Rhetorical Devices In Macbeth

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Early on in the play, Shakespeare provides a glimpse of Macbeth’s valour strength and the high esteem in which he is held as a fighter. We learn about the defeat of MacDonald and the Norwegian King, by Macbeth and the scene instantly arouses the audiences’ curiosity about the ‘brave Macbeth’ who sneers at defeat, “Disdaining Fortune, with his brandish’d steel…smok’d with bloody execution” in the words of the bleeding Captain who reports the news of the victory. Duncan receives the news of the victory with delight and with this euphoric current running through him, he declares that the Thane of Cawdor is a traitor and leaves Macbeth to assume the title of Thane. It is with this that the witches’ prophecy begins to unravel. The irony of Duncan’s …show more content…
“This supernatural soliciting cannot be ill, cannot be good.” He weighs up his argument, deciding that the prophecies can only be good because he is only being rewarded for his actions, but they could be perceived as pure evil as he has a growing desire for murder at the back of his mind. “Why hath it given me earnest of success, Commencing in a truth?” The rhetoric for the audience is tantalising at this stage as the soliloquy begins to delve deeply into Macbeth’s inner thoughts on the prophecies. Nevertheless, Macbeth’s promotion begins to stir evil and miscreant thoughts and desires, thoughts that are so fiendish, they begin to disturb Macbeth himself. “My thought…murder…shakes so my single state of man that function…in surmise”. Macbeth’s confused state and corrupt mind is demonstrated implicitly by the irregular grammar and incoherent thoughts. Shakespeare explicitly addresses mans’ thirst for power. The transition from valiant soldier to a murderous butcher occurs in this very scene. His unnatural and curious reliance upon the prophecies casts the first stone to his demise. However, despite Banquo’s rational and sensical approach, Macbeth continues to torment himself with the prospects of being King. “The instruments of darkness tell us truths…to betray’s In deepest consequence”. Banquo, who is conscious of what the supernatural powers of such …show more content…
The pathetic fallacy used to represent deaths, murders and evil deeds heightens the sense of evil and darkness of the play thereafter. “Some say the Earth was generous and did shake”. This literal device spoken by Lennox at the time of Duncan’s murder lays the path of evil for the entirety of the play. Macbeth, fooled by the witches’ foretelling, foregoes his respect, reputation and honour as a soldier, Thane and husband; the death of his wife does not subdue his obsession for power. Macbeth embraces the witches’ doctrine to the point where he believes he is invincible, never truly acknowledging the trickery or deception of the witches. Macbeth’s pride, ego and headstrong nature lead him to his own death after his

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