Macbeth and lady macbeth

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2008

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The story of Macbeth, based on historical facts from Scottish history, is a tale of murder, greed, corruption, violence, and treachery - all the things Shakespeare held near and dear to his heart. Enraged with King Duncan's announcement that his son, Malcolm, would be automatic successor to the thrown, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth begin entertaining murderous thoughts of taking over the Scottish Kingdom. This marked the beginning of their pitiful downfall from respected royalty to tormented tyrants. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth go through ironic character changes at different points throughout the story, as they commit the horrid acts of murder and are haunted by their crimes.

Macbeth and Lady Macbeth's lives were forever changed when greed and jealously gave way to murder. Knowing that Duncan was soon to pay a visit to Macbeth's castle, Macbeth, momentarily entertains the idea of killing the king, but trembles at such sinful thoughts.

Frightened, he says, "Present fears" (Shakespeare 136) "Are less than horrible imaginings" (Shakespeare 137). Lady Macbeth falls in with Macbeth's plot with greater energy than Macbeth himself. She vows adamantly that, "He that's coming / Must be provided for" (Shakespeare 62-63), implying that Duncan must be killed.

Driven by fear of suspicion by day, and terrible dreams by night, Macbeth becomes completely paranoid with everyone, including Banquo, his right hand man. At this time Macbeth takes control and realizes that he must kill Banquo. He decides that Banquo must die tonight, and says, " Banquo, thy soul's flight, / If it find heaven, must find it out tonight" (Shakespeare 141-142). When Macbeth tells Lady Macbeth about his plan, she is reluctant and says, "You must leave this" (Shakespeare 36), wanting him to get rid of the murderous thought. Tired and weary, she eventually gives in to her husbands newest...