The play Macbeth, by William Shakespeare, tells the story of a brave man, called Macbeth, who killed his way to the throne. In doing so, he brings about his own downfall. The description of Macbeth from “brave, valiant cousin and worthy gentleman” and that of his wife “honoured hostess” changes to “dead butcher and his fiend like queen”. This change is due to the receiving of prophecies, ambition and greed and desire. The play explores themes, including power, ambition and guilt.
In the beginning of the play Macbeth is a “brave, valiant cousin and worthy gentleman”, near the end of the play he turns into a “dead butcher”. This is a result of receiving three prophecies from a group of witches, who give him these prophecies in order to play and toy with him. “All hail Macbeth, hail to thee, Thane of Glamis”, “All hail Macbeth, hail to thee, Thane of Cawdor”, All hail Macbeth, that shalt be king hereafter”. These prophecies, given to Macbeth by the witches address the theme of fate as they tell the audience what is going to happen to Macbeth in the course of the play. A technique used in this moment is foreshadowing. This is the scene in the play that informs the audience what the play is going to be about and what is going to happen. It also displays repetition as the prophecies all start with “All hail Macbeth”. These prophecies show the beginning of the downfall of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth towards becoming “dead butcher and his fiend like queen”, because without the prophecies Macbeth would’ve never killed King Duncan to become King.
Macbeth and Lady Macbeth’s spiral towards becoming tragic heroes involves them changing from “brave valiant cousin and worthy gentlemen” and “honoured hostess” to “dead butcher and his fiend like queen”. The moment when Macbeth and Lady Macbeth plan to kill Duncan is a pivotal part of the play. “We will proceed no further in this business”. This shows how honourable Macbeth was at the start of the play and how much he changed...
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