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Macbeth. The Witches help introduce the theme of fate in the play as their primary function is to entice Macbeth to pursue the throne in order to become king

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Introduction

Macbeth coursework The play Macbeth was written in the early 17th century by a famous playwright William Shakespeare. The Elizabethan or Jacobeans were fascinate by the witches because back in those times people believed in witches, and thousands of people ( mostly women) were executed because they were thought to be witches. Therefore the Elizabethan or Jacobeans could relate to this play. King James was one of the main reasons why Shakespeare wrote the play. King James liked the play because it appealed to his Scottish roots and supposedly he was related to Banquo, one of the few honourable and admirable characters in the play. King James was fascinated with the supernatural because he suffered an assentation attempt when he was younger. Shakespeare included recognised that including 'the weird sisters' would please his king and audience because in the era that Shakespeare wrote the play witch craft witches and dark magic was thought of as common and evil. Shakespeare thought that if he was to use 'the three witches' the audience and king could relate to the play. The Witches help introduce the theme of fate in the play as their primary function is to entice Macbeth to pursue the throne in order to become king, they introduce it by saying three statements, the 1st one was that Macbeth was the Thane of Glamis, that he would become Thane of Cawdor and then become King. ...read more.

Middle

This is an example of one of the witches' use of antithesis and the effect of this to confuse Macbeth. This also makes the witch seem more untrustworthy. Shakespeare's use of onomatopoeia shows that the witches are different and that they will say things that will stay in the audiences minds. "Rump fed Ronyon" for example. With its emphasis and use of alliteration on the letter "R" helps the phrase 'stick' in the audience's minds. The audience would appreciate the incantatory speech that the witches use as they believed that witches were characters who were unnatural. An example of this is "when shall we three meet again, in thunder, lighting or in rain". In Macbeth the witches spoke using equivocation language and this makes them un-trustworthy characters, and because of this the audience did not like them. The witches used half-truths when talking to Macbeth, these include 'None of the women born shall harm Macbeth'. This phrase lets Macbeth think that no man can kill him because he did not consider birth via caesarean. Shakespeare's use of assonance in the play which like alliteration, draws the audience's attention. "But in a sieve I'll thither sail" and "Hurly burly". These are two examples of assonance used in the play and they show the repetition of the sound in the witch's speech. ...read more.

Conclusion

I feel that Lady Macbeth was a dark character in the play that persuaded Macbeth to kill the king. Just before killing Duncan, Macbeth was losing courage and decided not to do it, but Lady Macbeth taunts him calling him a coward, saying that he's not a man if he does not follow through with his plan. In the end, Lady Macbeth finishes the job by planting the daggers on the guards, Lady Macbeth made Macbeth do the dirty work and she just finished it off. I feel that it is Macbeth's own ambition that causes his down fall because he gives in to the temptation too quickly. I feel that Shakespeare presented the witches very effectively as they give the play a mysterious and secretive feel. In some productions of the Macbeth play, the director choose to have the witches omnipresent because it shows that Macbeth is constantly under the charm of the witches and they are always looking over him, observing his every action. This reinforces to the audience that the temptation of wrong doing is always nearby, but we can reject or give in to it. In the 21st century we don't have such a strong belief in supernatural powers, but instead we are afraid of humans, every day people that are armed with dangerous weapons that could hurt or endanger our families and are lead down the path of evil and temptation just like Macbeth was, but could the witches represent the potential for evil that is within humans. ...read more.

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