The Character Of Macbeth


The play 'Macbeth' is a portrait of one man, Macbeth, showing how he changes.
Although we are presented with his deterioration from good to evil, we can see
his human side throughout the play, which makes it a tragedy. It is the
shortest of Shakespeare's tragedies, and has a very fast pace. Once Macbeth's
ambition has ‘set the ball rolling', events happen quickly in the play as it
gathers momentum. The themes of ‘Macbeth' are ambition, effects of evil, and
violence, shown mainly by the language of the play, as in Shakespeare's time
plays were performed in daylight with very few props. Ambition is something that
everyone can identify with, and ‘Macbeth' is a compelling study of how ...

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death. Shakespeare creates an atmosphere of
evil and darkness mainly through his language, although scenes containing
violent actions or the witches are often played in darkness. Shakespeare uses
poetry (verse) as opposed to prose, as poetry often contains more metaphors and
imagery, which he used to create a feeling of darkness and evil. The language
gives an insight into the character of Macbeth - we see his ruthlessness and
cruelty, but also fear, doubt and some scruples.

Macbeth's first words, ‘So foul and fair a day I have not seen' (Act 1:3 L36)
immediately associate him with the witches because they say in the first scene ‘
fair is foul and foul is fair' (1:1 L12), so evil is brought to mind. Macbeth is
connected with the supernatural in the audience's mind from the onset. This is
the first thing that is not consistent with Macbeth's image of a war hero.

In an aside later on in Act 1:3, Macbeth reveals that he is thinking of killing
Duncan. Asides are very important because ...

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the scene. The audience can see that he has become yet more drawn to evil.

Evidence that Macbeth has a human side and is very worried is found in a long
soliloquy - a speech where Macbeth is alone on stage so we can again see what
Macbeth is thinking. He is worried about his eternal soul, and what his
punishment will be in Heaven if he kills Duncan. He thinks of reasons why he
should not kill Duncan - ‘He's here in double trust: First, as I am his kinsman
and his subject, strong both against the deed; then, as his host he should
against his murderer shut the door, not bear the knife myself.'(1:7 L12-16) This
shows that Macbeth is not totally evil, but his ambition spurs him on. ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 11/19/2005 09:49:04 AM
Category: Arts
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 2164
Pages: 8

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