Slides in this set
Revenge plays a key part in the play, not only is it inflicted
upon Vindice, it is also seen upon the antagonist and
Within the play, Vindice, the revenging protagonist, kills,
lies, convinces his mother to prostitute his sister to further
his revenge and allows others to be scapegoats for his
sins. He compromises his moral values in order to seek
Additionally, other characters who seek revenge in the
play end up dead: Vindice, Lussurioso, Spurio, Ambitioso,
Supervacuo and Hippolito. This links in with Hamlet, as
Laertes and Hamlet, both filled with vengeance, die in the
end of the play, in the act of revenge.
The Revenger's Tragedy also connects to Hamlet, as the
play opens with Vindice establishing his motive behind his
revenge. In the opening scene, Vindice carries the skull of
his murdered lover, which alludes to Hamlet because
Ophelia dies due to the unrequited love of Hamlet, when…read more
Justice vs. corruption
Whilst the play examines the nature of revenge and
judgement in general, the idea of whether revenge
can be justified materialises.
Vindice changes from the man of justice into a killer
taking pleasure in his murders. At the beginning, he
cannot get justice through the court for the
poisoning of his betrothed and therefore decides to
murder the Duke. Vindice carries out his revenge as
a vigilante, and brings the Duke to justice; this
shows that acts of justice can be performed out of
the range of legality.
In the play, corruption permeates the court, which
should be an institution of justice, and as a result,
those highest in social structure the Duke, can
influence the decisions of the court, demonstrating
the injustice of society.…read more
Justice vs. corruption
Furthermore, the endless desire for wealth and
ambition in the court are conveyed, where
Vindice points out that money is in fact, the root
cause of evil.
Each member of the court possesses his or her
own political agenda and is willing to do
anything to further his or her own gains,
including setting aside moral codes. Even
Vindice, who sees himself as working for justice,
lies and kills his way through the play.
He blames his actions on the corruption and
adultery he sees in the court, which reinforces
the moral bankruptcy of the court.…read more
Love vs. Lust
The theme of erotic love is portrayed in Vindice's quest to
avenge his "beloved". The same type of love is
demonstrated in Hamlet's distancing away from Ophelia,
as he does not want her to be hurt in the process of his
revenge. Ironically, she suicides anyhow.
Whereas familial love is portrayed in Vindice's family, as
Vindice and Hippolito (Vindice's brother) seek revenge
In antithesis, there is a lack of familial love in the Duke's
family, illustrated when the Youngest Son is tried for rape,
and the Duke does not speak up for him when he could
have easily saved him.
The main example of lust within the play is the Duke's
pursuit of Vindice's betrothed, which led to her death, as
she would not give in to him. Another example of lust is
Lussurioso's desire to have sex with Castiza, who rejects
him constantly and chooses to remain chaste.…read more
Misogyny (hatred, dislike, or mistrust of women)
is mainly created by the female characters in
The Revenger's Tragedy, through their owns
views of being unable to operate without a man.
The men themselves see women as naturally
lustful and deceitful and therefore cannot bring
themselves to trust the female characters.
The relationships of the families within the play
provide somewhat of a contrast. Vindice's initial
bond with his family are juxtaposed with the
twisted relationship of the Duke and his sons.
However as the play progresses, the corruption
and greed for power, leads to brother killing
brother, and Vindice's mother selling her own
daughter for gold.…read more