The Downfall of Macbeth

Topics: Macbeth, Duncan I of Scotland, William Shakespeare Pages: 3 (949 words) Published: November 21, 2006
Downfall of the Macbeth's

If one has the firmness of killing another, will that person collapse to the forces of guilt and turn themselves in, or will that person suffer the effects of guilt and try to live through their troubles? Guilt can cause many people to turn themselves in or can make people succumb into a deep hole. In the play "Macbeth" by William Shakespeare, Shakespeare reveals that the effects of guilt can cause the downfall of one's status and more importantly, their inner being.

The main character, Macbeth, is corrupt with guilt. Because of the witch's three prophecies, Macbeth finds himself contemplating on how he could finish the last prophecy; becoming the king of Scotland. Once Macbeth finishes the task of killing King Duncan, his troubles start. Macbeth starts having guilt because of what he did. After the murder, Macbeth asks himself if "great Neptune's ocean [will] wash this blood clean from [his] hand." (II, ii, 77-78). Macbeth is already feeling guilt towards Duncan's death and doesn't know whether the guilt on his hands will ever wash away. Macbeth even feels guilt before the murder. The quote "This supernatural soliciting, Cannot be ill, cannot be good… if good, why do I yield to that suggestion whose horrid image doth unfix my hair…" (I, iii, 140-145) already suggests this. Macbeth is confused at why he has thought this and already feels guilt. Macbeth killing Duncan only brought Macbeth trouble sleeping, loss of appetite, and nightmares. This is only the beginning of Macbeth's hardship. Macbeth feels agitated and on edge for the rest of the play. This causes the lords, thanes, and people to think there is something odd about him. The guilt caused from Duncan's murder definitely caused part of Macbeth's downfall of inner being and status. Relative to Macbeth, Lady Macbeth had the same effects from guilt, but with a different outcome.

Lady Macbeth, Macbeth's partner in crime influenced Macbeth greatly. Lady Macbeth initially...
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