How Did Macbeth Change Throughout the Play?

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Is Macbeth a cold-hearted, brutal traitor? Or is he an innocent victim, forced into the sinful act of murder? Macbeth starts off as a humble, loyal subject to the King, but greed led him to doing unimaginable, acts of cruelty. He became a blood-thirsty tyrant, with no limits, and unable to stop. He didn’t want to take the killing path but Lady Macbeth cunningly persuaded him, and hooked him to the taste of blood. Macbeth started off as an eager young thane, still a small fish in a big pond. He was a power hungry juvenile man. His bravery and loyalty in the war, led to his recognition by King Duncan. The King announced “...For brave Macbeth…well he deserves that name…his brandished steel smoked with bloody execution.” This metaphor hints that Macbeth is a brave, heroic, merciless fighter; it also tells us that he has gained a good reputation, as he is receiving praise from the King. This ‘fame’ along with Lady Macbeth’s encouragement, brewed some cunning evil plans in his head. He wanted to kill King Duncan and frame the chamber guards for his murder, and ultimately, the kings very own sons, Malcolm and Donalbain. He did this so he could become even more powerful, and gain the title ‘King Macbeth.’ After Macbeth ‘takes the plunge’ and murders King Duncan, he is in a deep state of shock. He says “why do I yield to that suggestion, whose horrid image doth unfix my hair, and make my seated heart knock at my ribs.” He is revolted by his actions, and still can’t believe what he has done. Even the thought of King Duncan’s death, makes his hair stand on end and makes his heart pound. After Macbeth is crowned King, he is determined to keep the throne, and keep his reputation clean. He clearly regretted slaughtering King Duncan, displayed in the quote “to know my deed t’were best not know myself,” but once he got crowned King, he needed to make sure that no one

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