Figurative Language In Macbeth's Soliloquy

Improved Essays
Macbeth by Shakespeare is a beautifully woven play of a king who has his wheel of fortune rise and fall in a dramatic tale. The play begins with a valiant Macbeth pondering his morals before eventually deciding to commit treason but later he has become ruthless. He breaks the law without thought.

(I, VII) Macbeth ponders the consequences of him killing Duncan in a soliloquy. In the beginning of his soliloquy, Macbeth wants to murder Duncan quickly so as to have no hesitations. (I, VII, 2-5) Shakespeare uses a metaphor to Macbeth hunting and catching a wild animal without being harmed. He refers to the killing as if to catch the king with a net. This is because a net is silent and causes little suspicion to who caught and killed the animal.
…show more content…
Shakespeare uses a reference to family ties by telling the audience that Macbeth is related to Duncan. Shakespeare does this to show the toils and snares Macbeth must overcome to take the crown. Macbeth is feeling pushed against a wall because he doesn’t want to disappoint his wife, but killing a family member to become king is horrific. Next, Shakespeare uses a simile (I, VII, 18-20) "So clear in his great office, that his virtues Will plead like angels trumpet-tongued against The deep damnation of his taking-off" Macbeth is worried that Duncan 's attributes will show Macbeth as the true murderer. This also alludes to heaven with Duncan being sent there with the angels. Shakespeare also uses words such as “heaven 's cherubim” and “trumpet-tongued”. The heavenly allusions here are in a positive context because a celebration is occurring in the bible when angels appear and trumpets are being played. This is used to show how Duncan was a pure king with a clean heart and that heaven will welcome him with open arms. Another allusion is used by Shakespeare when Macbeth says every person in Scotland will cry for Duncan when he is killed. (I, VII, 25-26)Shakespeare uses this allusion to show the absolute despair in which Scotland will enter when Duncan dies. The wind being overpowered by tears shows Macbeth feels pained that a king so beloved by all the kingdom would have to end …show more content…
Shakespeare uses bold diction when Macbeth describes the people in Macduff’s castle as unfortunate souls. Macbeth shows that he knows that by going into Macduff’s castle that innocent lives will be killed. However, Macbeth displays his willingness to cause extra bloodshed for the damage he will deal to Macduff’s family. Macbeth says this to show the complete desire that has taken over him from the prophecies the witches gave him just earlier. This is seen in the beginning of the play as well as the initial prophecy of kingship for Macbeth. However, what differed for Macbeth at the beginning of the play was his morals were still intact and so he fought the all controlling desires. Macbeth tells himself “No boasting like a fool,” to describe his old self as a fool that made mistakes. Macbeth does this so as to ground himself so as to not get too over the top. Macbeth ironically continues to boast even to the end. He boasts to Macduff that he can’t die to anyone of women born. This ends up leading to his downfall and death of Macbeth at the hands of Macduff. Shakespeare finishes with a reference to the witches and apparitions. (IV, I, 161-162) Macbeth says this because his head has been completely clouded by all the horrid stuff the witches say. Macbeth at this point has realized that the witches have caused him to lose all sense of morals and that he has become completely

Related Documents

  • Superior Essays

    Sharing his plan with Lady Macbeth, the would-be queen, shows he hoped “it would find welcome lodgement with her,” and she would encourage his greed for more power (Flathe 2). Realizing it is against his morals, Macbeth tries to back out of the murder plan but he is “charged with cowardice” by Lady Macbeth (Richardson 1). She scolds him for being too frightened to achieve his goal to become king and not being “the same in thine own act and valor as thou art in desire” (1.7.40-41). This accusation spurs his ambition and his greed, so he murders Duncan, knowing the prophecies are on his side. By committing this crime, Macbeth destroys a bond with a parent-like figure and violates the “powers of [his] own superego, or conscience” (Reid 5).…

    • 1131 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Macbeth’s words are crucial because they verify that Macbeth is the true villain because he causes suffering to Lady Macduff and her children who are innocent and should be sheltered not harmed. Additionally, Macbeth also causes harm to other innocent children. When planning Banquo’s murder Macbeth also orders the murder of his only son, Fleance. Upon planning Banquo’s murder with the murders Macbeth says, “Fleance his son, that keeps him company, /Whose absence is no less material to me/Than is his father 's, must embrace the fate/Of that dark hour.”(Shakespeare3.1.137-140). Macbeth reveals that since Fleance will be with Banquo in the forest he will suffer the same fate as his father even though he is an innocent bystander.…

