The Importance of Act 3 Scene 4 in Macbeth

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Macbeth: Act 3 Scene 4
‘They say, blood will have blood’
‘Lesser than Macbeth but greater,’ theses are the words which make Macbeth start to think about whether his bestfriend, Banqou, can be trusted. In one of the first scenes of the play the three witches tell him this after he killed King Duncan. The words start to drive him insane as he starts to believe that Banquo or his son, Fleance, may take the throne away from him. His sanity leads him to killing Banquo, making him so guilty that he breaks down at the State Banquet. Act 3 Scene 4, the Banquet scene, is one of the most significant scenes as it shows Macbeth has finally cracked as he goes insane in front of all his guests. I will be discussing how violence, the supernatural, masculinity, ambition, guilt and prophecies effect Macbeth throught the scene.

The supernatural is one of the most biggest themes in the play. It starts off in Act 1 Scene 1, with the 3 witches and carries on with the prophecies given by them, which i believe make macbeth insane, believing that he can be all powerful. The supernatural links into this scene because, when Macbeth looks over the banquet he says ‘the table is full’ and sees the ghost of Banquo sitting in his chair. Macbeth speaks to the ghost, ‘Thy gory locks at me,’ the ghosts ‘locks’ of hair as described as gory because as the guest enter the first murderer tells him that Banquo diesd with twenty gashes on his head. Interestingly, if this does link into the theme of supernatural then Macbeth would have thought that the others would be able to see it to. However the confusion on their faces could suggest that the figure may have just been an hallucination created from the guilt. Macbeths ‘halluciantions’ have gone from a mere dagger to a ghost, matching his riding madness. The ghost or hallucination can also be seen as Macbeth’s personal tormentor, making him feel guilty and slowly pushing him towards his own death. I think he wanted Banquo killed away from the...
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