Macbeth's Descent Into Evil

Topics: Macbeth, Morality, King Duncan Pages: 3 (893 words) Published: June 13, 2005
Macbeth's Decent Into Evil
The character Macbeth in the story of Shakespeare's Macbeth faces decisions that affect his morals. He begins as an innocent soul, dedicated to serve his kingdom and its king, Duncan. As time passes and opportunities present themselves combined with the deception of the evil witches, Macbeth begins his descent into madness. Macbeth's innocence and loyalty are completely corrupted due to his over confidence, guilty conscience, and the inevitability of human nature. Macbeth looses sight of what is morally right to do in life because his logical choices are changed by these factors.

Macbeth was capable of achieving his place as king but his path to greatness would not have occurred without his ability to be overconfident. This ability was responsible for his overall position as being blind to the possibility of failure. The witches assured him that he would be essentially invincible and that only in what seemed to be impossible situations, would his life be threatened. Macbeth explains:

"With thy keen sword impress as make me bleed:
Let fall thy blade of vulnerable crests;
I bear a charmed life, which must not yield
To one of woman born" (5.8. 13-16).
Macbeth was so confident that the idea of someone not being born of a woman was impossible in itself and therefore he had nothing to fear. However, it was this overconfidence that the witches depended on. They wanted the overconfidence to prevent Macbeth from understanding the consequences of his actions, and to do so they overwhelmed him with security:

"He shall spurn fate, scorn death, and bear
His hopes'bove wisdom, grace, and fear:
And you all know security
Is mortals' chiefest enemy" (3.5.29-33).
Another factor resulting in the inevitability of Macbeth's evil was his Guilty conscience. Macbeth knows his actions are wrong and he understands and feels grief at first but as time goes on he dismisses his feeling so that his reign as king remains secured. He...

Cited: Shakespeare, William. Macbeth. : , .
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