By what means does Shakespeare build suspense before the Ghost's appearances? What disturbing political events happen in the background of Act I?

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Shakespeare was a master at building dramatic suspense and never more so than in this iconic opening to HamletFirst, the setting is a castle watch late on a dark night--suitably creepy. Then, just as we are starting to hear about the appearance of the ghost for two nights running, the ghost itself appears. We see it and are told it looks like the dead king, Hamlet, but when Horatio demands that it speak, it disappears. We the audience want to know more. Horatio, though he doesn't know what the ghost's appearance means, says he fears it is a bad omen for Denmark, again building our anxiety. Horatio then amplifies our fear and suspense out there on the dark ramparts, where the ghost has just passed, by telling what we might call "ghost stories": stories of...

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