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

The use of Blood as a Motif in William Shakespeare(TM)s Macbeth

Extracts from this document...


The use of Blood as a Motif in William Shakespeare's Macbeth In William Shakespeare's Tragedy of Macbeth, he often and with different meanings uses blood as a motif and develops it until it dominates the play. The usage of blood changes throughout the play along with the transmogrification of Macbeth's character from that of a loyal subject to one of a traitor. The connotation Shakespeare designates to blood shifts from power and honour to death and murder to guilt. In various parts of Macbeth blood comes to symbolize power. One such place is in the very opening of the play when Duncan sees a sergeant approaching him in the battleground and questions, "What bloody man is that?" (5). The use of blood here signifies the captain's bravery through his wounded state, showing that even though the captain is wounded he has the courage and strength to come back and report to his King. He delivers reports of triumph and therefore making his "bloody" appearance a symbol of the violence that took place in the battle. ...read more.


The blood on the dagger foreshadows the violence and goriness that is anticipated when he executes his plan to regicide King Duncan. Macbeth goes on to acknowledge that "There's no such thing. / [and that] It is the bloody business which informs / Thus to mine [his] eyes" (27). Macbeth refers to the murder as "bloody business" (27) which adds to the sanguinary nature of the heinous crime that he is about to commit. Similarly, Donalbain warns his brother of the lurking danger in terms of, "There's daggers in men's smiles; the near'er in blood, / the nearer bloody" (37). The bard cleverly exploits the difference between the meanings of 'blood' and 'bloody' to convey the eminent threat that the heirs face. This warning issued by Donalbain to his brother, Malcolm employs the word bloody to impart the high possibility of them getting murdered as they are closely related to King Duncan and are also the heir apparent to the throne of Scotland. The evil deed of regicide becomes too much of a burden on Macbeth and Lady Macbeth and unable to bear the cross (guilt) ...read more.


/ All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand" (80). She despite advising her husband earlier feels the same insatiable need for perfume to mask the stench as her mind is drawing dreadful picture. The motif of blood in this part Macbeth plays a significant role as it symbolizes the struggle that Macbeth and Lady Macbeth under go to hide their horrid deeds. In The Tragedy of Macbeth, the way in which Shakespeare uses blood changes throughout the play along with the metamorphosis of Macbeth's character from an allegiant subject to one like Judas. The connotation Shakespeare allocates to blood shifts from power and honour to death and murder to guilt. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth go insane with the guilt over the murderous mission for power. The couple, in their destructive power, created their own torment, where they are excruciated by guilt and driven to insanity. The duo sees the guilt stain their hands and find out that it is impossible to exonerate them of the guilt. At the end of this tragedy, Shakespeare successfully establishes Macbeth as an archetype of the famous proverb "Destruction will befall the covetous. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate Languages 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 International Baccalaureate Languages essays

  1. Two Hands

    Difference and distance from his father, as much as unfavorable comparisons, are reasons for the son's cursing. His regret at their difference is shown by the lines: "Who would have thought hands so alike...would have no more in common". His further regret at their physical (metaphorical), behavioral and psychological distance

  2. Compare the play Pygmalion with its film version my fair lady. Which do you ...

    As a second theme, Higgins is shown as a "dangerous teacher" to Eliza due to his mind broadening influence. Similar to the movie "Dead poets Society", just like the teacher Mr. Keating, Higgins exerts a subversive influence on Eliza, with an encouragement to such an extent that he fills her heads with dreams that life can't give.

  1. An Exploration of Michael and Hanna(TM)s Journeys to Self-Acceptance using the Motif of Books ...

    unlike a child's. However, Hanna's evolving handwriting from forced letters to 'lighter and more confident' (190) is a metaphor for her evolution, in terms of triumph over her illiteracy. This evolution is her initial path in her journey that takes personal exertion from Hanna as the reader can see from

  2. William Shakespeare Macbeth

    In thunder, lightning or in rain?" This question alone makes the witches appear dark and mysterious, because they do not meet when weather is pleasant, but meet in the darkest, stormiest of weather. Also, the Witch said when shall "we three" meet again.

  1. El Perfume

    Posteriormente lo lleva al orfanato de Madame Gaillard. Era un hombre culto. Se ocupaba de la administraci�n de los fondos destinados a beneficencia. Madame Gaillard no ten�a m�s de 30 a�os pero reflejaba en su mirada haber vivido mucho m�s.

  2. The play, Othello, by William Shakespeare has often been described as a domestic tragedy; ...

    "(Act 3, Scene 3, line 377). This can also be interpreted as a balance between the 'high mind' of Othello and the 'low mind' of Iago. The double narrative is also in accord with the 'conception of love as beyond nature,'2 and illustrates the possibility of free choice shown in the play.

  1. e - Marketing. Svaka tvrtka nastoji razvijati nove proizvode, to zbog zadovoljavanja elja i ...

    Inovacija se ne mo�e za�tititi ako je vec prijavljeno identicno ili slicno tehnicko rje�enje; zato treba razmotriti sljedece: * vremensko i teritorijalno ogranicenje za�tite industrijskog vlasni�tva * mogucnost kori�tenja za�ticenog industrijskog vlasni�tva * poduzetnicka vrijednost va�e inovacije 4.2 Za�tita tehnolo�kih inovacija Inovacije tehnolo�kog procesa (tehnolo�ke inovacije)

  2. Scarlet Letter-Nathaniel Hawthorne-Study Questions

    20. How has Roger Chillingworth changed since Hester first knew him? Chillingworth intends to find the truth, the father of Pearl. The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne 21. What does Chillingworth suggest is the cause of Dimmesdale's suffering?

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