Examples Of Euphemism In Macbeth

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In 4.1, Macbeth visits weird sisters and they call on apparitions to tell him of his fate. All the apparitions equivocate the truth to the make it sound like the like the odds are in Macbeth’s favour. An example of this can be found in the second apparition, a bloody child, who tells macbeth “ the power of man for none woman born shall harm Macbeth”. (4.1.81) Macbeth interprets this prophecy to mean that no human is capable of defeating him because all people are born from a woman.However, in 5.8, during the battle between him and Macduff, Macbeth realises that this is not the case. Macduff reveals that he was “from his mother’s womb untimely ripped” (5.8.15-16), meaning Macduff was technically not born from his mother 's womb but was delivered…show more content…
During the plotting of the murder of king duncan, lady macbeth uses many euphemisms in her speech to hide the true meaning behind them. She says, referring to Duncan, “he that 's coming/must be provided for: and you shall put/ this night 's great business into my dispatch”(1.5.66-68) This statement can be understood as Lady Macbeth intending to take care of King Duncan as hostess of the party, however the words ‘provided for’ and ‘dispatch’ are euphemisms for murder. Not all characters equivocate in order to hurt another person. Ross attempts to tell Macduff of his family’s murder. When Macduff asks how his family is Ross answers “they were at peace when I did leave them.” (4.3.208) This statement can be interpreted to imply that Macduff’s family is alive and well, but what Ross is truly means is that Macduff’s they were fine when he last saw them but are no longer at peace. The other meaning is that Macduff’s family are indeed at peace because the are dead. Equivocation is used by multiple character in their attempts to cover the truth both for their own benefits or the sake of…show more content…
He believes in Banquo’s ghost’s presence or else he would be dismissive of it. Lady Macbeth has hallucinations of her own. In 5.1 she somnambulates. While in this state, she constantly rubs her hands together as if to wash them clean of something. She imagines that there is blood on her hands and commands “Out, damned spot! Out,” (5.1.35) and asks “What, will these hands ne 'er be clean?” (5.1.43) There is no blood on her hands but she is adamant that King Duncan’s blood is still literally on her hands. Lady Macbeth also smells blood on her hands and feels as if the smell will never leave her, stating: “Here 's the smell of the blood still. All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand.” (5.1.50-52) The scent and sight of blood she imagines on her hands are not palpable but are figments of her guilty conscience. It becomes difficult for Macbeth and his wife to distinguish between reality and their hallucinations.
Shakespeare presents the theme ‘appearances versus reality’ though the characters and their actions throughout Macbeth. The characters are duplicitous, deceitful and equivocate often, at times the theme is presented though the characters’ hallucinations. Shakespeare uses the theme of ‘appearances versus reality’ to demonstrate that things are not alway what they appear to

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