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

What dramatic use does Shakespeare make of the supernatural? Be sure to include the witches, the dagger, Banquo's ghost, the apparitions and the Old man.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

What dramatic use does Shakespeare make of the supernatural? Be sure to include the witches, the dagger, Banquo's ghost, the apparitions and the Old man. There are many themes in Macbeth like ambition, loyalty and hypocrisy but Shakespeare has used the theme of the supernatural to create dramatic emphasis and suspicion. He has used the witches, dagger, Banquo's ghost, the apparitions and the old man to create to add an element of the supernatural to Macbeth. Throughout the play the witches create a sense of mystery. The opening scene is significant because it puts the audience in fear. 'Fair is foul, and foul is fair' This quote by the three witches is echoed throughout the play and shows a sense of evil. Macbeths opening line 'So foul and fair a day I have not seen echoes the witches words and is significant because he is already in tune with their way of thinking and you know that he will be depending on the witches a lot throughout the play. The witches can tell the future which tempts Macbeth to go back to them. On their first meeting, Macbeth is present with Banquo, the witches tell Macbeth three prophecies and he is initially stunned. ...read more.

Middle

He talks to Macbeth about the witches who have given him reason to believe in them. 'I dream'd last night of the three weird sisters; To you they have show'd some truth.' When Macbeth is left alone he starts to hallucinate and imagines he sees a dagger in front of him which is guiding him to King Duncan. 'Is this a dagger which I see before me.' 'Thou marshall'st me the way that I was going.' The a bell rings which determines him to proceed with the killing of Duncan. 'The bell invites me. Hear it not, Duncan for it is a knell That summons thee to heaven or to hell.' When the murder has been committed, Macbeth is shattered and hysterical. He is in such a state that he brings the two bloody daggers he used to kill Duncan and the guards with him. 'This is a sorry sight.' Macbeth is probably looking at his hands, which are holding the daggers and claims that it is a miserable sight. However Lady Macbeth tries to pull her husband together and orders him to wash his hands and to go back and place the daggers beside the guards. 'Go get some water And wash this filthy witness from your hand, Why did you bring these daggers from the place? ...read more.

Conclusion

The second is a bloody child and represents Macduff. 'Be bloody, bold, and resolute; laugh to scorn The power of man, for none of woman born Shall harm Macbeth.' The third apparition is a child crowned with a tree in his hand represents Malcolm. 'Macbeth shall never vanquish'd be until Great Birname Wood to high Dunsinane Hill Shall come against him.' All three prophecies convince Macbeth his fate and make him more confident which leads him to his death. It is a contrast to the first three prophecies which came true when he was alive. The Old Man is significant with the theme of supernatural because he and Ross discuss the unnatural events that occurred on the night of Duncan's murder. They learn from Macduff that Macbeth has been chosen to be the next king. The Old Man states that this is the worst night of his life and he cannot remember seeing anything worse than this. '..but this sore night Hath trifled former knowings.' To add effect to the scene darkness has taken place of light. 'And yet dark night strangles the traveling lamp.' The Old Man is a representative of the people and has a memory that goes back a long way and as far as he can recall he has never experienced anything like this. The supernatural events in Macbeth have definitely been effective and has created a more suspicious tragedy. Azmeen Noreen ...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. How does Shakespeare create dramatic tension in these scenes?

    She believes that water will put them in the clear~ "water clears us of this deed"; whilst he believes that no amount of water will make it better. The amounts are also contrasted; a "little" compared to "multitudinous", which reflects the emotions of the characters at this point; his emotions exaggerated and fearful and hers are toned down and unaffected.

  2. Compare and contrast Banquo and Macbeth looking particularly at the first meeting with the ...

    "Thou hast it now, King, Cawdor, Glamis, all, As the weird women promised, and I fear Thou play'dst most foully for't" It seems that Banquo is more concerned about the possibility of the witches' predictions coming true, as they have done for Macbeth.

  1. How Does Shakespeare Use the Supernatural in Macbeth?

    This line could have a double meaning. Macbeth could be meaning to his guests that we miss Banquo from the banquet, but also Banquo is dead we miss him. The ghost of Banquo is seen only by Macbeth and is very supernatural. We know that the ghost is real because in the play it says 'Enter Banquos Ghost' but the witches could have sent the spirit.

  2. What use does Shakespeare make of contrast in 'Macbeth'?

    Shakespeare explores the idea of good and evil through the porter and his talk of 'equivocation': Faith here's an equivocator, that could swear in both the scales against either scale This also introduces the audience to a new idea of God and the devil (the epitome of good and evil)

  1. What contribution do the Witches make to the play Macbeth?

    are shown to be different from the other characters by the way they appear, speak and act. Shakespeare portrays the witches as the stereotypical type of that period, and when Macbeth and Banquo first meet the witches on a heath they are described as being `so withered and so wild in their attire'.

  2. How does Shakespeare Present the Supernatural in Macbeth?

    This makes the evidence of the strange behaviour of the witches stronger. In Act 1, scene 3, Shakespeare presents the witches to the audience using rhyming language, "a drum, a drum; Macbeth doth come", short sentences, "sister, where thou?" repetition, "I'll do, I'll do and I'll do."

  1. Compare And Contrast The Murders Of Duncan And Of Banquo - Which Do ...

    Overall Shakespeare makes the play very simple in both the murders: A similarity is that both the murders are very basic and simple i.e. they are not very complicated at all. We know this by the method Shakespeare uses of 'stabbing him, and blaming it on someone else'.

  2. Shakespeare's use of the Supernatural in Macbeth

    The audience will start thinking whether or not the witches will use these powers, so dramatic tension is created. This scene is not only powerful, but also surreal, because of the witches' unusual appearance, having beards and wearing tattered clothes, which make them look unusual and alien to earth.

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