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I have always been the confidant and trusted friend of Hamlet. Our friendship was grounded on sincerity, trust and understanding. I have tried to keep my friend from making mistakes and getting into trouble, however, I was not able to deny him doing so. In spite of all the controversies in my actions, I was acting honestly and loyally in order to provide a kind of support Hamlet needed.
I have always been a rational and responsible person. When the castle guards had encountered the ghost, they called upon me to address it. As an intelligent and discerning man, I felt deeply uneasy about the appearance of the ghost, however, I was not afraid of it. The only thing that scared me was that the ghost portended that something would go wrong with Denmark. I demanded that it tell me whether the ghost had come to predict the future of Denmark or to confess its ill deeds because of my calm and rational nature.
I was not involved in the Danish court’s intrigue directly, and that is why Hamlet trusted me. Hamlet praised me for my self-control and virtue,
Horatio, thou art e’en as just a man
As e’er my conversation cop’d withal (act 3, scene 2, lines 56-57).
At the same time, I was never afraid to speak my mind to Hamlet as honesty and sincerity were very important in our friendship. When Hamlet met the ghost for the first time, I made it clear that his choice to follow it in hopes to learn the reason for the ghost’s appearance was ill-advised. Being forthright and honest in my arguments was very important to me as I was genuinely worried that my best friend Hamlet might be drawn into madness leading to thoughts of suicide.
However, I was not able to deny Hamlet making his own mistakes. When he followed the ghost anyway, learned about the poisoning of King Hamlet, and swore to avenge his death, I allowed myself to swear to keep my friend’s secret and maintain silence. Some people can say that I was not honest doing so, however, in this situation Hamlet needed a loyal friend who will support him. That is why I kept the secret of the ghost of Hamlet’s father, which was one of many secrets I would keep for Hamlet.
Nonetheless, I questioned judgment of Hamlet few times more. One of such situations was Hamlet’s story of King Claudius’s letter telling the King of England that Hamlet must be killed. One more example was when Hamlet told me that he would fight Laertes who was the son of Polonius, whom Hamlet has killed earlier. I loved Hamlet with all my heart, however, I was governed by a very sensible disposition compelling me to speak the truth to a friend of mine; in spite of that, Hamlet never heeded my warnings.
There was only one point in Hamlet’s story on which I lost my sensible outlook. However, it was a momentary loss. I could have become a slave of passion I had never been or tried not to be if my friend did not stop me. When Hamlet lost out in his fight with Laertes, I, in my grief, offered to kill myself as I imagined no life without my best friend whom I was not able to save. However, my actions were not only ruled by emotion that was out of control but a sense of duty and honor. It was Hamlet’s dying request to me to tell his story that kept me from suicide. Hamlet wanted the truth of his story be known and trusted me as he knew that I would keep my promise and would not lie. Here, my love and sense of loyalty to my friend have won out harmful thoughts and brought me back to myself.
Despite some controversies in my actions, I was always acting honestly and loyally to provide the kind of support Hamlet really needed. I tried to do my best in order to keep my friend from making mistakes and getting into trouble, however, there were no ways of avoiding the tragedy except denying him to act like he wanted. As a loyal and honest person that respects one’s freedom, I was not able to save Hamlet in the way of limiting his aspirations.