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Consider the events leading up to the murder of King Duncan. What elements contributed to his death?
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Regicide is the killing of a king. It is an event prevalent in Macbeth as the main focus of the story is of killing to gain power. In the play Macbeth the character Macbeth takes the easy route to power by killing the king and usurping the throne for himself. While this route to power seemed easy in plan the consequences for the country of Scotland and Macbeth are dire. The chain of being is an idea or philosophy that was prevalent during Shakespeare's time. It is an ordered hierarchical system of government. In Shakespeare's time people believed there was...
however his actions are augmented by the influence of others. Duncan provided an opportunity to assume the throne, his wife encouraged him to step forward and fulfil his destiny, and the witches make Macbeth and Lady Macbeth believe that it is possible and inevitable. With these factors all in correlation the single path in Macbeth's mind is opened. Through commitment to this task Macbeth chose the death of Duncan above his own honour. While he performed the act himself no man is an island. He relied on the influences of those around him in order to form his decision.
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Dear Kylie, I noticed your submission...Dear Kylie, I noticed your submission to Culture Magazine, regarding Shakespeare's great play "Hamlet". Having recently studied "Hamlet" in Year 12 English, I think I can help answer one of your questions. You asked why is Hamlet regarded as a tragic hero and the play a classic tragedy? Before I can answer your question, you must first understand the difference between the meaning of tragedy today and what is meant by tragedy in drama. Whereas a tragedy in life may be considered something such as a death or accident, in drama a tragedy in drama is much more. In a tragedy, although the hero may be in conflict with an opposing force, the cause of his downfall falls ultimately on himself. This is usually because of a character defect "“ a "tragic flaw" which causes him to act in a way which ends up bringing about his own misfortune, suffering and ultimately death. "Hamlet" is very much a tragedy, but it is also different, being a revenge tragedy where the hero is driven by the need for revenge, not unlike a modern day horror movie. Prince Hamlet is a tragedy of character where it is himself that brings his downfall, not fate. Well Kylie, a tragedy is usually a story of one person, with both the hero victims in the play usually of a high standing of society. This is especially the case in "Hamlet", with his victims being King Claudius, Queen Gertrude, Polonious, Laertes, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, all being linked to the Royal Family of Denmark. A personality fault the tragic flaw causes the hero to act in a manner which brings about his own misfortune and eventually death, during which he lets the audience know he is dying by delivering a final speech. In "Hamlet", it is his tragic flaw of his indecisiveness and inability to act, which brings his own suffering and misfortune. Had he been able to kill King Claudius in the beginning none of the suffering would have occurred. He also delivers his final speech telling the audience of his death, "I am dead Horatio. Wretched queen, adieu!" he exclaims after being poisoned by Laertes envenomed rapier. In a tragedy the pity and fear known in drama as pathos is ultimately replaced by an uplifting and suffering known in drama as catharsis Hamlet's acts cause suffering but in the end ultimately achieve learning. Hamlet's ultimate death teaches the country of Denmark about Claudius's murder and brings them under the reins of a new ruler Fortinbras of Norway. A tragic hero must not be purely good or purely evil. If he were purely good we would not understand his actions and if he were purely evil we would expect them. Hamlet is not purely good or purely evil, he is mixture or good and evil. He was intelligent, witty and cheerful and delighted in "flashes of merriment that were wont to set the table in a roar" in the beginning, but he was also in a state of melancholy and irresolution for much of the play. The hero in a tragedy is unable to resist the force. Hamlet cannot live knowing Claudius murdered his father and will either take his life or his own. The story focuses on the troubled part. In "Hamlet" this is mostly about his mental state with the famous "To Be, Or Not to be" being an expression of his thoughts on suicide. In "Hamlet", as in all tragedies, the tragedy is in the suffering and the whole story, not in the death. We feel pity and fear for the hero, because we feel sorry for his cause and we fear what will happen if he does not carry out his actions. In tragedies, the flaw dominates the hero. In "Hamlet" this is the case for much of the play, he does try to kill the King earlier on but in a mistake of judgement murders Polonious instead, but from this accident he carries on his procrastination and hurts and causes In a tragedy the suffering affects many innocent people, not only the hero. In Hamlet the suffering goes on to affect Queen Gertrude, Laertes and Ophelia and eventually leads to the death of all of these characters as well as Polonious and Prince Hamlet. It even, in the end affects the whole of Denmark, as the throne is taken by Fortinbras of Norway. In the beginning Marcellus says "Something is rotten in the state of Denmark" and nothing could be more true with the murder of King Hamlet. The suffering in a tragedy is exceptional and unexpected. Before the murder of King Hamlet Denmark was in all its glory, occupying part of Norway and Hamlet was a happy scholar at the University of Wittenberg. Everything changes due to Claudius and this brings on Hamlets madness. Tragedies generally have to do in part to the supernatural. In "Hamlet" the supernatural is the ghost of King Hamlet who tells Hamlet of his murder by the hand of Claudius. Many other revenge tragedy ingredients exist, such as mutilation and carnage, tales of revenge and murder, a play within a play, sensational happenings and of course a bloody end. "Hamlet" is also in part a detective story, with Prince Hamlet trying to find out the murder of his father in order to bring him to justice when he gets the players to act out a play to see if the King reacted "I'll have grounds more relative than this: the play's the thing wherein I'll catch the conscience of the king." As you can see Kylie, "Hamlet" is clearly a revenge tragedy, following all of the revenge play traditions. Hamlet the Prince of Denmark is clearly the tragic hero, with all of the suffering in the play due to, in some part, his tragic flaw. Kylie, I hope this answers your questions and that it provides you with the help you require.   

Dear Kylie, I noticed your submission to Culture Magazine, regarding Shakespeare's great play "Hamlet". Having recently studied "Hamlet" in Year 12 English, I think I can help answer one of your questions. You asked why is Hamlet regarded as a tragic hero and the play a classic tragedy? Before I...

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William Shakespeare's play Macbeth is about...William Shakespeare's play Macbeth is about a struggle for power in Scotland. Macbeth, the main character, gets prophecies from three witches about his future accomplishments that will come to him. One of his prophecies is that Macbeth will become king, Macbeth hearing this he becomes ambitious and later kills the current King Duncan, making himself the new king. A tragic ending comes to Macbeth when the people leave him and his world collapses around him. Blood is a recurring theme in this play; the theme of blood shows the setting of the play at that time and the different moods and emotions acquired by the characters. This idea of blood in the characters mind reverse from the beginning of the play to the end. Blood traverses the play Macbeth. King Duncan is the first to bring up blood in the play. Scotland at this time is fighting Norway; Macbeth and his best friend, Banquo, lead the Scottish forces to victory. The blood brought up by Duncan shows the honor and the heroic deeds done by Macbeth. "What bloody man is that?" Duncan asked to which Malcolm tells him it is the sergeant who had saved him and fought honorably. The sergeant shares his story of how Macbeth has fought so honorably even outnumbered "carv'd out his passage." This valiant story with the bloody sergeant being weak from his war injuries enhances Macbeth's heroic appearance. Duncan's response to the story shows his respect for Macbeth and realization of Macbeth's honor, "O valiant cousin! Worthy gentleman!" Blood as it shows the good also shares the evil. Lady Macbeth portrays the evil side that blood offers to contrast with the good. Lady Macbeth hears from a messenger that the king shall arrive at the castle tonight. Lady Macbeth is the evil one of the pair while Macbeth seems full of good in this world Lady Macbeth sees opportunity. The only problem she finds wrong with herself is that she is a woman; she wishes that her weak female body change, "unsex me her, / and fill me, from the crown to the toe, top-full/ of direst cruelty!" With this change she wants her blood to become thick, thick blood would help Lady Macbeth become strong and let her kill without regret, "make thick my blood, / stop up th' access and passage to remorse." Macbeth soon finds out what the word blood is to him. Macbeth after he has killed Duncan is in shock, his world of good has been shaken and the blood within him is scared. The blood sets up in his mind a paranoid scene; him, being afraid of every thing. Macbeth thinks what he has done is a terrible thing when he looks at his