Character Analysis "Lady Macbeth"

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Topics: Macbeth, First Folio
Set in 1603, Shakespeare’s play, Macbeth, follows the life of what started out to be a normal married couple. When the couple, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, discover from a prophecy that Macbeth would one day rule the land of Scotland, the two did everything in power to make sure this would come true. The couple devised a plan to murder Duncan, the current king of Scotland; Macbeth carried out this plan. With this newfound immense amount of royal power, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth go through several challenges in their relationship. Throughout Shakespeare’s play, Macbeth, there are significant changes in the way the audience perceives Lady Macbeth when considering her power, brutality, and physical characteristics. Comparing the beginning to the end of the play, it is apparent that Lady Macbeth is very different when considering her power. In the beginning, it appears as if Lady Macbeth was the superior in her relationship with Macbeth. At this period of time, man being inferior to woman was found to be very unusual. In a sense, Lady Macbeth was the “man” of the relationship. While debating whether or not Macbeth should kill Duncan, Lady Macbeth 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” (Shakespeare 43). This line expresses Lady Macbeth’s opinion that Macbeth will only be a true man if he follows through with the murder; until then, Lady Macbeth would question his manhood. By using this line, Lady Macbeth has total control over her husband and can basically get him to do whatever she may ask. On the other hand, Macbeth seemed to turn around and take steps toward being the “bigger man” in their relationship as the play unfolded. With his immense amount of power, Lady Macbeth had no choice but to go with his superiority. An example of Lady Macbeth’s weakness was when she was conversing with the doctor and said, “Out, damned spot, out I say! One. Two” (Shakespeare 163). This quote explains how


Cited: Shakespeare, William. Macbeth. N.p.: Folger Shakespeare Library, 1992. Print.

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