"All hail, Macbeth, that shalt be king hereafter!" These are the words with which the witches greet Macbeth in the third scene of the first act. The prediction that he shall be king wakes Macbeth's ambition and he starts to think about killing Duncan although he is his cousin and also a worthy friend. Macbeth's wife really wants to become queen so she talks her husband into killing Duncan when he visits the couple in their castle. Because Macbeth' s thoughts and feelings can be seen on his face easily, Lady Macbeth tells him to hide them and to "Look like th' innocent flower, but be the serpent under' t" as she does it.

When Macbeth is on the way to Duncan' s chamber to kill him, he asks himself: "Is this a dagger which I see before me?" He probably has got a hallucination which helps him with his decision and gives him the power and courage to commit the murder.

When Macduff wants to wake up Duncan on the next morning, he finds his dead body. Crying "O horror horror horror! Ring the alarum bell! Murder and treason!" he wakes up the people in the castle. As it is shown later in the play, Macduff is - in opposite to Macbeth - a true and trustful nobleman and really sad about Duncan's death.

As they don' t feel safe anymore, Duncan's sons Malcolm and Donalbain decide to fly from Scotland. This puts suspicion of the deed on them so that Macbeth is crowned as the new king. But having achieved this target, his cruel thoughts still don't find an end. He says to Lady Macbeth: "O, full of scorpions is my mind dear wife!" which refers to the thought of killing his friend Banquo whose sons shall - after the witches' predictions - be kings after Macbeth's death. The new king feels threatened by this prediction as long as Banquo and his son are alive. So he engages three murderers to kill Banquo and his son Fleance in spite of his scruples. They kill Banquo whose last words to his son are: "O treachery! Fly, good Fleance, fly, fly, fly. Thou mayst revenge."

On this day, Macbeth gives a banquet for several noblemen in his castle. Just as they want to start with the meal, Banquo's ghost appears but he can only be seen by Macbeth who is very scared by this and behaves very strangely in the eyes of his guests. Of course, they cannot understand when Macbeth cries: "Avaunt and quit my sight! Let the earth hide thee!" When the noblemen have to leave the banquet without any order to let the king alone, this is already a sign for the decay of Macbeth and also of Scotland.

To find out more about the predictions, Macbeth visits the witches again. They are mixing a drink for him while they say: "Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn, and cauldron bubble." After having drunk the magic mixture, Macbeth has got three apparitions which tell him that he can' t be harmed by any man born of a woman and not before Birnam Wood will come towardshis castle, but that he shall be aware of Macduff. In this moment, Macbeth can't understand these predictions, yet. But later they will all come true, for it is Macduff who kills him and who came to world by Caesarean section. The moving forest are ten thousand soldiers from England, who have covered themselves with bushes and are coming against Macbeth's castle.

Although he feels safe for he can't imagine a man who is not born of a woman or a moving forest, Macbeth decides to have Macduff killed. When the murderers enter Macduff's castle, they only find his wife and children and a lot of servants there. One murderer first says: "What, you egg! Young fry of treachery!" to Macduff's son and then kills him. The boy's last words are: "He has kill'd me, mother!" In the rest of this very cruel scene, the murderers rape the women and then kill all people in the castle. [in one film version]

Lady Macbeth, who seemed so very cold and cruel in the beginning of the play, is now getting more and more ill and mad. She is not able to bear her bad conscience and always thinks that Duncan's blood is still on her hands, wherefore she always washes her hands. Sleepwalking, she says: "Out damned spot! Out I say! Here's the smell of the blood still." While in the beginning Lady Macbeth believed that a little water could wash away the blood, she now thinks not to be able to ever get rid of the blood. Of course, the blood is away for a long time, but it is the guilt that she cannot get rid of.

In the very end, when it is already clear that everything is lost for Macbeth, he and Macduff fight against each other. Probably knowing that he will be killed, Macbeth hasn't any fear for there is no more sense in his life. Fighting with Macduff he says his last words: "Lay on, Macduff, And damned be him that first cries, 'Hold, enough!'" The only thing that is important for Macbeth is being a strong man who knows no fears nor pains. In contradiction to this, Macduff knows that to be a man also means to have and to live emotions. The question what it is that makes a man is one of the most important of the play.

928 Worte in "englisch"  als "hilfreich"  bewertet