5 Macbeth Essay Examples

The tragedy “Macbeth” is the only one in Shakespeare, which depicts the transformation of a noble man into a villain. Macbeth was first a brave warrior, a faithful vassal of his king Duncan. But ambition creeps into his soul, a thirst for power. These feelings push him to a crime – the assassination of the king and the usurpation of the throne.
The work was created in the classic staged genre, which is achieved by piling up scenes, an expanded system of images and the dynamic development of the plot. This became the reason for the high popularity of the work. From the time of Shakespeare to the present day, the Macbeth tragedy has been included in the repertoires of theaters around the world, and numerous screen versions of the work are also known.
Example 1: The Root Of All Evil, Macbeth

G. R. Elliot once said, “wicked intention must in the end produce wicked action unless it is not merely revoked by the protagonist’s better feelings, but entirely eradicated by his inmost will, aided by Divine grace. ” This statement can be directly applied to Macbeth’s descent into the darker recesses of human nature and what human weaknesses this classical tragic figure struggles with and finally succumbs to, causing his downfall. In William Shakespeare’s famous play, Macbeth is drawn to the murder of King Duncan, Banquo, and Fleance by his yearning for power.
How could such a ourageous, gentle man such as Macbeth suddenly be transformed and drawn to do such evil? Surely he did not come up with such villainous thoughts of his own. His desire for control, authority, and jurisdiction was strengthened by evil sources, those from both the witches’ prophecies and his wife’s encouragement. In Macbeth it is very clear that evil begets evil. Shakespeare focuses on Macbeth’s courage early in the play. For example, Duncan and the sergeant both compliment Macbeth’s mental and physical bravery in Act I, Scene II.
Macbeth “carv’d out his passage” until he and the enemy eneral were face to face. In the same act, the reader is told that Macbeth is brave because of his “disdaining Fortune. ” In addition to his quality of courage, Macbeth is also a gentle man. Demonstrating his love and devotion for his wife, Macbeth refers to her as “his dearest partner of greatness” in Act I, Scene V. Lady Macbeth views his kindness as somewhat of a problem for their quest for power. She says that Macbeth is “too full o’ the milk of human kindness” to place them on the throne of Scotland as a result of murder.
Macbeth realizes that Duncan is, n fact, a good and humble king, and other than to fulfill self-centered, uncontrolled ambitions, this is not reason to murder him. Macbeth is soon pressured into the murder of Duncan by both his wife and the three witches. The three witches are supernatural instruments of fate who predicted that Macbeth will become King of Scotland.
In act I, scene III, the witches chant, “All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, Thane of Glamis! / All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, Thane of Cawdor! / All hail, Macbeth! That shalt be King hereafter! When Macbeth hears this prophecy, many questions nstantly begin to run through his head. He begins to wonder, what are they talking about and how will I become king? Macbeth does not entirely trust the witches, for he does identify them with evil. The foretelling of the witches spark the plot of the murder. The spark becomes a flame when Lady Macbeth hears of the prophecy. Lady Macbeth is canny and masterful as she propels Macbeth to kill Duncan. She binds Macbeth’s attention to the throne of Scotland, but never to the severity of the crime.
Lady Macbeth is clever when she constantly urges Macbeth to forget about his torments and the brutal death he has aused. Before the actual murder, Macbeth is shrouded with fear. Banquo can also see the fear in Macbeth, although he does not know about the plan of murder when he asks, “Good sir, why do you start, and seem to fear/ Things that do sound so fair? ” He ponders what would happen if he fails, and discusses this possibility with his wife. He struggles with fear in the presence of Lady Macbeth but she constantly reassures him that there is nothing to fear and that the murder will be for the better.
This fear demonstrates that Macbeth does realize the difference between right and rong, good and evil, and the consequences, but the outcome, which is murder, proves he can be swayed in his beliefs and concerns. Macbeth was pressured to do a horrible deed which was driven by evil. The beginning of the evil was rooted in his wife and the witch’s but quickly spread into his mind and heart. Macbeth was soon contaminated by evil, although he realized what he had done was wrong. Macbeth says, “To know my deed, ’twere best not know myself,” meaning that committing such a vile act makes him uncomfortable.
