William Shakespeare's Macbeth Essay

3963 words - 16 pages

William Shakespeare's Macbeth

In Macbeth, look at the following scenes: Act one, scenes one, two and
three, Act two, scene two, Act four, scene one and Act five, scenes
three, six and seven.

What did Macbeth's character, words and actions show about changes in
his character? Why are these scenes important to the plot and
structure of the play and how the themes are presented?

The play Macbeth is about a man whose rise to power and fall are
influenced by his own ambitions, with help from the supernatural.

In the beginning of the play, Macbeth started off as a brave man,
because he fought well in battles, even the King praised him for his
courage. This is shown when the sergeant was explaining what was going
on the battle. He explained that Macbeth had fought well

"For brave Macbeth, well he deserves that name"

They know that he is brave and loyal. However, in the scene before,
three withes were planning to use him to do evil. They must have known
that there was something else to Macbeth than bravery and loyalty;
there was a strong ambitious side that they could prey off.

Those two sides of Macbeth were shown together, the witches' scene
(scene one) was hinting Macbeth's dark ambitious side and his
vulnerability. Straight after that scene was the scene with King
Duncan saying how brave he was. The audience would get mixed messages
there and wouldn't know what to think about Macbeth.

The audience learn more about Macbeth in scene three because he
actually appears in the scene.

It started with the witches telling each other about how they are
going to kill someone's husband because she didn't give her any food.
This shows that the witches are evil beings and shouldn't be trusted,
yet Macbeth trusts them. This shows that Macbeth actually has got a
dark side.

The witches posses great power. This was shown when one of the witches
say that she is going to go to sea in a sieve to follow a man in a
boat. It isn't humanly possible to go to sea in a sieve, but
Shakespeare uses this imagery to show the audience how powerful the
witches are. The other witches say they would give her a wind, this
proves that they can control the weather. In the Elizabethan times,
this would be shocking because they were firm believers in witchcraft,
and all the things that went wrong in the world was blamed on witches.

When the witches hear Macbeth coming, it seems like they cast a spell
on him

"…Thrice to thine and thrice to mine

and thrice again to make up nine.

Peace! The charms wound up!"

Just after the "spell", Macbeth says "so foul and fair a day I have
not seen". The weather was reflecting what was going on in the play.
From the moment Macbeth meets the witches on the heath, Scotland is
doomed. I think this because when the witches told Macbeth the
...

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