The Role of the Supernatural in Macbeth Essay

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The Role of the Supernatural in Macbeth

The play 'Macbeth' is essentially about a battle between 'good' and 'evil' where the witches represent the 'evil' or 'supernatural'. It is a fast moving historical tragedy with images of evil, disaster, and tragedy all produced as a consequence of ambition. At the time that Shakespeare wrote the play (between 1603 and 1606), there was much fascination and intrigue with the supernatural and this play would have interested the audience a lot at the time and the theme of the supernatural would have kept them captivated. The play was supposedly written with King James the first in mind as it was written at the time that he was at the throne and he had also
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She makes an arrangement with the witches to meet them at the 'Pit of Acheron' (a river in hell) to tell Macbeth his destiny 'And at the Pit of Acheron - Meet me I'th'morning'. She feels Macbeth has become too confident and promises to use witchcraft to ruin him 'he shall spurn fate, scorn death, and bear his hopes 'bove wisdom, grace, and fear'.

The supernatural is also embraced by Lady Macbeth when she calls upon evil spirits to aid her in killing Duncan. The speech includes a series of powerful images that are associated with the supernatural and evil 'And pall thee in the dunnest smoke of hell'. Alliteration is also used to emphasise important quotes 'you murd'ring ministers'. She also calls upon evil spirits to take make her a man and remove her feminine qualities so that she can be harder and more evil. She wants the powers of evil to stop the blood from flowing to her heart easily so that her passages will become blocked and she will not feel natural emotions 'make thick my blood'. She also feels that Macbeth is unable to kill Duncan because he is too feeble 'yet do I fear thy nature, it is too full o'th'milk of human kindess'. She desperately wants Macbeth to kill Duncan and she tries to persuade him to do it 'look like th'innocent flower but be the serpent under't.' In the speech,

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