Among the heroines that appear in all the dramatic works of WilliamShakespeare, Ophelia, although a tragic heroine, seems to be most loved,most popular, and best remembered. She has always been a source ofinspiration to many artists, regardless of age or nationality. What isdistinctly noteworthy in the dramatic description and representation of thistragic heroine through the mouthpiece of Gertrude in Act IV, scene vii,lines 167–84 in Hamlet (Peter Alexander edition of The Complete Worksof William Shakespeare) lies in its aesthetically and imaginatively richlanguage and dramatic poetry. As Shakespeare has successfully dramatisedand immortalised the Hamlet’s well-known “To be, or not to be” soliloquyin Act III, scene i, the dramatist has also successfully succeeded here inimmortalising Ophelia as a tragic yet graceful and unforgettable heroine.The dramatic language and poetry employed and portrayed in theseimmortal lines had never failed to leave such celebrated nineteenth- andtwentieth-century painters as Ferdinand Victor Eugène Delacroix, JohnEverett Millais, and Paul Albert Steck unaffected and untouched: they werewithout doubt all charmed and drawn into the Shakespearian heart-rendingcharacter of Ophelia with such mounting passion and such enkindledimagination. This paper attempts to present a new and radical approach tointerpretation of Ophelia by way of taking into account some considerationsof the three prominent painters and their individual works of Ophelia inconnection with the Hamlet films, with a view to better understanding whatessentially constitutes and configures the disposition and behaviour of thistragic heroine. With the eleventh lithograph illustration of “Death of OPHELIA” in theseries of 13plates of ‘Lithograph Illustrations for “Hamlet”’, all of which wereproduced from 1834 to 1848, Ferdinand Victor Eugène Delacroix (1798–1863)lithographically and three-dimensionally represents the heroine’s soul that is“struggling to be free” in the presence of “Cosmic Unconscious”. John Everett Millais (1829–96), representing the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhoodwith William Holman Hunt and Dante Gabriel Rossetti and drawing inspirationmost likely from Hamlet, painted his masterpiece Ophelia, which recreatesan elaborate scene of Nature in which Ophelia, like a “mermaid-like”, floatsdown a stream, chanting “snatches of old lauds”. The drowning scene havingbeen realistically yet imaginatively depicted with highly aesthetic and poeticsensibilities, Millais encompasses within the canvas a red-breasted cockrobin, sitting on a bush and singing a psalm to Ophelia’s “melodious lay”. Thepresence of the cock robin suggests its symbolic metaphor for “forgiveness” andreconciliation. Paul Albert Steck (1866–1924) painted a visionary Ophelia underwater in hisOphélia. Nevertheless, the vision and intuition manifested in his work genuinelyinspire people more with “mirth” and less with “dirge”. Ophelia in the artist’s mind’seye is permanently transformed into an elegant and graceful court lady with prayers. With these paintings and the lithograph illustration in mind, one is alsoreminded that Ophelia’s tears, often gushing from her eyes, do not prove herselfto be a woman of “frailty” at Elsinore, but rather a woman of warm affection andpatience —— a quality or “rarity” whose nature had been nurtured during theMiddle Ages and far into the Renaissance.