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Macbeth the downfall and deterioration of a great man

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This tragedy can be classified by one of two theories. One theory suggests that the tragic hero, Macbeth, is led down an unescapable road of doom by an outside force; namely the three witches. The second suggests that there is no supernatural force working against Macbeth, which therefore makes him responsible for his own actions and inevitable downfall.

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  • Also the witches were poking fun at him making him believe that even though he committed all those murders he'd be safe until someone not born of woman challened him and until Birnam Wood came to Dunsinane Castle which happens later on in the play.

These forces had no direct control over his actions but simply pointed out different paths for him to follow. Ultimately, Macbeth chose the path of darkness. He knows what he is doing is wrong even before he murders Duncan.

The Decline of Macbeth’s Mental Stability

His own conscience is nagging at him but he allows Lady Macbeth and greed to cloud his judgement. He allows himself to be swayed by the woman he loves.

  • His insecurities cause him to see the positive side of immediate action;
  • Which of you have done this?
  • Macbeth caused his downfall due to over-confidence and ambition;
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  • Hath been but for a wayward son, Spiteful and wrathful, who, as others do, Loves for his own ends, not for you.

Lady Macbeth gave him an ultimatum and provoked him by saying: When you durst do it, then you were a man; And to be more than what you were, you would Be so much more the man…. I, vii, 49-51 She provokes him by questioning his manhood and then saying that he would be a much greater man if he were to go through with the deed. Macbeth then had to make a decision. He willingly chose to follow the path of death and destruction.

  • His insecurities lead Macbeth to rash actions to get rid of his perceived enemies, actions that he later often regrets;
  • Another example of how far gone Macbeth is by the end of the play is when he does not put any armor on before going into battle.

Lady Macbeth simply showed him that path. It is easy to believe that the witches controlled Macbeth and made him follow a path of doom.

Related Questions

The predictions they give, coupled with their unholy ways suggest that they are in control of him. Hail to thee Thane of Cawdor! All they have done is foretold his future. It is a warning that Macbeth ignores.

Macbeth's Downfall

He is so enraptured by the prophecies of the witches that he consciously follows a path of darkness in an effort to fulfil the prophecies It can also be shown that the witches definitely have no physical control over Macbeth. This in turn will cause his sleeplessness.

The Downfall of Macbeth

Though his bark cannot be lost, Yet it shall be tempest-tossed I, iii, 22-25 The witches can do no more to Macbeth than they did to the sailor. The witch can toss the ship about but she cannot cause its sinking nor can she directly cause the sailor to go without sleep.

Only Macbeth controls his actions. In the soliloquy that Macbeth gives before he murders Duncan, he states: These are not the words of a man who is merely being led down a self destructive path of doom, with no will of his own.

  1. Lady Macbeth simply showed him that path. In Macbeth's soliloquy he expresses his inner feeling saying that he doesn't want to kill Duncan because there is absolutely no reason.
  2. Hath been but for a wayward son, Spiteful and wrathful, who, as others do, Loves for his own ends, not for you. Another example of how far gone Macbeth is by the end of the play is when he does not put any armor on before going into battle.
  3. Come, let me clutch thee.

They are the words of a man who realizes not only the graveness of his actions, but, also the reasons behind them. Macbeth is a fully cognizant person and not a mindless puppet of the supernatural.

Macbeth is responsible for his own downfall – Essay

Later the head witch, Hecate, declares: Hath been but for a wayward son, Spiteful and wrathful, who, as others do, Loves for his own ends, not for you. He willingly committed the crimes to fulfil his ambitions; not because of a spell cast by the witches.

Macbeths Downfall Essay

While purposely played in a mysterious setting, the location is not meant to cloud the true theme of the play with the supernatural. Macbeth simply succumbs to natural urges and his own ambitions which lead him to a fate of his own making.

  1. Lady Macbeth is like a joined appendage to Macbeth.
  2. The second suggests that there is no supernatural force working against Macbeth, which therefore makes him responsible for his own actions and inevitable downfall. When you durst do it, then you were a man; And to be more than what you were, you would Be so much more the man…..
  3. She manipulated him by making him prove his manhood.

He was not supernaturally controlled by the black magic of the witches nor was he purposefully led down a path of destruction. Everyone has character flaws that they must live with; Macbeth simply allowed those flaws to destroy him.