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

Macbeth: Truth Vs Fiction Essay

1832 words - 7 pages

William Shakespeare altered history for his play, Macbeth, to flatter King James. There are several big differences between Shakespeare’s version of Macbeth and the true history of Macbeth and Banquo. In the true history of Macbeth, Banquo was a traitor to King Duncan. In Shakespeare’s version of Macbeth he made Banquo loyal to King Duncan. Shakespeare altered history to flatter King James. Shakespeare also changed history to not only flatter King James but to avoid the consequences of offending the king. William Shakespeare altered Banquo’s history to compliment King James.
In the true history of Macbeth, Banquo was a traitor to King Duncan. There are many differences between this history of Macbeth and Banquo and Shakespeare’s version of these two figures. One major difference is how King Duncan dies. In history King Duncan died in a different way than William Shakespeare proposed. As written in “Macbeth (c.1005 – 1057)”, “In August 1040, [Macbeth] killed the ruling king, Duncan I, in battle near Elgin, Morayshire” (1). Shakespeare changed history in his play by saying Macbeth killed Duncan in his own room, not in battle. Another way Shakespeare also portrayed Macbeth differently from his true character was his right to the throne. As written in “English Background”, “Macbeth was a real eleventh century Scottish king, but the historical Macbeth, who had a valid right to the throne, reigned capably in Scotland from 1040 till 1057” (1). William Shakespeare showed in his play that Malcolm succeeded Duncan, but in history Macbeth truly succeeded Duncan. Duncan and Macbeth were cousins, grandsons of King Malcolm II. Shakespeare portrayed Duncan as a respected elderly character. However, it is written in “English Background”, “but the real Duncan was a weak man, around Macbeth's own age, not the respected elderly figure we meet in the play” (1).Shakespeare made Duncan this well-respected character in his play to make his death such a tragedy. This made Macbeth look even worse since the king was well-respected and loved by his people. Not only did Shakespeare change Macbeth’s history, but also Banquo’s. William Shakespeare stole his character of Banquo from Holinshed’s chronicles. This story portrayed Banquo as a traitor that helped Macbeth kill Duncan. Shakespeare thought this would offend King James so he made Banquo loyal in his play. As written in “English Background”, “As a tribute to the Stuarts, and James in particular, Shakespeare presents Banquo as a wise, noble and regal figure who arouses jealousy in Macbeth as much for his own good qualities as for the promise the witches make to him of founding a dynasty” (1). Shakespeare showing the witches in his play prophesising that Banquo would have a long-lasting ruling family which flattered King James. Shakespeare was also worried about offending the king and wanted to avoid the consequences of portraying his ancestor as a traitor. In history, Banquo was not a loyal...

Find Another Essay On Macbeth: Truth vs Fiction

Is Macbeth Guilty? Essay

1078 words - 5 pages Banquo, whom he murdered to protect his secret. Macbeth starts freaking out when he sees Banquo’s ghost, which almost causes him to reveal the truth about King Duncan’s murder. His guilty conscience is causing him to hallucinate visions of Banquo because he is responsible for his murder. Killing a man, not to mention a beloved king, is a crime; as well as ordering someone else to kill someone for you is as well. Macbeth knows what he has done is

Macbeth, by William Shakespeare Essay

1300 words - 5 pages the time. She begs for the light to bring back the good and the truth in her life. After her suicide Macbeth says, “Out, Out brief candle” (5.5.23), her artificial lightness went out and the darkness killed her. Shakespeare used the two distinct opposites light vs. dark to mirror good vs. evil. As soon as King Duncan is murdered, the light in the world disapears.Although, everyone has light and dark inside them, the part we chose to

Fate vs. Freedom

1051 words - 4 pages Fate may state what will be in one's life however, how that destiny comes about is a matter of man's own choice. In other words, incidents don't occur because our destinies are written. In the play Macbeth, Shakespeare expertly uses the theme of fate vs. free will and raises the pre-eminent question of which holds power over the characters. In Shakespeare’s tragedy, fate is not the cause of his downfall, his own desires and choices prove to be

A Drawn Thread

816 words - 4 pages weighs heavily on his mind. They alter Macbeth’s appearance adding to the opposition of reality vs. appearance, which signify that Macbeth is not king material. Although Macbeth is the king of Scotland he is not the rightful king. “ Lets our old robes sit easier than our new.”(Shakespeare ) Macduff says that on account of Macbeth becoming king, since he is not the rightful heir, he is not a royal figure. Back when Duncan was king, the kingdom was

Lady Macbeth in William Shakespeare's Macbeth

1797 words - 7 pages the most influential characters in all of Shakespeare’s plays. Its appearance vs. reality throughout the play; the way Shakespeare goes against the context of 17th century Britain. In 17th century Britain things were much different than things are today; women had few rights and people then. This belief is much against the play of Macbeth, so what Shakespeare did was try to change people’s views which caused great upset. Between 1603 and 1606

