What is the meaning behind this quote from Hamlet "Goodnight Sweet Prince"? Is it an indication of Horatio's death; is it a suicide?

Quick Answer

Horatio does not die at the play's end, especially since he is needed for closure. Horatio says these words to Hamlet as a way to say goodbye to his dying friend, and the words show that Horatio does not see Hamlet as a completely negative man, but as a man who stayed unconditionally loyal to his father and country. 


Expert Answers info

omconnelly eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2015

write44 answers

starTop subject is Literature

Hamlet is the definition of a Shakespearean tragedy. The main protagonist, Hamlet, loses everything that is important to him in the end and his life. Unlike Greek tragedies where the main character must suffer as a result of his actions and his burden is to live with the ramification of his tragic flaw (ex: Oedipus), Hamlet dies without being about to explain the conflicts he endures and his subsequent actions to his people prior to his death. 

Horatio knows this when Hamlet is taking his final breaths. He understands what his friend sacrificed in order to avenge his father's death, and the torment...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 731 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

William Delaney eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write5,416 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences












check Approved by eNotes Editorial

mitchrich4199 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write171 answers

starTop subject is Literature








check Approved by eNotes Editorial


rondog91 | Student

Goodnightquotes,

I believe you made a mistake by saying Horatio's death.  As I am sure you know, it is Horatio's line directed, with respect, to his dead friend Hamlet.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial