Thursday, October 10, 2019

After the murder of Duncan Nothing goes Right for Macbeth and his Wife Essay

Shakespeare first showed Macbeth in the court of a newly crowned King James the First. Some people would argue that in places this was written as a piece of flattery for James the first. James was meant to be a descendant of Banquos’ and therefore Shakespeare shows Banquo to be a valiant and heroic character throughout the play. However, Shakespeare had to be careful what he said in the play, as he didn’t want to upset the King. This play could be written as a piece of propaganda or a warning to anybody who went against the King. The play supports the Stuarts doctrine of the â€Å"Divine Right† of kings. This states that kings are appointed by God and therefore going against them is as sinful as going against God himself, the greatest punishment should be put against anybody who does so. This is shown all the way through the play up until the death of Macbeth himself. Macbeth starts the play as a great hero and is well respected by his fellow lords and friends. He has shown himself to be a great warrior and is referred to by some as â€Å"Bellona’s Bridegroom† who helped to save Scotland from invasion by the King of Norway and an attack by MacDonald. Macbeth is highly regarded by the King, who calls Macbeth a â€Å"valiant cousin, worthy gentleman†. Macbeth is rewarded, by the King, the role of Thane of Cawdor after the previous Thane proved to be a traitor and tyrant. However, by the end of the play Macbeth is hated by all and is considered to be a traitor and tyrant. I believe that had Macbeth not have murdered Duncan, he would have carried on his good name and maybe gained the role of King without having to do anything to gain it. We can see that Macbeth starts to suffer from the murder almost directly after when he says that he thinks he hears a voice: Methought I hear a voice cry ‘Sleep no more! Macbeth does murder sleep’, This could be seen as the first part of Macbeths punishment for murdering the king. He has been cursed so that he can no longer sleep because he has murdered the king whilst he sleeps. We can see that this is true because throughout the rest of the play Macbeth does not sleep well again. Macbeth knows now that he will never be forgiven for what he has done and almost immediately regrets his actions and wishes that he could undo it. Macbeth panics after he does the deed and he murders Duncans guards before anyone goes into the room. He thinks that this will be seen as an act of courage and loyalty to the King but doesn’t realise that instead he is getting rid the only other people that could have been blamed for the murder and taken the suspicion away from himself and lady Macbeth. In doing this Macbeth draws suspicion to himself straight away from Macduff who says, â€Å"Wherefore did you so?†. This is the first time we see Macduffs suspicions and they carry on to the very end of the play at which time he goes on to kill Macbeth himself. Macbeth realises Macduff and does not feel safe. Macduff shows the extent of his view of the murder of Duncan by not attending the coronation of Macbeth. Macbeth notices this and his fear grows. After becoming King, Macbeth realises that it does bring him nothing more. He becomes more and more suspicious of Banquo, who is beginning to query Macbeth over the murder of Duncan. Macbeth realises how big of a threat Banquo could be to him and says: To be thus is nothing, But to be safely thus: our fears in Banquo Stick deep. Macbeth is constantly tortured by the witches prophecy of the desendants of Banquo becoming King. If it were true then Macbeth would never built a true dynasty. Macbeth hates this thought and we see it plague him all trough the play. We then see Macbeths change. He orders Banquo and Fleance to be murdered. Yet, unlike the first, his wife is not involved and he hires criminals to do it for him instead of doing the deed himself. This, in my opinion, is the first time we see Macbeth going it alone and leaving lady Macbeth out of his plans. Macbeth believes that by killing Banquo and his son he will be preventing the second prophesy from coming true and put his mind at rest. However, the plan is not completely successful and Fleance escapes. Macbeths reacts to this by saying: Then comes my fit again:I had else been perfect Macbeth is saying that if that had not have gone wrong then it would have been perfect but now it has brought back his unsettlement because if Fleance still lives that means that the prophecy may still come true. His feeling of never having any satisfaction of king returns to him. Macbeth then has a banquet with all his lords and ladies and he gives the game away. He sees the ghost of Banquo sitting in a seat and in his shock and panic he begins to shout out in madness excuses for what he has done. Lady Macbeth tries to cover up for him but Macbeth carries on. The lords become ever more suspicious as begin to understand what Macbeth has done. After the lords have gone Macbeth tells his wife what he done to Banqou and I think this is when Lady Macbeth realises what her husband has turned into and what Kingship has brought him and her. After the feast the lords begin to feel that Macbeth is not a worthy king, referring to the feast as the â€Å"tyrants feast†. Lennox refers to the situation as: ‘our suffering country Under a hand accurs’d’ This means that Scotland is under the rule of a hand (Macbeth) which is unworthy or bad. This tells us that Macbeth is growing more and more unpopular within the lords and he has now lost all of the respect and ‘good name’ that they once gave him. Macbeth begins to fall ever more into despair and goes to see the witches for some more advice. They tell him that he is safe and gives a feeling of security. Macbeth now feels better but the witches then rob him of any happiness by reconfirming Banquos descendants becoming king by showing him an image of kings to come who all look like Banquo. Macbeth is now unhappier than ever and we can see the full extent of which being king has brought absolutely no satisfaction whatsoever. Macbeth, in his despair, says: ‘I am in blood Stepp’d in so far that should I wade no more, Returning were as tedious as go’er. This shows us a gory view of him wading through all of the blood of his victims and to turn back and try and do right would be as hard or ‘tedious’ as it would be to finish off what he has started and to carry on with the murders. Macbeth has by now lost all of his kindness and any compassion that he once had. His lords are slowly deserting him and his wife and him are further apart than ever. From the beginning of the play Macduff has suspected Macbeth of the murder of Duncan and he now has proof enough to flee to England and join Malcolm. Macbeth has now turned bitter and twisted and vows that he will now do whatever he thinks without thinking about the consequences: ‘From this moment The very firstlings of my heart shall be The firstlings of my hand.’ Macbeth then decides to do his worse deed yet, he orders the murder of Macduffs wife and child. This shows Macbeths lords openly that he is a true tyrant and nothing but a bloody killer. He now loses even more support when Ross leaves him. Not only does he lose support but he also gives Macduff even more reason for revenge and makes Macduff even more eager to overthrow him. Macbeth now realises that he has lost all his support and that he is hated over all the land and is close to despair. By now Macbeth has lost all human feelings that he once had and even when he learns of his wife’s death he simply shrugs it off saying, â€Å"she would have died hereafter†. All feelings of love or hatred or guilty have now been wiped from him and he is now a bitter and lifeless person. He begins to believe that life has no meaning. When Macbeth learns of Macduffs oncoming he is not afraid and says, â€Å"I will not yield†¦Ã¢â‚¬ ¦ lay on Macduff†, he is saying that he will not retreat but instead will wait for Macduff and take him on. Macbeth is not afraid anymore and now just waits for his fate. Macbeth fights to his death and ends up being killed by Macduff in the final confrontation. We can see Lady Macbeths slow spiral of despair throughout the play to the point of suicide. She started off as an ambitious woman who was in love and who wants nothing but the best for husband. She assists in the murder and tries her hardest to make her husband gain Kingship. At the beginning she was in complete control of her husband and the marriage yet by the end she loses all of this and Macbeth pays no attention whatsoever to her. Being queen gives her absolutely no satisfaction and realises that all of the plans were nothing more than a complete waste of time. I believe that after the murder of Duncan nothing goes right for Macbeth and his wife. It eventually pushes Lady Macbeth to suicide and causes the murder of Macbeth himself. I believe that if they had not carried out the murder then Macbeth would have kept his good name and maybe the witches prophesies would have come true without any encouragement. Macbeth had everything and should have been grateful for it. Lady Macbeth became greedy and should have let her husband do what he wanted to instead of pushing him into the initial murder.

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