This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Guilt In Macbeth Essay

1004 words - 5 pages

The feeling of guilt is a strong emotion in ‘Macbeth'. Macbeth tries to take the throne in a variety of heinous ways and as a result he feels repercussions of his guilt as he carries out his murders. Literary elements are scattered throughout ‘Macbeth’ are used to progress the reoccurring theme “The Horrors of Guilt"
Sleep is a metaphor that is used throughout ‘Macbeth’, more specifically the murder of sleep. Murder of sleep is a metaphor that first appears when Macbeth kills Duncan," ‘Sleep no more! / Macbeth does murder sleep'- the innocent sleep, / sleep that knits up the raveled sleave of care/ the death of each days life, sore labors bath," (II.ii.1-4). The metaphor of the murder of ...view middle of the document...

In order to ensure his place on the throne Macbeth hires murderers to kill Banquo. Although Macbeth was not a witness of the murder that so viciously fell upon Banquo he still proved to give in to his inner guilt. Macbeth saw the ghost of Banquo at his feast. “What man dare, I dare. /Approach thou like the rugged Russian bear, / The armed rhinoceros, or th' Hyrcan tiger;/Take any shape but that, and my firm nerves,” (III,iv.104-106). In this simile Macbeth calls upon Banquo to approach in the form of a “rugged Russian bear,” and “armed rhinoceros” (III, iv, 104-106), instead of as a ghostly reminder of Macbeth’s horrid deed. Macbeth compares Banquo to frightening animals in his simile to prove his lack of guilt and upmost bravery, however Macbeth then reveals his inner guilt when he adds “Take any shape but that and firm my nerves,” (III,iv.104-106). Macbeth would rather face a variety of vicious animals than have to come face to face with his own guilt that came in form of Banquo’s ghost. Macbeth is not afraid of the ghost of Banquo himself; rather he is afraid of the reminder that the ghost brings. The ghost of Banquo is not only a reminder of Banquo’s murder but also a reminder of all the lives Macbeth has previously taken and most importantly a reminder of his guilt.
The horror of guilt is an experience that seems to happen to all those within the contact of Macbeth, moreover Lady Macbeth plays her role as the enabler and motivator of murder and soon is hit with the recoil of guilt as she begins to walk in her sleep and later take her life. "Out damned spot, out, I say! […] hell is murky. Fie, my/ lord, fie, a soldier and afeared? What need we fear/ who knows it when none can call our power to/account?" (V.i.37-40) Lady Macbeth’s rapid change...

Find Another Essay On Guilt In Macbeth

Guilt in Macbeth by William Shakespeare

782 words - 4 pages A person’s guilt will eventually manifest itself on its own terms. For most people, guilt is a hard psychological experience. Thus, the effects can be very diverse. In the play Macbeth by William Shakespeare, the effects of guilt and having a guilty conscience is a recurring theme displayed throughout the text. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, the two characters Shakespeare reveal to be most evil, experience an abundance of guilt and its unwanted side

Guilt and Conscience in Shakespeare’s Macbeth

1301 words - 5 pages In Shakespeare’s Macbeth, the theme of guilt and conscience is one of many explored throughout the play. Macbeth, is a well respected Scottish noble who in the beginning of the play is a man everyone looks up to; however as the play progresses he makes a number of bad decisions. Eventually, as a result of his actions he suffers guilt and this plays heavily upon his character until his personality is completely destroyed. Shakespeare uses a range

How Shakespear uses sleeplssness in Macbeth to represent guilt

568 words - 2 pages see how sleep becomes innocence and Macbeth has taken that and now carries the burden of guilt or "sleeplessness." The act ends with Macbeth yelling for the person knocking to "wake Duncan with thy knocking if you could."As act two ends with Macbeth wishing to be rid of his guilt act three finds him speaking more of the heavy burden he now has: "Ere we will eat our meal in fear, and sleep in the affliction of these terrible dreams that shake us

Guilt is a Potent Emotion in Shakespeare's MacBeth

772 words - 3 pages ​Guilt is a very potent emotion that an individual always feels in relation to others and has its genesis in the wrong done by some person to other. The two prominent works of literature that is Macbeth and The Kite Runner, though contrived centuries apart, revolve around an unremitting feeling of guilt felt by the central characters that are Macbeth and Amir, and the ordeal they had to go through owing to the psychological and practical

Bravery, Guilt & Violence: The Power of Blood in Macbeth

1491 words - 6 pages There are a variety of fluids in William Shakespeare’s Macbeth such as milk, water and blood. Milk quenches one’s thirst, whereas blood pours out of a person. Water is used to wash stains away, whereas blood can taint a person. The blood image is very potent throughout Macbeth and reinforces the major themes of bravery, guilt, and violence evoked by the three witches. At the beginning of the play, the bloody captain and Lady Macbeth have very

