, Research Paper
LADY MACBETH HAS BEEN DESCRIBED AS A FOURTH WITCH. DO YOU CONSIDER THIS TO BE FAIR JUDGEMENT?
I disagree with the statement that Lady Macbeth is a fourth witch.
This is because she displays many different characteristics to that of the witches. She is not naturally evil because she shows signs of guilt, unlike the witches. Murder is something that the witches enjoy. The witches do not show any sign of guilt or regret. To show the extreme of her guilt, during her sleep walking she is absolutely obsessed by a stain of blood which was on her dress after the murder of Duncan. She says, Out damned spot, out I say! One, two; why then, tis time to do t. Then she is obsessed with the smell of the blood. She says, Here s the smell of the blood still; all the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand. Oh, oh, oh! This is in comparison to the guilt that Macbeth felt at the start after the murder of Duncan. At this point, she was very practical and said to Macbeth; A little water clears us of this deed. Now she cannot see the practical side and she seems to have swapped roles with Macbeth because now Macbeth does not show guilt and Lady Macbeth does.
She then feels as if she is in hell, Hell is murky. Fie my lord, fie!
Also Lady Macbeth does not go and kill any one, which shows that she may not be completely evil.
She may not be completely evil because to persuade Macbeth to commit the murder she needs to call upon evil spirits to help her. This shows she does not have natural evil inside of her. When calling upon evil she says, Come you spirits, That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here, And fill me from the crown to the toe top-full, Of direst cruelty; make thick my blood, Stop up th access and passage to remorse, That no compunctious visitings of
nature, Shake my fell purpose, nor keep peace between, Th effect and it. Come to my woman s breasts and take my milk for gall, you murd ring ministers, Wherever in your sightless substances you wait on nature s mischief. Come thick night, And pall thee in the dunnest smoke of hell, That my keen knife see not the wound it makes, Nor have peep through the blanket of the dark, To cry Hold, hold!
This means that she could not have done it with out the help of evil spirits, which is quite unlike the witches who them selves are evil.
She knows that their desire is too deep and needs alcohol to help her in fulfilling her desire, Nots have all spend where our desire has got without content.
To show that she is not naturally evil she faints just after the death of Duncan is made public. This maybe shows a first sign of weakness from Lady Macbeth.
However, I can see why it can be said that Lady Macbeth could be considered as a fourth witch. This is because after she read the letter from Macbeth her instant reaction was the murder of Duncan, which is an evil thought you would expect to come from someone as evil as a witch.
Another reason is that she calls upon evil. This argument has two cases as shown above. The other is that it shows she is witch like because it shows that she is welcoming evil to aid her. It sows she is already quite evil and has a sense of evil inside of her.
She is like a witch because she dose not go and commit the murder herself but pushes Macbeth to do it. She says, I would have done it if he had not resembled my father as he slept. It shows she is cunning and manipulative in encouraging Macbeth to go and kill Duncan. In a very similar way to which the witches persuade Macbeth.
However my final reaction is the same as before and I feel it would not be a fair judgement to call Lady Macbeth a fourth witch. She is not as bad or as evil as the witches are.