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Lady Macbeth - character study

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Lady Macbeth Lady Macbeth comes into the play in act 1 scene 5, when Lady Macbeth is reading the letter from Macbeth. Lady Macbeth fears that Macbeth's heart "is too full o' th' milk of human kindness". She knows that her husband has is "not without ambition, but without the illness should attend it". Lady Macbeth's immediate response to the letter is the thought of killing the king. "Hie thee hither, that I may pour my spirits into thine ear" she wants her husband to hurry back so she can talk to him about killing the king. Lady Macbeth's determination to be queen is evident when she refers to "the raven" who "himself is hoarse" and "croaks the fatal entrance of Duncan". It is here that we realise she means to end his life, she calls upon evil spirits to "unsex me here" abandoning all her feminine qualities, her "direst cruelty" to evident when she opposes her nature asking for it to "take my milk for gall." She warns him warns him of such things such as "your face, my thane, is a book where men may read strange matters" She tells him how to behave when around the king "...bear welcome in your eye, your hand, your tongue; look like th' innocent flower, but be the serpent under't". ...read more.


She clearly shows her first obvious sign of weakness, "had he not resembled my father as he slept, I had done't". Therefore the seeds of her own downfall are clear because she does have a conscience, which is a prohibitive force. But still at this stage she is chastising, determined and scornful of her husband who fears he will loose the gods blessing because of his actions. She tells him, "consider it not so deeply" "these deeds must not be thought" this shows she is keeping determined at any cost. Lady Macbeth believes her husband's guilt can easily be erased: - "go get some water, and wash this filthy witness from your hand". When Macbeth refuses to go back to the murder scene, Lady Macbeth responds, "Give me the daggers" she feels "the dead are but as pictures" to her. She feels no guilt or fear while Macbeth remains conscience-stricken. "A little water clears us of this deed". She has no care for the villainous of the deed they have performed. However, these feelings change and this comes back to haunt her in her acts. She continues to organise him after the murder, "get on your nightgown". ...read more.


Then she starts to recite conversation she has had with Macbeth previously in the play, "I tell you yet again, Banquo's buried: he cannot come out ones grave". The conversations where she has been the brave figure, but now she is weak and riddled with guilt. Act 5 scene 3, the doctor reports to Macbeth that he is, "not sick, my lord, as she is troubled with thick - coming fancies that keep her from rest" Macbeth responds "cure her of that" notice how he cares less for her now. His guilt has now become her guilt. Macbeth does not understand the implication of her guilt, believing it would be easy to, "pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow" and "cleanse the stuffed bosom of that perilous shift which weighs upon her heart" Act 5 scene 5, Macbeth hears the cry of Lady Macbeth committing suicide. Lady Macbeth went from being normal to being overcome with selfishness and greed to become queen. She called upon the spirits to take away her feminine qualities, which made her wicked and cold hearted. She manipulated her husband and persuasively more than once changed his mind on killing Duncan. Her guilty conscience grew more as Macbeth guilty conscience grew less. Eventually her guilt was too much and this lead to her death. Dane Kapoor ...read more.

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