Evil drives Macbeth to later kill Banquo and Fleance for fear they know hat Macbeth was the murderer. One evil lead to another, for if he had not done evil by killing Duncan then he would not have done evil with the death of his best friend and his son. All the evil they committed to gain power, which was what they always wanted, led to great sorrow. They realized that the dead were much happier. While Macbeth and his wife were wracked with guilt and paranoia, Duncan was seen as the lucky in the eyes of Macbeth. He did not have any threats and was much safer than Macbeth who is feared losing his throne.
Macbeth made these feelings clear when he said, “In restless ecstasy. Duncan is in his grace;/ After life’s fitful fever he sleeps well. / Treason has done his worst; nor steel, nor poison,/ Malice domestic, foreign levy, nothing,/ Can touch him further. ” Macbeth, soon killed by Macduff, now, too, can rest with worry. Lady Macbeth was also troubled by feelings of guilt. In her sleep she screams, “Out, damned spot! Out, I say! …/Yet who would have thought the old man to have had so much blood in him. ” Lady Macbeth is suffering from a dieses which she created from evil. Trouble and suffering have come into their lives in the place of power.
Lady Macbeth ultimately kills herself, ending up in a state of peace without worries along with her husband. Macbeth is a basically good man who is troubled by his conscience and loyalty though at the same time is struggling with evils of ambition and murder. He is led to evil initially by the witches’ predictions and then by his wife’s goading, which he succumbs to because of his love for her. Lady Macbeth rids herself of any kindness that might stand in the way and fills that void with evil to achieve her ambitions. In both cases evil becomes controlling so much that both of there normal lives are ruined.
Example 2: How Is Evil Portrayed In Macbeth
In this essay I shall be looking at the way evil is portrayed in Shakespeares play, Macbeth. I will be concentrating on the characters in the play that contribute to the evil themes of the play. It is clear from the start of the play that the witches are the main source of evil. The witches have an enormous effect on the play, not only are they evil, but this is emphasised by the strong feelings against witches and witchcraft in Elizabethan times. Convicted witches were regularly tortured and even executed. Most people believed in witches and there was little opposition against this persecution.
This was not helped by the fact hat the king, James 1 was also interested in this superstition, often, he interrogated the accused himself. It is clear from the start of the play that the witches play a key role. The first scene is the witches planning to meet Macbeth. The setting of this scene is very important; they meet on a moor in thunder and lightning. These surroundings portray an evil image; the moor is a very lonely, barren and bleak place, while thunder and lightning associate with evil. So even at the beginning of the play one of the themes is known.
The witches language includes rhyming couplets that contradict each other and are very powerful. Fair is foul, and foul is fair: Hover through the fog and filthy air This quote tells us about the witches hatred for all things good, and their love for things that are evil. Shakespeare adds rhyme and rhythm to the witches language to emphasise their evilness. The second part of this quote adds to their image of being witches and would have created tension among Elizabethan audiences. The image of old women with cats and the ability to fly would have shocked an audience.
The first meeting between Macbeth and the witches is significant as they make two predictions to Macbeth, Hail to thee hane of Cawdor and perhaps more significantly, That shalt be king hereafter. These proclamations astound Macbeth due to their sudden nature. The witches lure Macbeth into a false sense of security. The witches manipulate Macbeth and when he tells Lady Macbeth of the predictions, an evil plan is conceived. Ive done the deed. This deed is the worst possible crime, kingship; Macbeth has murdered king Duncan in cold blood.
Macbeth, the brave warrior at the beginning of the play has been driven by his ambition to be king. However, the source of this evil deed may not have come from Macbeth himself. Look like the innocent flower, But be the serpent undert. Lady Macbeth plants the seed of murdering king Duncan in Macbeths mind. The language Shakespeare uses here is significant, the flower is associated with beauty and goodness while the snake is associated with evil. The association with a snake would have been especially strong because in the bible the serpent is seen as an evil being.
