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History of Hamlet

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Sara Rivera

on 24 October 2012

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Transcript of History of Hamlet

The History of Hamlet Amleth Saxo Grammaticus wrote Amleth around 1185, but the story is based on an older oral legend Saxo Grammaticus was a Danish historian who wrote Gesta Danorum. In English, "The Story of the Danes." His work detailed the history of Denmark and its rulers and was the first Danish contribution to world literature Gesta Danorum is 16 volumes, and the tale of Amleth is found in volumes 3 and 4 Saxo Grammaticus was from Zealand (Denmark's largest island) and came from a family of warriors, although he was a clerk. Shakespeare's Hamlet closely follows the story of saxo's Amleth Gesta Danorum was first printed in 1514 in Paris and then translated into French by Francois Belleforest in 1570. The Story of the Danes did not appear in English until 1608. The account of Amleth is: the king of the Danes, King Rorik, placed Jutland in the control of two brothers, Orvendil and Feng. Orvendil wed the Rorik's daughter Geruth, and they had a son, Amleth. Ur-Hamlet Helsingor is Elsingor in English Zealand, where Saxo lived J Jutland, where Amleth lived It was translated into Le Cinquiesme Livre des Histoires Tragiques, or The Fifth Book of Tragic Stories. This version may have influenced the characters of Ophelia and the ghost--it was the first time the "fair woman" mentioned in Amleth was given importance. In Rome, Claudius was the name of Roman emperor Nero's great-uncle and stepfather. Nero killed Claudius and supposedly his mother as well. Author of Amleth Elsinore Elsinore is a real place, and it is called Helsingor in Danish. Helsingor is located on the big island of Zealand in Denmark, just off the coast of Sweden. The castle that serves as the setting of Shakespeare's Hamlet is also a real place, and it is called Kronborg Castle and is located in Helsingor. Helsingor This plaque, dedicated to Shakespeare, is outside the Kronborg Castle. Roughly translated from Danish to English, it says,
"The legend tells about a prince Amleth who lived in "Jutland" (or Jylland, in Danish) in the viking ages (which were from 800-1050 in Denmark). A guy named Saxo wrote the Legend about Hamlet in the Middle Ages. In the renaissance Shakespeare rewrote the stories of Hamlet and connected them to this castle,...there with it... Prince's eternal reputation... Helsingør over the world"

. It is unknown whether Shakespeare actually visited Kronborg, but it is known that several of his co-workers in his acting troupe preformed as guest there, so perhaps they were the source of the stories inspiring Shakespeare to set Hamlet in that particular spot. Today, Kronborg looks like this.... Author Gesta Danorum Author Gesta Danorum Gesta Danorum Translation Saxo wrote in Latin which is why his last name, Grammaticus, is Latin Author And it is still surrounded by a moat... Kronborg From the outside... And inside the courtyard Ur-Hamlet was speculated to have been written around the late 1500s and to have been written by Thomas Kyd About Ur-Hamlet
There is no surviving copy of Ur-Hamlet, so little is known about it. It was a tragedy, it was preformed on a London stage, there was a character named Hamlet, and there was a ghost who cried "Hamlet, revenge!" What is known: Feng was jealous of his brother and was in love with his wife so he killed Orvendil and married Geruth, becoming King of Jutland. The similarities between Kyd's The Spanish Tragedy and Shakespeare's Hamlet lead scholars to believe Kyd wrote this lost Hamlet Tale of Amleth These similarities include: a play within a play to catch a killer, a ghost hungry for revenge, and bloody, elaborate familial drama. Amleth feigns madness to protect himself from being murdered Tale of Amleth The Spanish Tragedy, performed about a decade before Shakespeare's Hamlet, was the first "revenge tragedy" and influenced a larger movement in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries of many similar revenge-driven plays, including Hamlet and Titus Andronicus At the time Hamlet was written, Denmark and Norway had been in a peaceful union, since 1380 that lasted until 1814, so there was no real war between the two countries during Shakespeare's time. Ur-Hamlet was supposedly so violent that even the bloodthirsty groundlings left. Even the bloody Spanish Tragedy ends with several stabbings, suicides, a dead body being dragged onto stage, and a man chewing out his own tongue! The truth about the war Differences in the plots Amleth: Amleth's father, Orvendil, was a co-governor
of Jutland, only part of Denmark

Hamlet: Hamlet's father is the king of all Denmark, as
was his father before him Differences in the plots Amleth: Amleth's mother, Geruth, is King Rorik's

Hamlet: Gertrude is not stated to be a princess Names William Shakespeare

Prince Hamlet

Hamlet's father


King Claudius

Ophelia Saxo Grammaticus





Unnamed 'fair woman" Senecan Influence Who is Seneca? Because of Elsinor's proximity to Sweden, it would have been a popular port and trading city. This might have been why Shakespeare chose to make Elsinor his setting for Hamlet. Bibliography: http://www.pitt.edu/~dash/amleth.html






http://emerset.blogspot.com/2010/02/hamlet-versus-amleth.html Senecan tragedies were crude and melodramatic, but popular to the taste of Englishmen in the late 1500s Senecan tragedies focused on accounts of terrible deeds, had long reflective soliloquies, and ghosts and witches were common. What was a Senecan tragedy?
Elizabethan dramatists loved Seneca's themes of bloodthirsty revenge, and the Senecan tragedy served as a model for tragedies earlier in the Renaissance era. Seneca was a Roman orator, philosopher,
and tragedian playwright who lived from
4 BC to 65 AD. He must have pushed the
boundaries of what was accepted in theatre
during his time because Emperor Nero
ordered him to kill himself, and he complied. Senecan influence on Hamlet Hamlet's theme of revenge, the corpse-strewn ending, and the ghost can all be traced back to Senecan tragedy Amleth means foolish, mad, or "not sane" in Icelandic and in various Norse languages Shakespeare's writings were influenced by the time period in which he lived: the Elizabethan era In the Elizabethan period, Senecan tragedies were gaining popularity, but in order to understand how Shakespeare was influenced by Senecan tragedies, we need to know more about Seneca and his style. Amleth: Amleth's father's assassination was openly known

Hamlet: Hamlet didn't know of his father's murder until the ghost told him Amleth: when Amleth kills an unnamed eavesdropper he cuts up the body and feeds it to pigs

Hamlet: Hamlet leaves Polonius's body in the upstairs lobby Amleth: Amleth changes the king's letter to say to kill the two messengers and to let him marry the English king's daughter (which he does)

Hamlet: Hamlet changes the letter to say kill the two messengers upon arrival Amleth: The unnamed fair woman lives and has no brother

Hamlet: Ophelia kills herself which drives her grief-stricken brother to seek revenge. Laertes plots with the King Amleth: Amleth lives and becomes king (governor) of Jutland

Hamlet: Hamlet dies from Laertes's poisoned sword Amleth: Geruth lives

Hamlet: Gertrude dies from drinking poisoned wine that was meant for Hamlet Across from the main gate... And going through the history of Denmark and Norway, we found... Kronborg was used as a defense fortress against attacks from the Swedes, as Sweden was Denmark's traditional enemy, not Norway. King sends Amleth to England with two couriers. Amleth finds their letter with the order for England to kill him. He switches the letter with one that says, in addition to killing the messengers, Amleth should marry the English princess. Amleth marries the princess and plots revenge against his uncle. Amleth returns to Elsinor, kills him, and becomes the King (governor) of Jutland
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