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Similarities Between Hamlet And The Great Gatsby Essay

During history there have been literary works that had characters that were remarkably similar to each other. Two characters that stood out was Jay Gatsby, from The Great Gatsby by Scott Fitzgerald and Hamlet from The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark by William Shakespeare because they were both being driven to a separate kind of person than who they usually which is being more insane than the usual human would be.

Some reason for their peculiar outbursts of who they really are is a particular girl that was in their life that changed who they are as a person, their ranking in society, society itself, and the amount of money that they had compared to others in their stories and who they knew. One similarity between Hamlet and Gatsby was they both loved a girl very much so. One example for this so called loved was: Doubt thou the stars are fire; Doubt that the sun doth move; Doubt truth to be a liar; But never doubt I love. Shakespeare)

This is showing how Hamlet seemed to really care for a female named, Ophelia and he expressed his love for her in exquisite words. Gatsby also used such words to obtain the girl of his dreams that he wanted. They were also given opportunities that they took for themselves for their loved ones. Another quote may come from Hamlet as well saying: I loved Ophelia: forty thousand brothers Could not, with all their quantity of love, Make up my sum. What wilt thou do for her? (Shakespeare)

Another similarity between Hamlet and Gatsby was they were both driven insane. An example of this was “‘Though this be madness, yet there is method in’t. “(Shakespeare). This was Hamlet saying how he was going insane and due to all that was happening around him that caused him to be impacted and lose his sanity. Gatsby was also impacted by the girl that he loved that made him turn into a deranged man as well. The last similarity between Hamlet and Gatsby was they are both very specific men that are chosen to be the “main events”.

An example that could come from this is “To be honest, as this world goes, is to be one man picked out of ten thousand. ” (Shakespeare). Both these characters were the ones that are the main characters and they were the designated chosen ones out of all the other males in the world that are also humans. Apart from having similarities, these characters both have contrasting details to happen. One way they are different from each other is where the live. The prince of Denmark, also known as Hamlet lived in Denmark. Shakespeare). Gatsby lived on Long Island in New York. (Fitzgerald).

Another difference between these two characters was how they became rich and full of fortune. Hamlet became rich because the is the Prince of Denmark, which then means he was born into his fortune(Shakespeare), while Gatsby had to do and illegal act which was known as bootlegging which brought him full of fortune. (Fitzgerald). Their means brought them their ranks in life. The last reason they are different from each other is what they became rich for.

Hamlet became rich because there was no other way and he was didn’t go from rags to riches, he started out in the riches as the prince. (Shakespeare). Gatsby became rich because he wanted to get the girl of his dreams that he could not stay with and the only way that he could obtain her was if he became high in his social class. Due to their similarities that these characters both had they were affected by these changes in their life and it was a huge major result in the storyline of these stories.

One similar impact that happened was they both fell to their demise. The last lines that Gatsby has before his demise was “So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past. “(Fitzgerald). These were some chilling words that went right before Gatsby was killed by someone else as well as Hamlet being killed at the very end of the play by someone who was close to him. Another similarity between the two that impacted others was their deaths left amends on people.

As Gatsby was killed, the other people were left stress free, such as the girl that he loved as well as her husband, Tom who was very aggravated with Gatsby and wanted and ended Gatsby’s life in a non primary way and Hamlet once killed he left Denmark very calm and soothing by leaving the King of Norway, Fortinbras to take over all of Denmark and to become king of both places. The last similarity that had an effect was these characters were changing everybody’s opinions and view of them.

As Gatsby was growing more insane and in love for his female, he was driving himself away from sanity, as well as Hamlet he was going insane over his father who was killed by the current king of Denmark which was King Claudius. He was a man who drove the rates of insanity to flood Hamlet’s mind and he changed the outlook of himself to his family and everybody. As well as having similar effects on their lives and others they also had different ways of changing people’s ways and their lives. One effect was the way they were killed, the males faced a grave ending when they were left to go six feet underground.

In “Hamlet” this was said by Hamlet: Oh, I’m dying, Horatio! This strong poison’s overpowering me. I will not live to hear the news from England. But I bet Fortinbras will win the election to the Danish crown. He’s got my vote as I die. So tell him that, given the recent events here—oh, the rest is silence. Oh, oh, oh, oh. (he dies)(Shakespeare) This was Hamlet saying that he was facing death by the acts of poison while Gatsby was killed by a deranged man who went behind him and then shot himself as well to end his sorrow.

Another difference between both of these two were the amounts of people that they killed by being deranged. The difference in deaths as three to zero, which is the ratio for Hamlet to Gatsby. Hamlet says “What’s this, a rat? I’ll bet a buck he’s a dead rat now. (he stabs his sword through the tapestry and kills Polonius)”(Shakespeare). This is him ending the life of Polonius, one of the three victims that was ended and killed. Meanwhile Gatsby doesn’t have any lines where he has killed someone during the story unlike Hamlet.

The last way that they had a different impact was the amount of people that still remembered or would have memories of them. Gatsby barely had anybody that cared, while Hamlet had many. Hamlet was a prince who would be remembered. Even Fortinbras said something bold about him which was: Bear Hamlet, like a soldier, to the stage; For he was likely, had he been put on, To have proved most royally: and, for his passage, The soldiers’ music and the rites of was Speak loudly for him.

Take up the bodies: such a sight as this Becomes the field, but here shows much amiss. Go, bid the soldiers shoot. (Shakespeare) This was Fortinbras giving him the a word of command of saying such pleasant words that would warm the heart of anybody if they were alive to hear it. Most would thank thee Fortinbras. In conclusion, Hamlet and Gatsby were similar characters, but at the same time they were very similar to each other.

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