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Consequences in Macbeth Essay


In literature, the actions that characters commit have serious effects. Shakespeares play Macbeth displays acts of killing and betrayal. Macbeths obsession with power and fear of death leads him to commit actions that neither he nor his mind can control. What he does cannot be the effect of one person but that of what many people have contributed to. These actions sprout from the seeds of others, seeds that others plant, seeds that manipulate his mind into taking drastic measures. These people drive Macbeth into a scary world. A world filled with death and insanity. It is apparent that the three witches, Lady Macbeth, and Macbeth are the source of all of Macbeths actions.

The three witches are the roots of Macbeths lust for power and his fear of death. In the beginning they cause Macbeth to believe he will obtain power. They proclaim All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, thane of Cawdor! All hail, Macbeth, that shalt be king hereafter! [] Lesser than Macbeth and greater. Not so happy, yet much happier. Thou shalt get kings, though thou be none. So all hail, Macbeth and Banquo!(Act 1, Scene 3, lines 50-51...66-70) His hearing this causes him to go insane and to do whatever it takes to take and keep the throne. He murders King Duncan in order to obtain the thrown and become King of Scotland. Then in an effort to change the path, that the witches prophesies pave, he proceeds to betray and kill his friend Banguo. The witches powers are shown when they are told He shall spurn fate, scorn death, and bear his hopes 'bove wisdom, grace, and fear. And you all know, security is mortals' chiefest enemy. (Act 3, Scene 5, Lines 30-33) The witches have the power to manipulate Macbeth into believing that he is above death. Him believing this leads to his downfall. The three witches spark Macbeths conquest for power, and are the reason for his death.

Lady Macbeth is the next influence that takes over Macbeths mind. She is the stem to the flower of Macbeths actions and acts as the push Macbeth needs to go completely insane. When Macbeth decides to kill King Duncan he is not sure he wants to go through with it, but Lady Macbeth persuasively says From this time such I account thy love. Art thou afeard to be the same in thine own act and valor as thou art in desire? Wouldst thou have that which thou esteemst the ornament of life, and live a coward in thine own esteem, letting I dare not wait upon I would, like the poor cat i' th' adage?(Act 2, Scene 3, lines 43-49) She questions his manhood and his courage. This is enough of a push to make him go through with the murder. Lady Macbeth calls Macbeth insane and cowardly when she says This is the very painting of your fear. This is the air-drawn dagger which you said led you to Duncan. Oh, these flaws and starts, impostors to true fear, would well become a womans story at a winters fire, Authorized by her grandam. Shame itself!(Act 3, Scene 4, Lines 61-67) This, yet again, shows the power that she has over Macbeth. After the death of the King, Macbeth goes completely insane and the source of his insanity is Lady Macbeth.

Macbeth himself is what creates the flower of the plant that makes up his actions. With the help of the witches and his wife, he loses his control of his mind. His insanity is shown when he says Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible to feeling as to sight? Or art thou but a dagger of the mind, a false creation, proceeding from the heat-oppressd brain?(Act2, Scene 1, lines 34-39) and has caused his to dig a hole to deep to get out of. He becomes so obsessed with murder that he cannot stop killing. Macbeth feels that he has killed too many people to turn back. This leads to him killing his friend Banguo and the family of Macduff, which in turn leads to his demise. Macbeth himself is the final ingredient that creates the monster that he becomes.

The three witches, Lady Macbeth, and Macbeth are all responsible for Macbeths actions. The witches prophesies create Macbeths lust for power. They steer his mind on a path. This is a path that he would have inevitably followed but did not have the courage to do so. Then Lady Macbeth persuades Macbeth to commit the murder of King Duncan. This murder leads to the death of many people that may not have died if Macbeth did not kill Duncan. Finally the events that occur cause Macbeth to go insane. This was with the help of the witches and his wife. All of these are reasons why Macbeth does what he does. With out each part, every event would play out differently. They all help in the creation of the plant that is Macbeths actions.

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