Macbeth: Superstitions

Satisfactory Essays
Macbeth: Superstitions

The tragedy of Macbeth was written by Shakespeare in 1606 and produced

in 1610. Macbeth is the most concentrated of Shakespeare's tragedies. The action

gushes forward with great speed from the beginning to end. The main characters

in the play are Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, who are very noble, but their evil

ambition ultimately causes their downfall and death. The play focuses around

evil, greed and the supernatural. The play was written by Shakespeare for the

king at that time, since he was a big believer of witches and the supernatural.

Supernatural is classified as the unnatural or the explainable mysteries of our

universe. In Shakespeare's time many people would relate many of the unusual

happening against the supernatural, since this was the most simplistic of an

answer to give. Elizabethan's have several beliefs in superstitions. Some of

these superstitions include that they believe in witches, ghosts, destiny, and

the foretelling of the future. This essay will investigate superstitions and how

they are used in the play Macbeth.

Witches were believed by many people in Shakespeare's day. The

supernatural was believed by everyone from the educated to the non-educated.

When something was not explainable they would relate that problem to the

supernatural, even though today that same problem was explainable in scientific


The witches in this play are named by Shakespeare as the "weird Sisters".

These witches had all the features of witches in those days; old people, dirty

broken clothe and come together in groups of three. These witches have many

animal's but in this play - a cat, and a toad are used - who are actually evil

spirits who have taken this form. In Macbeth we here about the owl quite often

which has to relate to the witches. The owl gives a sense of scariness which

makes the paly thrilling to read. It keeps the reader hooked to the play and the

suspense increases with every scary sound. Macbeth had many nightmares, which

were caused by the witches, even so hallucinations, such as the "air-drawn

dagger." that Macbeth seen before he went to kill Duncan.

The very - word "nightmare," often called in Shakespeare's time "the

riding of the witch", which refers to a witch riding wildly through the night on

horseback, visiting bad dreams on her victims.

Supernatural is the unusual, unseen, and the unknown. The supernatural

occurs in many parts of the play. The supernatural occurs in the appearances of

the witches, in the strange behaviour in nature on the night of Duncan's murder,

in the appearance of Banquo's ghost, in the apparitions with their prophecies,
Get Access