Are The Witches Responsible For Macbeth's Downfall

1301 Words6 Pages

Rosalie Miklos
Ms. O’Sullivan
British Literature
26 February 2023
The Downfall of Macbeth Without the witches Macbeth could have been alive and well. His death and insanity were a direct result of the witch's deception. The tragedy of Macbeth written by William Shakespeare contains the story of a man who was overcome by greed and an obsession of power that ultimately led to his destruction. During the play Macbeth seeks out these three witches to learn about what might come to him in the future. What Macbeth does not realize is that the witches have a backwards morality. When the witches are first introduced they are seen reciting the phrase “Fair is foul, and foul is fair” (Macbeth act 1 scene 1 line 9) Macbeth is driven closer and closer …show more content…

They placed ideas into his head and sparked his unhealthy obsession with power, without the first prophecies Macbeth would have never gone down the path he did. These prophecies were told in a way that would manipulate Macbeth into committing crimes against those around him. The more and more he saw the witches and the more crimes he committed the worse his internal flaws became, with each murder and betrayal Macbeth lost a piece of his morality. The three witches are primarily responsible for the downfall of Macbeth because they sparked his obsession with power, manipulated him through their prophecies, and worsened his flaws. The witches planted the seed of power in Macbeth’s head. Without their first prophecy Macbeth could have continued being a good man, they poisoned his mind with different prophecies that caused him to self destruct. In the beginning of the play Macbeth goes off to see the witches with his friend Banquo, the two do not plan on taking their words seriously. However, …show more content…

Each time Macbeth received another prediction he committed another bad deed, and with each bad deed he committed he lost more and more of his morality and sanity. Throughout the play it can be observed that Macbeth’s mental health and moral code are drastically decreasing. At one point he actually admits that he has a problem but rather than turning back and making amends he believes he is too far gone and must continue on his murderous path. In Macbeth Act 3 scene 4 lines 131-141 Macbeth talks to Lady Macbeth about how it would be easier for him to continue his evil life rather than to turn back. He recognizes and admits to his mistakes and unjust acts that he carried out because he was blinded by the witches promises. In this scene he acknowledges the fact that he was uncontrollably committing a series of immoral acts. In the sixth paragraph of this critical article the author talks about how Macbeth’s sanity gradually gets worse throughout the play (The Role of the Three Witches…) This paragraph also provides examples of Macbeth’s insanity, one being the fact that the prophecies led him so far as to murder his own best friend. The prophecies scared Macbeth into believing that his best friend, Banquo, is a threat. Macbeth’s obsession with power led him to no longer care about what his friendship meant and to murder Banquo in order

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