Today I had to watch Claudius with state business. I find him so cold and
official whilst he deals with the business. Later my mother insisted I was
being cruel as I am persisting in the grief of my father. I don't know. I
really don't. Am I being cruel in persisting with my grief, for it seems to
give misery to others, and I don't want that, I just want to be allowed to
mourn my fathers death in my own time. Is this cruel? And yet my mother did
not grieve at all. She married my slime-ball of an uncle immediately, and I
thought she loved my father.
Who does Claudius think he is? He has forbidden me from going back to
Wittenburg University. He says it is because I am heir to the throne and
should stay near to the castle, but he seems to be watching me as if he is
afraid of me. What is there to be afraid of? There is no reason I should
harm him. I am just angry. I am grieving; I am allowed to be angry, am I
not? I mean my father is dead. Anyway, I must obey him, even if only for
the sake of my traitorous mother.
I have more news for you! My father's spirit has appeared to people. It is
no joke! For Horatio is a loyal and trustworthy friend, he would not lie
about something so close to me. I will go on the night watch at 11:00 with
Horatio and Marcellus to see if he appears again and if he does, to find
out what has troubled him and made him leave his resting place. I must see
him again! I would not be able to bear it if my father did not appear to
me. I would die. I am very nervous, for I am worried about what has
disturbed him, but I am also excited, for I am sure I will see him and I
have missed him so!
I saw my father, but now I feel lonely, like he has left me behind and gone
forever. I wish to see him again! More importantly he spoke to me. He told
me a secret. I must leave out names, for it is a very important secret, and
if someone got hold of this diary I would be in grave danger. He told me he
was murdered by (name). He was sleeping in the garden when (name) came and
poured poison in his ear. The murdering fiend! I knew he was guilty of
something, I could tell by the uneasy look in his eyes! And the way he
watched me! I must avenge my father's death! . But he warned me not to hurt
my mother, and how can I not hurt her if I go ahead and avenge his death?
I must sleep, it will help me think and give my troubled mind a time of
I feel depressed. I am not fit for the job my father has placed upon me. My
heart is heavy with my knowledge and my mind is troubled. I must heed my
father and not hurt my mother, but I must kill (name) for as the saying
goes: an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.
They will think I'm mad! They are the mad ones! How can they act as if
everything is normal? How can they not see there is a murderer in our
midst? What is making them blind, and stopping them see the truth?
Yet, I suppose it is good they think I'm mad. This means they will dismiss
my words as the raving of a lunatic, which is good, for otherwise they
would know what I am planning and who knows what measures they would take?
They would definitely make it harder for me to avenge my father's death.
I met Polonius today. He's a meddlesome old fool and a busybody. He was
questioning me, but if he suspected something his suspicions will have
eased, for the answers I gave, though logical, sounded like the answers of
a madman. I wish the old minister would stay out of my way. He's too
inquisitive for his own good.
I then swapped words with Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. I am enraged. The
king brought them here so they could spy on me. How dare he do such a
thing? And it is not I finally losing it. They admitted it. I told them to
tell him I am depressed, for a reason unknown to me.
I wonder what the low-down sneak is up to? Whatever it is it can't be good.
After that the actors arrived and the lead one presented me with a very
powerful, realistic, moving and fantastically performed speech. Polonius is
looking after them. I now have a plan to reveal if (name) really did murder
my father. The actors will play The Murder Of Gonzago. It is a murder very
like my father's. I am hoping that (name's) expression will give him away.
I encountered Ophelia. I know I have hurt her deeply but I am not in the
mood to care. I cannot marry her and so cannot be bothered with the
trivialities of courting, especially with more important and pressing
matters to deal with. Anyway, woman can't be trusted. They will betray you
with any chance they get.
I can trust that I have the right to kill him now. He must have done it!
After the actor was poisoned he jumped up and stopped the play. He felt too
guilty to watch. Later I had the chance to kill him, but he was praying and
I cannot allow his soul even a slight chance of going to heaven
(redemption). I then had a violent quarrel with my mother. She cried out
and someone started to come out from behind the curtain. Thinking it was
(name) I stabbed him. It was Polonius. I was not to blame! It was his
fault, so I ignored the body and yelled at my mother. Suddenly my father's
spirit appeared and reproached me for the way I was talking to her. I spoke
more gently and my mother is now remorseful.
I found some letters on the ship. I had to substitute the names of
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern in my place so that I live to avenge my
father. It is a pity as they are old school friends, but it has to be done.
I have been taken prisoner by a group of pirates. There was a great battle.
To stop myself from being taken off to England I climbed onto their ship
alone and unarmed. Knowing my high status they are treating me well and
have said they will drop me off at the first port of Denmark. Although they
treat me well I will be glad to get home, for I am lonely and the pirates
have no manners.
I have sent the king a letter explaining in what happened in great detail.
I will now return in haste to Elsinore so I can get on with the duty I have
to my father. As evening draws near I am getting worried about the
consequences that will take place if I kill (name). I am extremely
troubled, It is only (name) that I want to hurt, I don't want to cause
anyone else pain.
I was following the road home when I walked past the churchyard; two
gravediggers (both very old) were digging up a body. I have always been
fascinated by the thought of death and they showed me the skull of the man
they were digging up. It was Yorick's. Time passes so quickly and we
mortals die fast. It seems like only yesterday Yorick was carrying me on
his shoulders and swinging me round.
I then saw a funeral procession enter the churchyard. It was an important
funeral, the king and my mother were there, and nearly the whole court.
Laertes, Ophelia's brother, was at its head. In a frenzy of grief Laertes
jumped into the grave after his sister's coffin shouting "Bury me with her,
bury me with her." I am ashamed to admit that all my pent up emotions
rushed out in a torrent of love and grief and I jumped into the grave after
Laertes. I wrestled him to the floor of the grave and yelled, "I love her
more than you can, I love her more than eve forty thousand brothers can.
Your love doesn't even come close to comparing to mine." We fought until
the funeral attendants tore us apart, scratched and bleeding. I deeply
regret the brashness of my actions and believe I must have more power over
my feelings. I now realise Laertes and I share a terrible loss and hope we
can be friends. I can't help but feel somewhat guilty for Ophelia's death,
for after my mothers hast remarriage I felt betrayed by all women and hurt
her deeply, maybe even broke her heart and the I took her dad's life. It
must have all been to much for her.
The king has bet Laertes six horses that I will win a fencing match against
Laertes himself. I will do my best to win for my mother but I am weary and
sore. I am more angry at Claudius than ever before. How dare he presume
that he can make bets concerning me and I will just go along with it? He
has a lot of gut in him, I am sure. Another reason I will go along with the
match is I am sorry for my fight with Laertes and want to show him that I
want to be friends. I must prepare now but will write more soon...