The story of Hamlet presents to us not one of treason and murder, but of self-reflection and a lack of self-trust. To what degree can we look the right in the face and deny it? Can we deny instinct and emotion? Hamlet is presented with the knowledge of his fathers murder, knows it within himself to be true, yet delays in carrying out a sentence so richly deserved. Throughout the story we watch as Hamlet delves within himself to find the reason for the delay, only find out that there is no reason.
The Old Dane is dead, supposedly by natural causes, and a mere two months afterward, his wife and Hamlet's mother, marries the Dane's brother, whom assumes the throne. Hamlet is disgusted by his mother's change of heart, adoring his father until the end, then marring the brother while Hamlet's tears are still wet. While dealing with all this, Horatio tells him of the ghostly figure seen during the night watch the previous nights watch. Horatio invites Hamlet to join then that night, Hamlet agrees, suspecting the ghost might be connected to his father's death. During the watch, the ghost appears and asks Hamlet to talk to him. They go a short distance and the ghost reveals to Hamlet the circumstances of his father's death, not natural causes, but murder and foul play by his own brother, the new King. Upon hearing those words, Hamlet swears vengeance for his father, and one would think that a loving son would carry out this act immediately, but he delays. As stated in Act 5, scene 2, much had happened to Hamlet that would have carried any other person to the edge:.
Does it not, think thee, stand me now upon.
He that hath killed my king, and whored my mother,.
Popped in between th" election and my hope.
Thrown out his angle for my proper life.
And with such cozenage - is't not perfect conscience.
To quite him with this arm? And is't not to be damne.
To let this canker of our nature come.