Hamlet – corruption

Thou rash, intruding fool, farewell Perfunctory and callous epitaph.Harsh words for an unnecessary deathHamlet has been infected by corruption like the rest of the courtPolonius’ death marks Hamlet’s downward spiral into the corrupt courtClaudius’ death is not as dramatic or shocking as Polonius’ death which emphasises the shock of Hamlet’s abrupt change into a murderer in Act 3 Scene 4.Shakespeare emphasises the influence a corrupt world can have upon a character
Up sword and know thou a more horrid hent…And may his soul be as damned and black as hell whereto it goes Hamlet’s sinister attempt to seek revenge for the corrupt ways of Claudius and the court poisoning Elsinore. He wants eternal domination for Claudius but will hold back on death until the time is right
In the rank sweat of an enseamed bed, Stew’d in corruption, honeying and making love. Claudius infects the lives of others through his corrupt waysHamlet is outraged and hurt by his mother being dragged into the corruption of the court through remarriageThe use of sexually explicit language is almost insulting emphasising the unwholesome nature of this relationshipIn the court, corruption is passed on from person to person
‘Tis an unweeded garden that grows to seed; things rank and gross in naturePossess it merely Corruption is prevalent in the imagery of death and decayThe state of Denmark is by no means a fraction of what is was under Old Hamlet’s rule’garden’ is a beautiful and vibrant place, symbolising the old kingdom’rank and gross’ demonstrates how weary and despairing life is, immersed in corruption”unweeded” suggests Hamlet’s frustration with nothing being done to stop corruption diminishing the pure
I with wings as swift as meditation on the thoughts of loveMay sweep to my revenge Shows Hamlet’s affinity and eagerness for violence Marks Hamlet’s entrance into the world of corruption and suspicion
Oh my prophetic soul! My uncle! Hamlet cannot avoid corruption and becomes victim to itBy use of word “prophetic”, Hamlet indicates that he has suspicions about Claudius The fact that he did not act upon his suspicions show him as neither corrupt nor impulsiveHamlet needs to be 100% sure before action
Oh my offence is rank! It smells to heaven! Claudius admits to the foul deed of killing Hamlet’s father”rank” – his brother’s murder affects his conscience1st time in the play that the audience gain insight into Claudius’ thoughtsIt is the only scene in which the audience trust ClaudiusClaudius repents the murder but not all of the possessions that he gained because of the deedHis guilt is so palpable – perhaps reinforced by the corrupt world that he rules
drunkards demonstrates the behaviour of the court since Old Hamlet’s deathHamlet is against Claudius’ celebrationsShows the corrupt schemes of Claudius to destroy the dignified reputation Denmark held before Claudius’ rule.
Denmark’s a prison Hamlet desperately wants to escape from the court He must fulfil his father’s demandLiving in the corrupt court emphasised Hamlet’s despair
Now cracks a noble heart Shows what Hamlet was like before the encounter with the ghost and his corruption that soon followedMirrors what Ophelia said :”O what a noble mind is here o’erthrown”It helps the audience gain insight into Hamlet’s true character hidden behind the corruption and “antic disposition”
Something is rotten in the state of Denmark Denmark is festering with moral and political corruptionNatural imagery, death and decayConveys that something is affecting the whole of Denmark, not just the corrupt king’s court