Madness in the play of Macbeth

Essay by al3xoo4High School, 11th gradeB, May 2004

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Madness in the Play of Macbeth

The play Macbeth, written by William Shakespeare, tells a tragedy of a man who has an overly ambitious character which will lead him to his own insanity and death. Macbeth's wife, Lady Macbeth, also becomes a victim of insanity and death once the madness of these two lovers kicks in to play. As the story of Macbeth grows, certain scenarios arouse which are accompanied by complications that haunt Macbeth, as well as Lady Macbeth, with an obvious madness, which seems to spread like a disease throughout the play.

Once Macbeth witnesses two of the three prophecies told to him by the three witches in Act 1 Scene III, he begins to believe the possibilities of his own rule. Lady Macbeth also craves this possibility and asks the deed of demons to help her and her husband do what is needed to become royalty.

"The raven himself is hoarse / That croaks the fatal entrance of Duncan / Under my battlements. Come, you spirits / That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here, / And fill me from the crown to the toe top-full / Of direst cruelty!"(Act 1, Scene V), Lady Macbeth is asking to be deprived of her female qualities and filled with urgent and remarkable cruelty-the exact cruelty which is accompanied by madness to inflict fatality upon another human being, in this case, King Duncan. Once the deed is done Lady Macbeth is forever in debt to her wish and is later driven to her own suicide.

Macbeth however, does not indulge himself in spiritual help. He lets his own eyes deceit him into murder:

Is this a dagger which I see before me, / The handle toward my / hand?

Come, let me clutch thee. / I have...