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How Does the Play Macbeth Follow What Is Expected in a Shakespearean Tragedy?

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The Shakespearean play "Macbeth" follows what is expected in a Shakespearean tragedy by containing characteristics similar to all Shakespearean tragedies. These are the fatal flaws in Macbeth, the fall of noble, respectable man with great qualities, Macbeth, and Macbeth's terrible murder of the King in order to obtain the crown, which causes absolute chaos.

Macbeth's character contains fatal flaws that cause him to do evil. These fatal flaws are a limitation to Macbeth's otherwise worthy character, and they include over ambition, greed, a power hungry nature and a weak will. For example, in Act 1, Scene 7, lines 25-28, Macbeth admits that the only reason he has to kill the king is ambition, which isn't a good enough reason. "I have no spur | To prick the sides of my intent, but only | Vaulting ambition which o'erleaps itself | And falls on th'other-" Shakespeare uses imagery here to describe Macbeth's excessive ambition as a horse who tries to jump too high over a fence and falls on the other side. Later in the scene, in line 31, Macbeth tells his wife that he has decided not to go through with the murder of the king ("We will proceed no further in this business"). However, Lady Macbeth takes advantage of one of Macbeth's fatal flaws, his weak will, and accuses him of being a coward and a traitor to his word, which she knows will stir him up and convince him to kill Duncan. "Art thou afeard | To be the same in thine own act and valour | As thou art in desire?" (1, 7, 39-41), "What... made you break this enterprise to me? | When you durst do it, then you were a man" (1, 7, 49). By the end of the scene, Macbeth's weak will has given in to his wife, and she has convinced him to kill the king. "I am settled and bend up | Each corporal agent to this terrible feat" (1, 7, 79-80). This follows what is expected in a Shakespearean tragedy as the protagonist is shown to have a limitation to his otherwise worthy character, or a 'fatal flaw'.

"Macbeth" is about the fall of a noble man who was of a respectable character, with wonderful qualities, but by the end is no longer held in esteem. In the beginning of the play, Macbeth is a well-respected nobleman and a courageous commander of the Scottish army. He showed great loyalty to the king, and was held in high esteem by society. He had a good relationship with his wife, and was of a worthy character, except for his fatal flaw- his hidden desire to be king. Throughout the play this desire causes him to sink lower in esteem, and by the end of the play Macbeth is hated by all of Scotland for the cruel tyranny in which he rules. Macbeth's desire also causes him to do great evil, killing many innocents, and his conscience is forever stricken with guilt, while his relationship with his wife crumbles into nothing. For example, in the beginning of the play, even King Duncan holds Macbeth in high regard. "True... he is full so valiant, | And in his commendations I am fed" (1, 5, 54-55). But then Macbeth kills Duncan to become king, which begins his descent into evil ways. He kills innocent people and soon he has done so much evil that he has no choice but to face the consequences of his actions. "I am in blood | Stepped in so far that should I wade no more | Returning were as tedious as go o'er" (3, 5, 136-138). Shakespeare uses more imagery here, of Macbeth standing in a lake of blood, to describe how deep he is in trouble and evil ways. Also, Macbeth's tyrannical ruling turns Scotland into a place of misery, where people fear for their lives. "Alas, poor country, | Almost afraid to know itself. It cannot | Be call'd our mother, but our grave, where nothing, | But who knows nothing is once seen to smile" (4, 3, 166-169). This follows what is expected in a Shakespearean tragedy, as the play tells of the fall of a great man, who had wonderful qualities but by the end is no longer held in esteem.

Macbeth's terrible murder of the King in order to obtain the crown causes absolute chaos and disturbs the Natural Order, or balance of the universe, and so he is punished for this. By murdering the king, Macbeth causes Duncan's sons to flee Scotland, allowing



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