Points out that the reason for the eventual downfall for the characters in the play "Hamlet" are caused by character flaws such as: obsession, cleverness, manipulation and bitterness.

Essay by mapleleafCollege, UndergraduateA-, February 2003

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The plays of William Shakespeare show his characters being victimized by flaws. As in other plays such as Macbeth, and Macbeth's out of control ambition, the play of Hamlet shares much of the same light. Within the complex storyline of character relationships these flaws can be easily withdrawn from various if not all of the characters found in Hamlet. The flaws of characters such as Hamlet and Claudius, arguably, but ultimately lead to their eventual downfall. Whether it is being obsessive, clever, manipulative or bitter, the deaths of these two contrasting yet vastly similar characters are inevitable. Gertrude's frail personality and her apparent unfaithfulness lead to her indirect death. As littler or as large as these flaws may appear to be, certain death becomes the result of them all.

Shakespeare is well known for his complex evil villains. In most cases these villains lack the simple clarity of absolute evil.

Claudius is a perfect example of this. At first the new King is introduced to the reader as a charming, powerful gentleman. Eventually his clever, manipulative murderous side is revealed through various encounters with characters throughout the play. One of which involves Laertes. After losing his father, Polonius, and his sister, Ophelia, Laertes is infuriated. The clever Claudius recognizes this and immediately goes to work in manipulating Laertes to coincide with him in the slaying of Hamlet. "Under the moon, can save the thing for death that is but scratch'd withal: I'll touch my point with this congtagion, that, if I gall him slightly it may be death." (4.7.145-148) Laertes speaks of the pre-meditated place induced into his frivolous mind by Claudius. After receiving word that Hamlet has been accusing him for the murder of King Hamlet, Claudius acts swiftly and cleverly by sending Hamlet away. "And he...