These comparisons to bible characters would also have shocked Elizabethan audiences, as they believed in heaven and hell. Perhaps the most famous scene in Macbeth concerns the witches and especially their language. Liver of blaspheming Jew, Finger of birth-strangled babe. These disgusting images are the ingredients of the witches spell. The language used shows the exploitation of innocence and vulnerability by the witches and this links in with the theme of the desire to bring all good things to evil. The imagery conjured up in the casts is one of pure evil.
In the same scene the witches manipulate Macbeth by using three apparitions. The second of these apparitions lulls Macbeth into a false sense of security. Then live, Macduff: what need I fear of thee. The apparition, which is a bloody child, tells Macbeth of his fortune, For none of woman born shall harm Macbeth. Shakespeare uses Dramatic Irony as these words confuse Macbeth. It is apparent from these words that Macbeth would feel invincible and that no man could harm him. However, Macbeth fails to see the contradiction between this and the first apparition.
This is because Macbeth is unaware of Macduffs birth; he was born after his mother had died. It is only at the end of the play that Macbeth finally discovers his fate. After being told that Macduff had been, Untimely ripped from his mothers womb, describes the witches as Juggling Fiends. Macbeth is accusing the witches of deliberately juggling their words so that he could not understand them. This is a brilliant quote as Macbeth has just realised his life is in ruins, but the audience knew this earlier.
The witches have changed Macbeth from a brave warrior to an evil, murderous, traitor. By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes. This quote is significant as it illustrates the change in Macbeth throughout the play, now even the witches consider Macbeth to be evil. However, when looking at the path of destruction that Macbeth has left ehind him it isnt very surprising. Just one man driven by his ambition to be king has led to a chain reaction of murders Stars, hide your fires! Let not light see my black and desires!
From this quote we can see Macbeths true feelings towards king Duncan. It tells us that no one will see the murder due to the darkness and lack of light. His dark intentions have imagery due the blackness of the night and evil desires and intentions of Macbeth. The murder of his once best friend, Banquo leads to Lady Macbeth going mad. The brains behind the relationship who conceived the plan of murdering ing Duncan which started the chaos of the whole play eventually commits suicide as she couldnt handle the guilt.
Heres the smell of the blood still: all the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand. This is a significant quote as although Lady Macbeth did not kill king Duncan it was her idea, and it could be argued that Macbeth wouldnt have murdered king Duncan without the influence of Lady Macbeth. The fear of the Scottish people is shown in a conversation between Donalbain and Malcolm. Theres daggers in mens smiles. This metaphor describes how Donalbain feels he can rust nobody and that everyone is putting on disguises; underneath the smiling faces is hatred and evil.
The imagery conjures up pictures of the innocent and pleasant man on the outside but on the inside he is a traitor and a murderer. The quote portrays the scenes of anarchy and chaos in Scotland. In conclusion I think it is clear the witches mostly portray evil in Macbeth. Not only are the witches evil themselves but their evilness spreads to other characters throughout the play. I think there is little doubt that without the influence of the witches, Macbeth wouldnt have murdered king Duncan.
Example 3: Dramatic and Significant in Act 2 Scene 3 – Macbeth
Title: How does Shakespeare make this scene both a significant and dramatic moment in the play? In Shakespeare’s play Macbeth there are a lot of dramatic, exciting and tragic occurrences in many of the scenes. Although in the beginning, Shakespeare foreshadowed the tragedies that were to come nothing could have prepared the audience for what took place in Act 2 scene 3. This is the scene in which King Duncan is found murdered causing shock and panic in all the characters on stage.
He dramatizes the scene by portraying the discovery of the King’s body, by emphasizing the shock and disbelief of the characters, by the flattering description given of Duncan and by revealing to the audience the deceptive characters of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth. Duncan is the King of Scotland. He went to Macbeth’s castle to commend Macbeth in his bravery in the war against Scotland. However what he did not know was that his death was planned before his arrival.
