Get help from the best in academic writing.

Macbeth’s Upright Banquo

Macbeth’s Upright Banquo

There are some good military men in William Shakespeare’s tragic drama Macbeth. One of them is Banquo, a fearless captain, like Macbeth, who helped rout the “Norweyan banners.”

Clark and Wright in their Introduction to The Complete Works of William Shakespeare comment that Banquo is a force of good in the play, set in opposition to Macbeth:

Banquo, the loyal soldier, praying for restraint against evil thoughts which enter his mind as they had entered Macbeth’s, but which work no evil there, is set over against Macbeth, as virtue is set over against disloyalty. (792)

In Fools of Time: Studies in Shakespearean Tragedy, Northrop Frye explains the rationale behind Banquo’s ghost in this play:

Except for the episode of Hercules leaving Antony, where mysterious music is heard again, there is nothing really supernatural in Shakespeare’s tragedies that is not connected with the murder of the order-figures. In Macbeth we have Banquo’s ghost instead of Duncan’s, partly because of the emphasis on the repose that Duncan has gained by getting murdered, and partly because the line of the reigning monarch descends from Banquo. (24)

In his book, On the Design of Shakespearean Tragedy, H. S. Wilson says that the ghost of murdered Banquo has the greatest emotional impact on Macbeth of any adverse experience:

He is confident enough, even after the commission of the crime, to put his faith in the Senecan maxim, per scelera semper sceleribus tutum est iter, “Things bad begun make strong themselves by ill.” After he has been shaken by the appearance of the ghost of Banquo, he reflects,

For mine own good

All causes must give way. I am in blood

Stepp’d in so far that, should I wade no more,

Returning were as tedious as go o’er;

and this is as near as he ever comes to repentance. (71)

Fanny Kemble in “Lady Macbeth” contests the opinion that the ghost of Banquo is seen at the same time by Lady Macbeth:

Taking the view I do of Lay Macbeth’s character, I cannot accept the idea (held, I believe, by her great representative, Mrs. Siddons) that in the banquet scene the ghost of Banquo, which appears to Macbeth, is seen at the same time by his wife, but that, in consequence of her greater command over herself, she not only exhibits no sign of perceiving the apparition, but can, with its hideous form and gesture within a few fee of her, rail at Macbeth in that language of scathing irony .

Macbeth’s Plan to Kill Banquo and Fleance

Macbeth’s Plan to Kill Banquo and Fleance

I have managed to convince the murders to agree with my plan to kill

Banquo and Fleance. I have strong faith that it will succeed. Those

murders said if they get caught they had nothing to lose, but if they

do succeed I would repay them in time. I just want to be sure that

having the crown is not pointless, that when I die my children will be

kings and not Banquo’s. I murdered the king of my country (Duncan) so

that my wife and I would rule, but it will all be meaningless if my

next generation won’t rule after me.

The sisters (witches) said ” Macbeth you will be Thane of Cawdor and

will be the next king of Scotland” but they said to Banquo ” Your

children will be kings” At the time me and Banquo were laughing at the

witches saying they were crazy, but we are not now. Two of the three

prediction have come true , I did become the Thane of Cawdow and now I

am king of Scotland, but the third prediction still has time to come

true. I think I still have time to alter the witches visions for my

destiny and fate by killing Banquo and his only son. If I don’t kill

him I fear my wife and I won’t be rulers for long.

I hope my wife does not find out, because I know that if she does then

she will want to change my plans so it fits her. She is so persuasive

,a contralfreak and manipulative that she always gets what she wants,

not what I want. I’m so fed up with this that I am going to keep it

from her so be able to accomplish my plans.

Another thing that gets to me about my wife is that she thinks I’m

paranoid, but I think she is to. I don’t know what stressed me first,

or how that the pressure was fed, but now I know just what it feels

like to a face watching me inside of my head, telling me to do these

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.