Hamlet

Cover of 1882 Knight's Illustrated edition of Hamlet

Shakespeare probably completed Hamlet in 1601.
Explore the links on the left to find out more about this great tragedy.

Full synopsis
Read the story of Hamlet in plain English. If you don't want to know how it ends, don't read the last section!

Famous quotes
Hamlet is such an often-quoted play, it's almost impossible to select just a few well-known quotes, but we've chosen a few likely contenders and some that are also often misquoted.

Key moments
Directors choose their own key moments in Hamlet, depending on their interpretation of the play. Here Kath Bradley selects a number of important scenes.

Did you know...?
Some fascinating facts about Shakespeare's play and Hamlet in performance.

Stage history
From its first performances around 1607 up to modern theatre and film productions, Rebecca Brown examines Hamlet in performance.

Dating the play
Rebecca Brown explains how we know when Shakespeare wrote Hamlet.

Shakespeare's sources
Rebecca Brown presents the ancient sagas and contemporary works which influenced and inspired Shakespeare when he wrote Hamlet.

Production 2008
Find out about the production directed by Gregory Doran with an ensemble featuring David Tennant and Patrick Stewart. For a behind-the-scenes insight, read extracts from the Rehearsal Scrapbook.

Production 2006
Read an interview with the director Janet Suzman and view photos from this production by the Baxter Theatre in South Africa which played in Stratford-upon-Avon as part of the Complete Works Festival.

Production 2004
View video extracts, interviews and photos from Michael Boyd's production featuring Toby Stephen as Hamlet.

Production 1992
View photos from this production directed by Adrian Noble which featured Kenneth Branagh as Hamlet.

Production 1965
View photos from this production directed by Peter Hall which featured David Warner as Hamlet.

Productions 1948 - 2008
Rebecca Brown describes a selection of our productions.

Resources for teachers
Extra resources for teaching on Hamlet: activities, synopses, themes and links to more from RSC Education.


Image shows the cover of the 1882 edition of 'Knight's Illustrated' edition of Hamlet.
Image from the RSC Archive © Shakespeare Birthplace Trust

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