• Scene Progression and Analysis | Macbeth

31/03/2014 · Is Lady Macbeth a fiend like queen like Malcolm suggests

A cavern. In the middle, a boiling cauldron.

England. Before the King’s palace.

Dunsinane. Ante-room in the castle.
When he meets his nemesis, Macduff, Macbeth finally faces his guilt. Believing in the witches' prophecy that , he warns Macduff to stay away from him, admitting , a reference to the brutal killing of Macduff's wife and children. When Macduff reveals he was , Macbeth knows he is about to pay for his crimes.

Dunsinane. A room in the castle.

Script of Act IV Macbeth The play by William Shakespeare. Introduction This section contains the script of Act IV of Macbeth the play by William Shakespeare.
One of Shakespeare's reasons for writing the play was to illustrate the terrible consequences of murdering a king. The play was first performed in 1605, the year of the Gunpowder Plot, and this theme would be very politically acceptable to an audience composed of members of James I's court. Shakespeare shows the murderers of a king tormented by their own guilt and driven to their doom.

 

Macbeth Act 5 Scene 5 - Macbeth finds out Lady Macbeth is …


The idea of guilt first appears in Act 1 Scene 3, when Banquo shows his surprise at Macbeth's reaction to the witches' promises: The word 'start', meaning to jump with shock, is always associated with a guilty reaction. Later, Macbeth's guilt takes visual form when he hallucinates that a blood-covered dagger is leading him to murder Duncan.


In the murder scene, we again see Macbeth tormented by guilt. Shakespeare has the murder happen offstage so that he can focus on Macbeth's tormented mental state. Macbeth is terrified by his own sense of sin, as he could not say 'Amen' when he heard someone praying. He imagines his guilty conscience will never let him sleep peacefully again: . References to sleeplessness recur later in the play, as when Lady Macbeth says, . Even when he does sleep he will be tormented by his guilt in the .


Macbeth Whole Class Reading/Analysis - Folger Digital Texts

One of most striking images in the play equates guilt with the idea of blood-stained hands. Macbeth refers to his own hands as , which would be covered in blood from disembowelling victims of execution. When Lady Macbeth urges him to wash the blood off, he realises the impossibility of washing away his guilt. His crime is so wicked that the blood will .

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During the murder scene, Lady Macbeth reassures him: . The audience will realise the irony of this during her sleepwalking scene later in the play, when she obsessively washes imaginary blood from her hands.

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After arranging Banquo's murder, Macbeth is tortured by guilt even more. Again this takes visual form, as he imagines the ghost of Banquo returned to accuse him: !

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In Act 5, we see Lady Macbeth destroyed by the strain as her guilt becomes revealed for all to see. The metaphor of a guilty conscience being represented by the image of sleeplessness is shown in her sleepwalking. She is also seen constantly washing her hands, as her guilt has made the stains seem indelible to her: . Her rambling words reveal her complicity in Macbeth's crimes: Her reassurance to Macbeth in Act 3 is twisted into a despairing admission of guilt: .

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The first example is Duncan, who is a good man but not a perfect king. Macbeth pays tribute to his personal qualities when he considers in his soliloquy that Duncan has done nothing to deserve his fate: However, as a king, Duncan has the fatal flaw of being over trusting and gullible. After being taken in by the traitorous Thane of Cawdor, he transfers the title to Macbeth who will prove even more treacherous. Similarly, when Duncan comes to Macbeth's castle he misjudges the atmosphere and sees it as a place where the air smells .