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Macbeth essay It is clear at the beginning of the play that Macbeth starts out as a good man

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Introduction

Macbeth essay It is clear at the beginning of the play that Macbeth starts out as a good man. He is brave and well loved and trusted by the King, who calls him "worthy gentleman, valiant cousin!" (2, 2, 24) He is also a good husband, the first thing he does when he gets the chance, is write to his wife and share the news of the witches prophesy. Throughout the play, despite doing terrible things, he is not without remorse and guilt. He talks of how upset and frightened he was that he could not say Amen, just after he has killed Duncan, saying "I had most need of blessing, and "Amen" stuck in my throat." (2, 2, 32) This shows that already he feels that he has done a terrible thing. When he talks about never being able to wash the blood from his hands, "Will all great Neptune's ocean wash this blood/ Clean from my hand?", (2,2,60-61) it is clear that he is feeling guilty and dirty because of what he has done. ...read more.

Middle

Right from his first meeting with the witches, they seem to have some sort of hold over him, telling him things he wants to hear and sparking his ambition. Here Shakespeare has created the character of Lady Macbeth, who can be seen as the epitome of Macbeth's crisis of conscience. As the real Lady Macbeth is hardly mentioned in history books, we can imagine that Shakespeare has created his Lady Macbeth for the sole purpose of giving Macbeth's "darker side" a voice. In the play Lady Macbeth never seems to be in any doubt as to the action they should take. How could Macbeth show reluctance and fear when his own wife is so determined? When she accuses him of being a coward, saying "And live a coward in thine own esteem," we can see how he lets himself be talked into it. At this point in the play, Macbeths biggest weakness would seem to be that he is weak willed and easily led. ...read more.

Conclusion

and comment on how "some say he is mad". (5, 2, 13) This contrasts sharply with the first description of him by his fellow soldiers as "brave Macbeth" (1, 2, 16) However when we look at Macbeths speech to Seton, we see a man who appears broken and alone. He talks about the things that he should have at this stage in his life, "that which should accompany old age/ As honour, love, obedience, troops of friends/ I must not look to have"(5, 3, 24-26) Perhaps this is why he is ready to go down fighting. He has nothing else to lose and finds some comfort in going back to what he knows best, being a soldier. This is what he should have been all along. He clearly was not cut out to be king. In the end he accepts this fate and would rather die honourably, than live in a cage. So yes, Macbeth does terrible things, but he pays, not only with his life, but by losing his, friends, wife, reputation, honour and soul. And is destined to be remembered in history as "this dead butcher" with a "fiend-like queen", so perhaps he does not deserve everything he gets. ...read more.

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