Honors British Literature
December 18, 2012
Character Analysis of
In the beginning of the play Macbeth is the “bravest” solider and the honorable Thane of Glamis, his rank and nobility are of great value, and he seems fit for his status. But when he encounters the witches, a deep impatient ambition awakens in him. Immediately after the first prophecy of the witches comes true, the “horrid image” of the murder of King Duncan in order to become king crosses his mind. After being persuaded by Lady Macbeth does Macbeth actually go through with the murder, but is troubled mentally along the way. When Macbeth becomes king his paranoia for those loyal to him does not cease. Throughout the rest of the play Macbeth not only faces battles physically but mentally as well.
When the play begins Macbeth is the hero, and every hero needs a side-kick or better sense of judgment and that person for Macbeth is Banquo. Macbeth encounters the witches in the beginning of the play and the witches give three prophecies for Macbeth and Banquo, Banquo doesn’t take it seriously but Macbeth does because he seeks power: “Enter MACBETH and BANQUO
So foul and fair a day I have not seen.
How far is't call'd to Forres? What are these
So wither'd and so wild in their attire,
That look not like the inhabitants o' the earth,
And yet are on't? Live you? or are you aught
That man may question? You seem to understand me,
By each at once her chappy finger laying
Upon her skinny lips: you should be women,
And yet your beards forbid me to interpret
That you are so.
Speak, if you can: what are you?
All hail, Macbeth! hail to thee, thane of Glamis!
All hail, Macbeth, hail to thee, thane of Cawdor!
All hail, Macbeth, thou shalt be king hereafter!”(1, iii, 40-71) The character of Macbeth progresses even further when Macbeth is contemplating the death of King Duncan