Epic Hero : William Shakespeare 's Hamlet

1606 Words Jun 3rd, 2016 7 Pages
Epic Hero. “A brave and noble character in an epic poem, admired for great achievements or affected by grand events” (Dictionary). The traditional characteristics of an epic hero includes being born into nobility, being decisive, being an excellent warrior who is respected, and ultimately winning in the end. In Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Hamlet fits the mold of an epic hero as he is born into nobility, but he breaks the mold of an epic hero as he never takes action against Claudius while in Othello, Othello fits the mold of an epic hero as he is a great warrior but he breaks the mold as he ultimately loses in the end. Both Hamlet and Othello fit and break the mold of epic hero traits. When Shakespeare wrote Hamlet and Othello, epic heroes were considered the traditional example of heroes. One characteristic of an epic hero includes being born into nobility. It was common for the hero to be a prince and the son of a king and queen. This also meant the hero was very wealthy and powerful. In addition to being born into nobility, the hero being decisive was an important characteristic. Even if the hero didn’t succeed, he would try to act quickly to stop the conflict. During that time, a hero was considered manly if he made decisions quickly. Another characteristic of an epic hero includes being a great warrior. The hero was supposed to be very strong, powerful, and was well respected among the people. Finally, the hero ultimately had to win in the end. Even if the hero died, his…
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