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The Downfall of Macbeth

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    R. D Macbeth Essay 21-1-2013 William Shakespeare portrays a tragic downfall of a king through his ambition to become King and human weakness in the murder of Duncan. Shakespeare develops the play Macbeth by showing the changes in him and the effects his demise has on others. The tragedy Macbeth by William Shakespeare is based on a thane who is corrupted by greed and a negative ambition. He questions himself and whether or not he should follow through with the evil deeds that he does.

    Macbeth’s ambition causes him to compromise his honour, he doesn’t take into consideration that he is being trusted and that every action that he takes will have a reaction. Macbeth attains his position as king unjustly. As is evident by the conclusion, justice prevails as usual and Macbeth’s demise is a result of his evil deeds. Macbeth fails to show his moral responsibility as a person as well as a king. He doesn’t take into consideration that he will pay for all the evil deeds that he executes. Killing Duncan is the worst crime that is possible to commit since he was loved by many.

    It is evident that Macbeth is aware that this is an evil sin when he states, “I dare do all that may become a man, who dares do more is none. ” This statement shows that Macbeth believes that killing Duncan will make him nothing more than a beast. Nevertheless he goes against his morals and kills King Duncan. Sin is an important theme in this play, Macbeth shows that he knows he has lived a sinful life. Ambition takes over Macbeth when he decides to hire assassinators to kill Macduffs wife and children, “The castle of Macduff I will surprise; seize upon Fife”.

    Macbeth shows the insignificance of his morals and responsibilities by his actions, he shows that becoming king is of much more importance. The weird sisters (witches) have a great impact on Macbeth’s state of mind when he decides to follow through with many of his actions. The witches are responsible for putting the idea of Macbeth becoming king in his head. Faith in the witches leads him to delusional behaviour since they are believed to be evil however Macbeth clearly confides in them and this leads him to thinking he is invincible and he lowers his guard.

    Throughout the play paranoia takes Macbeth over. As a result of his ambitions he feels those who were associated with him are now a threat. Banquo, Macduff. Banquo is unceremoniously slaughtered by three henchmen who seem to be the only people Macbeth can confide in. People who have a grudge against the world and don’t care who they kill. This killing of Banquo also shows how Macbeth is incapable of remorse. Someone who once was a friend of Macbeth is suddenly an enemy and is murdered. Macbeth’s tyranny and downfall only gets worse.

    After the killing of Duncan and Banquo he says “I am in blood Stepped in so far that, should I wade no more, Returning were as tedious as go o’er”. Macbeth knows that he must continue in his deeds as turning back would only mean his death. Guilt is a serious issue to Macbeth especially after the murder of Banquo. This guilt is so great that it causes him to hallucinate and cause an occurrence during a banquet at his house. This scene leads to him feeling socially alienated since it causes his dinner guests to question his involvement in the murders.

    Macbeth’s loss of control causes him to rant, “Thou canst not say I did it; never shake thy glory locks at me! ” The tragic end to this play is a result of Macbeths continuous pursue of achieving his position as king. All of his insecurities paved a path to making rash decisions and only by the ending of the play does he realize that he will not get away with the crimes he committed. In conclusion, the protagonist in this play, Macbeth is a tragic hero.

    His demise is a result of his on-going ambition to attain power and position as king. Macbeth’s tragic end was a result of his own series of wrongful decisions and distrustful actions. These decisions and actions were motivated only by the dream of becoming king. Macbeths tyranny as King had a serious effect on Scotland and its inhabitants. Those who lived peaceable lives now lived in fear of what was in store for them. The people lost a good King in Duncan. He was much loved by many because of his gentle and peaceful ways.

    The old man sums it up well in his speech, “Threescore and ten I can remember well, Within the volume of which time I have seen, Hours dreadful and things strange, but this sore night, Hath trifled former knowings. ” Many terrible things he has seen in his days on earth but this dreadful murder of Duncan puts all other happenings to shame. The killing of Duncan even affects the animals and the natural world. “On Tuesday last, A falcon, tow’ring in her pride of place, Was by a mousing owl hawked at and killed. ” It is also said that Duncans horses ran wild and began to eat each other and it was as if “they would make war with mankind”.

    The stability of the monarchy in Scotland has been destroyed by Macbeth. He uses his unjustly attained power to slaughter anyone who may stand in his way without remorse. The families of those associated with Duncan now live in fear. The Macduffs are a prime example of this as, without expectancy, they are murdered by mercenaries of Macbeth. Other innocent women lose their husbands as a result of them being a threat to Macbeth. Many have fled Scotland out of fear of Macbeth who is the culprit for the countries collapse. Essay for wesley college dublin

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