Macbeth begins on a bloody note: a battle rages from which Banquo and Macbeth survive bloodied, but heroes. They are the generals of Scotland; the country’s future is in their hands and in their blades. However, when one clutches once to such power, it is hard to let go. Macbeth cannot let go. Macbeth also ends on a bloody note: Macbeth’s head is cut off and presented to Malcolm, his replacement. Peace is restored through war; bloody injustice is righted finally with bloody justice. What falls between these two notes—the beginning and end of the tragedy—is a symphony of treachery, deceit, and murder. The images of nature gone awry spread all through the play—from the gardens that have turned to weeds to the horses that have turned to cannibalizing each other—for murder of one’s king is so unnatural that the entire landscape, all that is natural, is affected. Macbeth, by killing Duncan, is himself made an enemy of nature. Macbeth murders sleep, the ultimate embodiment of peace and nature, when he murders Duncan. However, the title character is not as evil as is first suggested; Macbeth is only led to his evil deeds by those who surround him. Macbeth’s only crime may be that he is weak minded and afraid. Macbeth was lured and cajoled into his mistakes by his wife and the weird sisters.
The first person who influences Macbeth into his sin is not really a person at all. The weird sisters, as is their art, wreak havoc with Macbeth’s mind and life. From the moment they are introduced, their every word affects Macbeth’s actions. They are the characters that put the idea of becoming king in Macbeth’s head to begin with: “All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, Thane of Glamis! / All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, Thane of Cawdor! / All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, that shalt be King hereafter! (1.3.48-50).” By addressing Macbeth first as he is, then with a title that he is but does not yet know of, and finally with a title he must take action to attain, they encourage him to take the actions necessary. Their words are a promise to him that he will succeed if he murders Duncan. Of course, the weird sisters are not responsible only for the first blood that covers Macbeth’s hands. It is the sisters’ prediction that puts Macbeth on the course to kill Macduff: “Macbeth! Macbeth! Macbeth! Beware Macduff! Beware the Thane of Fife.
Free YGB Essays: Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Young Goodman Brown
Young Goodman Brown” by Nathaniel Hawthorne is a story about revealing true evil and the loss of one man’s faith. Nathaniel Hawthorne left “Young Goodman Brown” up for many interpretations. After reading the story a couple of times, one thing became clear to me. What I absorbed from this story was that evil exists in everyone, does not matter how good we may think we are. Things aren’t always what they seem. I say this because the people who attended the devil’s meetings, were the ones who attended church with him. The people whom he though were holy and Christian. These people were not holy at all. They were worshipping, praying, and obeying the devil. As Goodman Brown started his journey into the forest, he met an older man. The old man, “was about fifty years old, apparently in the same rank of life as Goodman Brown, and bearing a considerable resemblance to him, though perhaps more in expression than features” (DiYanni, 273). In Brown’s ignorance, he does not realize that the one he is with is in fact the devil. This is shown when Brown asks a question in fear before meeting the old man, “There may be a devilish Indian behind every tree,” said Goodman Brown to himself; and he glanced fearfully behind him, as he added, “What if the devil himself should be at my very elbow!” (DiYanni, 273). This to me is ironic because then, “His head being turned back, he passed a crook of the road, and looking forward again, beheld the figure of a man, in grave and decent attire, seated at the foot of an old tree. He arose at Goodman Brown’s approach, and walked onward, side by side with him”(DiYassi, 273). Here Goodman Brown does not realize that the devil is, in fact, walking “side by side with him”(DiYassi,273). “Goodman Brown recognized a very pious and exemplary dame, who had taught him his catechism in youth, and was still his moral and spiritual advisor” (DiYassi, 275). This dames name was Goody Cloyse. When Brown sees that Goody Cloyse recognizes the old man and cries out, “the devil” (DiYassi, 275), he can’t believe it. He now sees her as a “wretched old woman” (DiYassi, 276). Brown is feeling his loss of faith and tries to overcome this by saying, “What if a wretched old woman does choose to go to the devil, when I though she was going to heaven! Is that any reason to leave my dear Faith behind, and go after her?