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Hamlet, Tragedy, Tragic Hero

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  • Published: November 17, 2017
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“What a piece of work a man is,” says the title character, Hamlet, of William Shakespeare’s famous tragedy Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (Shakespeare 2.

2. 327). Men are pieces of work, and some men like to make pieces of work, like Shakespeare and his numerous plays, and other men like to give their opinion on pieces of work. The Greek philosopher Aristotle wrote about poetics, but more specifically he wrote about tragedy. Aristotle’s book, Poetics, defines tragedy as “an imitation, not only of a complete action, but also of incidents arousing pity and fear” (Aristotle 686).

Not only did Aristotle define tragedy, but he also defined the tragic figure in tragedy. A perfect example of the tragic figure is Hamlet, a melancholic grieving prince who has recently lost his father. After the death of his father, Hamlet’s uncle, Claudius, takes


(Video) Hamlet as a tragic hero. 9057 Unit 6

the throne and marries Hamlet’s mother, Gertrude. The play begins with the late King Hamlet appearing to young Hamlet as a ghost.

The ghost tells Hamlet that Claudius is responsible for old Hamlet’s death and that Hamlet needs to kill Claudius to avenge old Hamlet, and release him from Purgatory.Hamlet then “vows to give his life to the duty of revenge; the rest of the story exhibits his vain efforts to fulfill this duty” (Bradley 21). Hamlet eventually succeeds in killing Claudius but ends up dying in the process. Thus, Hamlet shows the signs of a tragic figure.

In William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Hamlet displays the characteristics of a classic tragic hero. To begin, Aristotle’s classic tragic figure must have four defining characteristics. First, nobility comprises the first characteristic that a tragic hero must have.To have nobility,

the character must be “manly,” because “it is not appropriate [for] a female character,” to be tragic (Aristotle 698). The tragic figure must also have a high ranking position in his society, be well liked, and he “shall be good,” and have a high moral fiber that elicits sympathy from the audience (Aristotle 689).

All of this will lead to the public opinion that he is “better than the ordinary man” (Aristotle 689). Regardless of the fact that he is noble, and viewed as of higher order, the tragic hero must have a tragic flaw. The flaw will usually be revealed early to the audience but is denied by the tragic hero.This flaw is a natural part of their personality that causes them to make an “error in judgment” (Aristotle 687). The error is most clear when the act is done “knowingly and consciously” by the character (Aristotle 688).

This flaw in personality causes the character to be responsible for his reversal of fortune. This reversal of fortune is called Peripety by Aristotle and is “the change […] from one state of things within the play to its opposite” (Aristotle 686). During the Peripety, the tragic hero will be seen “falling from happiness into misery,” in order to “move [the audience] to either pity or fear” (Aristotle 687).The hero will make a decision that will eventually cause his destruction that was the result of a combination of free will and fate.

As a result of the Peripety, the tragic hero will experience a realization of the truth and a downfall from his high position. During the realization the hero experiences “a change from ignorance to

knowledge,” and as a result of this change, will probably experience some form of mental suffering which will probably be “destructive or painful [in] nature” (Aristotle 687). This realization, however, comes at a price which is their downfall, during which they will experience long suffering or self torture.This will accompany death. Therefore, Aristotle’s aforementioned characteristics are the defining components of the ideal tragic hero. First of all, in order to be a classic tragic hero, Hamlet must be noble.

As a part of the nobility of the classic tragic figure, Hamlet exemplifies the high ranking male requirement. At the beginning of the play, when Hamlet is first introduced, Queen Gertrude tells Hamlet to stop grieving for the dead King. She says Do not forever with thy vailed lids Seek for thy noble father in the dust. Thou know’st ’tis common; all that lives must die,Passing through nature to eternity. (1.

2. 72-75) If the Queen says that he had a noble father, then by nature he must be noble himself. Also, at the end of the play, Hamlet’s school friend Horatio tells Hamlet “Good night, sweet prince” (5. 2. 397). The fact that he is a prince further proves that Hamlet is a high ranking male.

(Video) 💯√ Hamlet the Example Essay of Critical Studies Explained. Watch this video to find out!

Hamlet’s high ranking position and masculinity parallel the high rank and masculinity of the classic tragic figure. In addition to Hamlets masculinity and high rank, Hamlet is well liked just as the classic tragic hero is well liked.Hamlet’s popularity is evident when Horatio wishes to commit suicide when he realizes that Hamlet is going to die. Horatio picks up the poisoned cup that killed Gertrude and Claudius and says

“Here’s yet some liquor left,” indicating that he likes Hamlet to the point that he would rather die than be alone in the world without him (5. 2. 375).

