Macbeth Essay: on How Hallucinations and Vision Assisted in Macbeth's Mental Deterioration

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Hallucinations and visions are often noted as signs of mental instability. This means the person is losing touch with reality. The causes can be guilt, nerves, or simply a mental disorder. In the play Macbeth by William Shakespeare the hallucinations and visions all contribute to the growing mental instability in Macbeth’s character. The image of a dagger with blood, the voices when killing Duncan and the ghost of Banquo all play key roles in the deterioration of Macbeth’s mental state. In Act 2 Macbeth and Lady Macbeth compose a plan to murder King Duncan. As Macbeth approaches Duncan’s room he notices a dagger floating in front of him “Is this a dagger I see before me? The handle towards my hand? Come, let me clutch thee: I have thee not, and yet I see thee still.” (2.1.33-35) Macbeth looks at the dagger in front of him that is pointing towards Duncan’s room and tries to grab it but he cannot. This frustrates Macbeth and then he begins to notice something else “And on thy blade and dudgeon gouts of blood, Which was not so before. There’s no such thing: It is the bloody business which informs “(2.1.46-48). Macbeth has realized that blood was not oozing out of the dagger and he acknowledges that it is his nerves getting to his head and projecting this image. This incident shows Macbeth starting to display signs of mental instability. Secondly, Macbeth hears voices talking to him while he is killing Duncan. Macbeth explains to Lady Macbeth “Methought I heard a voice cry, ‘sleep no more Macbeth does murder sleep’, the innocent sleep,” (2.2.38-39). Macbeth is shaken by the event that just passed and tells Lady Macbeth that he believes he was cursed not to sleep again. This makes Macbeth feel regret right away for killing Duncan. Macbeth truly believes he has been cursed and this begins a mental barrier for Macbeth. As a result, later in the book Macbeth

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