What change has taken place in Hamlet in Act Five, Scene 2?

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David Morrison eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Hamlet has come to accept his impending death with some degree of equanimity. He is no longer obsessed with what the future may hold, with whatever cosmic forces may be swirling about him. As he approaches the end of his short life on earth, Hamlet appears at ease with his fate, no longer fearful of death. Compare his relative peace of mind here with the almost constant brooding introspection in which he indulges throughout the rest of the play.

Ophelia's death appears to have given Hamlet a bit of a jolt; he feels that he must somehow answer to Laertes for his part in the deaths of his father and sister. In the figure of Laertes, Hamlet comes to see an instrument of divine vengeance. More than that, however, he feels a certain empathy with Laertes. Hamlet of course knows all about seeking revenge for the death of a loved one. Just as Claudius must answer for the murder of Hamlet's father, so too must Hamlet answer for his own crimes.

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Gretchen Mussey eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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In the final scene of the play, Hamlet displays several...

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