Macbeth Diction Analysis

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In Macbeth, Shakespeare uses shifting diction and dramatic characterization to reveal how unrestrained desire for power leads to corruption of the mind. The diction that Shakespeare utilizes for the dialogue of each character reveals the different layers that pertain to the characters. For example, in 1.7, Macbeth pleads Lady Macbeth not to kill Duncan:
We will proceed no further in this business.
He hath honored me, of late, and I have bought
Golden opinion from all sorts of people,
Which would be worn now in their newest gloss,
Not cast aside so soon. (1.7.31-47) The diction choices Shakespeare incorporates, such as “honored,” “golden,” and “newest gloss,” have bright and content connotations. The connotations influence the reader to characterize Macbeth as honest and sensible, even more so when his character is contrasted with that of Lady Macbeth’s. However, after Macbeth becomes King, his lust for power compels him to
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Macbeth’s identity and growth is hindered tremendously by Lady Macbeth’s provocation and belittlement. For instance, when Macbeth urges her to not kill Duncan, Lady Macbeth goads him to take what he “esteem’st the ornament of life” and exclaims, “And, to be more than what you were, you would/ Be so much more the man” (1.7.42-50). We can infer from the dialogue that Lady Macbeth truly wants to kill the king. She coerces Macbeth to pursue her plan by questioning his masculinity, making him vulnerable, and replacing his will with her own. We all have a dark side to us, and it is a constant, internal struggle to choose between virtues or vices. If someone we love and trust pressures us towards a certain direction, then we are more prone to follow that person’s path instead of our own. Macbeth was capable of being an admirable and gracious man, but Lady Macbeth’s influence hinders his growth and molds his identity into one that goes against his

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