Analysis and Synthesis Fortinbras, a young man whose father has been beaten by an adversary and whose job it is to revenge that father's death and return the conquered properties, serves as a counterpoint for Hamlet. He appears in act 3, scene 4 of the play.
Fortinbras arrives in Denmark to claim the throne from King Claudius but is opposed by his cousin Prince Hamlet. The two men fight each other at Wittenberg, Germany, and although Fortinbras defeats Hamlet, he also loses his life in the process. After Fortinbras' death, Queen Gertrude remarries to Claudius who then becomes her second husband. Hamlet commits suicide, leaving everything to his sister Ophelia.
Here is where the story diverges between Shakespeare's original work and later adaptations. In the original work, it is believed that Fortinbras will come back to claim the Danish crown after Hamlet's death. However, in most modern versions, Fortinbras survives Hamlet and continues to pursue the throne.
This adaptation tells the story from Fortinbras' point of view. So instead of dying at the end of act 3 scene 4, he lives on to find out that Hamlet has also died. With no one left standing, he decides to take the Danish throne for himself.
Fortinbras, a young man whose father has been beaten by an adversary and whose duty it is to revenge that father's death and return the conquered assets, serves as Hamlet's antagonist. The events of the play are inexorably propelled by a single covenant, which is the medieval reality that governs Hamlet's existence. This covenant dictates that he must fight a duel with Fortinbras after he learns that his uncle has murdered his father. If Hamlet kills Fortinbras, he will be entitled to the kingdom.
Fortinbras arrives in Denmark to claim its throne. When his envoy announces Fortinbras' intentions, King Hamlet refuses the offer, but Fortinbras attacks and defeats him in battle. After Hamlet's death, Fortinbras rules Denmark until his own death several years later.
Although the play does not reveal much about Fortinbras' character, we can infer from the fact that he challenge Hamlet to a duel that he is a very courageous person who has no fear of death. He also seems to be smart because he realizes that the king is unable to fight him so he goes ahead and attacks first. Finally, it can be said that he is loyal to his friend because even though he knows that Hamlet is not fit to rule, he still wants him to get the crown because that is his oath as Fortinbras' knight.
Fortinbras serves as a foil for Hamlet throughout the play. His position is similar to Hamlet's: his father was likewise slain, and his claim to the throne was also rejected in favor of his uncle. But Fortinbras is not out for vengeance. He wants an alliance with Denmark so he can defeat the Norwegian army led by Hamlet's father. When that doesn't work out, he declares war on Denmark.
He seems like a good guy who just wants to do right by his country, but it turns out that he's really just using Hamlet to get back at his father's killers. Once this fact is revealed, Fortinbras removes himself from the story completely. He doesn't try to stop or punish those responsible for his father's death, and he doesn't show up until well into Act 3, when all hope appears lost. This makes him an unreliable narrator, since he sees things differently than everyone else around him.
Also worth mentioning is that Fortinbras has a large number of supporters who believe he should take over as king. They're only loyal to him because they think it's their duty to defend their country, but once he disappears they'll probably go look for someone new to follow.
As a counterpoint to Hamlet, Fortinbras resolves to conduct his idea in a much more aggressive, direct manner; he strives to fight for what his father lost. Fortinbras is not the only son in the play who serves as a counterpoint to Hamlet. Laertes is dealing with comparable challenges as a result of his father's death. Like Fortinbras, he decides to act decisively and without hesitation when it comes to combat.
Additionally, Fortinbras is a foil character to Hamlet. A foil character is one that is opposite in some way to another character. They often serve as contrast or examples to show how things should be done vs how they are being done. For example, Fortinbras is ambitious while Hamlet is reluctant to claim his crown. He also is willing to go to war while Hamlet is not. Finally, Fortinbras is very violent while Hamlet is not.
Fortinbras first appears on stage at the end of Act 1 Scene 2. He arrives in Denmark to claim his inheritance after the death of King Hamlet. When Fortinbras finds out that Hamlet is dead, he makes it clear that he intends to take over the kingdom himself. He plans to do this by having a battle against the army that is under the command of Prince Claudius. During this battle, which takes place off-stage, Fortinbras is killed.
Sc. 1, Lines 74-108: Based on what Horatio says, describe Fortinbras. Fortinbras, a young man whose father was murdered and robbed of conquered property, is enraged and ready to retaliate by assembling an army of thugs and mercenaries (1.1. 99–108).
He's described as a "young man" who is "ready to retaliate."
This shows that he is not only young but also very angry about the death of his father. This makes sense since King Robert was his father.
Also, he describes himself as a "conqueror" which means that he gets parts of other countries under his control. He wants to do this with Norway because it is a country that is close to Sweden. However, before he can attack, he is killed by Hamlet when he goes to fight him in a battle called the Battle of Nørre Garde. After he dies, Prince Claudius takes the throne of Norway and keeps it after Hamlet kills him too.
Prince Frederic of Denmark then decides to send for Prince Hamlet of Norway to take the throne because he knows that he will do anything to protect his country. So, at first glance, it looks like Fortinbras has died uselessly.