Free Macbeth Essays: Blameless Macbeth

Free Macbeth Essays: Blameless Macbeth

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Blameless Macbeth  

 

Macbeth, a tragic play by William Shakespeare, involves the downfall of a military hero, Macbeth. Our hero, however, is not to blame for his own fate – the downfall of Macbeth is the result of the actions by those around him.

Three evil withes foretell that Macbeth will become Thane of DCawdor and even King of Scotland. Macbeth dismissed their prophecies, but after he is promoted to Thane of Cawdor for military action, Macbeth wonders if he shall not be King, too.

Macbeth is a good and loyal kinsman who would never harm his King. Were it not for outside forces, he would have lived happily as Thane of Cawdor, an illustrious title in itself. Macbeth does not even want to kill King Duncan. He says Òchance may crown me without my stir.Ó Fearing the withes message means that he will kill the king in the future, he says ÒPresent fears are less than horrible imaginings.Ó

Macbeth writes to his wife, telling her about the withes and how one prophecy has already come true. As soon as she hears about it, she calls on evil spirits to fill her full of cruelty so that she will the King if necessary. Macbeth, one the other hand, does not like a possible future by the withes prophecy: that he will kill his King. This shows the difference between Lord and Lady Macbeth. It is only after much nagging and cajoling from his wife that he decides to go through with it, and then halfheartedly. His wife uses insults, demeans him, and makes him feel less than a man, so Macbeth finally gives in.

While Lady Macbeth is the one who sets the ball rolling, to use an analogy, it was the witches that put the ball at the top of the hill,. The three withes are a physical manifestation of evil. They conspire to kill as many mortals as possible, under their ‘superior,’ Hecate. Using their evil ability to see into the future, they can tell that by using Macbeth as a tool for destruction, the maximum destructiveness will be reached.

To get Macbeth to do their evil biddings, the first influence this seed of evil into his mind. By giving Macbeth that prophecy, they ensure that their plans will work.The prophecy is a self fulfilling one: for the future to be as it turns out to be, someone must know of it.

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That person is Macbeth./

The withes plan probably would not have worked if they hadn’t counted on the ruthless ambition of Lady Macbeth. After he meets the witches, Macbeth thinks out the idea of killing Duncan calmly and rationally, then eventually decides not to do the deed. This is both morally good as well as sensible: an usurper would not be able to hold an unsteady throne for long.

Some of the evil of the play Macbeth, however, is attributable only to himself and can be blamed on no-one else. The murders of Banquo and Macduff’s family are his fault alone: his paranoid tendencies alone are the reasons for the murder. Macbeth’s murder of Banquo is due basically to the fact that Macbeth does not want all of his work to go to Banquo, and he is paid back for this by being tormented by his ghost. Macbeth kills Macduff and his family: some of which is unnecessary evil alone. The witches tell Macbeth to fear Macduff, his true enemy, but the murder of his whole family is a pointless monstrosity. Macbeth is ion the precipice of instability, and the murder of the family of Macduff is the start of after he has fallen in.

Macbeth tends to get rash and indecisive as the play goes on. First he is swayed by Lady Macbeth, and then he seems to act very illogically. This is another facet of his paranoia. Macbeth wants to stay king, so he hires murderers to slay all who oppose him. In the last act he becomes crueler and crueler, lashing out with feverish intensity at all those around him, even those trying to help him and innocent bystanders. That last statement is not just metaphysical, though: Macbeth is diseased of both the mind and sol.

In conclusion, Macbeth is both a victim of external forces and some of his fate. The withes and his wife are both evil influences on him in the first part of the play. In the last acts, however, he is in control, but he exercises this power badly.

Like most tragedies, Macbeth, the main character, has a fatal flaw in his character. Macbeth’s hamartia is the fact that he is too sharing in his ambition. He opens up his path in life to include others as well, namely the withes and his wife. After that event, the true Macbeth is gone, another traveler on the road of evil.
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