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At the beginning of the play, before Macbeth is introduced, the impression given is that he is a very good man indeed. It is as if he was a local hero and could do no wrong.

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Introduction

GCSE English Coursework Macbeth At the beginning of the play, before Macbeth is introduced, the impression given is that he is a very good man indeed. It is as if he was a local hero and could do no wrong. The sergeant refers to him as 'brave Macbeth' and Duncan says "O' valiant cousin!" Worthy gentleman!" Duncan, the king, rewards Macbeth with the title, thane of Cawder, the previous, treacherous thane having been sentenced to death. People speak of Macbeth's brilliance in comparison with the treachery that he was to replace. Scene 2 is very different and contrasting to Scene 1. The witches in the scene would have immediately triggered an atmosphere of interest and fright in the crowd of Shakespeare time because the people would have believed it. During the period in which this play was actually performed the people watching would have believed the superstitions. The witches would have meant something to the crowd instead of, how a modern day audience would interpret them, as just some early characters. This atmosphere is made when the witches say "Fair is foul, and foul is fair," this alerts the audience to the fact that all is not what it seems, and Macbeth's apparently kindness and valour may be hiding something more sinister about him. The reaction is that of fright and interest, maybe he is disturbed by what the witches say, but he doesn't ignore it and shrug it off like a hero. The statements made of Macbeth's future stick to him, gradually whittling away his strong character. ...read more.

Middle

The thing that is annoying Macbeth is the fact he has been told that the crown is his destiny but cannot wait. He has such a great desire for the crown and would prefer his route legitimate. However, Lady Macbeth is spurring on the evil side of him that makes him king sooner rather than later but by murder. When Lady Macbeth hears of what the witches had said to Macbeth she asks not Macbeth but the devil. It's said as a kind of prayer and we can only assume it's to the devil since she's asking to be filled with evil to take her assets and strip her of all her goodness. Overcome by the temptation to be queen, she plays on Macbeth's discomposure. When it comes to the point where Macbeth is confronted with the real possibility of being able to successfully kill Duncan while he sleeps, he suffers a hallucination. He sees a knife floating in front of him. As he is committing the murder, he hears one of the guards say "God bless us", and yet Macbeth is unable to reply with "Amen", "I needed the blessing most, but 'Amen' stuck in my throat." This shows us that Macbeth knows what he is doing is wrong and evil. Throughout the murder and the leading up to it he truly doesn't want to kill Duncan. His Desire for the crown and the evil from lady Macbeth and the witches just over powers him. ...read more.

Conclusion

The witches have a big impact in the play, especially during the times of Shakespeare because of the commonly believed superstitions. The witches are aspects of the play that would stay in the audience's minds and frighten them. Macduff is now seen as the next threat to his position and he goes to attack the castle and to kill Macduff. Now he is invincible he goes over the top, to make his point he decides to kill the whole family and the servants. Of course this is a dreadful thought and would be an evil loss of life. Here there is the most dramatic part of the play. Everything before this has boiled up and the feelings in Macbeth's brain are all coming out at once in a frantic rage. He is shouting weird things at people for no reason. He sees only the worst in everything's and believes it should be eliminated for its faults. Evil controls him as he walks around thrusting his sword into all that lives; anything with a pulse in his way was slaked with no remorse. He doesn't show a care in the world for anyone. Everyone becomes a victim of this once hero who has descended into evil. I do not feel sorry for him because he becomes something that is totally wrong and evil. Nothing could be respected of him. However if it wasn't for Lady Macbeth getting him to kill Duncan I think that he wouldn't have fallen into the evil and he would have go to the throne a different way. At the end, however, he has no respect for his country or the people; not a king. ...read more.

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