Macbeth: Aristotle's Criteria For A Tragedy

958 Words 4 Pages
Aristotle’s criteria for a tragedy involves three main subjects: values, characters, and a conclusion; William Shakespeare’s Macbeth incorporates these critical topics. The values are supernatural powers which determines what is right and what is wrong. The character in a tragedy must be noble by birth and by action. In the conclusion, the character must understand why he or she fell, accept punishment, and order must be restored. By including these, Macbeth fits Aristotle’s criteria for a tragedy.
In a tragedy, there is always one noble character, in this case Macbeth, whose nobility is represented by birth and through action. When Sinel, Macbeth’s father, dies, Macbeth inherits his throne because “By Sinel’s death, he knows he is thane of Glamis”
…show more content…
Lady Macbeth brings out Macbeth’s tragic flaw when she proposes the idea of killing King Duncan and he states, “I have no spur . . . but only vaulting ambition” (1.7.25-27). Once King Duncan has been murdered, this flaw is revealed because his actions reflect on his ambition to stay king. Macbeth begins by planning on killing Banquo and his son because the witches told Banquo “thou shalt get kings, thought thou be none” (1.3.68). Macbeth must kill Banquo and his son, so no one will have the opportunity to take the crown away from him. When Macbeth sends murderers to kill them, Fleance can get away while Banquo is brutally attacked; however, luckily for Macbeth, Fleance is never heard from again. When Macbeth goes to visit the witches again and the 1st apparition tells him to “beware Macduff” (4.1.71-72), he then realizes he must eliminate any other obstacle that could potentially keep him from staying king. He says he will “give to th’edge o’th’sword his wife, his babes, and all unfortunate souls” (4.1.150-151) just to ensure his throne. By doing these horrible deeds, Macbeth proves he is willing to go above and beyond to remain king until his

Related Documents