Natural Imagery In Shakespeare's Macbeth

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Regardless of where one lives, nature surrounds them. It is quiet in the winter, blossoms in the spring, flourishes in the summer, and then finally it lays to rest in autumn. Often in literature, writers utilize natural imagery because it is something that can be easily understood by everybody regardless of race, gender, religion, creed, and ethnicity. This imagery provides a deeper understanding of the book, play, story, or poem for the reader. The prominent playwright William Shakespeare uses natural imagery throughout his play Macbeth to foreshadow upcoming events in the plot (or provide a deeper understanding of the play/its characters). This is shown when he uses sleep as a metaphor for sanity, displays the upcoming unrest in Scotland,…show more content…
This is especially true when analyzing the works of Shakespeare. In some instances, however, he chooses elements that are less natural and more human to prove a point. During Macbeth, Malcolm and Ross mention that there is an influx of disease in Scotland, and that there is a king in England who is magically healing the sick. This sickness in Scotland, the country of Macbeth, is a metaphor for both the current and iminent unrest in the country. Shakespeare writes “...be called our mother, but our grave, where nothing…\Where sighs and groans and shrieks that rent the air\Are made, not marked; where violent sorrow seems…\The dead man’s knell\Is there scarce asked for who, and good men’s lives…\Dying or ere they sicken” (IV.iii.191-198). Death will soon befall Scotland, as the play ends with a battle. This battle ultimately leads to the death of Macbeth. In a way, the sickness can be paralleled with Macbeth’s paranoia. He is never quite fully at peace, even after he hears the messages of the three apparitions, as he constantly worries who is plotting to kill him. Earlier in the play, after the assassination of the King of Scotland, the sun does not rise over the country. The long lasting darkness is significant, and displays the importance of stability in the country. Shakespeare describes this, writing “Thou seest the heavens, as troubled with man’s act\Threatens his bloody stage. By th' clock ’tis day\And yet

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