• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 5
  6. 6
  7. 7
  8. 8
  9. 9
  10. 10
  11. 11

"Whatever is noble in MacBeth is destroyed the moment he meets the witches" - Do you agree with this assessment of his character?

Extracts from this document...


"Whatever is noble in MacBeth is destroyed the moment he meets the witches." Do u agree with this assessment of his character? This play MacBeth was written by Shakespeare between 1605 and 1606. At the time, the Elizabethan were obsessed with witchcraft and the idea of being supernatural. As this play 'MacBeth' has a theme of catharsis and is a tragic genre, to express the strange, unnatural happenings, Shakespeare included witchcraft to represent evil and in a way blamed the witches for the chaos, troubles and mainly MacBeth's bloodthirsty. While people were fascinated and interested with this terrifying witch mania at the time, especially the famous King James I, perhaps Shakespeare had included it to attract more people to appreciate the play. Witches in this play often indicate chaos, troubles and even danger. We first meet the three witches in the play. In the first scene of the play, the three witches enter in thunder and lightning. This weather has instantly given us an idea of being negative and foreshadows something might go wrong during the play. We also know that they have a great supernatural power when the first with says, " When shall we three meet again, In thunder, lightning, or in rain?" This quotation suggests that they are powerful and anything they want to happen can happen, they can change and destroy the nature, such as the weather. This grim, tumultuous weather is used as pathetic fallacy in the scene, could suggest something disturbing could happen later on in the play. Chaos and troubles are also suggested through the language the witches use in this scene. They use words such as 'hurlyburly' and 'lost', the words 'battle lost' even imply conflict, pain and death. In general, the atmosphere the three witches have created is basically dark, evil and uncivilized. 'The set of sun' indicates darkness and the sun will never return. This then led onto evil spirits taking over instead of the good and things will become bad from good. ...read more.


again, she is telling MacBeth to pretend to be the innocent one but he must be evil inside in order to achieve his ambition. "This night's great business into my dispatch." She has arranged for the murder and she is in total control. She also uses alliteration in her speech, "solely sovereign sway" and the word "masterdom", these words emphasise how power hungry, determined, blood thirsty and devious she has become, only because of the predictions that the witches made before. When MacBeth tells Lady MacBeth that he decides not to kill the king. As he wants to be loyal to Duncan and he enjoys being complimented by other people. Lady MacBeth is disappointed and angry, "Was the hope drunk wherein you dressed yourself? Hath it slept since?" Every speech Lady MacBeth says is began in rhetorical questions. She wants to confuse and unnerve MacBeth. She makes him question himself and doubt himself and challenge his own mind. She also accuses MacBeth as a "coward" and is humiliating MacBeth, so that he will challenge his courage and manlihood and become more confident. Her first doesn't seem to persuade MacBeth. In her second speech, she again uses rhetorical questions, this time she attacks his sexuality. "When you durst do it, then you were a man." She is saying when he said he would kill the king, Lady MacBeth thought he was a man and was proud of him. The use of questions on his sexuality makes MacBeth feel inferior and weak. It is a role of reversal, MacBeth is forced to counteract. She is making MacBeth to feel like a coward by showing off her ambition. She says she would even kill her own baby if it were necessary. "Plucked my nipple from his boneless gums, and dashed the brains out" She shows her total commitment ambition of Lady MacBeth, and she will sacrifices her own flesh and blood. ...read more.


"The spirits that know all mortal consequences have pronounced me thus: 'Fear not MacBeth.. .. ..'.. .. The mind I sway by, and the heart I bear, Shall never sag with doubt, nor shake with fear" Here MacBeth shows that he believes he is invincible and the use of the rhyming couplets again emphasizes his arrogance. I do not agree with this assessment 'Whatever is noble in MacBeth is destroyed the moment he meets the witches.' of MacBeth's character, it is because, at the beginning, he didn't think and he had never thought he would kill Duncan to become king himself, although he didn't think the witches were lying, but he believed it was God's will if he became king and it would happen naturally. At that moment, he still had nobility when he met the witches, his nobility didn't disappear immediately, it was lost afterwards. But as the persuasion of Lady MacBeth brought into him, he began to think deeply of what he would do and he started to question and change his mind over and over. This was the first sign of the lessening of his nobility, it was Lady MacBeth's persuasion that tricked MacBeth's mind. But as the play continued, the witches appeared again and predicted more to MacBeth, and with the help of Lady MacBeth, he finally committed the sin. Then his ambition, his bloodthirstiness and his arrogance took over the witches and Lady MacBeth. There was no nobility left by the end. This play 'MacBeth' is a tragic genre. MacBeth was a great character, he was a brave warrior, loyal and respected and was a kingly gentleman. But at the end, he was self-centered, traitor, a bloodthirsty tyrant. As audience, we can feel a sense of loss and experience catharsis as a noble man is destroyed and declined to a tyrant, his whole righteous character was wasted and was a tragic hero. There is a disappointment for both MacBeth and the other innocent characters that died in the process. Tsz Ning Mak 4U Miss MacKenzie - 1 - ...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 is Macbeth persuaded to kill Duncan: Is his wife entirely to blame?

    When the household arises from their sleep, he equivocates on several occasions. When he is asked, "Is the king stirring" by Macduff, he says "Not yet." Another interesting occasion is when Lenox enquires, "Goes the king hence today?" to which Macbeth replies "He does: - he did appoint so," which shows the audience that Macbeth corrects himself guiltily.

  2. Shakespeare's use of the Supernatural in Macbeth

    A show of eight kings appears. Regrettably, for Macbeth, the following individual who arrives (to indicate who is the father of the line) is Banquo. This plunges a dagger unswerving to the pits of Macbeth's hopes and dreams: 'Horrible sight!

  1. 'Macbeth' gives us a classic example of the literary definition of a 'tragic hero'. ...

    When the doctor tells him that she is mentally troubled, he says, 'Cure her of that,' expecting to get what he demands. He shows no worry that his wife is ill and does not go to see her. This shows quite how far apart they have drifted and how unimportant he now considers their relationship to be.

  2. Imagery Of Appearance and Reality in Macbeth

    In the following scene the Doctor speaks of the King of Scotland who can cure the 'evil' (the King's evil). There may be a notion that Scotland needs a physician - Malcolm himself perhaps. In the Sleepwalking scene (Act V,Sc.i)

  1. How is Macbeth persuaded to kill Duncan: Is his wife entirely to blame?

    If the person who knows Macbeth better than any other thinks that he is not a real man, then surely, in his own eyes, he cannot be. This is when Lady Macbeth drops the bombshell: "And, to be more than what you were, you would Be so much more the man."

  2. Analysis of the witches in macbeth

    The witches' chants and riddles fascinate the audience and keep them watching the play. Also, the witches talk about when they should meet again and in what type of weather they should meet, "When shall we three meet again, In thunder, lightning or in rain?"

  1. Discussion of Macbeth - An Introduction

    Act one scene seven succeeds Duncan's arrival at Macbeth's castle and involves Macbeth's debate over whether he should kill Duncan. At the outset of the scene, during the preparation of Duncan's banquet, Macbeth, in his soliloquy ponders the matter of assassinating Duncan.

  2. Explore the way the theme of the supernatural is presented in Macbeth and The ...

    There is a clear message to the audience that to kill a King is unnatural. ?The Withered Arm? also has supernatural happenings which shape the direction of the story. This time however, the setting is a small, rural, superstitious community in fictional Wessex.

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