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Word Count: 872
The Role of the Supernatural in Shakespeare In the time of William Shakespeare there was a strong belief in the existence of the supernatural Thus the supernatural is a recurring aspect in many of Mr Shakespeares plays In two such plays Hamlet and Macbeth the supernatural is an integral part of the structure of the plot It provides a catalyst for action an insight into character and augments the impact of many key scenes The supernatural appears to the audience in many varied forms In Hamlet there appears perhaps the most notable of the supernatural forms the ghost However in Macbeth not only does a ghost appear but a floating dagger witches and prophetic apparitions make appearances The role of the supernatural is very important in Hamlet and Macbeth A ghost appearing in the form of Hamlets father makes several appearances in the play It first appears to the watchmen Marcellus and Bernardo along with Horatio near the guardsmens post The ghost says nothing to them and is perceived with fear and apprehension It harrows me with fear and wonder It is not until the appearance of Hamlet that the ghost speaks and only then after Horatio has expressed his fears about Hamlet following it What if it tempt you toward the flood my lord or to the dreadful summit of the cliff The conversation between the ghost and Hamlet serves as a catalyst for Hamlets later actions and provides insight into Hamlets character The information the ghost reveals incites Hamlet into action against a situation he was already uncomfortable with and now even more so Hamlet is not quick to believe the ghost The spirit that I have seen may be a devil and perhaps out of my weakness and my melancholyabuses me to damn me and thus an aspect of Hamlets character is revealed Hamlet having no suspicion of the ghost after the production by the players encounters the ghost next
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