AP Junior English
4 November 2013
Life Through a Pair of Forsaken Eyes
A close reading of Macbeth (5.5.17-28)
After hearing a shriek inside the castle, Macbeth sends his servant Seyton to find out what the noise was. When Seyton returns, he tells Macbeth “The queen, my lord, is dead” (line 16). Untouched by this horrific news, Macbeth replies, “She should have died hereafter: There would have been a time for such a word,” suggesting that she would have died eventually, implying that he is too busy to deal with her death (line 18 - 19). He goes on to say “tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow” using repetition, to show that life drags on, at a slow and “petty pace” up until the end of time (line 20 - 21). Macbeth then explains that “all our yesterdays have lighted fools the way to dusty death” implying that after each day, they are approaching death sooner and sooner (line 23 – 24). Would the “lighted fool” who is on his way to a “dusty death” be referring to Macbeth himself or to people in general (lines 23 - 24)? After saying “out, out, brief candle,” the candle’s light represents Macbeth’s life and he is commanding it to go out due to the shear depression and stress that he is undergoing (line 24). While in this pessimistic trance, Macbeth explains that “life’s but a walking shadow” and after each day the fool is coming closer to death (line 25). While referring to the illusion of life, he compares it to a “poor player that struts and frets his hour upon stage and then is heard no more” only to be forgotten once he is taken off (lines 26 - 27). Could Shakespeare be talking about himself since he is an actor upon the Globe Theater’s stage? Macbeth then goes on to say that “it is a tale told by an idiot f...
... middle of paper ...
...is considered to be a very deep and complex character due to this, and because he is ultimately the protagonist of the play, but yet he is also the antagonist too. He killed anyone that stood between him and his country’s crown, but yet in this speech he has an abrupt realization of what he has accomplished. He also had a strong and deep bond with his wife, yet when he receives the news he simply says, “she would have died hereafter: there would have been a time for such a word,” implying that he doesn’t care (Lines 17 – 18).
Kermode, Frank. “Macbeth.” Shakespeare’s Language. New York: Farrar, Strauss, Giroux,
2000. 201 – 216. Print.
Shakespeare, William. Macbeth. Jonathan Bate and Eric Rasmussen, eds. New York: The
Modern Library, 2009. Print.
SparkNotes. SparkNotes, n.d. Web. 10 Nov. 2013.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- The Symbol of Blood in William Shakespeare's Macbeth Blood represents life, death and often injury. It is an essential part of life, and without blood, we could not live. In Macbeth, Shakespeare uses the symbol of blood to represent treachery, murder and death. The word "blood", or different forms of it, appear numerous times throughout the play. Interestingly, the symbol of blood changes throughout the play, corresponding to the atmosphere and mood changes in the characters and the play. First, blood is a reference of honor, and this occurs when Duncan sees the injured sergeant and says, "What bloody man is that?"(1.2.1).... [tags: William Shakespeare Macbeth Essays]
703 words (2 pages)
- William Shakespeare's Macbeth In the play of Macbeth, Shakespeare introduces the main character, through the eyes of the one who knows him best, his wife. Lady Macbeth displays to the audience all of Macbeth’s weaknesses; her ambition to have power becomes her husband’s and this will bring out Macbeth’s ambition to be king. She also proves that the strong may become the weak and the weak may become the strong. Lady Macbeth is a main character in this play because she introduces Macbeth and helps the reader to understand his character.... [tags: William Shakespeare Macbeth Essays]
1287 words (3.7 pages)
- Shakespeare´s play 'Macbeth' is set in the heart of Scotland. The king at the time is king Duncun, a noble and honest king. He has two sons and many Thanes and noble men, one being Macbeth. Macbeth has fought his way up the ranks of the army to become one of Duncun´s most trusted Lords, but an encounter with three witches puts wickedness into the heart of an otherwise noble and loyal man. In act 1, scene 1, a scene of three witches confronts us. This alone would have created mystery and fright to the audience, setting the scene of the play to come.... [tags: William Shakespeare, Macbeth]
1638 words (4.7 pages)