Although we the audience only meet Duncan briefly Shakespeare provides us with an admirable view of Duncan’s character by the way the other characters describe him. For example when Duncan was found murdered Macduff had expressed his disbelief and outrage with the words: “Most sacrilegious murder hath broke ope/The Lord’s anointed temple, and stole thence/The life o’ th’ building! ” In this quote Shakespeare is comparing Duncan to God’s Temple. This gives the audience an idea of how kind and just Duncan really was.
Even Macbeth calls the king “graceful and renowned” although the audience is not quite sure whether he meant it or not. Macbeth refers to the king’s blood as “the wine of life” and his body as “the dregs that remain. ” In other words Duncan’s virtuous character was in his blood and now that it has been shed only the shell remained. Macduff was the one who discovered Duncan’s corpse. He was very much frightened and shocked to find his master dead. He had arrived on Duncan’s orders to wake him up early only to find the king murdered.
He comes out of the king’s chamber traumatized saying “O horror, horror, horror! /Tongue nor heart cannot conceive nor name thee! ” To him this is unbelievable. Shakespeare depicts the shocked tone through Macduff’s words “O horror, horror, horror! ” and through the exclamation marks to represent the tone of surprise in which Macduff spoke. There was a lot of commotion after that. Macduff awoken everyone by yelling and by ringing the bell to which Lady Macbeth responds “What’s the business, /that such a hideous trumpet calls to parley/The sleepers of the house?
Speak, speak! ” Lady Macbeth demands to know for what reason Macduff rung the bell awakening everyone that was sleeping. As everyone clambers in the tension and disbelief of the other characters start to build up emphasizing the drama of this scene. The audience is well aware that Macbeth was the one that killed the King and that Lady Macbeth helped him to accomplish the mission. So when they pretend they don’t know what happened it brings out one of the major themes of this play, deception. This scene reveals the duplicitous characters of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth.
Shakespeare portrays Macbeth as a person with a conscience but not a moral one. Macbeth wants to be king but he would rather have someone else do the evil deed and take the fall while he becomes king. He nevertheless kills the king and feigns disbelief when the body is found. He also killed the two innocent guards who were framed for the murder calling it an act passionate fury. Although the characters onstage are yet to find out that Macbeth is deceitful the audience waits tensely for the moment in which all is revealed.
Lady Macbeth is also shown as a duplicitous character here in this scene. She is well aware of what took place since it was her master plan but pretends to be innocent when Duncan’s body is found. The irony in this scene is when Macduff trying to protect the Lady tells her “O gentle lady, /’Tis not for you to hear what I can speak: The repetition, in a woman’s ear, would murder as it fell” little does he know how ironic his choice of the word “gentle” is. He tells her that if he repeats the news to her she would die because of the tragedy.
However Lady Macbeth is not shocked at the news although she feigns it since she herself kept awake to see that the deed was done. Lady Macbeth earlier on the play retorts to Macbeth that she herself would have done it if she wasn’t born a woman; she originally cursed her ‘gentleness’ begging nature to take the gift of giving life away from her. She even advises Macbeth on how to be deceitful when she said “To beguile the time, Look like the time.
Bear welcome in your eye, your hand, your tongue. Look like th’ innocent flower, But be the serpent under ’t. this shows that she is the more experienced one in being deceitful which is ironic since it’s Macbeth that is the ‘brave and worthy’ kinsmen. Shakespeare shows her to be a cruel woman who would stop at nothing for her husband’s success.
This scene is a very dramatic one leaving most of the audience on their toes in anticipation and suspense dying to know what was going to happen. Later on we discover that Malcolm the crown Prince runs away leaving the throne. This is when the audience fully realizes that the Witches were telling the truth and that their final prophecy came true. Macbeth became King of Scotland.
