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Lady Macbeth

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Introduction

Lady Macbeth Lady Macbeth is a very powerful character in Shakespeare's play 'Macbeth'. Her character develops and changes as the play goes on. She is a deeply ambitious woman who lusts for power and position. At the start, the audience is surprised to see such a strong determined and manipulative women. So unlike the women of Elizabethan times who followed rather than led. When act 5 scene 1 begins, however, Lady Macbeth is a shadow of her former self and falls victim to guilt and madness to an even greater degree than her husband. Her conscience affects her to such an extent that she eventually commits suicide. She is a very strong character throughout Macbeth although she is on the verge of committing suicide. This is the first time that the audience encounters Lady Macbeth and first impressions are very important. Lady Macbeth has just received the letter of the witches' prophecies from Macbeth. It had said that Macbeth will become king. 'Whiles I stoop wrapped in the wonder of it, came missives from the king, who all-hailed me, "Thane Of Cawdor", by which title before, these Weird Sisters saluted me, and referred to me to the coming of time, with "Hail king that shall be".' This quote signifies the prophecy that the witches have made for Macbeth to first become 'Than Of Cawdor' and then king. ...read more.

Middle

She insists they must plan it properly and all Macbeth has to do is to commit to her plan and they will succeed and rule Scotland. 'Look like the time, bear welcome in your eye, you hand, your tongue: look like th'innocent flower, but be the serpent under't. He that's coming must be provided for: and you shall put this night's great business into my dispatch. Which shall to all our nights and days to come give solely sovereign sway and masterdom.' This quote shows that Lady Macbeth has taken control of the plan and is telling Macbeth that if they play their cards properly they can be King and Queen of Scotland. At this point the audience would be extremely shocked because she is suggesting killing the king. In Shakespearean times you had the divine right of kings and no person would think about killing the king because 'he was second to God' but what makes it even more shocking is that it is Lady Macbeth planning all of this and women in those times followed rather than led. Up until This point Lady Macbeth has taken control. We know this because in act 2 Scene 2 she took the dagger Fom Macbeth and placed it by the guards that she had earlier drugged and smeared them with blood and she takes control be being firm when her husband's face is full of fear. ...read more.

Conclusion

Towards the end of the play Lady Macbeth's language begins to change. In Act 1 she was more precise and a lot more confident than in Act 2. 'One: two: why, then 'tis time to do' t' This quote shows the difference in the way she spoke compared to Act 1. In Act 1 she spoke with a very firm and confident voice and she had a lot of strength that shone through the words. However, in Act 2 her voice is full of guilt and it has lost all of that strength here. At this point in the play the audience will have pity for her because this once confident woman who was full of strength has turned into a gibbering creature, muttering incoherently. Her sleep is haunted by ghosts and the evil spirits she called upon to complete the evil deed of killing King Duncan. I believe that she deserved what happened to her because she was able to manipulate Macbeth, who was a very strong confident and noble man to murder the king. If Lady Macbeth hadn't manipulated him then he would have never been in the mess he ended up in. She used Macbeth to get to power for her own selfishness. Now That Lady Macbeth is dead I think that Macbeth will not be able to cope. I think that eventually the guilt of killing the king will be too much for him and he will confess everything. ...read more.

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