The Theme of Macbeth

1413 Words Sep 26th, 1999 6 Pages
The play Macbeth written by William Shakespeare in the beginning of the 17th century, deals with a man’s turn from the king’s most glorious, brave and courageous general into a traitor and murderer influenced by evil forces. In the following I am going to describe the play briefly and explain the theme of it. Furthermore I will discuss Macbeth’s character and his internal conflict. While the general Macbeth and his friend Banquo are returning from a victorious battle, King Duncan hears of their courage and bestows the title of Cawdor on the still absent Macbeth. The two warriors encounter three witches who greet Macbeth as Thane of Glamis, Thane of Cawdor, and „(…) King hereafter“. They …show more content…
Abstracting a theme from a play is not identical to establishing a point as fact. In Macbeth, as in other Shakespearean plays, we find that appearances are one thing, reality another. A more specific configuration of the main theme (there are also minor themes) is that only a deluded person thinks that playing with evil can leave him or her unchanged and that humanity, yielding to evil, is led to destruction. In Act I, this idea is embodied in Macbeth’s and Lady Macbeth’s responses to the salutations of the witches. Macbeth and his lady regard the greetings as Thane of Cawdor and future king as prophecies. Furthermore, with respect to the throne, they contemplate murder of the incumbent Duncan, although Macbeth is not told by the witches to kill Duncan for his crown. In Act II, the Macbeths are deceived by the apparent ease and subsequent guiltlessness with which they can achieve Duncan’s death. In Act III, Macbeth arranges the murder of Banquo and Fleance; but Fleance, who mainly intends to continue Banquo’s line, escapes. The murder of Banquo and Fleance had seemed to be assured, but the reality is otherwise. In Act IV and Act V, Macbeth wrongly reads the sayings of the second and the third apparitions – the prophecies that „none of woman born (…) shall harm Macbeth“ and that he is safe
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