hands, "This is a sorry sight," although he has brought the daggers out with him which scares Lady Macbeth. She tells Macbeth to go back and "smear the sleepy grooms with blood." Macbeth refuses to go because he is so shook up that he only can stare at his hands. He wants his blood that is on his hands which is full of his sickness and his nervousness off, "Will all great Neptune's ocean wash this blood / clean from my hand?" Macbeth answers his own question saying that this sickness and nervousness on his hands will not go away but it will make the ocean red with this blood, "No; this my hand will rather / the multitudinous seas incarnadine, / making the green one red." Lady Macbeth return's to find her husband obsessed with the blood she has a different feeling about the blood in this scene. Lady Macbeth keeps her composer and puts on a façade to the world. The blood on her seems to not bother her, evil has filled within her and a little blood does not tamper with her emotions. After she smears the guards with the king's blood, she returns to her husband proclaiming him as a coward. She tells her husband that her hands are exactly the same color as his but she is shamed that he has a "white" coward heart, "My hands are of your colour but I shame/ To wear a heart so white." She tells her husband that, "A little water clears us of this deed," and not to worry about anything. The morning after Duncan's death shows many emotions showed through the word "blood." The thanes continue to mourn over the death of Duncan the day after looking for suspects. Ross, a thane, observes the situation, it is dark and dreary the world seems to be in an unnatural state. He says, "Thou seest the heavens, as troubled with man's act, / Threaten his bloody stage," This "blood stage" is the earth that all of us humans act and live our lives. Duncan's murder brings about this stage to become bloody and with some mans act the heavens now appear to be angry. Later in this scene Ross tells Macduff, "Is't known who did this more than bloody deed?" Ross says "more than bloody deed" because Duncan should not have been murdered, which is unnatural, but he should have died naturally. Macbeth is crowned king, he then kills Banquo being afraid of what he shall do to Macbeth, from there he becomes more paranoid and turns his blood to evil. Macbeth sees Banquo and his "gory locks" at a banquet that Macbeth has after he knows that Banquo has died. Lady Macbeth covers for Macbeth and dismisses all the guests, when Macbeth is alone again he thinks about the events that have led up to that point, "they say, blood will have blood" This blood will always seek out revenge on the murderer. Macbeth keeps secret all of his bloody operations and then the bloody ghost arrived to confront him. Macbeth's character has changed from scared to becoming fearless. His guilt was "brought forth" in front of his guest. "Brought forth / The secret'st man of blood." None of this shows any remorse towards his killing though, he knows that he is already in too deep and that the blood will keep on spilling no matter what. He is, "blood/ stepp'd in so far that, should I wade no more, / Returning were as tedious as go o'er." Macbeth chooses to go on because either way there is more blood to be spilled. Lady Macbeth's perspective on blood has also reversed. Lady Macbeth has been going crazy since Macbeth's character has been changing. As Lady Macbeth sleep walks, her maid and a doctor observe her. She rubs her hands together as if she was washing them. She continues to "wash" King Duncan's blood away until she reminds herself of the bell she rang to summon her husband. "Out damned spot! out, I say!" When Lady Macbeth thought of Macbeth being king she thought that no one could oppose his power and killing Duncan wouldn't cause any harm to her. "What need we fear who knows it, what none can call our power to account? "”Yet who would have thought the old man to have so much blood in him?" She although adds that Duncan has a lot of blood and this reminds her of her guilt. This guilt plagues her and she is devastated in her dream when she realizes that, "Here's the smell of blood still: all the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand." Lady Macbeth's perspective changed at this point on blood and she will later commit suicide. Imagery is a useful tool used by many authors. Shakespeare used "blood" as an image throughout his play to show the emotions and actions of characters as well as the mood for that part of the play. This imagery is useful because it describes the characters.   

William Shakespeare's play Macbeth is about a struggle for power in Scotland. Macbeth, the main character, gets prophecies from three witches about his future accomplishments that will come to him. One of his prophecies is that Macbeth will become king, Macbeth hearing this he becomes ambitious and later kills the...

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