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Shakespear's Macbeth You Can't Trust Anyone

1160 words - 5 pages

After reading this climactic portion of Shakespeare's enticing play, Macbeth, I am filled with a plethora of different remarks and thoughts about several of the character's inner feelings and ambitions. It is not clear to the reader what the characters are actually expressing, but their feelings can be inferred from the surrounding text and the reader's basic understanding of all human nature.The main predicament that presented itself in this section was the three prophecies which the apparitions gave Macbeth. The first apparition was an armed head that warns Macbeth to beware the Thane of Fife, namely, Macduff. The second apparition was a bloody child, who tells him that "none of woman born shall harm Macbeth." Hearing this, Macbeth becomes reinforced, and states that he no longer needs to fear Macduff. The third apparition was a child wearing a crown, with a tree in its hand, who says that "Macbeth shall never vanquished be until Great Birnam Wood to high Dunsinane Hill shall come against him." This cheers Macbeth even more, since he knows that nothing can move a forest. However, Macbeth now asks his last question; will Banquo's children ever rule Scotland? Will Macbeth's rule ever be ended? The apparitions tell contrasting details regarding Macbeth's continuing rule, yet I believe that from analyzing the text, it can be inferred that Macbeth's rule will eventually come to an end. For example, when the third apparition states, "Macbeth shall never vanquished be until Great Birnam Wood to high Dunsinane Hill shall come against him," Macbeth is elated, for it is physically impossible to move the great forest to his castle. However, Macbeth's narrow-minded and overly-ambitious character can be seen here for he forgets to think about one significant detail. Couldn't it be possible for the castle to come down to Great Birnam Woods instead of the other way around? Malcolm's gigantic army could make this a reality, for since Macbeth's castle rests on a hilltop, when it is destroyed, its fragments will topple over into the forest. Thus, just as the witch's prophecies came true before, they consequently will come true again with the end of Macbeth's rule and the prosperity of Banquo's sons.Another interesting point that I witnessed in this section is Shakespeare's use of children in the last three visions. Why would Shakespeare now use children in a novel so dominated by adults? Normally children are regarded as innocent, but here they are involved in images of death, which are all so dramatic, terrifying and bloody. The choice of these images is carefully made so as to annoy Macbeth, who has no offspring. Furthermore, perhaps Macbeth's hallucinations are actually always images of his desires, not those of fears as I have previously speculated. For example, perhaps Macbeth wanted Banquo to enjoy in the feast of Act III and hoped for his friendship once again, which is why he had a hallucination of Banquo at his coronation dinner. Furthermore, perhaps...

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