Hamlet, Or, Shakespeare's Philosophy of History; A Study of the Spiritual Soul and Unity of Hamlet

9781235870644: Hamlet, Or, Shakespeare's Philosophy of History; A Study of the Spiritual Soul and Unity of Hamlet
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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1875 Excerpt: ...to liberty. The last words of Hamlet are, "which is not tomb enough and continent to hide the slain." This can only be applicable to the everlasting conflict of the strong and the weak. The cause for which this Prince, as Hamlet calls him (thus identifying himself partially), fights, is one eternal in a world, where every happiness depends upon physical or mental force. The struggle for liberty (not alone the liberty which we understand in this day) is at the bottom of all human conflict. Money, means, power, are only instruments of procuring for us greater liberty. The struggle for liberty is the struggle of individualism against social individualism, and that is too often tyranny over the individual. We remark the application of the word divine to Fortinbras. Is not the struggle for liberty a divine principle? Do we not desire in our earthly longing for a future life to realize a divine liberty? In the early stage of the tragedy we find Fortinbras making feeble and abortive attempts with ".... Here and there Shark'd up a list of lawless resolutes, For food and diet, to some enterprise That hath a stomach in't; which is no other--As it doth well appear unto our state--." 1 It is through liberty that reason finds a fitting atmosphere to flourish in. And Hamlet in using his reason silently escapes Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. We can understand the word lawless in all its meaning, as regards these early and feeble attempts. What a vast change has come over Fortinbras since these fiascos! Now he is a Prince, who, with a well-disciplined army, can "express his duty" in the eye of the King. He can act powerfully upon Hamlet. So immense is his influence upon Hamlet all through the play, that we may fairly say, without his help, our ...

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