Shakespeare intended Lady Macbeth to be a multifaceted character. We know this because even though she had evil conquests and was manipulative, she never lost her humanity because guilt took its toll on her.
The guilt ended up taking her over. Lady Macbeth says, “Yet who would have thought the old man to have had so much blood in him?” (Shakespeare 206). Lady Macbeth is talking about the amount of blood there was when Duncan was killed. She is saying this in front of other people as a result of feeling guilty. Lady Macbeth also states, “Here’s the smell of blood still” (Shakespeare 207). She is talking about the murder in front of the Doctor and the Gentlewoman. She is unable to hold in her tainted thoughts about the murder at this point. Lady Macbeth becomes so guilty that she ends her life; she is guiltier than Macbeth. Seyton says, “It is the cry of women, my good lord” (Shakespeare 211). She is ending her own life because she can’t handle the guilt any
Lady Macbeth has a huge role in Shakespeare’s play Macbeth. In the play we find a very frightening and strong female character. She is the wife of Macbeth and becomes queen later on. In the play she has a manipulative and ruthless characteristic. At the start of the play, she is very ambitious and plans on killing king Duncan and taking over as queen with her husband as king.We can see her lust for power and how that she has a more stronger personality at the start than her husband Macbeth does. She seems very okay with the idea of murdering the king. She really wants to go through with it and wants Macbeth to kill the king to go through with her plans as being queen. she immediately see’s how that her husband Macbeth isn 't as ambitious and strong minded as she is
Here’s the smell of the blood still. All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand. Oh, Oh, Oh!” (Act 5, Scene 1) Though she continuously rubs her hands to get rid of the blood, Lady Macbeth can not washed away the guilt that stains her hands. As a result of her inability to escape the nightmare of immense guilt in sleeping or in wakefulness, Lady Macbeth crosses into the state of eternal sleep, death.
Lady Macbeth is power hungry for the throne and she will do anything to achieve her goal. Her pleasure of having the thought of killing Duncan is revealed. These murderous thoughts that run through her mind shows how desperate she is to acquire power. Although it is the beginning of the play, her dark ambitions sets a dark tone for her character in the play. This coincidentally adds to the assurance of Macbeth’s prophecy which is that Macbeth will become king, but King Duncan is still alive. Moreover, this realization leads Lady Macbeth to think about murdering King Duncan for her and Macbeth to gain power. In addition to Lady Macbeth’s cruel character, she reveals her desirous thoughts towards the crown. Lady Macbeth continues her speech and mentions her unquenching thirst to take Duncan’s power. “Make thick my blood. Stop the access and passage to remorse, that no compunctious visitings of nature shake my fell purpose, nor keep peace with the effect and it!” (lines 33-37). Again, Lady Macbeth shows her lust for power. Her exceptional amount of greed continues to motivate
The motif of blood helps Shakespeare highlight the guilt experienced by the characters in the play. Moreover, Macbeth was one of the first characters to feel a great deal of guilt in the play. An instance in which Macbeth's guilt showed through was when he said, “A dagger of the mind, a false creation,... I see thee still, and on thy blade and dudgeon gouts of blood”(II,I) Macbeth makes this statement to his wife after killing Duncan, because he still feels remorse for his actions. To continue, he has the impression that there are daggers covered in blood haunting him constantly reminding him of his actions. Furthermore, a character that felt an abundance of guilt was Lady Macbeth. After killing Duncan, Lady Macbeth was haunted by the sight of blood. This is evident when it is stated, “It is an accustomed action with her, to seem thus washing her hands: I have known her continue in this quarter of an hour”(V,I). Moreover, after killing
She is malicious not only in words but also in her intent. Her sole object is to obtain power and wealth, with its attendant treasures. Lady Macbeth lacks humanity and regrets that she was not born as a man. She understands that power and violence are synonymous with manhood and bravery. Additionally, Lady Macbeth interests’ and ambition, override her love for even her husband, Macbeth. “Come, you spirits, That tend on mortal thoughts,/unsex me here, And fill me from the crown to the toe top-full/ Of dire cruelty” (1.5.41-44). Lady Macbeth is the personification of male dominance, ruthlessness and violence. She hopes that she could take control of all action. She yearns to be a man and her implication is that she is more masculine than Macbeth. Her drive and violent nature is more akin to men and their masculinity. It makes her more ferocious than her masculine counterpart and hence her dominance over Macbeth. As well as she invokes the spirits to deprive her of feminism and make her as volatile as men, so that she can fulfill her dream of being the queen. Lady Macbeth is a bold and ambitious woman. She has implicit faith in herself. She wants to remove every obstacle in her pursuit of becoming the queen. Her ambition is not only for herself but also for Macbeth. Nevertheless, with all her fervor, she wants him to be as strong as her. “Make thick my blood./Stop up the access and passage to remorse,/That no compunctious visitings of nature/Shake my fell purpose/Come to my woman’s breasts,/And take my milk for gall” (1.5.44-49). Lady Macbeth never wavers in her goal. Like men, she has the trait to be gruesome and diabolical in nature. She has determined for herself the course to be pursued and nothing can hinder her. She does not need the prophecy of the witches to urge her. She is aware of her strength and she is resolute in her aim. Knowing Macbeth’s weakness,
As soon as she heard Macbeth’s prophecy, she was willing to do anything to get him into the position of king. She was even willing to aid in the murder of innocent people who stood in the way of Macbeth’s ascension to the crown like, King Duncan. Her greed led to Macbeth’s downfall. When Macbeth stated that he was questioning his intentions to kill the king, she pushed him and assisted in the plotting. “We will proceed no further in this business. / He hath honored me of late, and I have bought/ Gold opinions from all sorts of people” (1.7.31-33). After he said this, Lady Macbeth questioned his manhood. With his manliness being questioned, he pushed himself to kill the king. The greed of Lady Macbeth and her scheming led to Macbeth’s untimely
