The Tragedy of Macbeth and the word "Blood".

Essay by Satisfxn November 2003

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William Shakespeare was the greatest playwright of his time. One of his most well-known plays is "The Tragedy of Macbeth". In The Tragedy of Macbeth, the word "blood" appears many times throughout the play. The word has drastic effects on the characters in the play, and it's meaning changes throughout the story. The meaning of "Blood" changes significantly as the story progresses according to the character of Macbeth, and it affects Macbeth and other characters along the way with some feelings of guilt.

First of all, the whole play is actually based on the word blood because as the story goes on, blood changes along the way and reflects Macbeth's character and behavior. At first, Macbeth is a brave and honored soldier, but as the play goes on, he becomes a treacherous person who has become disliked and associated with death and bloodshed, and then finally, the meaning of the word returns back to its original usage.

The first reference of blood is about honor, and it occurs when Duncan sees the injured sergeant and says "What bloody man is that?"(1.2.1). This is symbolic for the brave fighter who got injured in a noble battle for his country. In the next passage, the sergeant says "Which smoked with bloody execution"(1.2.20). He is referring to Macbeth's braveness for killing the enemy triumphantly with his sword. Duncan responds to this news by saying "O valiant cousin, worthy gentleman!"(1.2.26). These quotes show that "blood" was used honorably, and when said to a person, it would be taken as a compliment. After these few references to honor, the symbol of blood begins to change to show a theme of treachery and treason. Lady Macbeth starts this off when she asks the spirits to "Make thick my blood, Stop up...