In Macbeth, blood is a symbol used to represent guilt and how one's guilt will cause them to act with concupiscence. If an individual feels guilty about an action they will do anything to try to make up for that action or clear their conscience. They may cross a line in which they never had thought of crossing before in order to fight their guilt. In the play Macbeth by William Shakespeare, Macbeth feels guilty about the many murders he has committed and his guilt has turned to paranoia. His paranoia is evident in his conversation with lady Macbeth about banquo when he says, “Come, seeling night, / Scarf up the tender eye of pitiful day / And with thy bloody and invisible hand / Cancel and tear to pieces that great bond / Which keeps me pale” (Shakespeare 3.3.52-56).
At the start of the story she instigates Macbeth to murder Duncan and washes away his blood without a shred of remorse, whereas Macbeth is mortified by his actions. This changes however the second time Lady Macbeth encounters blood with her shocked reaction to Macbeth killing Duncan's guards. Where Lady Macbeth initially stood unfazed, she now faints at the sight of the cruel acts that Macbeth has committed. This only worsens as the play progresses to the point where she hallucinates blood spots on her hands, representing the guilt she now cannot escape
Murder's Impact: Empathy and Blood in Macbeth Throughout the play “Macbeth”, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth’s characters change as a result of murder and the trauma of bloodshed. Lady Macbeth thinks she can turn off her conscience and convince her husband to kill Duncan, which results in her crippling guilt and insanity. Macbeth feels no remorse of this kind, and instead fears the consequences, consistently referencing his safety. As the play progresses, we see examples of blood being used to communicate the guilt and remorse Lady Macbeth feels. On the other hand, blood appears to show Macbeth’s growing murderous desires.
She mentions the night of Duncan’s murder when she says, “will these hands ne’er be clean [of blood]” (5.1.39). Her heart contains the guilt of all the evil deeds she has done, and her body is paying by not letting her sleep properly. The doctor says “Unnatural deeds do breed unnatural troubles” (5.1.65-65) referring to the trouble of sleeplessness Lady Macbeth faces from the unnatural deed of murdering many people. She is damned due to the feeling of guilt, which eats her up inside and causes her to lose sleep. This guilt is caused by all of the evil she does, and sees her husband do; ultimately, her sleeplessness is caused by the evil inside of her and around her.
Macbeth and lady Macbeth both became crazy because of the deadly deeds that they committed. In the beginning of the play blood is shown as honor and bravery and towards the end of the play its shown as guilt and remorse. Lady Macbeth starts this off when she asks the spirits to .”Make thick my blood”.Stop up the access and passage to remorse..” (1,5,33-34).What she means by this is that she wants to poison her own soul to be insensitive and not feel remorse. She doesn't not want to feel remorse because of the deed that she's about to make. Macbeth had guilt, not like lady Macbeth.
Shakespeare uses the motif of blood to highlight the theme of punishment, where the effects of violence and wrongdoing have the greatest influence on those who committed such actions. Macbeth’s marriage is one of contradicting roles where he often takes the backseat, allowing Lady Macbeth to lead. His inability to take action gives Lady Macbeth many opportunities to persuade him into making risky decisions, namely killing the king. Macbeth, shocked with his own actions and flowing with remorseful thoughts, pleads for the “all great Neptune’s ocean [to] wash [the] blood/ Clean from [his] hand,” (59). Despite coming to terms with his actions, the image of King Duncan lying dead with “his silver skin laced with his golden blood,” (69) saturates
In the moments leading to her death, Lady Macbeth begins sleepwalking and experiencing restlessness–her body’s way of expressing outwardly the great guilt that she feels within. Her constant motion of “washing her hands” at this time further exhibits that she feels guilty and desires to pay for the deceit and evil she has inflicted (5.1.20). In many regards, Lady Macbeth’s ultimate act of suicide is “an act of repentance” where she shows sincere remorse for her vile deeds (Sentov). Macbeth, however, becomes so engrossed in “the apathy of joyless crime” that he hardly mourns the loss of his wife (Hazlitt 174). While Lady Macbeth dies in guilt and repentance, Macbeth dies in selfish submission to evil, fighting with what little he has left to retain for himself the throne.
Kayla Bjelke Ms. Reedy English 11 15 January 2016 Motifs in Macbeth In Shakespeare’s play, The Tragedy of Macbeth, the motif of blood is used to represent the constant guilt felt by the characters, which ultimately leads to their endless feelings of fear. Blood comes to represent guilt soon after Macbeth and Lady Macbeth begin a murder spree that destines them for catastrophe in the future. Whether the two actually regret their decisions or not, they do begin to feel that their crimes have stained them in such a way that cannot be cleansed. The first reference of blood pertaining to guilt comes right after Duncan’s murder. At this time, Macbeth is quickly becoming aware of the moral turmoil that lies with his actions: “Will all great Neptune’s
Blood, especially for those sensitive to such gory imagery, has a very powerful effect on readers. Whether it drips from a weary hero's blade after a long battle, or sticks to the bed sheets and the clothes of a murdered King, blood in imagery has the ability to develop and reveal character personalities. Shakespeare, in the beginning of his play Macbeth, uses blood to portray Macbeth and many other characters as brave and heroic; however, as the story develops, blood begins to indicate betrayal and darkness in the dispositions of many previously heroic and noble characters. In the beginning of Act II, Shakespeare uses blood in imagery to introduce Macbeth as a hero. King Duncan and his sons, Malcolm and Donalbain, are speaking with the sergeant
There are two types of violence in Macbeth, and they are both necessary for the theatrical development of the play. The first type that appears is greedy violence. This is shown when Macbeth kills Duncan due to his extreme ambition to have the throne. Additional occurrences of greedy violence are displayed when Macbeth kills Banquo, and when Macduff’s family is slaughtered. The second type of violence in the play is redeeming, or necessary.
”Hands”, signify the important components of self and violence that rounds out an emphasis placed on choice throughout the play. It is the impression of responsibility for this poor action that has been committed. In this play, there are many ideas, but guilt is one of the most significant ones. It teaches important lessons to the readers, with everlasting morals. In Act 2, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth chose to commit a sin, killing King Duncan, at his stay at Macbeth’s kingdom.