Many people have debated over how Hamlet was just acting mad; while other says Hamlet was actually mad. He tells Horatio that he is going to "feign madness," and that if Horatio notices any strange behavior from Hamlet, it is because he is putting on an act. Hamlet also tells his mother that he is not mad, "but mad in craft”. In addition to his confessions, Hamlet's madness only takes over when he is in the presence of certain characters. When Hamlet is around Polonius, Claudius, Gertrude, Ophelia, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, he behaves mad and insane. When Hamlet is around Horatio, Bernardo, Francisco, The Players and the Gravediggers, he behaves rather normal. So was Hamlet really mad or was it all just a big act that Hamlet put up? Is Hamlet mad for revenge? What is really going on in Hamlet’s mind? How does Polonius become a victim of Hamlet’s madness? Why does Hamlet become so mad when he sees his mother?
Examples: Some of the characters themselves come to realize that Hamlet is not mad. Claudius confesses that Hamlet's "actions although strange, do not appear to stem from madness." (III, i). Polonius also admits that Hamlet's actions and words have a "method" to them; there appears to be a reason behind them, they are logical in nature. (II, ii).
Quote: “It is not madness that I have uttered…Virtue itself of vice must pardon beg” (3.4.162)-(3.4.175). Hamlet tells his mother that he is not actually mad and that he is just putting up an act.