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The Fall of Macbeth

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The story of Macbeth is an example of power at the expense of everything else, he begins the play as a strong character who is greatly admired, however as the play progresses Macbeth's personality and actions become more and more deceitful which eventually leads to his destruction. Following the murder of Duncan, Macbeth realises that the murder has put him into the control of demon forces which are the enemy of mankind. Macbeth recognises that the conscious acts which torture him essentially reduce him to a human individual. This is the inescapable bond that keeps him "pale" and at Act 3 Scene 2, he states: "Come seeling night Scarf up the tender eye of pitiful day, And with thy bloody and invisible hand Cancel and tear to pieces that great bond Which keeps me pale" The above quote by Macbeth demonstrates that he imagines that the execution of more murderous deeds, (instigation of the murder of Banquo), will help him pursue his interest of personal safety and also destroy any personal humanity left within himself. Immediately after the death of Duncan, Macbeth is disgusted with himself for murdering Duncan. This is shown by Macbeth when he states: "I have done the deed" He says this instead of simply saying that he has murdered Duncan and is consequently almost trying to avoid the subject. This demonstrates that Macbeth is deeply ashamed of what he has done. ...read more.


A fantasy of his is that he is trying to create a safe world for himself whereby he is completely in control of Scotland. His idea is to form an autocracy and to fit that fantasy Macbeth has tried to become more pompous and divine and basically become a better version of Duncan. Duncan's main weakness was that he was too trusting, whereas it can be noticed that Macbeth is not trusting at all, for example, he does not trust the murderers. Macbeth used to be very humble to everybody and that was noted by all around him but later he acts more like a dictator. A quote that exemplifies the above observation is: "Fleance his son, that keeps him company, Whose absence is no less material to me Than is his father's" He is trying to be ruthless and demonstrate his greatness. In Act 3, Scene 2, Lady Macbeth's dominance over Macbeth is demonstrated because even though Macbeth likes to think of himself as a great dictator he still succumbs to the power of his wife. Lady Macbeth shows this when she says to the servant: "Say to the King, I would attend his leisure For a few words" This demonstrates that his fantasy of being all great and powerful is untrue, because he still basically prepared to listen to her advice and is not completely dismissive of her opinions. ...read more.


This is demonstrated by the witches: "something wicked this way comes" This is ironic as the witches, who are evil, are calling Macbeth evil, thus as above making him the most evil character in the play. Macbeth is also becoming more attached to the witches, as the play nears the end, Macbeth starts to speak in rhyme as the witches do. This may be because by that point in the play Macbeth has come to a point where he thinks of nothing else. At Act 4, Scene 1 from line fifty onwards, Macbeth is willing to sacrifice anything to get an answer about his future and it is considered that the prophecies give Macbeth a false sense of security. Macbeth is very insecure, which is an explanation as to why he feels he has to kill anyone who he remotely views as a threat to his reign including his plan to murder Macduff: "I'll make assurance double sure" I think this is because he is so insecure that he feels he needs to kill Macduff to make the prophecy come true. The multiple roles of Macbeth in the play demonstrate his changing character and portrays the complete evolution of Macbeth's personality. Macbeth begins as a respectable person and gradually his personality descends until he eventually falls apart and loses control. It is considered that the message that Shakespeare is portraying is that no good will come from destroying rivals on the way to the top even if it appears that you will not be found out. ...read more.

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