Hamlets popularity is also evident when he sees Rosencrantz and Guildenstern and says “My excellent good friends! How dost thou” (2. 2. 242). If Hamlet was unpopular he would not have friends. Hamlet’s popularity parallels the popularity that is required by the tragic hero.As well as popularity, Hamlet’s high moral fiber parallels the high moral fiber of the tragic hero.

Hamlet’s high moral fiber is clear when he calls his incestuous mother “Wretched queen,” indicating he does not approve of the fact that she married her former husbands’ brother (5. 2. 365). His high moral fiber is also apparent when he utters the words “To be or not to be,” because he is contemplating suicide (3. 1.

64). He then rejects the idea of suicide because he does not believe it to be acceptable by the church. Hamlet’s high moral fiber parallels the high moral fiber of the classic tragic hero.Therefore, Hamlet’s all around nobility corresponds to the nobility required by the classic tragic hero.

As well as being noble, Hamlet’s tragic flaw parallels the flaw that is required by the classic tragic hero. As part of the tragic flaw, the hero’s flaw must be a part of his personality. Hamlet’s flaw is that he is too analytical, which is clearly part of his personality. His flaw of being over analytical is apparent when he sets up a play during which he will “have [the] players / Play something like the murder of [his] father” (2.

2. 623-624).He hopes that by “the very cunning of the scene” Claudius’ reaction will prove whether or not he was the murderer of old Hamlet (2. 2. 619). If Hamlet had just trusted the ghost when it said that Claudius had killed old Hamlet, then Hamlet would have saved a lot of time and energy.

He could have just killed the King, been done with the entire business, and probably would not have died in the process as he did. Hamlet’s personality flaw of being over analytical is also apparent when he misses a chance to kill the King. Hamlet sees Claudius praying, and he says And so am I revenged. That would be scanned:A villain kills my father, and for that, I, his sole son, do this same villain send To heaven.

(3. 3. 80-84) Hamlet, however, does not send Claudius to heaven; he over analyzes the situation, and decides to kill Claudius at a later time. He thinks that because Claudius appears to be praying killing him would send him to Heaven, which is not wanted. It is later revealed; however, that Claudius’ “thoughts never to heaven go,” or in other words, he was not actually praying (3.

3. 103). Hamlet’s personality flaw of being over analytical parallels the personality flaw that must be in the tragic hero.As another part of the tragic flaw, the hero must make an error that is not realized by the hero.

Hamlet makes an error when he “accidentally kills Polonius and is consequently dispatched to his death in England” (Winders 8). Hamlet wanted to get revenge for his father on Claudius by killing Claudius, and Hamlet, while

arguing with his mother, decides to stab and kill a man behind a curtain whom he believes to be Claudius, but is actually Polonius. This causes Polonius’ son Laertes to want revenge on Hamlet. Hamlet tries to get forgiveness from Laertes, and says “Give me your pardon, sir.

I have done you wrong,” but Laertes insists that they duel (5. 2. 240). Hamlet also makes an error when he pretends to act mad. His fake madness drives Ophelia, his love, mad.

Then, while near water, she falls “in the weeping brook,” and the water “Pulled the poor wretch from her melodious lay / To muddy death” (4. 7. 200, 4. 7. 207-208). When Hamlet goes through all of the complex plans, and such in order to prove that Claudius is guilty, he makes the mistake of being partially responsible for the death of the woman he loves.

Hamlet’s error parallels the error made by the classic tragic hero.Thus, Hamlet’s tragic flaw parallels the tragic flaw of the classic tragic hero. In addition to his nobility, and tragic flaw, Hamlet’s reversal of fortune parallels the reversal of the classic tragic hero. As a part of Hamlet’s reversal of fortune, the opposite of what Hamlet wanted to happen happens, as a result of a decision Hamlet makes.

One of the decisions Hamlet makes that turn out to be the opposite of what he had hoped for is his killing of Polonius. When Hamlet stabs through the curtain, and Polonius cries “O, I am slain,” Hamlet realizes that he has killed Polonius (3. . 30). He had meant to “Kill a King,” and avenge his fathers murder (3.


(Video) How is Hamlet a tragic hero?

