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Macbeth’s men are serving him out of fear, rather than love or duty. This is another indicator of Macbeth’s terrible reign as king.
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This scene reveals the way she commands Macbeth and challenges his manliness, thereby manipulating him to pursue his dark ambitions. This scene being the last appearance of Lady Macbeth reflects the fact that she has become unimportant to Macbeth after this point, a meaningless irrelevancy.
Macbeth’s rich and elaborate imagery in his staged reaction to Duncan’s death reveal his insincerity, suggesting he has prepared this speech beforehand. Macbeth realises his folly and comes to a revelation at the end of the play. He reflects on the futility of life in the lines “It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing”. His nihilistic views are the product of his sorrow at Lady Macbeth’s death, as well as the hopeless situation he finds himself trapped in. He remarks “Out, out, brief candle, life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more.” This reflects his realisation about the inevitability of death, while comparing life to an actor that is temporarily in the spotlight and then is heard from no more. This theatrical imagery is powerful in the context of a theatre. This evokes pathos in Macbeth and his situation, because his grief and misery is expressed vividly through these lines. He realises the folly in his actions, and truly understands their consequences now when he is suffering. In this way, Macbeth can be argued to have reached clarity about the reality of life, by enduring the consequences of his folly, which is his downfall.
Macbeth - Full Analysis - Blitz Notes
At the onset, Lennox’s tone is cautious and ambiguous, highlighting the sense of distrust prevalent in societyTis the eye of childhood that fears a painted devil → only children fear anomalous species of terror We might have met them dareful, beard to beard” → beard symbolises man, and everything that manliness stands for Macbeth is concerned because he could not say “amen” and Lady Macbeth is frustrated and running scared because Macbeth is talking crazy talk.
irony Is this passage from Macbeth a good example of dramatic irony
live a coward in thine own esteem, Letting ‘I dare not’ wait upon ‘I would,’ Like the poor cat I’ the adage?” Note: Don’t confuse ironic overstatements with hyperbole , the rhetorical device of exaggeration. If a character says "I'm so tired, I could sleep for a million years,” and they are genuinely tired, that isn’t ironic — just exaggerated. Highlighting a fallacy Turn, hell-hound, turn!” → Macduff compares Macbeth to a creature spawned in Hell, a vile representation of Macbeth’s tyranny and evil.Even Macbeth’s mind is revolting against him “When all that is within him does condemn itself for being there”. This heightens the pathos.