• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 5
  6. 6
  7. 7
  8. 8
  9. 9

The letter from Macbeth to Lady Macbeth

Extracts from this document...


Macbeth Coursework The letter from Macbeth to Lady Macbeth My Dear LADY A plan is forming itself in my mind and may result in my ascendance to the throne. The war with Norway has been won, and much credit for the deed has been bestowed upon me. Indeed I slew in battle one of our foes Macdonwald and mounted his head upon the battlements for all to behold. Somehow word of my victory reacted king Duncan's ears, he was proud of me. A very strange and frightening thing happened to me. I must introduce the three weird sisters to you, whom in encountered on a heath. They cried "All hail", Macbeth! Thane of Glamis, Thane of Cawdor, thou shalt be king hereafter. I enquired them of their meaning, at which they evaporated into thin air. They told Banquo his children would mount to the throne this qualms me as our children will not be next in line we must dismiss Banquo. As I stood rapt in wonder at the vision, the Kings own messengers rode up and hailed me Thane of Cawdor, the previous one having deflected. Their announcement struck me dumb. It was predominately the manifestation of one of the witch's prophecies. king Duncan has selected his son as the heir to the throne, this indeed torments me as it means I will not become King, "this is a step on which I must fall down, or else o'erleap, for in my way it lies". Now the question that distresses me perpetually is this: shall I become king hereafter, as these three weird sisters addressed me. I do passionately hope so and this news I have thought to deliver thee, my dearest partner of greatness, that thou mightst not lose the dues of rejoicing by being ignorant of what greatness is promised thee. Although I respected Duncan as a king now that the weird sisters have told me I will accede to the throne, I am really impatient for Duncan to lie in his grave. ...read more.


At the beginning of the play he has great love and affection for his wife however at the end he is thoughtless and cruel towards her. In this essay I will explain why Macbeth decides to kill Duncan and how the murder changes him. I will examine his character before and after the murder. I will support my ideas with the appropriate quotations from the play. Before we see Macbeth his reputation is described by king Duncan and by the captain, this immediately tells us that he is a well recognised figure and he will play a important part in the play. The captain says "for brave Macbeth well deserves that name ..." this speech portrays the fact Macbeth is a courageous fighter and he has murdered many people from the conflicting army. This illustrates the information that Macbeth has a fine status. The King, Duncan says "o valiant cousin worthy gentlemen!" this is directed towards Macbeth and there is four meanings in this short speech. This shows that he is brave ,he also uses the word cousin which means that Duncan and Macbeth are close to each other and Macbeth is like a relative to him. He also calls Macbeth "worthy gentlemen" which means he is a pleasant man and Duncan believes he is a nobleman and a strong fighter. Duncan believes he is a loyal and respectful man and Macbeth has a good reputation. Loyalty between them is strong and this adds to the horror and gruesomeness of the murder. In this part of the play the witches come to the scene and this is very relevant to the question because they set Macbeth on his murderous path. When the witches come on to the scene they say "all hail Macbeth, hail thee, Thane of Glamis", this is the first prophecy and it is a revelation to Macbeth as it he feels how do they know about him being the thane of glamis, he is surprised as these weird sisters have never seen or met him in his life. ...read more.


Shakespeare creates a mixed mood about Macbeth before we see him as there are good things said about him from the king and by the captain. When Macbeth thinks about his dilemma suspense is created, this is done by making him ambivalent and this creates tension as we do not realise what he is going to do. Macbeth murders Duncan off stage this is done so the audience focus on the character and his feelings rather than the gruesomeness of the murder. The murder can be imagined, however we see how the murder affects Macbeth. We are horrified at Macbeth because he has comitted regicide and he has become an evil man. We feel pity for him because he was anxious about doing the murder and he was manipulated by his wife to carry out the murder we feel sympathy for Macbeth because he is out of control and he has lost all peace of mind. We do not feel as much sympathy for Lady Macbeth because she has let her self into this crime so she should deal with it. Macbeth can be summarised into a character although strong physically he is very weak mentally and it is this weakness which causes the downfall and change of Macbeth. Other factors do however also contribute to this change such as his wife whose ambition is very strong at first and is much stronger mentally than Macbeth but it is also Macbeth's ambition and his trust in the witches which ultimately change him. Macbeth changes from a noble gentleman to an evil villain who by the end of the play has no feelings, not even for his dearest love. Most of Macbeth is in blank verse, but parts are in prose and some sections are in rhymed verses. An effective device in "Macbeth" which adds to the gloomy atmosphere of the play is shakesphere's dark imagery, this is as early as the first scene when all the witches say "fair is foul and foul is fair, hover through the fog and filthy air". This shows the imagery of darkness and fear. ...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. Shakespeare: Banquo's Letter.

    Macbeth was puzzled at first, for he thought that the Thane still lived, Then, once we had heard that he was a traitor, I saw a gleam in Macbeth's eyes. I knew that he was taking the witches prophecies seriously.

  2. Diary entries for Lady Macbeth on reading Macbeth's letter, on Macbeth's return from battle, ...

    An owl shrieked and I nearly jumped out of my skin. What if the guards woke? Macbeth would certainly be executed for treason just as the last Thane of Cawdor was. It's a good job I had the sense to put laudanum in their drinks.

  1. Lady Macbeth's Character in Macbeth.

    In contrast, Banquo doubts them very much on introduction and tells them that he "neither beg nor fear Your favours nor you hate." Banquo has no reason to believe in them, and nor does Macbeth The second step towards his dreams being realized comes with the title, Thane of Cawdor, as the witches had prophesised.

  2. How is Macbeth persuaded to kill Duncan: Is his wife entirely to blame?

    It is interesting to see that Lady Macbeth can have the wit to turn around Macbeth's metaphors, but does not have the intelligence, nor the imagination to think about the terrible consequences of murdering the king. I can imagine audience desperately hoping that Lady Macbeth will actually change her mind,

  1. Explain what Act 1, Scene 7 tells us about the characters of Macbeth and ...

    Here Lady Macbeth persuades the man, Macbeth. It's almost as if Shakespeare is playing on the morale that all women are sinful and tempt men into evil, in a similar way that Eve tempted Adam. This could support the theory that Lady Macbeth is totally evil, but she could just be seeking support in a misguided and misinformed way.

  2. Shakespeare's use of the Supernatural in Macbeth

    Obviously, the Lords do not know what as been done. Macbeth could be saying one of two things. Either he is asking who murdered Banquo, meaning he is somewhat playing along to cover the real story, or he is asking who played this trick, by putting Banquo's dead body in his chair.

  1. 'My dearest partner of greatness'. Explore the Relationship Between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth Throughout ...

    He has her alone on stage in this scene receiving a letter rather than in conversation with Macbeth so that the audience can see her character as it really is without any constraints such as her expected role as a woman or the necessity to manipulate Macbeth.

  2. What factors lead Macbeth to kill Duncan?

    I am now going to look at Duncan. He seems almost like a natural victim - he is obviously weak and ineffectual as a king. At the start of the play Scotland is wracked by war, from Norway and also from within, with the rebels lead by the old Thane of Cawdor.

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