Macbeth is one of Shakespeare’s most well-known tragedies, and with that comes a lot of debate about the character Macbeth and the crimes he committed. Many people believe that Macbeth was simply a victim of his own ambition, while others argue that he was a cold-blooded killer. So, what crimes did Macbeth actually commit?
First and foremost, Macbeth killed Duncan, the King of Scotland. This act alone would be enough to condemn Macbeth, but there’s more. Macbeth also had a hand in the death of Banquo, Macduff’s family, and even Lady Macduff herself. Not to mention all the other innocents who were killed in the name of Macbeth’s ambition.
So, while Macbeth may have been driven by ambition, there’s no denying that he committed some horrific crimes. If you’re interested in learning more about Macbeth and his crimes, check out some of the resources below.
Macbeth is a play about one man, an ambitious, merciless, and distressing individual. The drama shows how he develops as a person. Even though we are shown his transition from good to evil, we may observe his human side throughout the play, which makes it a tragedy. Ambition, consequences of evil, and violence are three themes in Macbeth’s language. As events in the play accelerate towards its conclusion,’ Macbeth’s ambition sets the ball rolling.’Themes are demonstrated through the play’s language primarily. Although plays were performed during daylight then with few props like now,
Therefore, the actors had to use their voices and gestures to create the atmosphere. Macbeth’ is a play with a purpose. It is designed to teach people about human nature and the dangers of giving into ambition. Macbeth’s crimes are a result of his ambition. His ambitious nature leads him to kill Duncan, which in turn leads to more bloodshed as Macbeth tries to protect himself from discovery and ensure that he remains king. Macbeth’s violence is also a result of his ambition. In order to keep himself in power, he must be willing to resort to force and brutality.
Everyone can relate to ambition, and Macbeth’s is a fascinating look at how it may destroy you, so the audience is interested in Macbeth’s character. Our first impression of Macbeth is of a noble, renowned, and popular guy who is well-liked by the King, Duncan. Noble Macbeth’ was mentioned by Duncan. (Act 1 Scene 2 L67) Macbeth desperately wants to be called king, but he also understands that to do so he’ll have to commit some unthinkable acts.
Macbeth is a brave general in Duncan’s army, who has just won an important battle. Macbeth is informed of his future by the witches, and then Macbeth and Banquo are greeted by Duncan. Macbeth is ambitious and starts to think about murdering Duncan so that he can be king.
Macbeth does not act on his ambition at this point, because he is aware that Duncan has been good to him, and also, Macbeth is worried about the consequences of his actions. Lady Macbeth finds out about Macbeth’s ambition and starts to pressure him into taking action. She gives Macbeth a pep talk, which finally convinces Macbeth to kill Duncan. Macbeth commits the act, and then frames Duncan’s guards for the murder.
Macbeth becomes king, but he is troubled by his conscience and starts to worry about the consequences of his actions. Macbeth’s guilt leads him to commit more murders, in an attempt to cover up his original crime. Macbeth kills Banquo in order to prevent Banquo’s children from taking the throne, as the witches had predicted. Macbeth also orders the murder of Macduff’s family. In the end, Macbeth is killed by Macduff, and Malcolm becomes king.
Macbeth was already ambitious, but the women’s encouragement made those goals appear more attainable. This begins the first of three major crimes. In Act 1, Scene 3, Macbeth informs the audience that he has considered murdering Duncan. After the audience understands how a character thinks, they are likely to sympathize with him, which is one reason why Macbeth is a tragedy. Shakespeare was such a fantastic playwright that he frequently made spectators feel for both the protagonist and antagonist in his plays.
In Macbeth, this is done by making Macbeth’s thoughts and feelings known to the audience. It becomes clear that Macbeth is not simply a bad person, but a good person who is forced into doing evil things.
While Macbeth does ultimately kill Duncan, it is important to note that he does feel guilty about it. In Act two, scene two, Macbeth says: “I am afraid to think what I have done; / Look don’t again I dare not.” This indicates that Macbeth is not completely comfortable with the decision that he has made. He feels as though he has gone too far and does not know how to turn back. This conflict within Macbeth is another reason why the audience is able to sympathize with him.
The second crime that Macbeth commits is the murder of Banquo. Macbeth is afraid that Banquo will discover his secret and so he has him killed. This act is even more evil than the first because Macbeth knows that Banquo poses no real threat to him. He simply wants to kill Banquo in order to prevent any possible future conflict.
This is the aside that follows closely after Macbeth’s aspirations and doubts. He isn’t sure whether this supernatural soliciting is wonderful or awful, but he deeply desires to be king. He describes the murder he’s daydreaming about as awful (Act 1 Scene 3 L137), indicating that it repels and terrifies him, just like it would any brave and good man.
Macbeth’s first crime, therefore, is his ambition to be king, which leads him down a path of evil and destruction. Macbeth’s next crime is the murder of Duncan. Macbeth has many reasons for murdering Duncan. Firstly, he believes that it is prophesised that he will become king, as the witches tell him in Act 1 Scene 3. Secondly, Duncan has wronged Macbeth by not making him Thane of Cawdor, as he had promised. Thirdly, Macbeth knows that if he kills Duncan then he will become King, as Duncan’s sons would be too young and inexperienced to rule the country.
Fourthly, Macbeth is worried that Duncan will find out about his ambitions and try to stop him from becoming king. And finally, Macbeth is tempted by the power that he will gain from being king. These reasons all lead Macbeth to commit the crime of murder.
Macbeth’s third crime is the murder of Banquo. Macbeth murders Banquo for two reasons. Firstly, Banquo knows about Macbeth’s ambitions and could tell people about them, which would ruin Macbeth’s plans to become king. Secondly, the witches tell Macbeth that Banquo’s children will be kings, which means that Banquo’s line will rule after Macbeth’s, which Macbeth cannot allow. These reasons lead Macbeth to commit the crime of murder once again.
Macbeth’s fourth and final crime is the murder of Macduff’s family. Macbeth murders Macduff’s family for two reasons. Firstly, Macduff has left Scotland and gone to England to try and raise an army to overthrow Macbeth. Secondly, the witches tell Macbeth that Macduff is ‘born of woman’ and therefore vulnerable. These reasons lead Macbeth to commit yet another act of murder.
Macbeth has committed many crimes in his quest to become king and maintain his power. His ambition leads him down a path of destruction and death, which ultimately leads to his downfall.
Macbeth is drawn to darkness since he believes it will conceal his evil actions. This is first demonstrated when he says, ‘stars hide your fires; let not light see my black and deep desires’ ( Act 1 Scene 4 L50). Macbeth is afraid that others would discover his ambition for the throne, so he asks the stars to conceal their light in order that people may not realize what he’s thinking. After contemplating numerous options, Macbeth decides to go through with the crime and murders Duncan as he enters his palace.
Macbeth’s next crime is ordering the murder of Duncan’s two chamberlains, so that they cannot tell anyone about his involvement in the murder. Macbeth also orders the murder of Banquo and his son, Fleance. Banquo was Macbeth’s friend, but Macbeth is afraid that Banquo will find out about his crimes and expose him. Macbeth is also afraid that Banquo’s sons will someday take the throne, so he has them killed as well. In the end, Macbeth’s crimes catch up with him and he is overthrown and killed by Malcolm, Duncan’s son.