The Pretended Madness of Hamlet in Hamlet Essay

761 Words Jun 11th, 2012 4 Pages
In Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the main character Hamlet is believed to have gone insane after the death of his father. There is much evidence in the play that causes one to believe that Hamlet is in fact crazy. However, there are also indications to the contrary, Hamlet only feigns madness for the purpose of carrying out his mission. He rehearses his pretend madness first with Ophelia for even if he fails to convince her , that failure would not cause him any harm. The language he uses is clearly not that of an insane person, he is lucid and succinct when he speaks proving that he knows exactly what he is doing. . In Act 1, when we first meet Hamlet, even though he is still grieving his father’s death, he appears to be himself and of …show more content…
In Hamlet, Shakespeare writes about another character who had really gone mad. After her father’s death Ophelia was robbed of her sanity. When comparing Hamlet to Ophelia one can see that Ophelia acts as an insane person would. All she is able to do is dance around and sing about death whilst Hamlet speaks eloquently even if others don’t understand what he is trying to say. Other characters pick up on each of their state of minds. After speaking to Hamlet in Act 2 Scene 2, Polonius says to himself “Though this be madness, yet there is method in’t.” (204), which means that while Hamlet may have been speaking nonsense there was a reason for it. In contrast when Ophelia speaks her brother says “Hadst thou thy wits, and didst persuade revenge, / It could not move thus.” (IV.V.169), calling her insane and proving that she had completely lost her mind. In conclusion, Hamlet is not mad; everything he does has a purpose. He is out to avenge his father’s murder. He proves this by telling Horatio that he is going to fake madness, and admitting to his mother that he is not crazy. He also only acts mad in front of Polonius, Claudius, Gertrude, Ophelia, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. When Hamlet is with a trusted friend he is rational and symptom free, however when someone he wants to
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