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

The Tragedy of Macbeth - Is Macbeth a Tragic Hero?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

The Tragedy of Macbeth Is Macbeth a Tragic Hero? Aristotle a Greek Philosopher born in 384 BC greatly influenced the works of William Shakespeare although they lived centuries apart. Aristotle had a definition of a tragic hero; Shakespeare incorporated Aristotle's definition into some of his most famous works. But when Shakespeare wrote Macbeth did he define Aristotle's ideas of what makes a tragic hero into his play? The play begins with the three witches and we hear them make some predictions, which sets the supernatural theme to the play and gives an insight into future events of the play. They predict they are going "upon the heath to meet Macbeth". This is our first introduction to Macbeth in the play. Shakespeare uses the witches to fit in with the historical time the play was written, the Renaissance, James I was on the throne and Shakespeare wrote the play knowing that James was interested in and was fearful of witches. ...read more.

Middle

This is support again that Macbeth is a tragic hero, because this shows that Macbeth has bad characteristics. But although Macbeth did physically kill Duncan, Macbeth had a strong force behind him, his wife Lady Macbeth. Lady Macbeth begins to scheme so to influence Macbeth and asks herself if Macbeth is evil enough to get his goal, "I fear thy nature, it is too full o'th'milk of human kindness to catch the nearest way." But she begins to think if she could manipulate him so much as if to put her character into him, "That I may pour my spirits in thine ear and characterise with the valour of my tongue." Lady Macbeth then goes on to taunt Macbeth into performing the crime of killing Duncan by questioning his manhood and bravery, "When you durst do it, then you were a man. And to be more than what you were, you would be so much more the man." ...read more.

Conclusion

Macbeth has lost self-belief in his life in one of his soliloquies, "Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow creeps in this petty pace from day to day... out, out brief candle, life's but a walking shadow." The tragic hero always falls in the end, that is why he is called a tragic hero. Lady Macbeth has already died because of Macbeth's vaulting ambition, and Macbeth falls to his death in battle. "I will try the last. Before my, body I throw my warlike shield" As a result of all the flaws of a tragic hero Macbeth has fallen to his death. The evidence from the play suggests that Macbeth was Aristotle's version of a tragic hero and Shakespeare portrayed this well throughout the play with the language he used. The play is a long thread leading from one situation to another, if Macbeth hadn't listened to the witches from the start would he have gone ahead and killed Duncan? He wanted the power so much one thing lead to another and his bad judgement on the situations he was in lead him to his fall. Nadia Khalaf English Coursework ...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. 'Macbeth' gives us a classic example of the literary definition of a 'tragic hero'. ...

    nor steel, nor poison, Malice domestic, foreign levy, nothing Can touch him further. He envies Duncan, his predecessor because he is in an eternal slumber. He now sees life as a succession of obstacles, something to be endured, and not enjoyed.

  2. Macbeth as a Tragic Hero

    Is she suffering from remorse here, or does she think that the murder of Duncan has alienated Macbeth from her? "How now, my Lord! Why do you keep alone?" Is she worried that he is unhappy? She tries to console him, "what's done is done." and to rally his spirits.

  1. The extent to which the supernatural contributes to Macbeth’s tragedy

    Before the murder of Banquo, Macbeth calls on the "seeling night" to "Scarf up the tender eye of pitiful day" (Act Three, Sc. Two). He says, too, "Good things of the day begin to droop and drowse While night's black agents to their prey do rouse." In Act Two, Sc.

  2. Macbeth - tragic hero?

    For example when Lady Macbeth plots to influence Macbeth ('That I mat pour my spirits in thine ear.'), that leaves the audience to decide whether or not he will be swayed thus gripping them to the play as they will want to find out what actually happens.

  1. MacBeth - Tragic Hero

    predictable; Macbeth's character, like any other man's at a given moment, is what is being made out of potentialities plus environment, and no one, not even Macbeth himself, can know all his inordinate self-love whose actions are discovered to be-and no doubt have been for a long time- determined mainly by an inordinate desire for some temporal or mutable good.

  2. Macbeth- Tyrant or tragic hero? Discuss

    No amount of 'washing' will cleanse her spirit. She will bear this mark, forever reminding her of what she has done. The witches also manipulate the weakness of Macbeth. It is considered that his downfall begins when he first meets the witches in Act I Scene III. Interestingly, Macbeth's first line in the play links him to the witches.

  1. Macbeths genre is a tragedy due to some of its themes. One theme of ...

    The structure fits Aristotle characteristics as Macbeth the man with high social standing, experiences a downfall, which is the climax of killing for his ambition, which then, leads to a result of tragic action of which Macbeth the main character is killed.

  2. Macbeth: Hero or Villian?

    to the reader when after the witches have called him king of Scotland he says: (Act 1 Scene 3) "would they have stayed!" We can gauge from this that instead of being alarmed at the thought of his King's death Macbeth, instead wants to hear more of what the witches

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