- William Shakespeare's Macbeth During the Elizabethan era, the great chain of being reigned. Women were low on this chain of power, and men were on top. In fact, women were below horses; you couldn’t live without a good horse, but, you could live without a wife. Lady Macbeth was a woman before her time, she was caught between being today’s ambitious, powerful modern woman and a fragile creature of the Elizabethan era. In the first four acts of Macbeth, Lady Macbeth is vicious, overly ambitious, without conscience, and willing to do whatever it takes to get what she wants.... [tags: William Shakespeare macbeth lady Essays]
1471 words (4.2 pages)
- Shakespeare manipulates the audience’s opinions on whom was most responsible for the death of Duncan in many ways, I feel he does this to create question and surprise to the play. Shakespeare leads you along one path of thought, to then divert your thoughts onto another. Many people have different opinions and interpretations to this play; A.C Bradley once wrote “Lady Macbeth is the most commanding and perhaps the most awe-inspiring figure that Shakespeare drew. Sharing, as we have seen, certain traits with her husband she is at once clearly distinguished from him by an inflexibility of will, which appears to hold imagination, feeling, and conscience completely in check.... [tags: Macbeth Essays]
1715 words (4.9 pages)
- William Shakespeare was playwright and poet, as he is widely regarded as the greatest writer in English Language. Also, Shakespeare is the world’s most excellent dramatist as he named as “Bard of Avon” and English’s national poet. Furthermore, William Shakespeare was born on the twenty-six of April on 1564; he was an English playwright and poet. He get married at the age of eighteen years old with Anne Hathaway and he had three children; the twins Judith and Hamnet and Susanna. (Robinson, 2008) According to Argent (2007), Shakespeare wrote many works, including some collaboration, which comprise of thirty-eight plays, two narrative poems, a small number of other verses and one hundred fifty-... [tags: Macbeth Essays]
2438 words (7 pages)
- Lady Macbeth's Strategy in William Shakespeare's Play Macbeth In the seventh scene of act one Macbeth has left the banquet, and expresses his doubts about murdering Duncan in a monologue. Lady Macbeth comes in, and argues with Macbeth, until she manages to 'convince' him, that he has to murder Duncan. To do that Lady Macbeth uses mainly two arguments. 'Letting 'I dare not. wait upon ?I would. like the poor cat i. the adage. (lines 43-44). Lady Macbeth tells Macbeth here that he shouldn?t let his chance slip away.... [tags: Shakespeare Macbeth Essays]
1606 words (4.6 pages)
- The Witches or Weird Sisters play a major role in the brilliant tragedy Macbeth by William Shakespeare. The role of the Weird Sisters represents that equivocal evil in the nature of things which helps to deceive the human will. They are not mere witches although they have some of the powers of witches. Even though they were produced by nature, they share with angels a freedom from limitation of space and time, a power to perceive the causes of things, and to see some distance into human minds (Kermode 1309).... [tags: Shakespeare Witches Macbeth Essays]
1883 words (5.4 pages)
- The Role of Witches in William Shakespeare's Macbeth In Macbeth the witches make a huge contribution to the play and the way it comes across to an audience. The witches portray many themes in Macbeth, such as the theme of fate, and the way that they are supposed to have the power of changing someone's fate, and the way they can control people using their power. The witches also depict a theme of pure evil, and the way they treat others in the play shows this. Religion also is a big theme in Macbeth, references to the trinity, whether it is the unholy, or the holy trinity.... [tags: Papers Macbeth Shakespeare Witch Essays]
1871 words (5.3 pages)
- Role of Motifs in Shakespeare's Macbeth The best way to draw a reader into a story is to focus on knowledge drawn from other sources and add to them in a way so that the reader can relate. William Shakespeare achieves just this with his ability to enhance Macbeth with reoccurring motifs throughout the play. Possibly the most prominent ones and those that represent the greatest are the sleep and serpent motifs. J When one possesses a conscience, the function to tell the difference between right and wrong; it impedes the ability to either make positive or negative decisions.... [tags: William Shakespeare Macbeth]
1253 words (3.6 pages)