The Downfall of Macbeth: Who is to Blame?

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Everyones feelings and reactions towards the ending of Macbeth are different. Most people feel that Macbeth was horrible and power hungry, and had his death coming to him. In my opinion this is not entirely true. I think some sympathy should be given toward Macbeth because of the fact that something or someone else causes his downfall. I think that the witches and Lady Macbeth are to blame for this. Macbeth’s complete self-destruction originated from the beginning with the witches.

In the beginning of the play, Macbeth is a soldier with good intentions and has no care for harming others. At this point, the witches have not yet influenced Macbeth with the ambitions they gave him. His downfall begins as soon as he meets the witches. Being interested in the witches predictions, Macbeth quickly rises to power and begins to ignore his conscience.

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The witches seem to have total control over his mind and his behaviors. They cause Macbeth’s destructiveness, which in the end leads to his newfound habit to kill. Macbeth’s wrongdoing did not start in his mind or soul, but instead was a result from him being a victim of circumstance and misfortune. Therefore, I think Macbeth deserves some sympathy. Lady Macbeth’s aggressiveness and her own ambitions are another major influence on Macbeth’s behavior.

Lady Macbeth persuaded him to kill Duncan and urged him to do whatever it took to become king. From the moment he listened to her, he started losing his integrity and stopped listening to his conscience. If it were done when tis done, then twere well And falls on thother side. This shows how Macbeth was not completely evil, he decided not to kill Duncan until persuaded by his wife.

In Macbeth’s case, his wife was at least partly responsible for his madness. As a reader of Macbeth, I can indirectly relate to Macbeth’s character. I recognize that it is possible to be influenced by someone into acting immoral. Under the affect of peer pressure, for instance, a person can act irresponsibly causing harm. Although we cannot justify the wrongdoing of a person, we feel sympathy for him or her, realizing that their decisions were not created just by their mind, but rather resulted from other multiple factors.

Macbeth is at the mercy of the witches and Lady Macbeth and therefore not completely responsible for all his actions. It is easier to have sympathy for a person who is not entirely to blame for his actions. Despite all of his wrongful actions, Macbeth does not exemplify pure evil.

Whence is that knocking? The multitudinous seas incarnadine, Making the green one red. This quote shows how Macbeth does have regret and feels bad, the crime he committed haunts him. I do not excuse Macbeth but I do feel as if he was human, and as a human was pressured and tricked into his actions. Overall, these reasons are why I sympathize with Macbeth.

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The Downfall of Macbeth: Who is to Blame?. (2019, May 13). Retrieved from

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