Macbeth Supernatural Analysis

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The supernatural as a warning mechanism
Firstly, a number of supernatural predictions and paranormal occurrences in both tragedies serve as symbolic warning mechanisms that can potentially prevent tragic affairs of all main characters. In addition to verbal warnings, characters in Macbeth and Julius Caesar observe strange behaviour of animals and abnormal incidents, suggesting that something unnatural is about to take place (Amuthenu 2014). In Macbeth, the protagonist 's encounters with three witches trigger his dormant ambitions to replace Duncan as a king, and Macbeth 's actions follow his own personal logic rather than reacting to external stimuli. In Act 4 Scene 1, Macbeth observes three apparitions and a procession of eight kings that
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Similarly, Julius Caesar is presented with predictions and numerous warnings that he chooses to ignore. Initially, one learns about unnatural occurrences witnessed by the people of Rome. Casca recounts seeing a common slave 's hand on fire that 'remain 'd unschorch 'd ', a lion without his animal instinct to kill, women 'who swore they saw Men all in fire walk up and down the streets ', and an owl that 'sit even at noon-day upon the market-place, hooting and shrieking ' (1.3.15-28). These general disturbances are accompanied with direct predictions; a soothsayer warns Caesar to 'beware the Ides of March ' (1.2.21), and Caesar 's wife Calpurnia dreams about Caesar 's statue, 'which like a fountain with an hundred spouts, / Did run pure blood ' (2.2.80-82). However, Caesar disregards these warnings in order to leave for the Senate and perform his duties, and is consequently murdered by conspirators. Therefore, a human error of interpretation and ignorance on the one hand (Macbeth), and a sense of honour and duty on the other (Caesar), overrule supernatural warnings with possible benevolent outcomes, and Shakespeare 's tragic characters are not influenced by symbolic functions of supernatural forces. As Mosely (1991) observes, 'they merely say what shall be and leave the chain of circumstance

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