Macbeth Analysis

Essay by eidHigh School, 12th gradeB, March 2009

download word file, 3 pages 0.0

Downloaded 15 times

1.An atmosphere of foreboding and horrors is built up in the act. Much of the horror is implicit in Macbeth’s “dagger” soliloquy in scene 1.

a)Why does Macbeth refer to the dagger as a “fatal vision?”Macbeth refers to the dagger as a “fatal vision” (II.i.36) because it foreshadows his deadly intent to kill King Duncan. Macbeth is obviously under great mental torment, which is the cause of his hallucination of the imaginary dagger. He imagines the dagger, covered with “gouts of blood” (II.i.46), leading him to Duncan’s room. This image shows Macbeth’s fatal ambition as he follows his desire (the dagger) to kill King Duncan with a dagger which will eventually be covered with King Duncan’s own blood.

b)What does he mean by a “dagger of the mind?” What is suggested by having Macbeth experience a hallucination at this moment, just before the murder?A “dagger of the mind” (II.i.38)

suggests that the dagger is simply a figment of Macbeth’s imagination. Macbeth is hallucinating because his “heat-oppressed brain” (II.i.39) is deeply troubled by what he is about to do, and he is put under great emotional strain by his guilt and uneasiness over his murder act. The dagger he sees symbolizes his ambition to kill Duncan and to become king. The main purpose of this scene is to establish Macbeth’s transition from good to evil. At this point, he is facing a huge dilemma and is extremely confused, and unaware of his actions. He still has some good left in him and realizes that he is doing something wrong, but at the same time, his ambition continues to drive him forward and proceed with the murder. Macbeth is transforming from a strong, well respected general, to an evil murderer who will eventually become a hated king.

2. Skim...