Example 4: Macbeth – Analysis of Fear
Macbeth, it is evidence of how fear can affect any character. Fear is a significant factor in building a person’s character, be it affecting their actions, their words, regardless of whether it is right or wrong. This emotional quality, of which can motivate one to success as well as to downfall, had played an important role in countless works of literature. As for the play Macbeth by William Shakespeare, fear was the main motivating factor in influencing the actions and reactions towards the witches’ prophecies of Macbeth, in addition to of Lady Macbeth.
Seen through the development of the plotline, the final outcome of the play was affected greatly by fear and also inspired by how this particular sentiment can dominate and control the nature of mankind. Following the death of Duncan, Macbeth’s subsequent acts of murder were carried out of fear and insecurity for his position as the king of Scotland. Once Duncan’s body was discovered, Macbeth had immediately rushed up to the king’s chamber and killed the two sleeping guards.
He justified himself by saying ‘Who could refrain, That had a heart to love, and in that heart Courage to make’s love known? ‘ (2. . 112-114) Out of fear and without thinking straight, Macbeth has slain the grooms of Duncan in order to deprive them of a chance to justify themselves. The over-exaggerated passion displayed by Macbeth, as well as the amplified account of his courage, fired up the rising suspicions of Macbeth’s true intentions in the incident. His fear of getting caught and accused of Duncan’s death only further enhanced his fear of Banquo, who was beginning to doubt the justice behind Macbeth’s new status. As in the witches’ prophecies, Banquo was destined to father generation after generation of Scottish kings.
Macbeth demonstrated his anxiety regarding his royal legacy by commenting ‘To be thus is nothing; But to be safely thus. Our fears in Banquo Stick deep’ (3. 1. 48-50). This lead to his participation in the murder of Banquo, where Macbeth’s cautious attitude insisted that committing a second crime would further secure his role as king. This characteristic of Macbeth’s fear was also shown much later into the play after meeting with the apparitions. Upon learning that ‘none of woman born Shall harm Macbeth’ (4. 1. 8-81), Macbeth immediately scoffed ‘Then live, Macduff.
What need I fear of thee? But yet I’ll make assurance double sure, And take a bond of fate. Thou shalt not live’ (4. 1. 82-84). Macbeth’s psychological mindset was indicated through this quote, his vigilance drove him to the desire of murdering Macduff and hence his family. Therefore, fear precipitated Macbeth’s many redundant murders, which then amplified his downfall. Lady Macbeth was greatly consumed by fear and guilt that she was slowly losing her sanity, as a result of not being able to handle what she had done to Duncan. In the quote of ‘Out, damned spot!
Out, I say! ‘ (5. 1. 30), Lady Macbeth was trying to wash out what she saw as blood on her hands. The repetition of the word ‘out’ towards an inanimate object – something insignificant – emphasized her emotionally instable behaviour and inability to control her sentiments. Also, Lady Macbeth’s fear of blood contrasted greatly with Macbeth’s obsession with murder and bloodbath in the latter half of the play: when Macbeth utilized his fear in evolving into a vigilant character, Lady Macbeth deteriorates from a callous character into one overwhelmed with fear.
She mentioned hell – ‘Hell is murky’ (5. 1. 31), announcing her fear of going there for what she has done. Initially, Lady Macbeth had been the driving force behind Macbeth’s ambition to be king, masking whatever fears she occupied by calling proposed threats bluff as like in the quote ‘What need we fear who knows it when none can call our power to account? ‘ (5. 1. 32-33) Nevertheless, Lady Macbeth’s role became smaller and more insignificant as the play neared the end as she was driven mad by guilt.
Unable to take the torment, it was implied that she ended up taking her own life right before the battle between Macbeth and the English troops began – ‘The queen, my lord, is dead’ (5. 5. 17) – which demonstrated her fear and what fear can do to a person. The witches’ prophecies, particularly the apparitions, were a main source of fear for Macbeth, where he fell further into a belief of what fate had in store for him. The straightforward warning from the first apparition – ‘Macbeth! Macbeth! Macbeth! Beware Macduff. Beware the thane of Fife. ‘ (4. 1. 1-2)’ – angered Macbeth greatly and drove him to kill Macduff’s family. This then further motivated Macduff to slay Macbeth in combat. The second and third apparitions then told of the causes of Macbeth’s downfall. Once the battle commenced, Macbeth repeatedly announced the prophecies, either to himself or to whatever audience is there to listen, fearing he would have forgotten.