35). Thus, Hamlet’s decision to kill Polonius is the opposite of what he had hoped for, and that parallels the decision of the classic tragic figure. Another decision that Hamlet makes that is the opposite of what he had hoped for is when he first hears of the ghost. When he first decides to go see the ghost, he realizes that “All is not well,” which is the opposite of what he had been hoping for, because he had wanted to move on from his father’s death (1. 2.

277).He had even contemplated “self-slaughter” in order to escape the pain that it caused him, and when he goes to see the ghost, he realizes that something will be causing him more pain (1. 2. 136). The decision to visit the ghost turns out to be the opposite of what Hamlet had hoped for, which parallels the decision of the classic tragic figure.

In addition to making decisions that turn out to be the opposite of what he hopes for, Hamlet’s reversal is a combination of free will and fate. Fate placed Polonius behind that curtain. Hamlet clearly did not want to kill Polonius, he says Ay, Lady, it was my word.Thou wretched, rash, intruding fool, farewell. I took thee for thy better.

Take thy fortune. Thou find’st to be too busy is some danger. (3. 4. 37-40) This indicates that he feels some remorse for having killed Polonius, and that he had wanted to kill Claudius. As fate would have it, however, it was not Claudius behind the curtain.

Free will, however, was what Hamlet exercised when he decides to kill Polonius. Thus, Hamlet’s reversal

is a combination of fate and free will. Another way that Hamlet’s reversal is a combination of fate and free will is when Hamlet finds the orders of his death.When news of Hamlet’s killing of Polonius gets out, King Claudius decides that “everything is bent / For England,” and sends Hamlet there (4. 3. 50-51).

Little does Hamlet know, but on its way to England as well, is a letter with “an exact command” to kill him (5. 2. 22). Then, Hamlet, “by a combination of his influence and an extraordinary stroke of good fortune,” is able to intercept the orders, and therefore prevent his assassination (Winders 9). Hamlet then exercises his free will, and turns the orders around onto Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. Hence, Hamlet’s reversal is a combination of ate and free will, just as is the reversal of the tragic figure.

Therefore, Hamlet’s reversal of fortune parallels the reversal of fortune of Aristotle’s classic tragic figure. Finally, Hamlet’s realization and downfall parallel the realization and downfall of the classic tragic hero. First of all, in order for Hamlet’s realization to parallel the realization of the classic tragic hero, he must experience a change from ignorance to knowledge. An example of that change is when Hamlet tells Horatio that “ill all’s here / about my heart” (5. 2. 226-227).

Here Hamlet has a bad feeling; he realizes that something will not go well for him when he fights Laertes. Another example of Hamlet’s realization is at the end of Laertes’ and Hamlet’s duel. Both Hamlet and Laertes are struck with a poisoned blade. Laertes then tells Hamlet that “the point [is] envenomed too” (5. 2.

(Video) Why Hamlet is a tragic hero?

352). Hamlet then realizes that he has less than half an hour to live. Thus, Hamlet’s change from ignorance to knowledge parallels the change from ignorance to knowledge in the tragic figure. As another part of Hamlet’s realization, he must experience some kind of mental suffering.Hamlet suffers immense pain and loss, when he learns of Ophelia’s death, jumps into her grave and proclaims What is he whose grief Bears such an emphasis, whose phrase of sorrow Conjures the wand’ring stars and makes them stand Like wonder-wounded hearers? This is I, Hamlet the Dane. (5.

1. 267-271) He suffers so much emotionally that he proclaims “forty thousand brothers / Could not with all their quantity of love / Make up my sum” (5. 1. 285-287). Hamlet also suffers mentally, when his mother dies.

He had already considered killing him self when his father died, and were it not for Gods “canon ’gainst” it he probably would have (1. . 136). Now that his mother has died as well, Hamlet must be suffering from extreme emotional pain. Therefore, Hamlet’s emotional suffering during the realization parallels the emotional suffering of the classic tragic hero.

Furthermore, Hamlet’s downfall parallels the downfall of the classic tragic hero. First of all, for Hamlet’s downfall, he must experience some form of suffering, or self torture. Hamlet experiences suffering because he constantly tortures his own mind with the thought of suicide. Even in the beginning, during a suicidal soliloquy, he states that he believes life to be “stale, flat, and unprofitable” (1. . 137).

He also causes himself to suffer mentally when he has “a kind of / gaingiving,” or uneasy feeling that

the fight with Laertes will not end well (5. 2. 229-230). Hamlet does, however, still force himself to fight him regardless of his feelings. As the final part of Hamlet’s downfall, he must die.

