Macbeth - A Great Man Torn Apart By Vaulting Ambition Essay

Macbeth - A Great Man Torn Apart By Vaulting Ambition Essay

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William Shakespeare, an eminent playwright, wrote a number of inspiring plays such as Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet. He wrote many plays in the Elizabethan era but wrote Macbeth when King James I came on the throne (Jacobean era). Macbeth is a great man torn apart by vaulting ambition. Three witches, a superstition of the time, show Macbeth is future to send his life spiralling into oblivion. Witches were the terror the era. The Jacobeans were very conscious about whom they would socialise with as everyone and anyone could be a witch. You were killed if you were a witch but then the witch trial would kill you if you weren’t. You would nearly always die if you were an old woman that lived on her own; she had a pet usually a cat, a bird or a toad and sometimes a mark on her skin. So witchcraft was taken very seriously in those times. Macbeth was a real king in the Jacobean era who committed regicide against King Duncan of Scotland. In the Jacobean era all of the citizens believed that God chose the king and that the king had a high status in the chain of being. The chain of being was a hierarchy that people were born into, for example God was at the top and the earth was at the bottom. The place, on the chain, which you were born into, cannot change because God chose it and if you did challenge it you would be seen as a sinner because you went against God’s wishes. This could also be called the natural order, gender also played a large part in this because it was natural for a male to be higher than a female.

Shakespeare uses dramatic irony a lot to build tension throughout the play. Shakespeare uses dramatic irony when Macbeth does his soliloquy and tells us what he is feeling and what he thinks he should do. This builds tension...


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...nsure of the characters thoughts and what they are going to do in the scene. When Shakespeare uses thunder and lightning in the scenes this also builds tension because it’s mysterious but also because it shows the supernatural powers of the witches.

As Macbeth was a real king that committed regicide it makes the story more realistic for the audience and makes the play come to live. This builds tension because they know that this could happen and that it is possible. It is also very believable because at this time there was war and treachery happening all over England and Scotland. Similarly because they believed in the great chain of being and the natural order of things it became all real as this is how they life in real life. On the other hand it would be unreal when Lady Macbeth was the dominant figure in the relationship and then became a ruler of Scotland.

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