As the Macbeth’s portray the opposite of social constructs and expectations in the play, they eventually fall into their belonged stereotype after Lady Macbeth slowly starts to spiral downhill. Once Macbeth feels as though someone is in the way of him becoming King, he instantly creates a plan to murder them like Lady Macbeth did with Duncan. As they eventually take up each others common behavior, Lady Macbeth drives herself to insanity due to her womanly feelings. “I have seen her rise from her bed, throw her nightgown upon her, unlock her closet, take forth paper, fold it, write upon ’t, read it, afterwards seal it, and again return to bed; yet all this while in a most fast sleep.”, she is seen sleepwalking and participating in strange activities due to the insanity driven from guilt (5.1.4-6). Her feelings of shame and weakness have made her crazy to the point where she has herself doing these things. Not only was she sleepwalking after realizing her mistakes of pushing Macbeth about his manliness too far, she “appears to be washing imagined blood from her hands. Her actions and confused speech greatly concern the doctor.” (5.1.Exposition). After manipulating Macbeth to kill King Duncan and to solve his guilt by washing his hands, she is found compulsively “washing” the “blood” off her hands to rid her own guilt. Although Lady Macbeth is suddenly plagued by guilt, Macbeth has
Although Lady Macbeth appears strong and evil through her words, her actions throughout the play demonstrate differently. Lady Macbeth initiates the plan to kill King Duncan and convinces her husband to take part. However, when the time comes, she is unable to bring herself to follow through. “I laid the daggers ready; he could not miss em. Had he not resembled my father as he slept, I had done’t.” (II, ii, 11-13) Lady Macbeth is only strong enough to
She insults him and calls him a coward while also questioning his manhood which makes Macbeth come to a realization that not killing the king is the way of a coward and he is motivated to carry out the plan and murder the king because of Lady Macbeth’s insults and speech that she gives him. By successfully persuading Macbeth into murdering the king this shows that Lady Macbeth is controlling towards people and she can be a very manipulative person. It shows that she is the type of person that gets things done by manipulating other people to do her dirty work for her. Lady Macbeth can simply achieve her own goals by getting into anyone’s head and turning their own conscience against them in, which is essentially what she did to her husband. Macbeth would have never went through with killing King Duncan if Lady Macbeth had never persuaded him because he really does have a soft heart and is good and honorable. The reason Macbeth decides to carry out the plan is because everything that Lady Macbeth talked about to him makes sense to him and he fully agrees with Lady Macbeth’s argument and the points that she states as well. Because he fully agrees with her, he begins to believe that not proceeding with the plan is the coward’s way out and in order to prevent him from being known as a coward and
specifically his relationship with his wife, Lady Macbeth. As he began to become more focused on holding onto his power, he began to ignore Lady Macbeth, quite possibly when she needed his attention the most. When Macbeth hears a noise and asks “wherefore was that cry”(V.v.18), Seyton, Macbeth’s attendant, replies with “the Queen, my lord, is dead”(V.v.19). Upon finding
He goes from being a loyal soldier to a cruel tyrant killing all of his enemies. In the beginning of the play he is presented as a loyal soldier to King Duncan and he is widely respected and admired by people. It can seem questionable as to why Macbeth is an antagonist when he has the trope of a hero. Despite that image, his inner thoughts begin to reveal themselves, showing another side to Macbeth that people don’t know about. Macbeth soon admits to his dark lust for power and status beyond his capability. At first these thoughts remain hidden, but when the witches approach him with their predictions his desires reform his character. The witches wait for Macbeth and tell him series of predictions. The specific prediction, “All hail, Macbeth, that shalt be king hereafter!” (1.3.51) causes Macbeth’s desire to become more intensified. Their prediction that he would become king brings a change in his character. The audience can now see his desires as well as his ambition. At this point, Macbeth is still hesitant of revealing his true nature, but the audience gets a peek of what he yearns for. In addition, the witches’ predictions are known to be paradoxical, their predictions are never straightforward; they tend to have different interpretations. Macbeth kills King Duncan to obtain the power he was told he’d get. Despite that, the witches never said to kill King Duncan; they told him he would become king. Macbeth’s true character reveals his natural cruelty when Lady Macbeth persuades him to kill Duncan for
Over the course of the play the characters of both Macbeth and his wife Lady Macbeth develop intensively. They share similar ambitions, but it is Lady Macbeth who dares to do unspeakable things to accomplish them. This creates great conflict within Lady Macbeth who does not conform to the traditional female stereotypes of her epoch. Throughout most of the play, she is portrayed as powerful and confident, and more daring than Macbeth himself, though this image changes when she shows signs of weakness, resulting in her death.
In Shakespeare’s play Macbeth, he presents the character of Lady Macbeth. Lady Macbeth is shown, as a character that schemes into making rebellious plots. She reveals the desire for wanting to lose her feminine qualities in order to be able to gain more masculine ones. When Lady Macbeth is compared to Lady Macduff, they are very different. Lady Macduff embodies what motherhood should look like and she does not invest her time creating evil plots to kill other people. Whereas on the other hand, Lady Macbeth, not as bound to household duties, she sharpens her knowledgeable capabilities for the use of her own and the power which she holds. This is a very untraditional and unnatural factor that a woman would hold. Lady Macbeth also is seen as the more dominant role in the Macbeth marriage. On many occasions she rules her husband and dictates his actions. Although near the end of the play Lady Macbeth’s personality and strength begins to deteriorate. Later committing suicide after having many detailed memories and thoughts from the murder. Shakespeare not only shows how guilt can change a person’s personality but he also portrays untraditional gender roles.