A Study Of The Differences Between Macbeth

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A Study Of The Differences Between Macbeth And Lady Macbeth Essay, Research Paper It is the development of the characters of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth during the play that makes this character study so vital to Macbeth. At the beginning of the play King Duncan hears of Macbeth, the bloody hero. The battle was horrific, but Macbeth was fearless, fighting his way through the enemy and literally cutting the rebel leader in half. King Duncan is suitably impressed by Macbeth’s braveness. ?O valiant cousin! Worthy gentleman!? The audience’s initial perception of Lady Macbeth is of a confident and evil woman. In her first scene she is reading a letter from her husband telling her about the witch’s predictions. Upon reading the letter she instantly decides to obtain the crown

for Macbeth through any possible means. ?Glamis thou art, and Cawdor, and shalt be What thou art promised.? It is these two bold and sure views of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth that are soon to change. Lady Macbeth forces Macbeth to murder Duncan and when he first refuses, she appeals to his manhood and courage. ?When you durst do it, then you were a man? Macbeth eventually gives in with the proposition of being king being too powerful a lure for him. At this stage the audience can deduce that Macbeth is easily subject to persuasion while Lady Macbeth is very persuasive. As the fateful day draws near, Macbeth becomes delusional, picturing visions of blood stained daggers, witches and ghosts. Killing Duncan horrifies him, resulting in him imagining all the consequences of the murder

before he commits it, this is due to his vivid imagination, something Lady Macbeth does not have. Lady Macbeth at this point has a stronger inner conviction and uses very powerful antilife phrases in an effort to persuade the evil spirits to make Macbeth kill Duncan. ?Come to my woman?s breasts And take my milk for gall.? One would assume here that if one of the two were to have the strength of mind to live through this evil tragedy it would be Lady Macbeth. Shakespeare is entering into the very interior of Macbeth’s mind allowing the audience to realise further differences between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth. Macbeth at this stage is going deeper and deeper into the world of evil. ?Nature seems dead, and wicked dreams abuse The curtained sleep.? Macbeth realises that in obtaining

the crown by foul play he is devaluing it as the king is meant to be appointed by God. By now, Macbeth is able to have the courage to look into the heart of fear; Lady Macbeth on the other hand is unable to do this. Following Macbeth’s murder of Duncan, Macbeth becomes frightened and unsure of himself. He begins to regret his actions and realises that this will remain on his conscience until his own death. ?Macbeth shall sleep no more? Conversely Lady Macbeth pushes her knowledge of this sacrilegious act deep inside her, trying to ignore it. ?Consider it not so deeply? She believes that she will be able to do this with relative ease. ?A little water clears us of this deed? She thinks that it is just a question of washing the blood yet the psychological impact is as if the blood

will not come off. Macbeth however appreciates the difficulty of disregarding their deed. ?No, this my hand will rather The multitudinous seas incarnadine, Making the green one red? Here Macbeth is stating that the seas are filled with the blood of Duncan. This blood will never leave, thus serving as a constant reminder of his regicidal act. Shakespeare employs a great deal of imagery to depict certain situations and in the last two quotations he has used the image of blood. At this stage in the play Lady Macbeth is confident while Macbeth is subject to frightened loyalty. However, what Macbeth fears is the evil of committing the evil deed rather than the evil deed itself. It is at this stage that one can first realise a chink of humanity in the originally confident and cold Lady