The Witches And Lady Macbeth Are Responsible

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The Witches And Lady Macbeth Are Responsible For The Death Of Duncan. Essay, Research Paper During the epoch that Shakespeare wrote Macbeth (the Elizabethan era), regicide was deemed the most scandalous breach of the law in this country, because the ruling sovereign had the Divine Right of Kings. This meant that the monarch had infallibility. Important factors to take into consideration are; ? Macbeth made the decisive choice ? The witches manipulated his thoughts, and images worked his mind ? Lady Macbeth manipulated his heart. However, the witches and Lady Macbeth do supply a mitigating state of affairs for Macbeth?s degree of guilt In the play Macbeth we can argue that there are three possible choices for who is most responsible for the murder of King Duncan. The first

choice is the witches. In the whole of the play they symbolise darkness and make a morally corrupt atmosphere. In Elizabethan times they were regarded as evil so these prophecies would be thought of as evil. Macbeth first meets them after the battle against the Norway and they predict that he will be Thane of Cawdor and then King. At first he can not believe this but when he finds out he is Thane of Cawdor he and Banquo are surprised. Banquo says, ‘Can the devil speak true?’ in surprise. This shows us they did not expect the witches to be telling the truth. After this Macbeth seems to be astonished, which shows he is deep in thought about the third prophecy. Therefore, we could argue that the witches make him feel that he will be king and that it is his destiny. He is always

thinking about the prophecies after this and drops hints to Banquo, for example he says, ‘Let us speak our free hearts to each other’. He is trying to see whether Banquo would be interested in helping him. It also shows his great interest and desire for the throne. The prophecies also show he has been demonically possessed, due to the fact that at the end of act one, he invites spirits to possess his body, by saying, ?come you spirits?. Finally at the start of scene act two, he tells the audience he his having visions by the quote, ?Is this is a dagger I see before me?. However, we could argue that the witches put real ideas to him that are already in his head. He has great ambition and may already want to be king so the witches therefore could not be totally responsible and

just act as a catalyst. What I mean by this is that the witches change Macbeth?s outlook upon the crown, but not be directly involved while they do this. We can see it is quite easy to resist the witches as demonstrated by Banquo. This shows us he can control his thoughts, but Macbeth, however, has a weak point and can not control his vaulting ambition. The second factor is Lady Macbeth. Macbeth writes a letter to her telling her of the witches’ prophecies. He writes this letter because he wants the crown and knows she will have to push him to get it. She drives him to the murder and acts as a more physical catalyst than the witches. She bullies him, emotionally blackmails him and knows he is morally sensitive so he must be pushed. She mocks his bravery and knows he is a

warrior and will be insulted. When Macbeth is having doubts she says, ‘When you durst do it, then you were a man; and, to be more than what you were, you would be so much more the man’. What she means by this is if he does the deed, he will be more of a man. She answers every objection he comes up with. Before the murder Macbeth says, ‘If we should fail’ she replies, ‘we fail?’ She is surprised by him thinking negatively because she believes there is no way they will fail, but Macbeth doubts their ability to cover up the truth. She also organises the fine details of the murder. The main part is when she goes to put the daggers back. Macbeth has returned from the murder scene and brought the daggers with him. She is annoyed with him because he is being careless and is