The Role of the Witches in Macbeth by William Shakespeare Essay

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The Role of the Witches in Macbeth by William Shakespeare

Macbeth is a play written by William Shakespeare some time between 1603 and 1606 and is set in Scotland around 1040. The time it was written coincides with the reign of King James the First of England. King James showed a great interest in witches and powers of the supernatural and Macbeth was arguably written to impress the king in what were violent times. Shakespeare used witches as pivotal characters to create a catalyst for the action that was included in the play. Another reason for him to use witches in this way is that it is an attention grabber and will interest people, at the time Macbeth was written people believed that witches had
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"I myself have all the other, and the very ports they blow, all the quarters that they know, I' the shipmans card" is said by the first witch and as well as being in rhyming couplets, this also demonstrates how witches were thought to be able to influence the weather as she is saying she controls the other winds and know which points they blow on from every point on the compass. The three witches sometimes also use riddles like "though shall get kings, though thou be none. So all hail Macbeth and Banquo." This shows how they could be equivocators because using a riddle gives the person you're talking to the right to make up their own mind about what you're trying to say. The witches like to mislead people and speaking in riddles is the perfect way to do just that, watching people suffer is what they enjoy doing and they will do whatever they want or can do to make that happen, I think that the witches doings are purely mischief as if they wanted to do something more sinister then they could have, as they had Macbeth believing everything they said. The setting of the first scene helps to build the tension up at the beginning of the play, the isolated surrounding of the heath will make the audience feel like they're seeing something which is part of a secret and feel involved. Macbeth's name is brought into the scene to show how
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