Fate Or Free Will Essay

1071 words - 5 pages

In Macbeth, Shakespeare depicts the character of Macbeth as one ruled by free will to illustrate that human lives are inflicted by the actions that they decide upon rather than a predetermined fate. Macbeth’s choices to fulfill the prophecies that the three evil witches gave him depict that, although, characters are influenced by others, ultimately their decision is what they follow through with and what impacts their life the most.
The three evil witches confronted Macbeth and Banquo early on in Act I and they refer to Macbeth as the Thane of Glamis and the Thane of Cawdor. Banquo is also told that, although, he will never be king of Scotland, his children and future generations in his ancestral line will have the honor of one day becoming king of Scotland. Despite Macbeth being the Thane of Glamis, he is left puzzled and confused because he is not quite sure how he could be the Thane of Cawdor, when the current Thane of Cawdor is still alive. Curious and intrigued, Macbeth attempts to get answers out of the three evil witches, but they disappear in a flash. Lady Macbeth learns of the prophecy and what the future holds according to the three evil witches and beings convincing Macbeth to join her in murdering the current Thane of Cawdor, king Duncan, in order to secure the throne for Macbeth. Macbeth’s initial reaction is one of disgust and utter disbelief. How could he murder a man of such greatness, kindness and one that is admired by all? How could he disregard his loyalty as kinsman and commit such a traitorous act? Deciding not to go through with murdering Duncan, Lady Macbeth quickly talks Macbeth into committing the murder by reassuring him that everything he has ever wanted will be in reach with the death of Duncan. The argument between the two lovers seems to go back and forth for quite some time, when eventually Macbeth realizes the validity in the points that Lady Macbeth makes and decides to give in to her pressures and go through with murdering Duncan. Lady Macbeth’s pressures may have greatly impacted Macbeth’s decision, however, the final decision of killing king Duncan was made by Macbeth when he gives in to the pressures of Lady Macbeth.
Haunted by the prophecies given by the three evil witches, Macbeth is going to commit murder in order to be the Thane of Cawdor and to gain royal status. Act II is centered around the murder of king Duncan. Not only does Macbeth go through with the act of killing an innocent and great man, he also does it in such a brutal and violent way. The actual scene of Duncan’s murder is not depicted in the play in order to allow the audience to use their own vivid imagination to infer how Duncan was killed. However, the audience is able to see the bloody dagger that Macbeth used in Duncan’s murder and they are able to imagine the horror and awful manner in which Macbeth proceeded to kill a man all in the desire to fuel his ambition. Macbeth knew very well what he was accomplishing in...

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