Summary: Hamlet and Agamemnon as Fundamental Components of Greek Tragedy

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Hamlet and Agamemnon are two classic plays that each incorporate all the fundamental components of Greek tragedy. They additionally share similar themes related to the abuse of power, deceit, revenge, loyalty, love, and loss. Both are characters of high social status that endure inevitable ruin brought about by their own character flaws and a catastrophic error of judgment. In any case, between the two plays, I believe Hamlet to be more tragic. Albeit both of their hardships evoke sympathizing, Hamlet offers the audience a more intimate perspective into his musings, sentiments, and relationships which encourages a stronger emotional connection and a more sympathetic response.

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The way in which Hamlet exposes his tormented internal state elicits deep sympathy and makes him relatable, regardless of his extraordinary circumstances. We likewise find out much about him through his numerous soliloquies and monologues that eloquently examine intense topics like betrayal, morality, and death. He is a dramatic, complex, and candidly expressive man, whether he feels profound grief, sadness, outrage, or joy. Moreover, Hamlet is generally a more likeable character because he was basically blameless and didn’t deserve to die in the way that he did. Agamemnon, on the other hand, was guilty of murdering his own daughter – a reality that uncovered a darker, more dangerous side to his personality. Despite the fact that both Hamlet and Agamemnon are the heroes of these plays, Hamlet appears to play a more primary role. Agamemnon is still a focal figure, but there is a significantly heavier spotlight on other auxiliary characters, for example, Clytemnestra and the Chorus. Consequently, the development of Hamlet’s character is considerably more substantial. I perceived Agamemnon in an impersonal manner and was neutral to the outcome of high plight, while I was more emotionally invested in Hamlet and genuinely wanted him to prevail.

These two legends and their heartbreaking tales share many common traits based on the components of tragedy described by Aristotle. However, Hamlet is a greater tragedy due to the humanity in his depiction. Furthermore, Hamlet is the centralized figure of his story, and the audience learns about him through the personal insight he offers. By contrast, the audience lacks insight into Agamemnon’s life and personality because his identity is constructed largely by different characters in the story, who figure just as prominently as he does. There are great moral lessons to learn from these two tragedies, yet Hamlet’s capacity to connect with audiences in a more intimate way by sharing the most profound pieces of himself, and the martyred nature of his death, makes him the exemplification of a tragic hero.

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