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Lindsey Allinson English IV Honors Period 1A Mrs. Roberson 12 February 2002 Hamlet William Shakespeare's Hamlet is a tragedy which centers itself around a circle of murder and revenge. After King Hamlet's death, Prince Hamlet undergoes a series of events which alter his life in numerous ways. Each event ultimately leads up to the downfall of Hamlet in the end of the play. They shape young Hamlet's life and create, in him, the characteristics of a true tragic hero. Prince Hamlet encounters his tragic death with a potent sense of courage, nobility, and spirit.

Prince Hamlet exhibits a strong sense of courage throughout the play. After King Hamlet's death, Prince Hamlet has to live with the near-incestuous fact of his mother and uncle's marriage. Hamlet also has to face the ghost of his father, which tells of the true reason of his death: "I am thy father's spirit, doomed for a certain term to walk the night, and for the day confined to fast in fires, till the foul crimes done in my days of nature are burnt and purged away.....Now,

Hamlet, hear. 'Tis given out that, sleeping in my orchard, a serpent stung me; so the whole ear of Denmark is by a forged process of my death rankly abused; but know, thou noble youth, the serpent that did sting thy father's life now wears his crown (Shakespeare 72)." These disturbing facts, which could immediately cause Prince Hamlet's downfall, prove that Hamlet is strong enough to survive. This strong sense of survival that is evident in Hamlet gives him a potent aura of courage.

Prince Hamlet exists, throughout the play, with his personal perception of nobility.

His character, because of his father's reign, lives as noble birth. Hamlet, therefore, lives out his virtue through Gertrude, Claudius, and, ultimately,