What a Tangled Web We Weave Essay

986 Words Nov 17th, 2005 4 Pages
From the beginning of time man has deceived to avoid consequences and achieve his evil

desires. The first to deceive was the serpent in the Garden of Eden. Since then man has been

caught in the, "tangled web of deception". In the play MACBETH, by William Shakespeare,

deception is used several times and is the cause of death for the tragic hero Macbeth. It is

the medieval time period in Scotland, and witches have gained the trust of Macbeth by telling

him he will be king of Scotland. When Macbeth does become king, he completely relies

on the witches prophecies, and as a result many people get caught up in a web of deceit that leads

to his downfall and death.

The theme of deception is introduced early in the
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Macbeth was told, "Be bloody, bold, and resolute; laugh to scorn The

pow'r of man, for none of woman born Shall harm Macbeth"(4.1. 86-88). This is deceiving

because every person is born of woman, therefore no one should be able to harm Macbeth.

Macbeth believed and followed this prophesy with reckless abandon, fighting without fear of

death from any man. The flaw with the prophesy was Macduff, like every other human, was born

of woman, but since he was ripped from his mother's womb, he was not considered to be born of

woman. In this sense the prophesy was true in that no man rightfully born of woman killed

Macbeth, but Macduff, not born of woman, did kill him.

The witches in MACBETH prove to be similar to the serpent in the Garden of Eden in

that they first entice their victim with power and knowledge, then deceive them. Because of

the serpent's deceit, man will labor and have to face sin till the end of time. Macbeth's deception

of people and his death, as well as Lady Macbeth's, Ross's, and Malcolm deceptions, can be

directly attributed to the witches enticement and deceit of Macbeth. MACBETH as a whole is

characterized by the plethora of deceptions in it, and like the old saying goes, " O' what a tangled

web we weave, when first we practice to

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