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Kingship Essay - Macbeth The issue of Kingship was such an important issue of Shakespeare's time because there is a change of ruler

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Kingship Essay - Macbeth The issue of Kingship was such an important issue of Shakespeare's time because there is a change of ruler, which will affect the lives of the population. Queen Elizabeth was a benevolent Queen who strived for peace. She was the virgin Queen and was, in effect, married to her country; she did this in order to protect her country from another King, who could potentially start tension and war. This commitment shows Elizabeth's love for her country, as she took on the personal commitments to defend her country. People loved her as a consequence of this. A benefit of this was that Elizabethan times were full of prosperity, advances in learning and the expansion of empire. There was no civil strife as there had been before in the war of the Roses. When Elizabeth's long era came to an end when she died in 1603 there was debate as to who would be the next ruler. The blood line of the Tudors found King James VI of Scotland as the legitimate candidate to be King James I of England. This united England and Scotland, and Shakespeare uses the play 'Macbeth', to compliment King James, to promote a good image and to show the significance of the Monarchy. Another significant issue to the background of 'Macbeth' is the hierarchy in place at this time. Elizabethan's desired stability as it meant they could move forward and could be protected from the outcome of war, which the population were afraid of. ...read more.


However the respect for him is obvious in this quote, when Macbeth exclaims; "Here lay Duncan His silver skin laced with his golden blood And his gashed stabs looked like a breach in nature." Duncan didn't make Macbeth the next King because he judged Macbeth as not a political leader but a military leader, and Duncan was alert enough to know that Macbeth's ambition could come in the way of being a worthy King of his country. Duncan's decision for not letting his Son's into battle, was for the same reason that he knew they were going to be the next in line to be King, therefore they need to stay alive and well. Duncan can also be proved to be a tactical leader as he does not send himself into battle, if he went into battle he could be central to the opposition attack and then captured and therefore his side would lose. Duncan has faith in his soldiers that they can win the battle for him because of their love for their country and their king. Here is a quote from the play from Ross, who is talking to King Duncan after the battle; he talks of the soldiers love for their country, "And everyone did bear Thy praises in his kingdom's great defence And poured them down before him." This then shows how Duncan can put his soldiers into battle without worrying about himself or his sons going into battle as his soldiers are so patriotic for their country. ...read more.


What I am truly Is thine, and my poor country's, to command:" Malcolm has clearly thought about the prospects of kingship and tells us what he must do, he talks of "Bounty, perseverance, mercy, lowliness, Devotion, patience, courage, fortitude" In line 97 Act 4 Scene 3, Malcolm reveals he wants Kingship not for personal gain, power and glory but to protect his country, and to selflessly improve his peoples life's and the Kingdom. "Had I power, I should Pour the sweet milk of concord into hell, Uproar the universal peace, confound All unity on earth." Malcolm is a good military leader, just like Macbeth. Therefore he has aspects of a warrior King, for example using the strategic wood of Birnam to defeat Macbeth, again showing that God is on his side. The last speech Malcolm makes of the play is a significant one as he reveals his qualities of King in practise by doing the following, restoring peace, harmony and balance. Malcolm rewards all involved equally, "My thanes and Kinsmen, Henceforth be earls, the first that ever Scotland In such an honour nam'd." He creates a new title to totally crush the old tranquil reign of Macbeth, and what the people of Scotland had finally been waiting for; Malcolm treated his people with dignity. In conclusion, Duncan's insight into his Son's ability to lead and be a king is proven to be correct by the end of the play, and everything is proven to be balanced again, as Malcolm has all the leadership qualities his country need. Macbeth however, has had his life on earth ended early, and as he knows he has "jump the life to come", showing the cost of committing regicide. ...read more.

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