Macbeth Essay, Research Paper
Many critics hold that the imagery in Macbeth is more rich and dramatic than that of any other of Shakespeare?s plays. Woven throughout the tragedy, are the recurring images of darkness, blood, and sleep. These images aid in portraying the evilness and the moral disintegration of the murdering tyrant Macbeth and his fiend-like queen.
The images of darkness and night symbolize evil in both mankind and Macbeth. Instruments of darkness is referred to as the witches, the witches are consequently darkness and the devil. Shakespeare seems to have made the witches purposely ambiguous. On the other hand, their words and appearance suggest they are evil. However, Shakespeare also uses them to symbolize fate. Darkness is often call upon by Lady Macbeth: ? Come, thick night, and pall thee in the dunnest smoke of hell??(Mac.1.5.48). Lady Macbeth calls on the night to cover her deeds with the thickest ?smoke of hell,? so that ?heaven? would not see the deed and cry out to stop.
From the beginning of the second scene until the end of the entire play, Macbeth is a play about blood, symbolic of murder and its consequences. Macbeth?s encounter with the witness took an evil hold on him. All realization of basic morale?s such as friendship and family become second to the evil darkness. His first act of blood shed was accomplished Lady Macbeth. She drugged the grooms in the King?s bedchamber, and Macbeth stabs the sleeping Duncan, killing him. Macbeth ordered his friend Banquo?s death, because of his fear that Banquo had suspicion of his involvement in Duncan?s murder. The witches? prophesy began Macbeth?s bloody crusade and a second prophesy began the end when, Macbeth encountered an apparition. ?Be bloody, bold, and resolute! Laugh to scorn the scorn the power of man, for none of woman born shall harm Macbeth?. (Mac.5.1.79)
Yet, another important image is that of sleeplessness ? a symbol of guilt and the consequences of evil. Macbeth is troubled by a voice that called out, ?Sleep no more/Macbeth does murder sleep?. (Mac.2.2.34)