Analysis of Macbeth

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MacbethMacbeth is an epic tale of tradgedy which has continued to awe readers throughout the centuries since its completion. Poetic brilliance inspired William Shakespeare to write a play about ambition, greed, and treachery, all of which was based on historical accuracy. Centering around the actual character, Macbeth, the play portrays the latter half of his life, from his betrayal of King Duncan all the way to his own demise. Macbeth was supposedly not an evil man in the beginning, but quite obviously an ambitious one. However, in the end, it was not this ambition, but rather his lack of open-mindedness which killed him. He did not use the proper foresight to see consequences of his actions. While walking through the halls of the castle, Macbeth proclaims to himself, "Is this a dagger which I see before me... Thou marshal'st me the way that I was going;" He had tricked himself into seeing a dagger to lead the way to Duncan's quarters.

He tried to believe that he did not know what was to transpire when he came upon the sleeping king. He was going to kill Duncan nonetheless, and never even considered the consequences. He only knew that he needed power, but not how to acquire it. While speaking of the advancing enemy, Macbeth says to a servant, "I'll fight, till from my bones my flesh be hacked. Give me my armor." He refuses to acknowledge that his fate may be drawing near. He boldly trods through everything he comes upon, counting on blind luck and arrogance to get him through the day. Macbeth feels that whatever he believes is automatically right or true, despite all facts that oppose it. During his conversation with the triad of witches and after hearing the third prophecy, Macbeth shouts, "That will never be. Who can impress the forest...Sweet bodements, good!" Macbeth never quite realizes the factthat he is speaking with evil witches, or if he does, he simply ignores it in favor of hearing his future. It never occurs to him that they might be lying about his destiny. In all reality they weren't lying, it was only his perception of the prophecies that proved to be his downfalling. During one of the final scenes with Macduff, Macbeth admits, "Accursed be that tongue that tells me so, for it hath cowed my better part of man!" Only now does he realize his fatal error, that he misjudged each and every one of the prophecies. He then contemplates becoming a prisoner and being forced to prostrate himself in front of the country, but he eventually decides that he should accept his mistake and his fate, whatever they may be. He dies of course, but even up until the very end he believes that he can prevent this if he only fights with enough strength. Throughout the theatrical performance, Macbeth's inability to accept reality slowly tears apart all that he holds to be true, and eventually destroys him. Though narrow-mindedness rarely is the cause of self-destruction, it can be very harmful. Being intolerant and bold can easily lead to awkward situations, not to mention a lack of any meaningful relationships. So in the end, having an open mind can allow one to have a fuller life along with more intersting experiences.