He would declare ‘Till Birnam Wood remove to Dunsinane I cannot taint with fear’ (5. 3. 2-3) and ‘I will not be afraid of death and bane, Till Birnam forest comes to Dunsinane’ (5. . 61-62). The fear of Macbeth’s own defeat had lead to a constant reminder for himself to continue fighting and living until the predictions did come true. Meanwhile, his consistent repetitions of the apparitions’ predictions implied a certain mindset of where he saw them as a protection against whatever harm. In using verbs like ‘cannot’ and ‘will’, the determination of Macbeth is demonstrated, as well as him trying to calm himself down in trying to be relieved of whatever emotions or fears which may affect his performance.
On the other hand, Macbeth’s obsession with the prophecies also weakened himself. Once having killed Young Siward in battle, Macbeth laughed ‘Thou wast born of woman. But swords I smile at, weapons laugh to scorn, Brandished by man that’s of a woman born’ (5. 7. 15-17) and this lead to the underestimation of Macduff once they started to fight and hence brought the tyrant and protagonist of the play to his end. In conclusion, fear plays a part in one’s decisions in every day life. Though one may hide his or her fears behind a strong exterior, it remains a potent motivating force throughout life.
In Macbeth, it is evident of how fear can affect any character. For the duration of the play, Macbeth’s fears of losing his position as king contributed to his many acts of murder in the means of being cautious. Similar to Lady Macbeth who found relief from her fears in death, Macbeth then buried himself into the witches’ prophecies; trusting whatever was told for security and, in the end, lead to his downfall. Therefore, fear can force people into great situations, motivating and hindering actions as stimuli for accomplishment in life.
Example 5: Macbeth vs. Lady Macbeth
In William Shakespeare’s Macbeth, the tragic hero or the great and virtuous character, Macbeth is destined for downfall as he brings suffering and defeat upon himself. However, this statement can be widely debatable, as many would assume that Lady Macbeth also plays an immense role in the murder of Duncan, the beginning of the tragedy. Early in the play, Macbeth encounters three witches or supernatural beings that foretell his future as the new King of Scotland. Intrigued by their prophecies, Macbeth places faith in their words.
Macbeth’s wife, Lady Macbeth, is instrumental in his ambition, manipulating him, as they both scheme for greatness. Driven by the will to become King, Macbeth commits the murder of the current King Duncan and continuously murders those that suspect him. He is led to his own destruction as Macduff, a Scottish noble, later kills him. Moreover, although both Macbeth and Lady Macbeth can be considered guilty for the downfall of Macbeth or the tragedy of the play, Macbeth is more to blame as a result of his ruthlessness, his ambitious desires, and his naive character, which allow him to betray his own conscience.
Macbeth’s ambitious character and his insatiable lust for power drives him to change his nature towards evil commencing his tragic downfall. Upon hearing the prophecies of the witches, Macbeth immediately ponders about the predictions and creates an idea to murder the King. Macbeth states that the image of Duncan, the current King’s death “doth unfix my hair” (I. ii. 148) meaning that this image was too horrid to even imagine. Early in the play, the witches only predicted that he would become King but it was Macbeth’s ambitious character that takes it to the next step as he now thrives on the will to become King.
Although the King’s death was never mentioned in the prophecies, Macbeth plants the idea in his head that the only way for him to become King, as the predictions stated was to kill Duncan, which creates and displays his lust for power. Macbeth also mentions, “let not light see my black and deep desires” (I. iv. 58). This is another example in which he now admits this dark character inside him, demonstrating that his valiant, brave character displayed in the beginning of the play is slowly fading away or deteriorating as his ambitious character takes over.