Evidence of Hamlet’s death occurs when right after Hamlet is hit with a poisoned blade he says “O, I die, Horatio” (5. 2. 389). Further evidence is when the conquering Norwegian Prince Fortinbras walks into the palace sees Hamlet’s body lying on the floor and says O proud Death,What feast is toward in thine eternal cell That thou so many princes at a shot So bloodily hast struck? (5. 2.

403-406) Here, Fortinbras is asking why Death had to kill a prince, and since Hamlet is the only prince other than himself in the area, Hamlet must be dead. Thus, Hamlet’s death as part of the downfall corresponds to the death as part of the downfall of the classic tragic hero. Hence, Hamlet’s realization and downfall parallel the realization and downfall of the classic tragic hero. Therefore, in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Hamlet displays the characteristics of a tragic hero.The real tragedy of Hamlet, however, is the fact that Hamlet dies an almost Christ like figure who takes up the cross, in a sense, to fight against “a source of evil” not only for personal revenge, but also against an evil corruption that is infecting all of Denmark (Bertram 94). He is almost successful because Claudius’ death comes not from Hamlet’s planning, but from his own personal treachery.

Hamlet truly is a tragedy because Hamlet dies only after he has lost everything dear to him: his family, his friends, and his love.Works

Cited Aristotle. Poetics. The Works of Aristotle Volume II. Chicago: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1952. Bertram, Joseph.

Twentieth Century Interpretations of Hamlet. Ed. David Bevingtion. New Jersey: Prentice-Halls, 1968. Bradley, A. C.

(Video) Hamlet as a Tragic Hero

Twentieth Century Interpretations of Hamlet. Ed. David Bevingtion. New Jersey: Prentice-Halls, 1968.

Shakespeare, William. Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. Ed. Barbara A.

Mowat and Paul Werstine. New York: Washington Square Press, 1992. Winders, P. Understanding Hamlet. Ontario: Pergamon Press, 1975.


What makes Hamlet a tragic hero essay? ›

Hamlet is a tragic hero because he was blinded by his want for revenge of his father 's death. Hamlet pretended to be crazy for so long that he blocked out his true self and the people who cared for him, like Gertrude and Ophelia. The want for revenge was his flaw and what made him a tragic hero.

Who is an example of a tragic hero in Hamlet? ›

Hamlet, the Prince of Denmark, violates the law by killing different people such as Polonius, Laertes, Claudius, and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, making him a tragic hero. Hamlet's madness leads him down this path of destruction in which he harms and kills many people.

How would you describe Hamlet as a tragic hero? ›

In addition to the play ending with the death of Hamlet and a host of others, Hamlet himself is a classic tragic protagonist. As the Prince of Denmark, Hamlet is a figure whose actions matter to an entire kingdom, which means the play's events reverberate through the entire world of the play.

How is Hamlet a tragedy essay? ›

Hamlet is a revenge tragedy. It features the elements of a tragedy common in his time such as a murder, ghosts, and someone seeking revenge, but it also has elements of a tragedy such as the main character having a fatal flaw.

What is Hamlet's tragic hero flaw? ›

Shakespeare's tragic hero Hamlet's fatal flaw is his failure to act immediately to kill Claudius, his uncle and murderer of his father. His tragic flaw is 'procrastination'. His continuous awareness and doubt delays him in performing the needed.

Why is Hamlet considered a tragic hero quizlet? ›

Hamlet is killed with a poisoned sword by Laertes. The main character, or tragic hero, comes to an unhappy end. The tragic hero is a person of importance in society. The tragic hero exhibits extraordinary abilities.

What is an example of a tragic hero in Shakespeare? ›

Some of the most famous examples of tragic heroes in literature can be found in Shakespeare's plays. Among Shakespeare's most famous tragic heroes are Othello, Macbeth, Hamlet, and Romeo.

Which character is the best example of a tragic hero Shakespeare? ›

Macbeth is a definitive tragic hero. He embodies the main characteristics of a tragic hero, those being: hamartia, hubris, peripeteia, and anagnorisis. Shaksepeare outdoes himself in The Tragedy of Macbeth making Macbeth one of the theatre's most iconic examples of a tragic hero.

