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His fiend-Like Queen is Malcolm(TM)s View of Lady Macbeth at the End of the Play, Do You Agree? Is She Completely Evil or Does She Have Redeeming Qualities? To What Extend Can She be Blamed for the Tragedy of Macbeth? Is
This is thinking very much like the witches 'foul is fair, and fair is foul.' Lady Macbeth's character has many attributes, which may be associated with evil and which is, in turn, part of the witches' characters. The first of these is the fact that Lady Macbeth is very manipulative: 'That I may pour my spirits in thine ear.' She speaks of 'the Raven' which is a bird associated with death. When she hears that Duncan will be coming to the castle she immediately thinks that this is the perfect opportunity to kill him, she refers to 'the fatal entrance of Duncan.'
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With Macbeth she plans the murder without any hesitation. Throughout Act 1 Scene 5, Lady Macbeth is so desperate for the throne of Scotland. She uses violent, persuasive, and aggressive language for Lady Macbeth to try to persuade Macbeth to kill Duncan. Lady Macbeth is stronger than Macbeth emotionally. It is so important to Lady Macbeth for her husband to become the king of Scotland because she wants to rule the country, and to have a happy and rich life.
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At the start of the play it is set just after a battle between the rebels and the king. At this part of the play the soldiers are talking about one thing. Macbeth. 'For brave Macbeth - well he deserves that name - Disdaining fortune, with his brandished steel,...' (Captain Act1, Scene 2, lines 16-17) This quote shows that Macbeth is regarded very highly amongst the soldiers at this part in the play. Macbeth also gain favour with the king at this point. 'What he hath lost noble Macbeth hath won.' (Duncan Act 1, Scene 2, line 68) At this point in the play Macbeth is an innocent, hardworking, devoted soldier.
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Macbeth himself is in doubt and this is shown when he wishes for "it' to be done 'then twere well". Yet Macbeth is aware of the repercussions of the act and ''upon this shoal of time'' there is no escaping the consequences of murdering a King. The tone in which Shakespeare has introduced the soliloquy in reflects upon the mental instability of Macbeth and provides the audience with major trepidation. Macbeth begins to apprehend this severity of murdering a King' to whom he was 'his kinsman and his subject'.
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for the forces of evil, and even numbers (2,4 and 6) for the forces of good. The audience would soon become aware of the switch from witches to king to witches, however Shakespeare opens Scene 5, a scene that, based on this alternating pattern, should represent evil, with Macbeth and Lady Macbeth. Both characters were included in the "even" numbered scenes at the beginning of Act 1, showing they were originally forces of good, however Shakespeare deliberately chooses to then use them to open Scene 5, an odd numbered scene. The interruption of the pattern begins to show the audience that other characters, besides the witches, have the capability of turning to the forces of evil during the play.
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The widespread belief in the supernatural is repeated often in Macbeth, often in the form of the three witches. The opening scene features the three witches hinting that there is lots of wrongdoing to come in the play. The three witches are also all women, showing that women were often behind evil-doing. How women were perceived and expected to behave is further suggested when Lady Macbeth receives Macbeth's letter recounting his encounter with the witches. At the beginning of the scene Lady Macbeth is seen to be acting conventionally, reading a letter that has been sent by her husband whilst he is away in battle.
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Further on in Scene 5, Lady Macbeth says, "unsex me here...and fill me from the crown to the toe top-full of direst cruelty". Here, she makes the stereotype of how women are "soft" and not evil enough and as a result, wishes for the devil/spirits to change all of that so she can commit the deeds that is required of her to become queen. Alongside this, she also mentions how she wishes for her blood to "stop up th' access and passage to remorse", preventing her from feeling any deep regret whatsoever along the way.
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He is not intimidated, but equally has no respect for them. Because of their foul looks he seems to look down on them and says "You should be women; and yet your beards forbid me to interpret that you are so". This also shows that he considers the creatures a bit of a joke, is disgusted by them and can't take them seriously. Bearing all this in mind it is very easy to see why Banquo doesn't take the predictions as seriously as Macbeth. Banquo does not see them in the same light as Macbeth does and therefore will regard what they say very differently.