Fear, Guilt, and Regret in Macbeth by William Shakespeare

869 words - 3 pages In William Shakespeare’s Macbeth the reader watches as Macbeth changes gradually as the play endures. He are transforms from a loyal person with a loving and loyal disposition with other people, into a tyrants who are willing to kill in order to keep himself on the throne. He is tormented with fear, regret, and guilt. When someone does something they know is wrong it causes them to fall prey to their own emotions. After Duncan’s death you are

Use of Guilt and Madness in Macbeth and Hamlet

2455 words - 10 pages characters. Throughout Macbeth and Hamlet shakes’ characters do some deplorable things and the easiest way to help the audience stay in favor of a major character is to have them feel bad about said acts. This converts into the “madness” that is ever-present alongside its buddy guilt. Shakespeare doesn’t just want the character to feel bad; He wants the audience to know it too. This is what creates the intricate visions, delusionary speaking, and

Lady Macbeth's Transformation into a Guilt Ridden Woman in Shakespeare's Macbeth

698 words - 3 pages kill Duncan. In the play she, wishes she could be stripped of her mortality in order to complete the task. “Had he not resembled/ my father as he slept, I had done’t” (II.ii.12-13). Her not being able to kill shows that deep down she is still human, however she plans the murder of King Duncan and takes pride in the fact that the task had been completed. She holds Macbeth together when the guilt gets to him and explains to him to shake it off and

Sleep imagery in shakespeare's Macbeth to develop themes innocence, nature and guilt

736 words - 3 pages . Sleep imagery in Macbeth is used to develop the theme of innocence, nature, conscience and guilt and reinforces the images of night, darkness, and evil.Sleep is a symbol of innocence and goodness, one of the main themes in the play. Since Macbeth has done a deed of great evil, murdering Duncan, Macbeth is no longer innocent. And hence he is no longer allowed to sleep. Macbeth also realizes this himself after the murder and says, "[Macbeth] has

To what extent does the impact of guilt on the characters similar in Macbeth and An Inspector Calls?

1503 words - 7 pages Macbeth and An Inspector Calls, both plays written by William Shakespeare and J.B Priestley. The pair embeds the aspect of guilt upon their characters. ‘Macbeth’, a play written in 1605, set in 11th century Scotland. Contrastingly ‘An Inspector Calls,’ written in 1945, set in the North Midlands during the post-war period. Despite the variation in setting, the impact of guilt on the characters were similarly approached. Situated at the the

Explore the way Guilt and Responsibility are Presented Through the Characters of Lady macbeth in ‘Macbeth’ and Sheila in ‘An Inspector Calls’

1866 words - 8 pages very domineering in their relationship. Macbeth writes in a letter “my dearest partner of greatness” which shows us that she is thought of highly by Macbeth, this links to her strong character since it was strange for a Jacobean women to be thought as an equal to Jacobean Men. Lady Macbeth shows very little guilt and responsibility at the start as she is self-centered and desires power so much that she persuades Macbeth to kill the king so that

Similar Essays

Guilt In Macbeth Essay

1679 words - 7 pages Guilt is an emotion that is felt by all people after they have done something that they know is morally wrong. This emotion can come in various levels and, depending on the intensity of the feeling, can change a person’s character. The theme of Guilt in Macbeth is described and portrayed through the two main characters Macbeth and Lady Macbeth. The feeling of guilt effects the way that these characters act in response to certain situations and

Damning Guilt In Macbeth Essay

1777 words - 7 pages      Both main characters in the Shakespearean tragedy Macbeth meet unfortunate ends, with this due in part at least to the huge burden of guilt which they must carry through most of the drama. In Fools of Time: Studies in Shakespearean Tragedy, Northrop Frye sees a relationship between Macbeth's guilt and his hallucinations: The future moment is the moment of guilt, and it imposes on one, until it is reached, the intolerable strain of

Guilt And Ambition In Macbeth Essay

1049 words - 5 pages In Shakespeare’s Macbeth, the title character Macbeth and his wife are both exceptionally ambitious, often taking rather radical measures to accomplish their goals. While this ruthless drive to power is seemingly prosperous at first, it quickly crumbles to naught as guilt infects their minds with grim consequences to follow. Macbeth transforms from a noble general to a guilt-ridden and despaired murderer, while Lady Macbeth’s usually stoic and

The Greater Guilt In "Macbeth" Essay

593 words - 2 pages Everybody is driven by guilty conscience in our life. Lady Macbeth and Macbeth feel guilty at different times and different ways. Macbeth feels guiltier than Lady Macbeth after the murder of Duncan. During the Banquet, Mecbeth is very upset and nervous after seeing the ghost, But Lady Macbeth is making an excuse about her husband's fear, and she doesn't show any guilt. At the end of the play, the opposite is true: Lady Mecbeth feels guiltier