    • 1253 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Through Macbeth’s rapt state in the presence of the supernatural, Shakespeare dangles fate a few feet away from Macbeth showing that he wants these things to happen. With the insistence from Lady Macbeth to kill Duncan, Macbeth is pushed into a corner where, through immense insults to his manhood, Lady Macbeth forces Macbeth to perform the deed. This performance triggers Macbeth to begin to enjoy being the cause of the death of all people he considers to be problematic to his position. Macbeth eventually turns against his influences and directly contradicts their wishes as the play progresses. He uses his free will to do horrible things and cause various other dastardly and heinous acts such as killing Banquo and Macduff’s family.…

    • 1249 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Shakespeare wrote the poem Macbeth which is about a great warrior who learns about a prophecy in which he will become king so kill the king and others who pose a threat of taking his crown. Throughout the story of Macbeth there are many actions and causes that lead to Macbeth’s downfall. While other may say that lady Macbeth is to blame for Macbeth's downfall in the story, Macbeth is the sole person to blame for his downfall. Macbeth was a brutal killer and very ruthless in his fighting, it was Macbeth's idea to kill Duncan, and his ambition to have power and be king led to his downfall in the story. Macbeth was a brutal and ruthless killer from the beginning of the book.…

    • 757 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Even though Lady Macbeth pushed her husband into a corner to commit the murder, Macbeth went through with it and continued doing more harm to be King, and to keep his kingship. Shakespeare portrays Macbeth as a heinous monster for wanting to keep his crown more than preserving Scotland; Shakespeare also illustrates that people are determined to do whatever it takes to be powerful, even if it means harming everyone else in the process and Macbeth is a perfect example of that, Malcolm says something about Macbeth to Macduff, “this tyrant, whose sole name blisters our tounges, was once thought honest”(IV. iii.12). Malcolm explains that Macbeth is a horrible tyrant who was at one point a virtuous and trustworthy man. Banquo was Macbeth’s best friend, and now Macbeth is planning his murder so that Macbeth can keep his kingship and prevent Banquo’s children(even future children) from taking the throne, according to the witches who gave both Macbeth and Banquo their predictions.…

    • 1034 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    In the play Macbeth, written by William Shakespeare, Macbeth, a Scottish soldier, is led on a path of violence, corruption, and greed after taking his chances with a prophecy that claims he will become the king of Scotland. When this prophecy is first proclaimed to Macbeth, is it not mentioned how he will become king, but due to the mystery surrounding the prophecy and his wife’s incitement, he eventually decides to take power through assassination. However, this marks the beginning of the end, Macbeth’s downfall, as even his first murder alone makes the people of Scotland suspicious of his rise to power. Because of the external factors that pushed him in the beginning of the play, the question as to whether or not Macbeth is responsible for…

    • 1165 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    When he kills King Duncan, he is doing so in order to be king and because his wife pushed him to do it. Later on in the play, however, when he becomes king, he also kills his formerly loyal friend Banquo. He is doing this for his own safety, because he feels Banquo is a threat to his throne. Alone in his palace, he says to himself “Our fears in Banquo stick deep, and in his royalty of nature reigns that which would be feared.” (III.i.52-53) Because Banquo has more royalty in his blood than Macbeth does, Macbeth rightfully fears that Banquo may be a threat to his kingship, especially with people being more suspicious of Macbeth after the king’s murder. So in order to protect his throne, Macbeth hires two assassins to get rid of the potential threat.…

    • 1167 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    After Macbeth kills King Duncan and becomes king, the murder of Duncan created more problems as Banquo suspects that he has become king through evil means. As Macbeth said to Lady Macbeth, “False face must hide what false heart doth know.” This quotation supports the fact that Macbeth is dilapidating as he would have killed anyone who gets in his way of continuing his reign as king. These killings turned Macbeth into a tyrant king. Macbeth continues to allow his ambition and greed control him as in the ending scenes of the play he does not show or care to have emotion and becomes detached from the character he was in the beginning of the play, Macbeth the noble hero that fought for his country to protect it from traitors, “For brave Macbeth – well he deserves…

    • 455 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    The Downfall Of Macbeth

    • 1091 Words
    • 5 Pages

    Lady Macbeth wants her husband to gain the ambition to kill Duncan so that they will become royalty. Once Macbeth has gained the crown, he begins to feel that his enemies or comrades will try to overthrow him. This feeling becomes a reality when he says: “To be thus is nothing, but to be safely thus—” (III.i.48). Now that Macbeth has killed once, he is not going to stop killing until he feels safe and satisfied. This is how his ambition is a major role in his fate and downfall.…

    • 1091 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Throughout the play, he believed that he can be a successful king just by believing all his prophecies will come true and cover up his guilt by murdering everyone that could threaten him At the end he fails to be a king and fails to protect Scotland. His sin of murder made his wife feels troubled and guilty and caused her to commit suicide. From facing these consequences, Macbeth states that there is no special meaning in life. At the end, Macduff killed Macbeth during the final battle as his punishment for his evil plans to control the future and bury the…

    • 811 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays

Related Topics