Macbeth: Macbeth and Dramatic Irony Essay

Submitted By emilyanne1
Words: 609
Pages: 3

acbeth The famous tragedy, Macbeth, was written by William Shakespeare. Throughout the play, dramatic irony occurs. During dramatic irony, what appears true to one or more characters is seen to be false by the audience. Dramatic irony’s purpose is to provide a more complete picture of the action. Dramatic irony can be seen in the surrounding circumstances of Duncan’s death, Banquo’s death, and Macbeth’s downfall. The situation of Duncan’s death is full of dramatic irony. When the witches approach Macbeth, they call him Thane of Cawdor. It is not until after the meeting with the witches that Macbeth learns that the former Thane of Cawdor has been sentenced with the death penalty for treason and he is take on the name. It then becomes ironic that Macbeth, Thane of Cawdor, will follow the former in betraying King Duncan. Upon Duncan’s arrival at Macbeth’s castle, he asks Lady Macbeth to conduct him to his lovely host. In actuality, the audience knows that Duncan is to be murdered that night by the hand of his lovely host. We also see dramatic irony within the plan to murder Duncan. The plan is to use the chamberlains’ daggers to make it seem like they have murdered Duncan. The plan is pulled off successfully as Lennox declares at the discovery of the slayed Duncan that it seems that the chamberlains are guilty. Yet, the audience knows that Macbeth is indeed the murderer. The surrounding circumstances of Duncan’s death exemplify dramatic irony. Next, dramatic irony is found in the surrounding details of Banquo’s death. As Banquo prepares for a ride out, Macbeth asks him three questions. Banquo thinks nothing of the questions asking how far he rides or if his son will be joining him. However, the audience recognizes that the responses given will help Macbeth in plotting Banquo’s murder. Macbeth then speaks to the murderers and convinces them that Banquo is the source of all trouble. By doing so, the murderers believe they will be doing a noble act; one that the audience knows is actually full of horrific ambition. After the deed is done, Banquo’s ghost appears at the banquet. However, only Macbeth can see the apparition, the rest of the guests are unaware. Upon seeing the ghost, Macbeth breaks into a frantic fit. Throughout the fit, Macbeth unintentionally reveals hints as to him being the