Lady Macbeth And King Duncan Essay

1876 words - 8 pages

How far is Lady Macbeth responsible for the murder of King Duncan?
Shakespeare was born in 1564 in Stratford-upon-Avon. He was known for “The Globe” a theatre where he would act out one of his plays. He is seen as one of the most distinguished playwright to have ever walked across the face of the earth. His poetry is read by people of a wide age of group. Shakespeare died in 1616 and was later buried in his home town. In his whole lifetime he wrote thirty seven plays and sonnets, they were fascinating plays on love, his best was said to be Romeo and Juliet.
Macbeth is one of Shakespeare’s most successful and powerful plays; a tragedy in which the audience is forced to question ...view middle of the document...

When Macbeth receives word of the old thane of Cawdor being killed for treason he feels a sense of jubilation and starts to believe in the witch’s powers. Whilst the reason why Banquo can sense the witches devilish intentions is because he is not worried and is unconvinced on their apparition.
In act one scene five, Macbeth informs his wife Lady Macbeth, a clever, beautiful and ambitious woman of what has occurred in battle. More importantly of his encounter with the wicked witches in a letter, she is delighted with her husband’s letter. Although she knows her husband ambitions, she says he lacks ruthlessness, and is,
“So full of the milk of human kindness”
Lady Macbeth then vows to kill the king and to persuade Macbeth to join her. Macbeth’s letter reveals so much in the letter. What he says is correct but what he reports back to his wife may be seen as him possible seizing the throne.
We then get a glimpse of a religious perspective of how ruthless Lady Macbeth is in Act one scene five,
“Nor heaven peep through the blanket of the dark, to cry, hold, hold”
Saying that let it be dark and so evil, the deed that god wouldn’t be able to stop her. Lady Macbeth decides that she will have to help him find the necessary determination. When a messenger comes to tell Lady Macbeth that King Duncan is arriving today, she is excited seeing this as the perfect opportunity to make Macbeth King.
“Fill me from the crown to the toe, top-full Of direct cruelty; make thick my blood, stop up th’ access and passage to remorse...”
A treacherous murder was never perpetrated, even by the most hardened miscreant, without compunction: and that Lady Macbeth must have been in a horrible agitation, it appears from her invoking the infernal spirits to fill her with cruelty and to stop all avenues to remorse.
We then recollect a scene where we are shown the king’s politeness. In Act one scene seven, King Duncan is talking to Banquo, he comments on how pleasant Macbeth’s castle is. Lady Macbeth tells her husband to deceive their guest and to hide his real thoughts.
“look like th’ innocent flower but be the serpent ‘t.”
She says that people might see what you’re thinking from his face. She tells him to be nice, but nasty underneath. In Act one scene seven we hear about the doubts which play on Macbeth’s mind whether to murder the king or not.
“First, as I his kinsman, and his subject, strong both against the deed.”
Macbeth has a conscience however Lady Macbeth appears to guide him towards his ambitions in a devious manner which results in him killing Duncan meaning Lady Macbeth was responsible in a way of playing on his mind.
Contributing with Act one scene seven, Macbeth’s conscience is very persuasive. He tells himself that Duncan’s goodness and kindness is such that his killing would provoke a tremendous outcry. In the sixteenth century men were thought of to be more highly superior to...

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