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There are a number of people involved in the assassination of King Duncan. Identify who they are, what the relationship was to the king and the extent of their responsibility.

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Introduction

There are a number of people involved in the assassination of King Duncan. Identify who they are, what the relationship was to the king and the extent of their responsibility. A number of principle characters in "MacBeth" take their roles in King Duncan's murder. The witches planted the idea into Macbeth's head. Lady MacBeth persuaded MacBeth to kill Duncan. Banquo was the only person (other than MacBeth) to know the witches' predictions. In a way King Duncan was responsible because he was a poor judge of character. The witches could be said to blame because if they hadn't prophesied to MacBeth that he would become "King hereafter" MacBeth would never have thought about it. After all MacBeth was a "peerless kinsman" one of Duncans closest friends. The witches exploite MacBeth because they couldn't act alone. ...read more.

Middle

King Duncan could be blamed for his own death because he was a poor judge of character. The first Thane of Cawdor was a traitor, and by appointing MacBeth Thane of Cawdor he was repeating the same disastrous mistake although he had confessed himself that MacBeth "was a gentleman on whom I placed an absolute trust". Duncan is generous and trusting of the people around him - perhaps too trustful - especially of the two Thane of Cawdor's, both of whom betray him. MacBeth, is mostly to blame because he physically carried out the murder. MacBeth knows what he does is evil but the temptation to be king gets the better of him "Let not light see my black and deep desires". MacBeth thinks that the supernatural powers of the witches will help him "greatness is promised thee". ...read more.

Conclusion

Lady MacBeth meanwhile could be said to blame because she convinced MacBeth to murder Duncan in cold blood. She convinces MacBeth to do the "deed" by using emotional and psychological blackmail as she questions MacBeth - "As thou art in desire?" "And live a coward". Lady MacBeths determination to make MacBeth king has overcome all his doubts in his mind. In a powerful speech Lady MacBeth explains how far she would be prepared to go to get what she wanted "pluck'd my nipple from his boneless gums And dash'd the brains out, Had I so sworn As you have done to this". I think that all the characters had something to do with the Kings death. I personally think MacBeth and his wife should take the blame as MacBeth physically carried out the murder and Lady MacBeth "ordered" him to do it. Thomas Minto ...read more.

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