Macbeth Essay

Submitted By Coopermrtt1
Words: 1042
Pages: 5

“Something wicked this way comes”; Can you overcome it? Shakespeare, a profound playwright of the 1600’s, wrote the action packed play of Macbeth that portrayed the inexorable downfall of Macbeth and his wife. The play portrays numerous examples of how evil uses its deceitful nature to work its way into the many lives of the characters of this play, specifically Macbeth and Lady Macbeth. Evil, in the play, is portrayed as both a perversion of nature with many of the characters, some more prevalent than others, and something full of deception and lies. But it is also avoided with some characters, like Macduff, who turns evil into a form of poetic justice when he obtains revenge against Macbeth for killing his family. As said before, evil throughout the play is shown as a perversion of nature. Characters such as Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, numerous times, have to go against their true human nature and commit acts of complete evil. For example, the first murder, the murder of Duncan, was the first time that Macbeth himself went against his own human nature to be able to kill Duncan. Macbeth didn’t realize that both the prophecy of the witches, themselves being perversions of nature, and the killing of Duncan would send him and his so called followers into a downward spiral to their inexorable fate. Continuing with that theme, in the numerous other murders, specifically Duncan’s murder, Lady Macbeth plays a huge part in the committing of these murders. Macbeth thoroughly contemplates Duncan’s murder three times, and changes his mind twice. In these times of decision making, Lady Macbeth in a way, guilt trips Macbeth into committing the deadly act. She slips and slides like the serpent did to Eve in the Garden of Eden when he persuaded her to eat the forbidden fruit. She asks Macbeth over and over again, are you a man? Lady Macbeth uses these questions to get under his skin to make him feel as though if he didn’t commit this murder he wasn’t a man; he would be seen as worthless and cowardly. Macbeth himself also uses the techniques of the serpent when speaking with the murderers. As did the serpent in the Garden of Eden when speaking with Eve, Macbeth uses large amounts of false persuasion to motivate the murderers.” Have you considered my speeches?... which held you/ So under fortune… In our last conference; passed in probation with you/ How you were born in hand, how crossed, the instruments,/ To half a soul and to a notion crazed/ Say “Thus did Banquo.” (3.1.76-84). The serpent, or Satan, used many mendacious sayings when he spoke with Eve like how the forbidden fruit held the wisdom of God and if she ate it she would be wiser and more cunning than God himself. Macbeth also uses mendacious sayings when he explains to the murderers their “misfortunes” when in reality everything was false. The story of Adam and Eve also ties into the theme of how Evil works by deception in the tragedy of Macbeth. The witches throughout this play constantly deceive Macbeth with their prophecies saying only half of them. They never tell him of the exception or outlier that could make the prophecy become true and ultimately lead to Macbeth’s downfall. For example, “Be bloody, bold, and resolute! Laugh to scorn/The pow’r of man, for none of woman born/ Shall harm Macbeth.” Here at the time of Macbeth visiting the witches for the second time, the witches conjure up three apparitions to tell Macbeth the rest of his prophecy. But what he doesn’t understand is that he’s right smack in the middle of the witch’s lies. They purposefully deceive Macbeth to make him overconfident so he will inexorably fulfill his own prophecy. Here the second apparition tells Macbeth that no one person born of a woman can harm him. Hearing this he thinks himself invincible but when encounters Macduff in the last