Hamlet Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

Hamlet book cover
Start Your Free Trial

As the play Hamlet opens, what is the mood?

Expert Answers info

mattbuckley eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2010

write146 answers

starTop subject is Literature

The opening of this classical play is one of confusion. It is ominous as the opening line asks the question of "Who's there?" The characters are almost hysterical in there anxiousness. It lets the audience know that something is very wrong in the...

(The entire section contains 141 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

aszerdi | Student

As the play opens the mood is ominous. There is a sense of apprehension and paranoia. This is observed as the soldiers repeatedly and almost frantically as each other who is there. The following quote from Marcellus also highlights their fear and anxiety upon viewing an apparition that appeared to be their king:

"Horatio says 'tis but our fantasy,
And will not let belief take hold of him
Touching this dreaded sight, twice seen of us:
Therefore I have entreated him along
With us to watch the minutes of this night;
That if again this apparition come,
He may approve our eyes and speak to it."

Furthermore, they view this ghost again, and Horatio trembles and appears pale. All these fearful occurrences within this first scene foreshadow the tragic events that will follow later in the play.