What do we learn of the political situation between Denmark and Norway in Hamlet?

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In act 1, scene 1, Barnardo and Marcellus have recruited Hamlet's friend Horatio to come up to the castle ramparts and wait for the ghost of the old King Hamlet (who is dressed in full armor, as though ready for battle). Horatio, even before he sees the ghost, thinks...

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In act 1, scene 1, Barnardo and Marcellus have recruited Hamlet's friend Horatio to come up to the castle ramparts and wait for the ghost of the old King Hamlet (who is dressed in full armor, as though ready for battle). Horatio, even before he sees the ghost, thinks that the ghost's appearance may be related to the threat of war from Norway, in part because of the preparations that Denmark appears to be making for such a war. He explains that, in the recent past, the king of Norway, old Fortinbras, started a war with old King Hamlet, and the Danish forces defeated the Norwegian armies; during this time,

[Old Hamlet] Did slay this Fortinbras, who by a sealed compact,
Well ratified by law and heraldry,
Did forfeit, with his life, all those his lands
which he stood seized of, to the conquerer (1.1.98–101).

In other words, Norway lost not only its king, it also lost a great deal of land to Denmark as a result of the conflict. Now, according to Horatio,

Young Fortinbras,
Of unimproved mettle hot and full,
Hath in the skirts of Norway here and there
Sharked up a list of lawless resolutes
For food and diet to some enterprise
That hath a stomach in 't; which is no other . . .
But to recover of us, by strong hand
And terms compulsatory, those foresaid lands
So by his father lost (1.1.107–116).

The dead king's son, young Fortinbras, appears to be attempting to avenge his father's death and the losses his country sustained as a result of this defeat. He is rounding up whoever is willing to fight with him to attack Denmark and to try to win back the lands that Norway lost.

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From several scenes in Hamlet, we know that the political situation is tenuous and delicate between the two countries. In Act I scene i, we learn that Hamlet's homeland is under threat from Denmark because young Fortinbras seeks to regain lands lost to Hamlet's father by Fortinbras' father years before. 

The appearance of the elder Hamlet's ghost seems to fortell of the upcoming war since ghosts are considered to be omens to such things.  The ghost is also dressed in armor, which makes the sentries wary of the future. 

In Act I scene ii, Claudius informs the court of the aggression from Norway and sends messengers to the King of Norway (the uncle of young Fortinbras) to curb the boy's zeal. 

Later, in Act IV sc iv, young Fortinbras, discouraged from attacking Denmark, now has his sights on Poland.  Hamlet remarks on his on inability to act while young Fortinbras and the Polish are willing to actively fight and die in the name of honor.   

Finally, in Act V sc ii, young Fortinbras enters and realizes with sorrow that he now has the opportunity to assume the Danish throne.  Horatio comments that Hamlet spoke in favor of Fortinbras' rule.  Fortinbras orders Hamlet’s body carried “like a soldier” to the stage, and says if Hamlet had had the chance, he would “have proved most royal.” As the new King of Denmark, he orders appropriate funeral rites for Hamlet, including the firing of ordnance, which marks the ending of the play.

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