The Mental Destruction Of Macbeth In William Shakespeare's Play

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Macbeth has been a well renowned play throughout its time period, and into modern society. While the play may take place within feudal times, the ideologies from the play can still be applied to how we live today. Shakespeare elegantly displays the mental destruction of Macbeth as he takes action to only achieve one thing: make sure he stays king. It is important to take away that when you are too focused on power, you can lose sight on what is important and travel down a destructive path.
Our first knowing of the character Macbeth is through finding out how powerful and well respected he is. In Act I, Scene ii, a soldier from the current war describes Macbeth 's personality as “brave” and uses the simile “as sparrows eagles, and hares the
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He says that he has “forgot about the taste of fears”(V.v), and I have supped full with horrors./ Direness, familiar to my slaughterous thoughts/ Cannot once start me.”(V.v). What Macbeth is saying here is that he has almost forgotten what it is like to be truly scared, and this is because he has witnessed and experienced such horrors that cannot be compared to other forms of fear. This realization from Macbeth helps show that even though he is the one corrupted by the Witches words and his greed of power, he understands that he is a changed man from when he once was a valiant soldier to his country. While it is important for Macbeth to be self aware of his down mental decay, he also knows that he is too far into this whole situation to turn back. He expresses this when he see’s that he is going be attacked and he says “They have tied me to a stake. I cannot fly,/ But, bearlike, I must fight the course.”(V.vii). The combination of using “tied me to a stake’ and “bearlike” is a reference to displays of entertainment that were put on back within Shakespeare 's time period. Back then, they used to tie bears to a stake within an arena and then have dogs attack the bear for the audience 's amusement. Macbeth is referencing this because he realized that he is “staked” at his current castle like the bears, and the army that is coming to attack him would be the …show more content…
Macbeth still believes that he cannot be killed by anyone who was birthed, so when threatened Macbeth is cocky and almost taunts Macduff by saying “Let fall thy blade on vulnerable crests;/ I bear a charmed life,”(V.viii). Macbeth is making a fatal assumption that Macduff is unable to harm him. Through Macbeth’s and Macduff’s encounter until the point in which Macbeth is killed, he is described in terms that are quite different from the beginning of the story. Instead of being called things such as “brave” and being compared to elegant and powerful creatures, he is described as a “tyrant”(V.viii), “villain”(V.viii), and even called a “hellhound”(V.viii). This contrast between the man who Macbeth once was, compared to how he ended up at the end of the play clearly displays how Macbeth started off as a respectable soldier, and through his greed turned into a hated

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