The Ghost's Deception in Shakespeare's Hamlet Essay

1620 Words7 Pages
The Ghost’s Deception in Hamlet The Ghost in Hamlet cleared out the event that Hamlet was uncertain of. The spirit clarified the death of King Hamlet, and caused Hamlet to perform his evil deeds. The Ghost’s request to avenge him caused the death of Hamlet’s family, friends, and eventually himself; therefore, the spirit can be viewed as evil because it failed the four tests that was set by Lewes Lavater and the Church. Lewes Lavater describes how the church determines if a ghost is evil or good. The first description is “good spirits terrify initially, but ultimately comfort.” The spirit does not cause comfort to Hamlet. Throughout the play, the Ghost causes trouble among the characters. According to Eleanor Prosser: The Ghost…show more content…
(John Hunt, pp. 35) The source of all these problems is the Ghost. Therefore, the Ghost is evil because it has caused the demise and tribulations of all these characters. The spirit’s original intention was this and has fulfilled his private revenge through Hamlet. The second way to determine if a Ghost is evil is “good spirits associate with light; evil with darkness.” When the Ghost appeared to Hamlet, the environment in the play was dark. The darkness is not only associated with the environment but also to the Ghost’s words about scripture. But that is what we are warned the Devil will do: in order to disguise himself as an angel of light, he will clothe his naked villany with a piece of scripture. Catholics and Protestants both agreed that the mere repetition of Christian doctrine proved nothing. Both warned that we must be alert to the speaker’s ultimate purpose. (E. Prosser, pp. 137) The Ghost said “Leave her to heaven.”(I,v, 93) By using scripture words, the spirit may be trying to disguise himself to get Hamlet to perform his evil deed. If the Ghost was good, it will not use any
Open Document