Ophelia is essentially a pure and virtuous character who is driven insane by the conflicting demands of her father and brother on one hand and her former boyfriend, Hamlet, on the other. She changes from a state of innocence to one of disillusionment and despair as the play goes on.
At the beginning of the play, Laertes, her brother, tells Ophelia that Hamlet is not serious about her. He says, "For Hamlet and the trifling of his favor, / Hold it a fashion and a toy in blood, / A violet in the youth of primy nature" (I.3.5-7). In other words, Laertes informs Ophelia that Hamlet's attentions are fleeting, and that they will pass because he is changeable young man. Later, her father, Polonius
(The entire section contains 586 words.)