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Why they are there is not really known. The battlefield they are at is full of "thunder and lightning". This starts to create a sense of drama. The fact that they are at a battlefield just after a battle gives you a sense of evil from the witches. You start to ask yourself what are they up to or what are they going to do? In terms of what they are saying we still can't get a clear message across from them because they seem to talk in riddles. "Fair is foul, and foul is fair". By saying this they are really starting to trigger questions.
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How does Shakespeare create a sense of horror in act five scene one? Comment on relation to what you already know of Lady Macbeth elsewhere in the play.
At the beginning of Act I, scene vii, Macbeth is clearly aware of the psychological implications implicit in regicide. If th' assassination Could trammel up the consequence, and catch With his surcease, success; ... We still have judgement here, that we but teach Bloody instructions, which being taught return To plague th' inventor. In Act II, scene ii, Lady Macbeth appears to be seeking an excuse for her own inability to commit murder. This suggests that she is not wholly de-natured yet. Had he not resembled My father as he slept, I had done't Lady Macbeth is obviously aware of the gravity of committing murder.
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However, the real question is, was Macbeth completely to blame, and what made him actually embark on his treacherous path of murder. I am now going to focus on the characters in the play that may have driven Macbeth to commit the terrible crimes. Firstly, the witches, the evil trio who have a profound influence over Macbeth and his actions. They are the first characters that we see in the play, therefore showing their importance. The witches immediately establish their connection to the supernatural as they have met in foul weather upon the heath; they speak of 'thunder', 'lightning', 'fog and filthy air'.
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In 1604, King James declared that anyone found guilty of witchcraft should be executed. They were often referred to as 'agents of the devil', 'enemies of God', and 'Satan's allies' therefore this would cast an even darker shadow over the scene. Not only this, but it would also draw the audience even further in, as they would be keen to find out more about witches, and their minds would encourage them to be more attentive. It is also clever how Shakespeare designates the three main evil characters as witches, as it will be easier for the audience to identify, because witches are known to be evil.
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However, when the witches told him the prophecy, those aspirations were rekindled and he genuinely believed them. As soon as he became Thane of Cawdor, just as the witches had told him, he was sure that he would become king as well. Also, witches were a very real thing when Shakespeare wrote the play so I imagine the crowd would have believed in the witches and what they said, just as much as Macbeth did. Macbeth has a dark side to his nature and always wanted to be king.
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She convinces Macbeth to kill King Duncan and puts it to the back of her mind, or so we think. Towards the end of the play, she begins to go slightly insane and can see a spot of blood on her hand. However, there is no spot of blood at all, it is in her mind and this insanity leads to her committing suicide. Lady Macbeth has many strong character traits. One of which being ambitious for Macbeth. She wanted him to be the best and wanted the best for him.
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Discuss the importance of the witches in Macbeth and how their role in Macbeth(TM)s downfall can be interpreted dramatically.
The mood of the play is set here, but the action is yet to begin. In the film the scene opens on the scene of the battle field and this shows that the witches perhaps have some foresight of what is to come. There is a red sky symbolising danger or the blood that is yet to be shed in battle. They dig a hole in the beach and in it they place a noose, perhaps to signify the 'Thane of Cawdor's' treachery.
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After returning he is given praise and is celebrated by the king and his friends. "Hail, most worthy thane! For it is thine" Macbeth is awarded this title for his bravery and success in battle. However when Macbeth meets the witches he begins to show his ambitious side. "Stay you imperfect speakers, tell me more". He is curious because the witches' prophesised that he is to become the Thane of Cawdor, but he knows that the Thane of Cawdor lives so is eager to find out more. Macbeth and his wife have always had a close bond.
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to restore their lost greatness; the audience recognizes this potential for greatness; the tragic hero is killed; and finally order is restored to the people who surrounded the tragic hero. At the start of the play, Macbeth is admired by the public. "For brave Macbeth - well he deserves that name..." This is said by a wounded captain. He is just a normal member of society, and plays no further part in the chain of events, yet as he sees Macbeth this way, it suggests that his view is shared by the rest of society.
