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Trace and explain the downfall of Macbeth from this brave soldier to this dead butcher and his fiend like Queen.

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Introduction

Trace and explain the downfall of Macbeth from this brave soldier to this dead butcher and his fiend like Queen. "Macbeth," first acted in 1606 in front of King James I, was based on a true story, using historical facts. The names, Banquo and Fleance, two prominent characters were deliberately used, as they were the King's ancestors, through whom he inherited his throne. Shakespeare willingly employed witchcraft into the plot as the King believed he was descended spiritually from a long line of monarchs. When we are first introduced to Macbeth he is portrayed as a valiant soldier and is brave in battle against the Norweigens who he defeated. Macbeth is respected by his fellow soldiers and the king rewards him with the title "Thane of Cawdor." Macbeth then goes to see the witches with Banquo, not knowing about his new title and they predict the future. Macbeth believes what their prophecies and is amazed by the predictions showing he is gullible and easily led as we later discover in Scene 7 with Lady Macbeth but Banquo is unsure. Macbeth is intrigued by the "supernatural power" of the witches and asks them for more information concerning his future. "Stay, you imperfect speakers, tell me more." As he has been predicted his new title he is confident and demanding towards the witches. ...read more.

Middle

This is where we see the valiant and honourable side to Macbeth as he becomes afraid to murder and Lady Macbeth's influence portrays him as evil. Once Macbeth has agreed to go on with the murder it is constantly on his mind and it begins to affect his thoughts. His conscience begins to take over as he sees a vision of a dagger dripping with blood. Macbeth cant tell if he sees the dagger or he is imagining it. "or art thou but A dagger of the mind, a false creation, Proceeding from the heat-oppressed brain?" At the end of this vision, a bell rings, which is known as the funeral bell and this is what summons him to kill Duncan. After Duncan has been killed, Macbeth returns to his wife with the blood on his hands and says now he won't be able to sleep coming across as weak to his wife but Lady Macbeth uses her power over him to convince him not to think about it or they will go mad. "These deeds must not be though After these ways; so, it will make us mad." The quote shows Lady Macbeth telling her husband what to do because he feels guilty of what he has done. Macbeth wants to turn back the clock and wake Duncan up because he is in regret. ...read more.

Conclusion

Scotland is suffering because of Macbeth's rules and Macduff tells Malcolm of it. He must prove his loyalty to Malcolm as, he does not trust him at first. Macbeth has to reflect on what he has achieved through his life, he needs to think if he had won his honours fairly. Meanwhile back in Scotland Lady Macbeth is suffering from a guilty conscience and she walks in her sleep dreaming that she and her husband are murdering. Lady Macbeth is disturbed commiting suicide illustrating not as strong a personality as we first thought perhaps. Macbeth loses all feeling of fear and grief as he doesn't react to his wife death or the fact the wood is moving towards the castle; he feels life is meaningless. In Act five Scene Five he speaks the most disillusioned speech Shakespeare ever wrote contemplating life's slow pace from day to day. Macbeth meets Macduff and chooses to die in battle, he doesn't want to fight him as his conscious is constantly getting to him. We respect Macbeth for this. Macbeth was corrupted through ambition. He wanted to be king so badly that he did not take into consideration anything or anyone else. He was easily influenced by Lady Macbeth and the witches but I feel he was an honest man. ...read more.

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