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Compare And Contrast The Murders Of Duncan And Of Banquo - Which Do You Think Would Have The Most Effect On An Audience?

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Chris Green Compare And Contrast The Murders Of Duncan And Of Banquo. Which Do You Think Would Have The Most Effect On An Audience? A Shakespearean audience would find the murder of Duncan much more brutal compared to a modern days audience. Because he is king a Shakespearean audience would feel deeply hurt for all the characters in the play, as they know Macbeth has killed a very important person whom they believe is their equivalent to God. Also the audience would be petrified at what he will do next as a Shakespearean audience would know that he can't commit another murder, which is worse than killing the King. On the other hand the murder of Duncan would have a different effect on today's audience. We have stopped believing in the 'Rights of Kings' and do not generally have everything based around the King/Queen. A modern audience would not consider the murder of Duncan as worse a crime as a Shakespearean audience would have thought. We wouldn't be very shocked compared to a Shakespearean audience who would be scared and horrified at Macbeth. In Shakespeare's time an audience would have a completely different attitude about the King, as he ruled the army and the country. Now days the Prime Minister takes charge in these matters. The witches also play a part in the effects on the audience. A Shakespearean audience would find the witches terrifying as they can prophesise what will happen in the future. ...read more.


The words Macbeth says are: " We will proceed no further in this business. He hath honoured me of late" and when Macbeth begins to "waver" he says words like "I dare do all that may become a man; who dares do more is none" and "If we should fail". These sayings by Macbeth are a big difference compared to the second murder. He also seems very hesitant and has uncertain feelings before he commits the deed. He speaks to his dagger, which reassures him and he describes the horror of the crime: "When we have marked with blood those sleepy two Of his own chamber, and used their very daggers". He also fears: that the stones on which he walks will give him away. Also the murder of Duncan has a lot more involvement of Lady Macbeth in to help Macbeth do the terrible deed. Lady Macbeth is not very happy with Macbeth and so she tries to put him back on straight terms to commit the murder. She says words like: "We fail? But screw your courage to the sticking-place, and we'll not fail". Again we see the ferociousness of Lady Macbeth and her determination, which is a difference from the second murder as she is not involved, when she says the words: "How tender 'tis to love the babe that milks me- I would while it was smiling in my face Have plucked my nipple from his boneless gums, And dashed the brains out, had I so sworn as you Have done to this". ...read more.


Overall I think that the murder of Duncan would have the most effect on an audience. Because in theory killing a king (Duncan) would have the most impact on an audience, but by the time of Banquo's death, the audience has got to know him. Then they will feel more saddened by his unjust death. The first murder has much more detail compared to the second, which can spark more interest for the audience with all the aggravation of making Macbeth do the deed. The second murder has many differences between the murder of Duncan. These include Macbeth getting better at being dishonest for example when he persuades the murderers to kill Banquo and while there at it kill Fleance. He seems much smarter and more confident. We could argue that this has more of an effect on the audience as they see how much Macbeth has changed from a war-hero to a villain, and it makes them feel more disgusted at Macbeth. To finally conclude this essay an audience would find both murders sickening, but the first murder would seem to have a bigger effect. This is because it has many things that the second murder of Banquo has not got. This includes the feelings and actions of Macbeth before both of the murders. In the first he is much more resistant, which I think would have a much bigger effect on the audience. The second murder doesn't have any resistance from Macbeth and emotions, so it doesn't keep the audience on the edge of their seat, which is the opposite compared to the murder of Duncan. ...read more.

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