“I plead guilty by reason of insanity,” is Hamlet’s plea if he was sitting in a modern courtroom. In Hamlet by William Shakespeare, it is evident that Hamlet himself is indeed out of his mind. The reader understands the reason for his anger and frustration, but how he “fixes” the situation is beyond a sane mind. To be fair, his madness deals more with emotional instability referred to as melancholy or madness than a person who is incoherent. Hamlet’s madness becomes clear in his actions and thoughts, in his erratic relationship with Ophelia, and in the murder of Polonius.
Melancholy is the perfect word to describe Hamlet from the beginning of the play. In his first soliloquy, Hamlet is depressed contemplating suicide over the death of his father. He hates his mother’s “increase of appetite” and her marriage to his uncle is in “incestious sheets” (1.2.144-159). Later when Hamlet meets the ghost he tells his friends that he will put on an “antic disposition” (1.5.58). This is odd for Hamlet considering how he was in a depressive state and then is suddenly is so relieved in hearing Claudius’ deed. His state of mind becomes so quickly altered a reader must infer he has melancholy, because of how quickly he dismisses his deppression. Although later on we see that he questions the ghost’s true nature ‘out of [his] weakness and [his] melancholy” (2.2.58). He claims himself that he is crazy even though he implying his sanity to his friends earlier. Throughout the play his mood drastically changes and implies or says that all his acts are really out of his madness. He is never of one mind throughout the whole play.
Did he love her or did he hate her? When the reader thinks of Ophelia that question is what pops in his head. Hamlet says he loves her in fact he says not even to “doubt [his] love” (2.2.5). He later claims to have loved her before, but changed in his feelings. He then becomes abusive and says that she is a...