• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

By careful study of the play decide in committing Duncan's murder how far Macbeth is driven by his own ambition; how far he is dominated by his wife; and how far he is influenced the witches

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

By careful study of the play decide in committing Duncan's murder how far Macbeth is driven by his own ambition; how far he is dominated by his wife; and how far he is influenced the witches The play "Macbeth" gives the audience plenty of opportunities to consider the reason for the main characters actions. In this essay I will consider how far Macbeth is driven by his own ambition, how far he is dominated by his wife and how far he is influenced by the witches. The very first thing that we hear about Macbeth is that he is a brave warrior. We hear the captain say about him "But all's too weak, for brave Macbeth - well he deserves that name,"(1,ii,16) so before he even appears in the play we only hear positive things about him and we already have an image in our head that he is brave and loyal. We also find out that Macbeth is Duncan's cousin "O valiant cousin,"(1,ii,24), so we also know that he is part of royalty. When Macbeth finds out that he is Thane of Cawdor instead of being happy with this he is already thinking about becoming king. He says "Glamis, and Thane of Cawdor, the greatest is behind," (1,iii,118) By saying this it looks like he believes what the witches have said, as if he is assuming that he will become king and that it is "behind" him. When Macbeth and Banquo first meet the witches, Macbeth is troubled by what the have to say. ...read more.

Middle

Macbeth also gets the murderers to ensure the death of Lady MacDuff for no reason other than to have revenge on MacDuff after he goes to England to fight against him. It is clear to the audience that from the start of the play Lady Macbeth is the stronger, more determined one out of the two. As soon as Lady Macbeth reads the letter from Macbeth about the witches' predictions and before even speaking to Macbeth she decides that Macbeth is going to be king and that he is to murder Duncan. After reading the letter she says "Glamis thou art, and Cawdor, and shalt be what thou art promised,"(1,v,15) she's saying that Macbeth has Glamis and Cawdor and now he will get what he was promised, to be king. She then says "Thou wouldst be great, art not without ambition, but without illness should attend it,"(1,v,20) She knows Macbeth has ambition, but fears he is too noble to make sure that the prediction is fulfilled. Lady Macbeth talks about defeminising herself to become more of a "man". She says "Unsex me hear," (1,v,41) as in Shakespeare's times women were seen as the weaker sex. She asks the evil spirits to give her strength to murder. When she hears that Duncan is coming to their home she says to herself "Fill me from the crown of the toe top-full of direst cruelty; make thick my blood, stop up th'access and passage to remorse," (1,v,42) ...read more.

Conclusion

At the end Macbeth and the audience are reminded how evil the witches really are. Banquo, however, was wise to the witches from the start and warned Macbeth not to trust them either. I believe that at the start of the play Macbeth is influenced mostly by Lady Macbeth as it is her that persuaded him to kill Duncan and even though it was the witches who told Macbeth that he was going to become King Macbeth said that he was not going to do anything about it until Lady Macbeth persuaded him. After the murder is committed she is still the calmer one. Macbeth seems to be handling everything well until at a dinner he sees Banquos ghost and starts going crazy, again it is Lady Macbeth who calms him down. However, as the play goes on he begins to organise murders with out her and goes to see the witches while she stays at home and goes mad with guilt. By the end of the play I think it is the witches who influence him the most as he listens to and believes everything that they say. It is only at the end, just before Macbeth dies that he realises what a fatal mistake he made by trusting the witches. I think that Lady Macbeth and the witches had a lot of influence over Macbeth but I don't believe they are solely to blame and Macbeth's ambition and drive contributed to it too. By the end he is the one organising murders without telling her. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Macbeth section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Macbeth essays

  1. How is Macbeth persuaded to kill Duncan: Is his wife entirely to blame?

    This most certainly would have delighted King James I, as this ties in with the theme of the Divine Right of Kings doctrine by which James ruled. The single line that encapsulates Macbeth's personality on the battlefield and the audience's perception of Macbeth is "Till he unseamed him from the

  2. How is Macbeth persuaded to kill Duncan: Is his wife entirely to blame?

    all, and it is his head that is pierced onto the battlements. Macbeth meets these witches upon the heath with his friend Banquo. Banquo's initial reaction to the witches is confusion about their strange appearance and to some extent mocks them with his speech by asking them if they are beings of the earth.

  1. Macbeth - A study of evil.

    Her response to Macbeth's letter for example was "evil", "...Come, you spirits That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here And fill me from the crown to the toe topfull Of direst cruelty..." Here Lady Macbeth is calling upon herself the evil spirits that are waiting to enter any human mind that is willing to receive them.

  2. Compare And Contrast The Murders Of Duncan And Of Banquo - Which Do ...

    This could be because killing a king and killing a friend are different things. Killing a king is much worse, as a king was thought of as just like a God, whereas Banquo is just a good friend to Macbeth.

  1. Is Macbeth a cold blooded murderer or

    Everything is going well until Macbeth sees the ghost of Banquo. He is the only one who can see the ghost. Macbeth is seeing Banquo's ghost as he feels guilty. His strange behaviour shocks the guests. Some of the guests think Macbeth is unwell "Gentlemen, rise; His Highness is not well" line 52.

  2. Consider how far Macbeth is driven by his own ambition, how far he is ...

    It is clear to the audience that Lady Macbeth's ambition to become queen is now at a greater level, she believes Macbeth is too kind to get rid of obstacles in his path to royalty she wants to defeminise herself she says 'unsex me here and fill me from the crown to the toe top full of direct cruelty.'

  1. Macbeth: How does Shakespeare dramatise the murder of Duncan in Act II Scenes (i) ...

    This shows great psychological understanding from Shakespeare. Even though the audience is shown a real dagger when Macbeth pulls out his own to compare: 'I see thee yet, in form as palpable as this which I now draw' (Line 40-1)

  2. Analysis of Macbeth's Inner Turmoil over Killing King Duncan - The Ramifications of Vaulting ...

    As evinced in the use of the word ?bloody?, diction has thus played an essential role in exposing the dark and unforgiveable sins in the treasonous regicide, as blood embodies and symbolises the guilt that sits like a permanent stain on Macbeth?s conscience.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work