Realities In Macbeth Essay

605 words - 2 pages

William Shakespeare wrote the play Macbeth in 1606. The play tells the story of a man who is so ambitious that he commits treason and murder. His actions are predicted by three “weird sisters”, and he is also encouraged by his wife, Lady Macbeth, to perform the evil acts that will result in his ultimate demise. Throughout the play the perception of Macbeth’s character and morality are quite different than the reality that the reader is ultimately confronted with.
     Macbeth is initially presented to the reader as a hero. He has been fighting courageously alongside Duncan, his king, in defense of Scotland. When the king learns of Macbeth’s fearlessness and aggression in battle, he exclaims “O valiant cousin! Worthy gentleman!” (Act I ,Scene ii) The king then rewards Macbeth’s bravery and loyalty by bestowing upon him the title of Thane of Cawdor. Unfortunately Macbeth has ambitions of becoming the king himself. This brave hero then gives in to his ambitious desire by committing murder. In so doing we realize that Macbeth is, in reality, a coward. Lady Macbeth actually accuses him of being one because of his hesitation to kill the king. But the cowardliness is in the performance of the act, rather than in the reluctance to act.
Duncan is not only Macbeth’s king and friend, he is also his distant cousin. Duncan trusts Macbeth as a family member and is very grateful for his loyalty. The king refers to Macbeth as “a gentleman on whom I built an absolute trust” (Act I, Scene iv). He declares this trust and gratitude when he states “But signs of nobleness, like stars, shall shine on all deservers. From hence to Inverness, and bind us further to you.” (Act 1, Scene iv). Macbeth continues...

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