Furthermore, by virtue of his honest character, Macbeth admits to himself of his “vaulting ambition” as he states, “I have no spur to prick the sides of my intent, but only vaulting ambition, which o’er leaps itself. ” (I. vii. 25-27) These lines portray that Macbeth has no other reason to kill Duncan except for his strong desires of wanting to become King. Macbeth’s character as ambitious appears again as even to the eyes of his wife, is seen clearly as lustful for power. Lady Macbeth states “art not without ambition” proclaiming of his ambitious character.
Macbeth’s ambitions is the root cause of his tragic downfall as his lust for power drives him to murder which is the misdeed that places his life at risk and begins his fall from glory. Macbeth as a man with solid morals and a well-established conscience allows himself to be manipulated by other significant characters of the play such as the witches and Lady Macbeth. The witches make two significant appearances in the play, each in which they use equivocation to confuse and manipulate or spark the characters in the play to lead a life of evil.
Their first appearance was in front of Banquo and Macbeth in which they praise him as they predict his future as the next King. They know that by calling him “King hereafter” (i. iii. 53) that it will create desires in his heart and they use these quick phrases or these words placed in paradox to manipulate Macbeth to do something that would earn him that title. Macbeth who has a conscience of his own, allows himself to create unwanted desires in his heart knowing well that patience is an attribute that only the noble obtain.
Macbeth, by the end of his first soliloquy, makes the final decision to not murder the King because in his point of view, “Duncan both born his faculties so meek” (i. vii. 16-17) and it would be injustice to kill a righteous person but later on changes his mind as he allows his conscience to be moved again by his wife, Lady Macbeth who questions his manhood to achieve the power that they would get if they kill Duncan. She states “If you durst do it, then you were a man” (i. vii. 56-57) as she tries to convince her husband to go along with Duncan’s murder.
Foolishly, Macbeth allows her to change his mind when he could have easily refused proving that he had a mind of his own. The witches near the end of the play manipulate Macbeth once more, but this time it was Macbeth who sought their help therefore getting himself into more trouble. A wise person would make the right decision not to ask the troublesome witches for help, but in Macbeth’s case, he deals with this situation differently as he is again easily manipulated into developing hubris, which leads to his downfall and his tragic ending.
Therefore, although Macbeth had a conscience of his own and had the right to make his own decisions, he allowed himself to be manipulated by others, which eventually leads to his own death. Macbeth makes further errors in judgment following his misdeed of killing Duncan as he commits other major crimes, which all precipitate his downfall. For example, the murder of his friend, Banquo. Acting completely on his fear that Banquo’s sons will become King and himself remaining unrecognized, Macbeth decides to kill both Banquo and his son, Fleance.
Macbeth knew that he was under suspicion for Duncan’s murder therefore concludes with these two reasons to kill an innocent man and his son. This is proven through Macbeth’s statement made in Act 3. Scene 2. Lines 41-42. Macbeth establishes his fear as he says that he is “full of scorpions in his mind”. Therefore, this murder was another factor or crime that leads him directly to his downfall. Another crime that Macbeth commits that is unforgivable was when he murdered a mother and a child.
To take advantage of the situation, Macbeth kills Macduff’s family, which was a tragic scene as Macduff’s son dies creating pathos in the audience’s heart and depicts Macbeth’s character as mad or insane. These murders portray his downfall as extreme for all the serious sins Macbeth has committed. Macbeth’s desire for power, his ignorance towards his own conscience, and the further crimes he commits portray him as more to blame over Lady Macbeth for his own downfall and death.
Throughout the whole play, although Lady Macbeth may seem as the masculine character and the brain behind the murder of Duncan, she plays a minor part in Macbeth’s own desires and the further crimes he independently commits that end in his downfall. Lady Macbeth is a significant character but is not more to blame for every tragic hero brings his fate upon himself. Therefore to conclude, Macbeth is more to blame for his own defeat and suffering.
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