The recurring motif of moral corruption also appears in this next passage. Due to the wicked internal proceedings in the state of Denmark, Hamlet implies that the whole state is "soiled", which in turn has a direct negative consequence in the grand universal scheme of things. Imagery of warped and distasteful plants, in place of the traditional "aesthetically correct" beautiful flowers in a garden, serves to further reinforce the degeneration theme: "'Tis an unweeded garden that grows to seed. Things rank and gross in nature possess it merely." (I. ii. l. 135-136) Essentially, all of life, and all that was good and beautiful in life (e.g. the garden) is sullied. This quote represents not only the moral corruption of King Claudius but of his whole kingdom due to his failure in being a positive leader.
As it is evident that moral corruption exists in Denmark in Act I, the unease of social corruption and decay occurs as the other European countries frown upon the state of Denmark and of the reputation that King Claudius has caused them to have. Claudius is infamous for his excessive, loud and boisterous drinking in front of an audience and
Hamlet and Robinson Crusoe... much corruption. Some plays focused with wit on that corruption, but Shakespeare's focus in Hamlet is thoroughly tragic. The damage ... (1726 7 )
Shakespeare's Hamlet... In other words, it is not Hamlet's corruption which creates the tragedy, but rather his goodness which leads him to delay taking the action which, ironically ... (1662 7 )
Sophocles' Oedipus and Shakespeare's Hamlet... Like Oedipus, Hamlet must cleanse the state of Denmark of the corruption that lives there because his uncle has killed Hamlet's father, usurped the throne, and ... (1544 6 )