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After the murder his conscience does not let him rest and this pushes the relationship with Macbeth and Lady Macbeth and this separates them in the end. He is something that starts of great and then falls which is the tragedy. There is a lot of influence on Macbeth though out the play and one of them is the theme of supernatural in the form of The Witches'. The Witches' feed Macbeth's ambition and trick him by telling him double meaning prophecies which lead him to the murder, Macbeth is blinded by ambition and desperately wants to believe them that he takes what they say literally and doesn't think about how they might trick him.
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A modern audience would be more cynical of the idea of witchcraft whereas a Shakespearean audience believed that witches were real and would have been more afraid of some of the themes and happenings in the play. Lady Macbeth is seen as being even more ambitious than her husband and has fewer moral scruples. She urges Macbeth to kill Duncan, and refuses to understand his doubts and hesitations. Gradually her close relationship with Macbeth crumbles into nothing because of this. She is first introduced to the play when she is reading a letter from Macbeth which is addressed to her.
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This also tells us that Macbeth sees her as strong. When Lady Macbeth read the letter sent by Macbeth, she was quite surprised. She said "it is too full o'th'milk of human kindness" which means that Macbeth is too kind - even though he kills people bloodily. This would make the audience question lady Macbeth's role as Macbeth's wife. We know he's a great warrior but she see him as "too kind". She says "that I pour my spirits in thine ear" which means that she will make him do whatever she wants him to do.
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In Macbeth we see love lost, power in those who protect it with loyalty and in the hands of a wicked tyrant, honour in noble men and women and stolen through disloyalty, and finally we see friendship put to the test. Shakespeare explored in his plays what it was to be human, and in Macbeth he explored how something so human could be drawn in by power, ambition and temptation. The witches are the most important unnatural characters in Macbeth, as although they are not the main characters we feel they have all the control throughout the play.
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come you spirits that tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here and fill me from the crown to the toe topfull of direst cruelty; (Act 1 Scene5) In her speech, lady Macbeth calls on evil spirits for assistance. Write about S
It is essential that Lady Macbeth and the three Witches create the plot of Macbeth. Without the Witches powers of foretelling the future and the evil persuasions of his wife, Lady Macbeth, Macbeth would have never become king. Since it was an interesting issue which many people of Shakespeare's time felt they were affected by, Shakespeare wrote about it. The play begins with a supernatural scene, where the three witches meet and give many clues as to who they are or what they have control over, "...we three meet again in thunder, lighting or in rain?....When the battle's lost and won....That will be ere the set of sun....There to meet with Macbeth."(Act 1 Scene 1)
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He is also described as "brutal" by the captain, Macbeth doesn't think about what he kills. In the first impression of Macbeth specific language is used, Shakespeare uses imagery and symbolism to make connections between themes throughout the play for example the symbol of blood is effectively used throughout the dialogue to create an atmosphere of darkness and evil. The imagery of blood operates on three levels in Macbeth. For instance, Lady Macbeth utters the words "make thick my blood" in act 1, scene 5.
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The audience now learn that Macbeth is not just a random name picked out by a group of witches. He is now looked at by the audience as a brave warrior who fights for his country in all battles. But Shakespeare is then adding in the appeal to King James by adding into the letter that not only did brave Macbeth win the battle but Banquo was right beside him was decisive in the battle. The next time we see Macbeth he is walking down a track with Banquo when they see the three witches. At first, the two heroes don't believe that there in front of them are three witches.
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This is effective as audiences feel the suspense created from the very beginning of the play. The three witches play a major part in the downfall of Macbeth right from the start as they predict that Macbeth will be Thane of Cawdor, Thane of Glamis and then King thereafter. Once Macbeth hears that he will be king it gives him ideas and the inspiration to actually go through with it and kill King Duncan thus committing regicide. Some critics claim Macbeth can be seen as responsible for his own actions throughout the play.
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