The Macbeths- A Study in Marriage

Essay by Contessa65High School, 10th gradeA+, May 2008

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Does love make a marriage, or does marriage make a love? You can have one without the other, but for one to be fully complete, does it need the other? Marriage is not just a vow, not just a signed contract, not just a binding kiss. It is a union between two people, an unwavering alliance and a promise that you will always have someone by your side. The Macbeth's did not have a perfect marriage, but they tried to make it work. They loved one another, but they also had to lie to each other, and deceive their other half. They supported one another's endeavors, but still grew apart as the play moved on. At the beginning of the play, it was clear that they loved and trusted one another, even though it is likely that their marriage was arranged. Can true love survive murder, tragedy, courtly intrigue and ultimately madness? Lady Macbeth supported her husband through thick and thin.

She was with him when he was the lowly Thane of Glamis, and stayed with him until her death, as Queen of Scotland. In Act 1, Scene 5, she reads a letting from him, telling her of the news of the war, and about the prophesy's of the Weird Sisters. She supports him, and shows her love in that she must lose all of the feminine qualities, such as gentleness, so that she can persuade her husband to kill Duncan and become King, making sure their bloodline would live on as royalty. By using her love for him as a weapon, she was able to coerce him into committing a vile act of murder. In a marriage, you must be willing to do things for the other person, and you must accept the fact that you may not always be able to do what you want to do. Lady Macbeth took advantage of that trust and misused her influence. To make your husband commit murder, even if it moves you up in the world, is an act of betrayal; betrayal of trust, mind and heart. Unfortunately, in Act 3, Scene 2, she discovered that being queen was not as good as she thought it would be. She ultimately goes mad, feeling as if her hands are covered in blood. She was not responsible for the killing of the Macduff household, but was she responsible for the ruination of the marriage?

Macbeth was a man of changes. From the beginning of the novel to the end, he went through a complete turnaround, and eventually became a man who he did not want to be. At the beginning of this play, he does not want to commit murder. He is hesitant to kill his King, as he knows that it is not the right thing to do. As the play progresses, Macbeth becomes colder, not caring if he sacrifices the lives of his subjects, so long as he keeps his throne. The slaughter of the Macduff household shows his fears, and he knows no other way of dealing with them than removing them. He has a loose grasp on his sanity, and ignores what is right in front of him. Madness and denial can ruin a marriage. If you do not trust one another, and keep things from each other, you will build your marriage on a foundation of lies, thus guaranteeing that your marriage will not work out. If Macbeth had worked more on building a trust and had consulted Lacy Macbeth on things such as the killing of Macduff's family, things may have worked out better for them. They needed to work together to make this marriage last.

A marriage is a bond between two people. One person cannot be responsible for harming it, and one person cannot be credited with any difficulties that the marriage has. The Macbeths did not work together on things that would help their marriage. The only things they ever did as a couple were to plan the murders of several people close to them.