1. Describe in detail the change in Lady Macbeth. How do her actions relate to her statements in Act 2, scene 2, lines 81-91? Lady Macbeth enters the play in Act 1, scene 5 were she is perceived as a powerful, controlling and an independent women. She is ruthless and tries to make sure Macbeth becomes king by planning the deed, and also getting her own hands dirty. While Macbeth feels guilty about the blood on his hands, she says, “My hands are of your colour, but I shame / To wear a heart so white,” (2.2.64-65). However, Lady Macbeth makes a complete 180 turns in Act 5 when guilt and repentance come to haunt her. She is sleepwalking and muttering about the horrible act of killing Duncan. The paranoid winds her into death.
2. Which nobles band together to defeat Macbeth? The nobles that band together to defeat Macbeth during the battle are “led by Malcom, old Siward and Ross,” (5.8.34). Joining these men, there is Young Siward, other thanes and soldiers.
3. What is significant about the name of Macbeth’s most faithful officer (think of the accent people might have had at the time). Seyton is Macbeth’s attending officer that stays alongside him when his thanes are abandoning him. The name ‘Seyton’ is significant because the fact that his name resembles with ‘Satan’ -the devil- may be coincidental. Macbeth becomes a ruthless king and his soldiers are only fighting because they are forced to, not to fight for Macbeth. The only person that it truly faithful to Macbeth is ‘Satan’.
4. How is the Birnam Wood prophecy fulfilled? When Macduff guides his soldiers to the castle against MacBeth, they use a camouflage technique to get closer to Dunsinane. The soldiers disguise themselves in Burnam wood and carrying cut down trees as they march towards the castle. This proves the third apparition where “Mabeth shall never vanquished be until / Great Birnam Wood to high Dunsinane Hill / Shall come against him,” (18.104.22.168). Macbeth believed that it would never happen because the trees would never pull their roots out of the ground and start walking. When Macbeth hears the news that Birnam Wood is making it’s way towards the castle, he realizes his fate.
5. Paraphrase Macbeth’s famous soliloquy in scene 5, lines 21-30. Day by day it creeps until the end of time. And in the past it has brought fools closer to death. Out, candle! Life is a walking shadow; an illusion. It is like a poor actor that paces and worries for his hour of fame, then never seen again. Life is a book narrated by an idiot, full of sounds and emotions, but has no purpose.
6. How, and by whom, is the prophecy about Macbeth being defeated by one “not of woman born” fulfilled? Macbeth believed that from his third prophecy, “none of women born / Shall harm Macbeth,” (4.1.82-830) he would never be vanquished because everyone is born from a women. Macbeth assumed that he was safe, but what he did not know was that, “Macduff was from his mother’s womb / Untimely ripped,” (5.8.15-16). Macduff’s mother had a caesarean section before she died.
7. What is Macduff’s trophy of this great battle? Macduff only wants to fight Macbeth and “If thou beest slain, and with no stroke of mine, / My wife and children’s ghoasts will haunt [him] still,” 95.717-18). Macduff wants to avenge his family’s death and will put down his sword to whoever isn’t Macbeth. At the end of the battle, Macduff enters, carrying Macbeth’s and hails Malcolm as king: “calling on the other thanes to declare their allegiance with him and says, “Behold where stands / The usurper’s cursed head. The time is free,” 95.854-55). The “time is free” because Scotland is free of Macbeth’s rebellion. Macduff’s trophy of this great battle was the head of the man that stole his family’s soul.
8. Why would the ending of this play fulfill the requirements of tragedy and the concept of the tragic hero? Explain. A tragic hero is a person that is born to become heroic and has all the qualities to conquer greatness. The only flaw is that the hero may have struggles that may go against their fate and create conflicts that will bring fourth. According to Aristotle a tragic hero:
• a character of noble stature and has greatness (good side) The first impression of the Macbeth was that he was the best nobleman that King Duncan had. “For Brave Macbeth – well he deserves that name – ” (1.2.16) because he was highly appreciated and respected throughout the country. Macbeth was the best soldier and fought for his country and King Duncan.
• he/she is not perfect (bad side) Macbeth did not stop at the assassination of King Duncan. To continue his royalty and keep the seat on the throne, Macbeth is driven to commit more devious acts that included the murders of Banquo and Macduff’s entire family.
• downfall, error or judgment (hamartia) Macbeth’s flaw was initially his own ambition and the goal of wanting to become King. Because Macbeth wants to become King, he will do anything in his power to remain in the position, even if it meant to kill an entire family. His ego takes the better part of Macbeth and hurts his reputation to become a mass murder.
• fate is not fully deserved This point is where Macbeth’s character does not agree with. Macbeth deserved the outcome that was granted to him; death. His punishment does not exceed his crimes that he had committed.