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Free Essay on Macbeth – The Guilt of Lady Macbeth

The Guilt of Lady Macbeth

Everyone is influenced by other people, including leaders or authority, to make the wrong decisions at some point in their lives. In the play Macbeth, Lady Macbeth is responsible for the evil doings of Macbeth. Lady Macbeth is responsible for this by using his love for her to persuade him into killing King Duncan. Because Macbeth loved and trusted his wife, he was vulnerable to her opinions and suggestions. We also know that she is responsible for these heartless things because she has so much guilt that she commits suicide. Macbeth would never have done any of those horrible things if it were not for the murder of King Duncan, which was forced on by Lady Macbeth.

At the beginning of the play, Macbeth is a trusted soldier, who is honest and noble. Unfortunately, he meets three witches who tell him three prophecies; that he will become thane of Cawdor, that he will become king and that Banquo’s sons will become kings. These three prophecies slowly change his opinions on life and turn him into a greedy, dishonest, tyrant, full of ambition. Lady Macbeth’s thoughts change as well when she is told about the three prophecies that were told to Macbeth. In the beginning of the play, Lady Macbeth is ambitious, controlling and domineering. She is the one who encourages him to kill the king, she not only encourages him, she makes all the plans herself, which shows her determination and persistence.”Yet I do fear thy nature, it is too full o’th milk of human kindness. To catch the nearest way thou wouldst be great. Art not without ambition, but without the illness should attend it.” (Act 1, scene 5). Lady Macbeth is the force behind Macbeth’s sudden ambition and she tries to manipulate him into feeling guilty and unmanly for not following through with the murder, by using her husbands emotions, she manages to convince Macbeth to murder Duncan.

After the death of King Duncan, Macbeth becomes the more controlling one, and Lady Macbeth’s guilt eventually becomes too much for her to handle which leads to her death. Lady Macbeth is in fact the one that performs the preparations for the murder of King Duncan, but still shows some signs of humanity by not committing the murder herself because he resembles “My father as he slept”. After the murder has been committed, she also shows signs of being a strong person because she calms Macbeth down in order to keep him from going insane.

Essay on Relationships in Antony and Cleopatra

Destructive Power Relationships in Antony and Cleopatra

Antony and Cleopatra’s “love” is not really about love at all. Their interaction can only be considered a sort of immature lust-power relationship. Their relationship is shallow, self-centered, irresponsible and destructive. Their attraction for each other centers around infatuation and a sort of egoistic rush that they are more important than the world. Just as a man or woman of today may attempt to control the desires of his or her intended, Cleopatra wants to manipulate Antony into wanting her:

Cleopatra. See where he is, who’s with him, what he does:

I did not send you: if you find him sad,

Say I am dancing; if in mirth, report

That I am sudden sick. Quick, and return.

Romeo and Juliet’s relationship was sweet and beyond life. Cleopatra and Antony’s relationship is a very worldly one (we do not even know if Cleopatra “applied the asp” because she wanted to be with Antony in death or if she simply could not stand being left with Caesar in life).

G.W. Knight of the Aesthetic school of critics says of Cleopatra that she is “a metaphysical, not moral, good–a good of totality. She is good in the same large way one might say life is good, or the universe is good, not because it contains no suffering or bad times, but because from restropect even these experiences are worth having. Her perfection flowers from totality, not exclusion.” You end up liking Cleopatra in this play because she is so robust and sensual and unpredicable and capable of so many strong emotions. Here she bursts out at the messager after he reported that Antony had married:

Cleopatra. What say you? Hence,

Horrible villain! or I’ll spurn thine eyes

Like balls before me; I’ll …

… middle of paper …

…and the first stone

Drop in my neck: as it determines, so

Dissolve my life! the next Caesarion smite!

Till by degreees the memory of my womb,

Together with my brave Egyptians all,

By the discandying of this pelleted storm

Lie graveless, till the flies and gnats of Nile

Have buried them for prey!

The hand of death hath raught him.

. . . let Patient Octavia plough thy visage up

With her preparéd nails.

. . . fill our bowls once more:

Let’s mock the midnight bell.

A 1759 quote about a performance of this play stated that it “did not seem to give ye Audience any great pleasure or draw any applause.” I can imagine that. It is not one of the best of Shakespeare’s plays, but it does give you a fair share of history, tragedy, and poetry. I think this play would be perfect for a more modern reinterpretation analyzing destructive power relationships.

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