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Why Did Hamlet Delay Killing the King In Shakespeares Hamlet the main character continually delays acting out his duty of avenging his fathers murder This essay will discuss how Hamlets nature and morals which are intensified by difficult events prevent him from carrying out the task In the opening scenes of the play the Ghost of Hamlets late father reveals to him the true means by which King Hamlet died The Ghost tells Hamlet that his fathers death was caused by Claudius pouring poison into his ear He exhorts Hamlet to avenge the murder Hamlets initial response is to act on the Ghosts exhortation quickly Hamlet says Haste me to knowt that I with wings as swiftMay sweep to my revenge Yet by the end of the same scene his reluctance to murder King Claudius is evident Hamlet says This time is out of joint O cursed spite that I was ever born to set it right Many theories have been put forward as to the reasons for Hamlets delay in avenging the King from hereon in One theory suggests that Hamlet wished to determine the nature of the Ghost before acting for he says in Act II2 that The spirit I have seen may be a devil However even after the play within a play through which Hamlet has obtained his proof as to the nature of the Ghost and confirmed that Claudius is guilty Hamlet says Ill take the Ghosts word for a thousand pound but fails to act and can only contemplate the event Similarly when Hamlet happens upon Claudius praying he does not take the opportunity to kill the King rather he makes excuses saying he does not want Claudius to go to heaven However this is little more than a delay tactic and Hamlet also does not make any further plans to kill the King The most plausible explanation is that Hamlets
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