Lady Macbeth

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In the play Macbeth by William Shakespeare, one character that I found particularly thought provoking was Lady Macbeth. Initially, she is manipulative and dominant in her relationship with Macbeth and she goads him into committing regicide but by the end she is powerless, desolate and stricken with guilt. She is self-deceiving because she believes she is man like and she wants power at any cost, but she cannot cope emotionally and goes mad because of her guilt. It is the mixture of fragility and strength than makes Lady Macbeth unique and interesting, and her utter transformation from an ambitious wife a desolate, suicidal shadow of herself. This is thought provoking because she is unusual, maybe even unique in literature and she makes us consider parallels we can see in real life. At the start of the play, Lady Macbeth appears brave and determined. She is prepared to do anything so that Macbeth could become king and she could become queen. She asks the ‘spirits’ to “unsex me here and fill me from the crown to the toe topfull of direst cruelty.” She believes she can be manlike and have no conscience but she never expected Macbeth to go as far as he did. She thinks that she will be able to forget about killing Duncan when she returns after returning Macbeth’s daggers- “a little water clears us of this deed.” We see later in the play that this is not the case, and she cannot wash the blood from her hands when she says “Out, damned spot! Out I say!” and “What, will these hands ne’er be clean?” she thought that she had no conscience, so she wouldn’t feel any guilt when persuaded Macbeth to kill Duncan, but we see later in the play that this has affected her and she still has blood on her hands so she can’t forget what she has done. The Metaphor of literally having blood on her hands is used to show Lady Macbeths guilt. Macbeth asks the doctor whether he can make her forget her crimes- “canst thou not minister to a mind diseas’d, pluck from the memory a rooted...
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