Macbeth Essay

1202 Words5 Pages
Theme ________________________________________ The theme of the play, according to G.R. Elliot is that a "wicked intention must in the end produce wicked action unless it is not merely revoked by the protagonist's better feelings, but entirely eradicated by his inmost will, aided by Divine grace." This is seen most clearly in Act V, Scene 1, where the Doctor says, "More needs she the divine than the physician." It also seen throughout the play in Macbeth's murderous plots. Also rampant through the play is the idea of "Fair is foul, foul is fair." Basically, this means that appearances can be deceiving. What appears to be good can be bad, and this is seen in such things as the deceptive facade of Lady Macbeth and in the predictions of the witches. In William Shakespeare’s Macbeth (1606), the protagonist is lured to murder the king, Duncan, by the desire for power, an appetite whetted by witch’s prophecies and his wife’s encouragement. But when he reaches the kingship, he finds himself insecure. He attempts to remove threats that decrease his security, including his companion Banquo and his son Fleance, prophesied to be king. His lords grow angry and revolt successfully, after witches lure Macbeth into a false sense of security by further foretelling. In Macbeth, we see that, despite appearances of paradox, man’s goals of comfort and power are forever opposed in increment, though the two may decline together. The power from knowledge causes discomfort. As often has been said, ignorance is bliss. After Macbeth is promised the throne, Banquo asks why Macbeth is less than ecstatic. "Good sir, why do you start, and seem to fear / Things that do sound so fair?" (Act I, Scene 3, p. 332) Macbeth’s new knowledge makes him uncomfortable, as he realizes the implications. His first thoughts considering murdering Duncan appear, and he is scared. After he commits the murder,
Open Document