Relationships between humans are always complicated, what seems to be the basis for father son relationships we see in Hamlet?

Expert Answers
Doug Stuva eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Three main relationships between fathers and sons exist in Shakespeare's Hamlet:

  • King Hamlet/his Ghost-Hamlet
  • Polonius-Laertes
  • King Norway (though deceased)-Fortinbras

The most striking element of these relationships is that all three sons are loyal to their fathers, and seek revenge when they are killed. 

A fourth relationship is contrasted to these:  King Claudius to Hamlet.  Claudius would like Hamlet to see him as "kin," but, of course, Hamlet wants none of that.

Concerning the relationships before the fathers die, we see nothing of Norway before he dies; we see a little of the relationship between Polonius and Laertes (Act 1.3); and we have only Hamlet's comments about his father, and the few comments we get deal more with his father's treatment of his wife than his son. 

You'll basically need to skim the play for bits here and there where Hamlet comments on his father, as well as analyze the conversation between Laertes and his father I mention above.  Perhaps another editor will take over where I leave off and provide you with some quotes. 

I will give you one though:  Hamlet says his father was a "dear father," in Act 3.1.550.