Essay Lady Macbeth in William Shakespeare's Macbeth
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Lady Macbeth in William Shakespeare's Macbeth
In act 1 scene, we see lady MacBeth reading a letter that her husband, MacBeth has sent her, it has been written as a soliloquy, she reads aloud to the audience how he has been given information about his future by a group of witches. MacBeth sent this letter to his wife quickly, he is was obviously pleased with the news and wanted her to know about it. This gives the audience the impression that Lady MacBeth was very dominant in their relationship, and by telling her about the prophecy she would know what to do. Lady MacBeth already knows that MacBeth is the Thane of Cawdor and according to the witches prophecy he will soon be King. But she says,…show more content…
In this soliloquy Lady MacBeth calls upon all that is evil to help her in her quest, "Come, you spirits That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here And fill me from crown to the top-full Of direst cruelty" Lady MacBeth calls upon evil to make her immune to remorse and make all that is good inside her evil, she tries to lose all her feminine qualities because she thins that by being a woman it would make her weaker. "Come to my woman's breasts, And take my milk for gall, " Lady MacBeth uses this sentence to show that she is ready to sacrifice everything for her husband. In scene 7, Lady MacBeth shows another side to her character She is trying to convince MacBeth to murder Duncan, "From this time Such I account thy love. Art thou afeard To be the same in thine own act and valour As thou art in desire?" By questioning Macbeths love for she is morally blackmailing him into doing this deed, she also calls him a coward for getting what he wants, "Letting 'I dare not' wait upon 'I would,'' Like the poor cat i' the adage?"she also makes fun of him, she is trying to make out that unless he does this he wont be a man. She is calling him chicken. In Shakespeare's time killing a king was the worst sin, the plot that Lady MacBeth and her husband had would have resulted, in the eyes of the Shakespearean people being
In Act 1, Scene 5, Lady Macbeth reads Macbeth's letter about the prophecies of the three witches. Look carefully at the two passages spoken by Lady Macbeth after reading the letter. She expresses her true feelings about the prophecies in these passages.
In the first passage, she shows that she is immediately confident that these prophecies should come true. However, she has doubts about her husband's ability to help the promise of becoming king come true. She says,
"Yet do I fear thy nature;
It is too full o' the milk of human kindness
To catch the nearest way..."
Since Lady Macbeth fears that her husband will not be able to achieve greatness on his own, she feels that she must prepare herself to assist him. In a well-known soliloquy, Lady Macbeth says,
"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!"
When she says "unsex me", we can see that she feels that she must become less womanly and more manly in order to be ruthlessly ambitious. This brings up the issue of gender roles. Women seem to be associated with caring and nurturing while men are associated with toughness and strength. Lady Macbeth's willing abandonment of all that is soft and comforting in a woman has made her a symbol of feminine deception.