William Shakespeare’s play Macbeth can be divided into six parts based upon the personality of Macbeth, the main character, which changes noticeably throughout the play.
From the beginning of the play until we first meet Lady Macbeth, Macbeth appears to be a brave, loyal commander in the Scottish army. In fact, King Duncan refers to ‘noble Macbeth’, as he calls him, as ‘valiant cousin’ and ‘worthy gentleman’ after hearing of how he led Scotland to victory. However, after meeting the witches, Macbeth begins to show signs of ambition, saying that ‘If chance will have me king, why, chance may crown me’.
Then, after speaking with Lady Macbeth, Macbeth’s character seems to change and more about him is exposed. It becomes noticeable that, in private, Macbeth is weak-willed and easily confused. Lady Macbeth convinces and bullies him into murdering Duncan but when Duncan arrives, Macbeth tells her that they ‘shall proceed no further in this business’. Then, after only a short conversation, she again persuades him to kill Duncan and he tells her that he is ‘settled’. It is possible that in his confusion, his ambition took control.
Once Macbeth has been crowned king, his character appears to change again. At this point he becomes distrustful and suspicious of everyone around him. He says that his ‘fears in Banquo stick deep’, meaning that he no longer trusts the man who was he best friend at the beginning of the play.
Then, only a short time later and after seeing the ghost of Banquo, who he had murdered, Macbeth’s personality one again changes. He becomes terrified and fearful and feels insecure and guilty about Banquo’s death. He...