Quarter 1 Benchmark (Macbeth Character Analysis)

(In our first benchmark we had to show how macbeth evolves as a character.)
Roger Bracy                                                                                                           11/1/10

Macbeth Evolved

            Throughout the story of Macbeth the character of Macbeth has evolved in so many ways. Macbeth has changed and evolved from a heroic and ambitious person to evil and mean spirited.

            In act 1 scene 2 of Macbeth, Macbeth is thought of as heroic for the country of Scotland he is one of a kind on the battlefield. He is praised when the captain describes him on the battlefield; “like a valor’s minion carved out is passage till he faced the slave which ne’er shook hand nor bade farewell to him till he unsreamed him fro the nave to th chaps and fixed his head upon our battlements.” (Act 1, scene 2, p 4) The captain is saying that Macbeth is a warrior who is very gruesome on the battlefield. Showing he is heroic and will fight for his country.

            In act 1 scene 7 of Macbeth, Macbeth and his wife, Lady Macbeth, are planning to kill King Duncan. Lady Macbeth plans on killing the king to get Macbeth prophesies to happen faster. Although, Lady Macbeth is confident in the decision Macbeth is not, he thinks to himself when he states; “If it were done when ‘tis done, then ‘twere well it were done quickly. If the assassination could trammel up the consequence, and catch with his surcease success.” (Act 1, scene 7, Page 20) insuring that he will get his power. Macbeth is saying that, if the assassination were done then he could get his success promised to him by the three witches much faster. As the story goes on the Macbeth get more and more anxious to make his prophesies come true.

            Also in act 1 scene 7 of Macbeth, after Macbeth’s wife, Lady Macbeth, gave him the idea of killing King Duncan, Macbeth man-hood is questioned because he doesn’t have the strength to kill. So he second-guesses himself by stating; “Bloody instructions, witch, being taught, return to plague th inventor.” (Act1, scene 7, p 21) This shows that Macbeth is very humble to King Duncan because he says he doesn’t want to kill the man who taught him how to kill. However this shows Macbeth is willing to at least think before he and his wife make a decision.

            In act 2, scene 1 in Macbeth, Macbeth finally makes the decision to kill off the king. He is doing this to prove his masculinity to his wife and to prove the witches prophesies true. Through peer pressure Macbeth makes the decision to kill the king when he says. “ Is this a dagger I see before me? The handle toward my hand” ( Act 2, scene 1, p 25) Macbeth is trying to state that he is not ready to do this, and he is about to do something he will regret.

            Act 2 scene 2 of Macbeth, the deed is done and not only is Macbeth feeling guilty but Lady Macbeth acts like there is nothing wrong. Macbeth shows his guilt when he comes back with the bloody dagger he used to kill Duncan with, and says. “Will great Neptune’s ocean wash this blood clean from my hand.” (Act 2, scene 2, p 29) Macbeth has stated that he wants to wash this blood from his hands because he doesn’t like that he just betrayed someone who he trusted. He has to over come his guilt if he ever is going to be a powerful leader and right at this point he doesn’t show those qualities.

            In act 3 scene 1 of Macbeth, the town finds out what was done but not who had done it, so the lords group together to find this mystery. Banquo, who is also a lord like Macbeth, has a suspect that there was foul play involved and he tries to go farther into in, but Macbeth soon find this and tries to shut Banquo’s investigation down. He decides, without influence from his wife, to kill Banquo by having two murderers follow him. Macbeth makes this plan by saying; So is he mine; and in such bloody distance that every minute of his being thrusts against my near’st of life.” (Act 3, scene 1, lines 116-118) Macbeth is now on the path of evil because he is stating that he will kill banquo because he is a threat to his crown. Banquo will soon have his revenge.



            In act 3 scene 4 of Macbeth, after Banquo is killed he comes back as ghost to haunt Macbeth at his dinner party, but Macbeth is the only one who can see him. Macbeth knows he’s in way over his head when he says; “I am in blood, Stepped in so far that, should I wade no more.” (Act 3, scene 4, p 55) What is being said here, is that Macbeth is feeling some guilt he mite have done to much. As a reader, Macbeth is now making his own decisions and is not influenced by anyone else but himself and he is becoming more of villain with all these murders under his belt.

            In act 4 scene 4 of Macbeth, Macbeth is now a full blown king with and he is using his power to become a villain instead of a leader. Macduff was next to get executed because he knew too much about what happened to King Duncan and Banquo. So because of this Macbeth decides to kill Macduff while he is at home, what the muderers found was a house only filled with Macduff’s wife and son but he wasn’t there. Macduff hear this news and Malcolm, the real king who was next to receive the crown but run away, comforts him when he says; “This tyrant, whose sole name blisters our tongues once thought honest, you have loved him well; he hath not touched you yet.” (Act 4, scene 4, p 73) Malcolm statement on Macbeth shows that he is a disloyal king and cannot be trusted as the King of Scotland.

             In act 5 scene 5 of Macbeth, Lady Macbeth has just passed away because of her sickness and Macbeth isn’t fazed by this because he has a bigger challenge ahead of him.

This challenge is the war between Macbeth and the other lords. He doesn’t even think about his wife when the messenger says; “The Queen my, lord is, dead” (Act5, scene 5, line 16) Macbeth is feeling no hurt because he has been through this situation before with King Duncan. So now he has no one to back him up and he will face this army alone.

            In the end, Macbeth is found to be a ruthless killer, who has no feeling for his wife or his country. These quotes connect to my thesis because they help describe Macbeth evolvement into the monster that he became in the story. Shakespeare’s motive for the story of Macbeth was to inform readers to be happy with what you have, because Macbeth was given a promoted and the prophecy that he will be king; but he was impertinent and need more power.