The Witches in Macbeth: Corruption and Fate vs. Free will in William Shakespeare's "Macbeth"

867 words - 3 pages In "Macbeth", William Shakespeare uses certain characters to foreshadow the play by involving supernatural spirits. For example, witches and their prophecies bring the subject of free will vs. fate into the play and also the rising anger and blood. Supernatural spirits become involved because of the effects they have on the characters; Shakespeare uses each character to manipulate their conscience and to show the breakdown of the human spirit

Macbeth vs. the Soviet Macbeth

1120 words - 4 pages show that both men are thinking and are forming personal ideas. These personal thoughts spark ambition which puts the play in motion. When Macbeth and Banquo ride home from battle they stop and rest. This is where Macbeth delivers his first personal soliloquy. Macbeth says, “If ill, why hath it given me earnest of success commencing in truth? I am the thane of Cawdor” (23). This personal reflection on recently being named the honorable Thane

Appearance Versus Reality in Macbeth by William Shakespeare

808 words - 4 pages Appearance Vs. Reality Throughout the course of their life, every human being will experience a time during which they are deceived by what appears to be true, while there is an underlying reality that they are utterly unaware of. People use words, actions, and emotions to deceive people into believing they are genuine thus keep reality concealed. In William Shakespeare’s play Macbeth, the dichotomy of appearance vs. reality is incessantly used

Temptations: The Devil's Donations vs. the Wich's Divinations

1031 words - 5 pages TEMPTATIONS: The Devil’s Donations Vs. The Witch’s Divinations Temptation, no matter what is being offered or desired, is something that humans have struggled with since we first began to walk upright. Because this is something that we’ve been able to identify with since forever, it has become a central theme in our works of fiction and in our art. The two works discussed herein-Mathias Grunewald’s The Temptation of St. Anthony and William

evilmac Shakespeare's Macbeth - Theme of Night vs Day and Evilness

594 words - 2 pages Macbeth: Theme of Night vs Day and Evilness             “Fair is foul, and foul is fair” (I.i.10).  This becomes the key phrase in describing Macbeth's downfall.  It defines the night vs. day motif, foreshadowing the evil that will soon come.  The night vs. day motif is so important in bringing out the theme of evil in this play because almost all of the elements of Macbeth's

Brianna Confer

721 words - 3 pages are becoming evilness which are sick. Shakespeare gives us the first sign of Macbeth’s illness coming in to the play. The illness of Macbeth leading into evilness in him. When people think of good vs. evil a common example they usually think of is God vs. the Devil. “List’ning their fears, I could not say Amen’ when they did say ‘God bless us’.” This not only shows that Macbeth is tied to the devil, but there is nothing he can do about it. Evil

Similar Essays

Character Changes In Shakespeare's Macbeth Essay

1350 words - 5 pages .          Lady Macbeth is still strongly in control, as the play progresses, and is able to handle crises very well. This is shown at the banquet when Macbeth sees the ghost of Banquo, and Lady Macbeth is quick to lie for him, to conceal the truth about what is happening. As Macbeth progresses with his evil acts, however, Lady Macbeth starts to go mad, fulfilling the three witches’ prophecy about her.  She also hallucinates like her husband

William Shakespeare's Macbeth Essay

1656 words - 7 pages determined and guilty. Bibliography "Enjoying "Macbeth" by William Shakespeare", (2002), Macbeth, "Holinshed vs. Shakespeare", (2000), Shakespeare vs. Holinshed, "Macbeth and Fate", (2002), Macbeth, "Macbeth - The truth behind the Shakespeare", (1999), Historical

Appearance Vs. Reality; The Cause Of A Hero’s Downfall

1104 words - 4 pages Macbeth furthers his plans, which fall in step with the weird sisters’ prophecy, he uses, “False face must hide what the false heart doth know,” (Macbeth, Act1.Scene7.Line82) in order to deceive his fellow noblemen and fulfill the prophecy of his becoming the Thane of Cawdor and the King of Switzerland. Even as Macbeth tries to defy fate, he realizes that what appears to be the truth is in fact unreal, and Shakespeare’s tragic hero does not fully

Altering Reality Essay

1236 words - 5 pages fact, the seat of the earls of Cawdor, but it is not so during the ages of Macbeth (“Cawdor”). While some settings contrast between historical accounts and The Tragedy of Macbeth, one can find Shakespeare’s setting to hold some truth as to where the historical rivalry actually takes place. William Shakespeare uses many historical people, events, and settings in his The Tragedy of Macbeth. While he does keep to some of the historical facts