William Shakespeare's Hamlet

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Hamlet is a complex story that uses many literary devices to help develop the characters in Hamlet. One dominant device is irony. The main plot of the story revolves around irony. Hamlet is a witty character and loves to use irony. Hamlet’s use of irony displays how he insults people, discovers useful information, and reveals his true character. The use of irony in this story helps to add depth to each character, which is why Hamlet is one of Shakespeare’s most complex stories. There are three types of irony: verbal, situational, and dramatic. Hamlet uses all three, which helps us see what the protagonist truly thinks of the world around him. He usually uses verbal irony to insult Claudius. He uses situational irony to develop the plot. Lastly, the author uses dramatic irony to let the audience interpret if Hamlet is truly insane or just misunderstood. The most important use of irony in Hamlet is situational. He uses this type of irony to catch Claudius, which is the turning point of the story. He also uses situational irony to crown Denmark’s biggest enemy king. The situational irony of the play within a play is that it resembles how Hamlet Sr. dies and the fact that Claudius does slip on his emotions. The reader gets some important details about Hamlet’s character through his use of irony: he is smart, does not trust Claudius, and knows how to use his vast knowledge of literature to set up Claudius. Hamlet suspects Claudius killed his father and tells the actor “let

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