How is Hamlet an ideal example of a true tragic hero? ›

Prince Hamlet's instances of self-doubt and indecisiveness correspond to the idea that tragic heroes lack important decision-making skills in times of distress. Prince Hamlet's inability to make crucial decisions ultimately leads to his tragic death, and that is what makes him a tragic hero.

Is Hamlet a hero essay? ›

Hamlet comes across as both a hero and a villain throughout 'Hamlet' at different intervals. His loyalty, morality, honesty and popularity are certainly heroic traits however one can't deny his villainous ways in his dealings with Ophelia, his killing of Polonius and most importantly his delaying of killing Claudius.

Is Hamlet an anti hero or tragic hero? ›

Hamlet, the protagonist in William Shakespeare's play Hamlet, does not fit into the above description of a hero, and should be labeled as an "anti-hero." By a specific definition, an antihero is the "hero" of the play or novel, but this protagonist has negative attributes apart from the classic hero figure.

Is Hamlet to blame for the tragedy? ›

Most of the deaths in the play can be argued in many ways, but one character that is definitely to blame for a lot of deaths is Hamlet. Hamlet is the tragic hero in the play and although his plan was only to kill Claudius he ended up taking out a lot of other characters along the way.

Is Hamlet a revenge tragedy essay? ›

Audiences watching Hamlet at the time it was first performed would recognize the play as belonging to a particular genre: they didn't have a name for it, but modern scholars call it “revenge tragedy.” In a revenge tragedy the hero has suffered a great wrong, usually the murder of someone he loves, and the plot is ...

What tragedy happened in Hamlet? ›

Hamlet's uncle, Claudius, murdered King Hamlet and married his widow after the deed. Yet, Hamlet hesitates. He accidentally stabs the wrong man, causing the dead man's daughter – Hamlet's lover – to commit suicide. By the end of the final act, all the main characters are dead.

Is Hamlet responsible for his own tragic fate essay? ›

The decision of Hamlet to take action into his own hands leads Hamlet on a prolonged journey to avenge his father's death, however Hamlet's over analyzation and series of missed chances or opportunities to kill King Claudius, proves Hamlet to ultimately be procrastinator who is responsible for his own fate, whatever ...

What lies at the heart of Hamlet's power as a tragic hero? ›

Hamlet is a legendary tragic hero because he is a man of great nobility and unrealized potential, he suffers a tragic flaw that is both not entirely his fault and leads to his downfall, and he is a man who, despite his tragic ending, reminds readers of the beauty and the potential for human greatness.

What makes a tragic hero? ›

TRAGIC HERO CLASSICAL DEFINITION. A tragic hero is a person of noble birth with heroic or potentially heroic qualities. This person is fated by the Gods or by some supernatural force to doom and destruction or at least to great suffering.

Is Hamlet a hero a villain or something else? ›

In short, Hamlet is a self-centred, entitled, manipulative, callous bully. However, he is also intensely charismatic, so much so that he has persuaded the world to share his Hamlet-centric view. That is what makes him a villain of genius.

Is Hamlet a tragic hero a character who comes to misfortune through a fatal character flaw? ›

Hamlet in Shakespeare's play is known as a tragic hero due the fact that he was bound for greatness, but his fall came as a result of his personality flaw of over thinking and complicating each situation and not being able to act in desperate times.

What is a short note on the tragic hero? ›

A tragic hero is a type of character in a tragedy, and is usually the protagonist. Tragic heroes typically have heroic traits that earn them the sympathy of the audience, but also have flaws or make mistakes that ultimately lead to their own downfall. In Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, Romeo is a tragic hero.

What is the tragic hero summary? ›

A tragic hero is a character in a dramatic tragedy who has virtuous and sympathetic traits but ultimately meets with suffering or defeat. Something tragic is sadly disastrous, such as the untimely death of a loved one.

What are 3 major characteristics of a tragic hero? ›

Based on the Greek plays, the tragic hero typically has the following characteristics:
  • Hubris : excessive pride. ...
  • Hamartia: a tragic error of judgment that results in the hero's downfall. ...
  • Peripeteia: the hero's experience of a reversal of fate due to his error in judgment.

What is an example of a tragic hero story? ›

Traditional tragic heroes are noble individuals with many good, heroic, and sympathetic traits, all of which are counterbalanced by one potent flaw. This flaw eventually causes them to make poor decisions and downfall. Examples of classic tragic heroes include Sophocles' Oedipus and Creon, or Shakespeare's Hamlet.

Who are Shakespeare's Big 4 tragic heroes? ›

Four Great Tragedies: Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, Macbeth.

