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

Trace development in the character of Lady Macbeth. How does the relationship with Macbeth change during the play?

Extracts from this document...


?? Macbeth Essay Question: Trace development in the character of Lady Macbeth. How does the relationship with Macbeth change during the play? In Act 1 Scene 5 Macbeth and Lady Macbeth are very close he addresses her in the letter as, 'my dearest partner of greatness' Lady Macbeth is keen to see Macbeth to discuss the murder with him, but fears he is, 'too full of' the milk of human kindness'. This proves how well she understands her husband. She respects him by calling him, 'Great Glamis! Worthy Cawdor!' Macbeth was perhaps thinking about murder when he wrote the letter, because if he did not think the witches' prophecies would account to anything he would not have consulted Lady Macbeth, he also did not want her to, 'lose the dues of rejoicing' which shows they share everything together, including their ambitions hopes and dreams. Macbeth also shows a great deal of trust towards his wife as a letter that implies plotting the death of a king, would result in treason which is punishable by death, this shows Macbeth would trust Lady Macbeth with his life. Macbeth is introduced as a worthy noble gallant soldier, rewarded for fighting bravely on the King's behalf, whilst Lady Macbeth in her soliloquy asks for evil spirits to, 'unsex' her and fill her, 'top-full of direst cruelty'. ...read more.


Lady Macbeth is being brave and practical, and tells him, 'go get some water and wash this filthy witness from your hand.' When Duncan's murder is committed, the audience hears 'the owl scream and the crickets cry' and know that nature's cycle of order collapses consequentially. A supernatural atmosphere is brought back from the scenes with the witches, and tension builds, as the audience wait to see if the Macbeths are caught. Lady Macbeth knows that, 'These deeds must not be thought...so it will make us mad.' The irony here is that Lady Macbeth's thoughts are filled with the murder and it eventually forces here to become insane. Macbeth hears voices saying that he will, 'sleep no more'. When more murders are committed, Macbeth starts to hide things from his wife, he orders the death of Banquo, his best friend, without telling her, this marks the point of deterioration in their relationship, their trust and loyalty has gone. It seems as if Macbeth would do anything to keep the crown, including becoming a greed driven, secluded, person. When Lady Macbeth asks her husband, 'Why do you keep alone?' she seems concerned for her husband as his guilt is making him withdrawn, another interpretation could be that Lady Macbeth may also be feeling isolated, and wishes to be in control of their relationship again. ...read more.


Macbeth's character degenerates at the same pace as his relationship to Lady Macbeth, perhaps because his character is linked to and depends on their relationship as Lady Macbeth makes up a part of him, which is why when Lady Macbeth dies, a part of Macbeth dies with her. Macbeth somewhat unwillingly kills Duncan for personal gain; then he has to kill Banquo, his closest friend, to maintain that position, showing how important kingship has become to him. By the time he faces Macduff he is a very desperate and dangerous man, quite different from the character we thought we knew at the beginning. Macduff is his bringer of destiny, as he takes revenge for his wife and children's murders and kills Macbeth. There can be no doubt that their love remains strong throughout the entire play, perhaps it could be said the love between the two was so strong Lady Macbeth's breakdown is caused by her concern for her husband, and his personality collapse than any regrets about the murder. When she dies he is totally alone and that is when he meets his final tragedy. Macbeth feels sure he will never attain peace - either in this world or in the next, for he has murdered, now his sleep will be forever disturbed. ?? ?? ?? ?? Zahra Hassan ...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. Marked by a teacher

    Analysis of the relationship between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth

    3 star(s)

    When she repeats them at this point, it is almost as if she is reassuring herself as she speaks, rather than just going over it, which is interesting. It is obvious that now that it has finally hit Lady Macbeth the extent of what has been happening.

  2. The relationship between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth

    At that time order was considered very important, and the supernatural was said to upset the balance of God's world. It could be said that the witches do not give Lady Macbeth what she asks for later in the play (she asks to be unsexed and made stronger)

  1. Lady Macbeth's Character in Macbeth.

    We can now realise how the thoughts in Macbeth�s mind are immediately pointing to murder. It is shocking to see how the thought of murder occurs to him so soon. Yet, Macbeth is in a confused state of mind on whether or not to pursue his ambitions.

  2. How is Lady Macbeth presented by Shakespeare? In what ways does she change throughout ...

    She uses this example, however hypothetical it may be to ensure Macbeth understands the sincerity in what she is saying. Using such persuasive tact on her own husband only accentuates her domineering and manipulative character. Lady Macbeth is anxious to persuade Macbeth, as the delay of one night could jepordise their chance of being able to carry through their plans.

  1. How does the relationship between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth change throughout the play?

    "Was the hope drunk, wherein you dress yourself? Hath it slept since, and wakes it now, to look so green and pale, at what it did so freely?" Lady Macbeth's scathing rhetorical questions persuade Macbeth to commit the murder and is querying was he drunk when he promised her that he would kill Duncan.

  2. How does Macbeths Character change during the play

    and says "Is this a dagger which I see before me, The handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee. I have thee not, and yet I see thee still." Here Macbeth asks a rhetorical question. Shakespeare used this because he was trying to show that Macbeth is confused

  1. Macbeth: Analyse and compare two scenes in William Shakespeare's Macbeth that show the audience ...

    whom he is supposed to protect for the good of the country; and also Duncan is visiting his castle because he trusts him and that, as his host, he should protect him, not cause harm. "He's here in double trust".

  2. Lady MacBeth - Character Assessment

    He has been honoured for his great roles in battle by the king himself. Naturally, it will provoke MacBeth if his honour or 'masculinity' is challenged. She taunts him: 'Was the hope drunk Wherein you dressed yourself? Hath it slept since?'

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