Words of Wisdom:

"Idiocy is contagious, Go away!" - Aznmask


  • Date Submitted: 01/15/2013 09:24 PM
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Question #4: “The beginning of a play is also an end; and the end also a beginning.” Discuss this comment in relations to Hamlet.

Hamlet is a play of questions, starting from the very beginning of the play with the murder of King Hamlet and subsequent marriage of his widow. Responding to the statement of “The beginning of a play is also an end…” the beginning of Hamlet is an end in that it is the end of Hamlet’s old life and the start of his new motive: revenge. The play opens up immediately with the king already dead, the ultimate ending, and his son left to witness his mother’s re-marriage to his uncle, again another ending.
The beginning of any play is always that: a beginning. However, in every beginning there is always something that has to end in order to create something new. In Hamlet, several things end: King Hamlet’s reign, Gertrude’s widowing and subsequent remarriage, Hamlet’s relationship with both his mother and Ophelia. These endings provide the force behind the conflicts of the play and help to drive it forward. Also like any good story, these endings help the audience to be able to connect to the main character and create an emotional connection with Hamlet. In addition, the ending of these items creates questions and interest in how those questions are going to be answered.
In specific examples in Hamlet, the main ending that affects the plot the most is of course the ending of King Hamlet’s life. This not only affects Hamlet in that it causes him much grief but also later on creates the main plot story of Hamlet’s drive for revenge. In addition, King Hamlet’s death leaves the path open for Claudius to step in and take both the kingship and Gertrude.  
Moving on to the “and the end also a beginning.” part of the prompt, this basically states that the ending of a play often times open ups into a new beginning of the characters in the play, and it allows you   to imagine what will happen after the play’s end. Play’s endings...


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