What are the five characteristics of a tragic hero? ›

His outline consisted of five things all tragedies should have characterized for their main tragic hero. This consisted of having nobleness, having a tragic/fatal flaw, peripeteia, a reversal of fortune, and having a fate greater than what the character deserved.

Who is an example of a modern day tragic hero? ›

Professional AthletesPoliticians“Celebrities”
Mike Tyson - BoxingTed KennedySyd Barrett
Oscar Pistorius- TrackGen. G. A. Custer
Lance Armstrong – CyclingJames Dean
Jim Irsay
17 more rows

Which is the best example of a tragic flaw? ›

Some examples of a tragic flaw include cowardice, ambition, over-protectiveness, and self-sacrifice. Overall, many different traits can be a tragic flaw if they become responsible for death and destruction.

Which plot is the best example of tragedy? ›

Sophocles' Oedipus the King is an excellent example of the tragedy plot with the tragic hero. The story begins with the incentive moment. There is a plague in Thebes and Oedipus vows that he will take care of it. Thus begins the cause-and-effect events.

What is the evidence that Hamlet is a hero? ›

Hamlet comes across as both a hero and a villain throughout 'Hamlet' at different intervals. His loyalty, morality, honesty and popularity are certainly heroic traits however one can't deny his villainous ways in his dealings with Ophelia, his killing of Polonius and most importantly his delaying of killing Claudius.

Who is the most tragic character in Hamlet? ›

Sweet and innocent, faithful and obedient, Ophelia is the truly tragic figure in William Shakespeare's Hamlet. "Her nature invites us to pity her misfortune caused not by any of her own self-initiated deeds or strategies"(Lidz 138). Laertes tells us convincingly how young and vulnerable Ophelia is, (act I. iii.

How is Hamlet a tragic hero according to Aristotle? ›

Hamlet is considered as a tragic hero because his flaw had caused him to turn from a person who seeks revenge to the person who got avenged by someone else, thus making him as a tragic hero.

How was Hamlet as a character? ›

Hamlet is melancholy, bitter, and cynical, full of hatred for his uncle's scheming and disgust for his mother's sexuality. A reflective and thoughtful young man who has studied at the University of Wittenberg, Hamlet is often indecisive and hesitant, but at other times prone to rash and impulsive acts.

Is Hamlet a good king essay? ›

Hamlet would indeed make a great king due to his compassion, loyalty, and intelligence. Any great king must be compassionate, and Hamlet is the embodiment of compassion. He shows this through his great sadness after his father's death.

Is Hamlet a victim or a villain essay? ›

During the course of the play, Shakespeare portrays Hamlet as the victim at first, but later becomes the villain when he murders his uncle to seek revenge for his father's death. Hamlet's Christian values kept him from seeking revenge all throughout the play until the very end.

Is Hamlet a tragic hero is Hamlet a tragic hero in the true sense of tragedy? ›

Hamlet is in fact a tragic hero. According to Aristotle's definition of tragedy, a tragic hero is a great person who has the potential for greatness but is defeated. This protagonist must come into conflict with a force who or which directly opposes to what he should want.

What is an example of a tragic hero? ›

Shakespeare created many notable tragic heroes: Hamlet, Macbeth, King Lear, and Othello, to name a few. Let's analyze a modern and a classic tragic hero as examples: In Star Wars, Anakin Skywalker's fear of losing his loved ones drives him to join the Dark Side, embracing evil powers in a twisted attempt to save them.

How Hamlet is responsible for his own tragic fate? ›

From killing Polonius to eventually causing the deaths of the entire royal family, Hamlet shows his friends and subordinates that he makes his choices based on his emotions. This ignorance and overall weakness becomes the layout for all of Hamlets choices, thus eventually leading him to his own demise.

Why is Hamlet to blame for the tragic ending? ›

The selfish decision Claudius makes to murder Hamlet's father makes him liable for all the other tragedies that occur. The death of King Hamlet causes Hamlet to act out of character, which makes him do things he would not normally do. This leads to the deaths of Polonius and Ophelia.

What is the conclusion of Hamlet tragic fate? ›

In William Shakespeare's Hamlet, the protagonist, Hamlet, dies in an effort to revenge his father, the King of Denmark, who was murdered and usurped by Claudius, Hamlet's uncle. Hamlet's tragic flaw, the cause of his downfall, is the reason why the play concluded with his own death.


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