• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Show How Shakespeare Uses The Supernatural To Develop Macbeths Character

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Show How Shakespeare Uses The Supernatural To Develop Macbeths Character - Essay. Shakespeare has written five tragedies, and Macbeth was his shortest. It was written between the years 1603-1606 during Elizabethan/Jacobean times which was when James I came to the throne. It was written and performed to James I as he was already James IV/V of Scotland and reputedly a descendant of Banquo; it is widely accepted that there is an element of truth in the story. At these times there was a strong belief in the supernatural and the fact that the devil was real and could come before anyone or send 'sub-devils' instead, in the case of Macbeth it was the witches. This belief and use of dark magic in the play helps to show us key aspects of Macbeth's development throughout the play. Before Macbeth even meets the witches in act 1 scene 3, we see how capable of evil they are, "Weary se'nnights nine times nine shall he dwindle, peak and pine." They sent a storm upon a man and his whole crew when they were at sea, just because his wife refused to share her chestnuts with one of the, the witches are capable of trickery and don't tell the whole truth. ...read more.

Middle

The good point that came from this was that he became Thane of Cawdor but the evil over powers him and he finds himself considering murdering Duncan for the first time, "Why do I yield to that suggestion whose horrid image doth unfix my hair." This new idea that is planted in Macbeth's head is not the witches doing this time, but the creation of his own self. He has not however had murderous thoughts towards Banquo yet, presuming that he is thinking the same and wants to share this gruesome experience, "Think upon what hath chanc'd, and at more time... let us speak our free hearts each to other." The famous dagger scene (act two scene one) reveals a lot about Macbeths character and also how much he has changed due to his supernatural experiences. Before Banquo departs from Macbeth he makes it clear that he remains unaffected by the prophecy even though he has had the same experience of the supernatural as Macbeth, yet he has still managed to resist evil; "But I still keep my boson franchised and allegiance clear." This suits Macbeth very well because he wanted to change the subject, "I think not of them," whilst in fact he is, and didn't want Banquo to have these thoughts on his mind while the murder is being committed. ...read more.

Conclusion

Macbeth realises he is talking and not acting - he doesn't want to talk himself out of the murder because he knows at heart that he has changed so much due to this wicked prophecy. But the dagger encourages him onwards, "Words to the heat of deeds too cold breath gives." He hears a bell as his last and final signal but it is like a death bell for Duncan and Macbeth doesn't care if Duncan goes to heaven or to hell, he just needs him out of the way, "The bell invites me... that summons thee to heaven or hell." In conclusion it could be said that Macbeth's character has developed and changed dramatically through the course of the play. The supernatural encounters that he experienced show us complex aspects of Macbeth's character and how he went from loyal and fond of King Duncan to murderous and a liar. Macbeth ended up dieing due to his arrogance and high ambitions and Shakespeare uses this theme to say that a small idea that gets planted into your mind can grow into something big and dangerous. Jenny Islam 10J ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Macbeth section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Macbeth essays

  1. How does Shakespeare Present the Supernatural in Macbeth?

    She says he is unmanly and unheroic. "Are you a man?" Macbeth believes this ghost is real and cannot see why nobody else is frightened of it. The ghost is only real in his mind though. "This is the very painting of your fear; this is the air-drawn dagger which you said led you to Duncan."

  2. Shakespeare's use of the Supernatural in Macbeth

    Despite Hecate has only a small part in the play; she actually is quite a major character in terms of the storyline. Act 4 scene 1 is the next scene in the play for the supernatural. This is the final scene in which the witches take part.

  1. How does Shakespeare use language and dramatic devices to present Macbeths changing character?

    Shortly after this, Macbeth and Banquo, together, encounter the witches on the heath where Macbeth hears their prophecy for the first time. Banquo reacts as a friend would at the sound of Macbeth's promising future, and then seeks to know his own future.

  2. How does Macbeths Character change during the play

    This shows us that Macbeth is weak because he is so easily persuaded by his wife, and that he doesn't use his own brain because his wife is doing all the thinking and telling Macbeth what to do. In Act 2, Scene 1, Banquo says, "How goes the night, boy?"

  1. Responsibility of Macbeth's Death

    At Macbeth's castle King Duncan arrives whilst Lady Macbeth plays the most perfect of hostesses. Macbeth's castle seems to be a haven of sanctuary, so much so that Banquo describes it as being almost heaven like in its peacefulness. King Duncan asks "Where's the Thane of Cawdor?"

  2. Using Macbeth's soliloquies and speeches, show how the character changes throughout the course of ...

    She exploits his love for her - 'From this time, such I account thy love'- and tells him he is cowardly - 'Like the poor cat i' th' adage?' At this point, Macbeth shows how weak his character is. Although he has just thought of many powerful reasons why he

  1. Lady Macbeth's Character in Macbeth.

    Why then does he fight him? Is it because Macduff calls him "coward" and his concept of manliness cannot stand this? Or is it because he cannot bear to be humiliated in public and so forfeit his pride? Is there despair in his final words, "Yet I will try the last" ?

  2. Analyse the Macbeth's marriage during the play, and explain why and how it changed

    Lady Macbeth recognises that Macbeth is "too full o' th' milk of human kindness" and would not be able to become king by "the nearest way." She understands that Macbeth- "wouldst thou holily: wouldst not play false." Lady Macbeth loves her husband and wants him to have the best.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work