Essay Is About Macbeth And How His Wife, Witch's Prophecy, And His Conscience Lead To His Down Fall

812 words - 3 pages

Macbeth's Downfall

"Fair is foul, and foul is fair: Hover through the fog and filthy air." (Act 1, Scene 1:12-13)

This quote is interesting to me because it is an oxymoron. Its impossible how fair can be foul when fair is equal or mild and foul is gross and rotten. Its significance is that the witches delight in the confusion of good and bad, beauty and ugliness.

In the play Macbeth by William Shakespeare, a character or fate. This of these two forces (external or internal) led to the downward fall of a great military hero and worthy thane, Macbeth. Macbeth turning evil and murderous when led astray by the prophecies of three old witches. Some argue that Macbeth is the victim of fate, while others argue that his character choose his downfall. The argument for fate is strongly led by the actions of others, with Lady Macbeth being the major influence on Macbeth. While the conflict is led by Macbeth's troubled conscience, his own internal conflict and his tragic flaw. It is clearly visible that Macbeth's own character is at fault for his tragic downfall. It is the opinion of many, that Macbeth is a victim of fate.

Macbeth is heavily influenced by his overpowering wife, Lady Macbeth. Macbeth decides that he cannot kill Duncan as he is his "kinsman, and his subject." (Act 1, Scene 7: 13), yet Lady Macbeth taunts him saying, "I have given suck, and know how tender 'tis to love the babe that milks me: I would, while it was smiling in my face, have pluck'd my nipple from his boneless gums, And dash'd the brains out, had I so sworn as you have done to this." (Act 1, Scene 7: 54-59). This graphic view of the extent to which Lady Macbeth would go to keep a promise would have been more accepted in our society than in that of Shakespeare. In the days of Shakespeare, women had no business arguing with their husbands and even less often was their argument or threat taken into consideration.

The Macbeth of Shakespeare was a military man, strong in his views and opinions and was definitely a victim of his own character. On the other hand, Macbeth was warned of his assuming downfall by his own conscience. On three occasions his conscience wearied him. To begin with the vision of the dagger before the...

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