Practice Essay


Having Power and seeking security can be quite harmful – Especially when you strive to gain power at any cost.

Shakespeare demonstrates this idea throughout the play Macbeth, using Macbeth’s descended into insanity and a range of language features, Shakespeare demonstrates this idea.

Paragraph 1:

During the beginning of the play (Act 1, Scene 2) you are met with Duncan, Malcolm and the Captain. They are talking about how the war is at a stand still Captain “Doubtful it stood, As two spent swimmers, that do cling together And choke their art.” The literary device is a simile (he is refusing the battle to, 2 drowning swimmers that fighting each other to stay above water). The captain then goes onto talk about the turning of the tides, what had happened to seal Scottish victory, Captain “For Brave Macbeth, Disdaining Fortune, with his brandished steel, which smoked with bloody execution, Like Valour’s minion, carved out his passage, Till he faced the slave”, the captain referring to Macbeth as ‘Valour’s minion’ is suggesting that Macbeth’s actions were so brave that only a servant of Bravery itself could fulfill the actions that Macbeth achieved. All this praise is well deserved, Macbeth fighting carving a path through an army to reach the scoundrel the Thane of Cawdor, who had betrayed Duncan and sided with the enemy, Norway, blood smoking off his brandished steel Macbeth striked down the former Thane of Cawdor, Claiming victory to Scotland.

Paragraph 2:

Macbeth and Banquo are first introduced to the witches (for Banquo the first and the last) after the battle is one when they both are celebrating the victory (Act 1 Scene 3). The way Banquo and Macbeth describe the witches is an indication of how supernatural they are, Banquo “What are these, So withered and so wild in their attire That look not like th’ inhabitants o’ the earth And yet are on ‘t – (He speaks to the witches) Live you? or are you aught” at first glance Banquo is confident that these things are not of this earth and yet he is witnessing their presence in front of him. He then goes on to describe the witches in detail, Banquo “By each at once her choppy finger laying Upon her skinny lips: you should be women, And yet your beards forbid me to interpret That you are so.” Banquo is confused about their appearance because they look like women beside the beard across their face. Macbeth then confronts the witches to speak if they can, Witch 1 “All hail, Macbeth! hail to thee, Thane of Glamis!”Witch 2, All hail, Macbeth! hail to thee, Thane of Cawdor!”Witch 3 “All hail, Macbeth! that shalt be king hereafter”, Macbeth would be quite happy with this, he would be announced Thane of Cawdor and King, this sets the seed for Macbeth’s ambition to become king at any cost. Banquo wasnt as convinced, Banquo “Are ye fantastical, or that indeed Which outwardly ye show? My noble partner You greet with present grace, and great prediction Of noble having and royal hope…:to me you speak not. If you can look into the seed of time, And see which grain will grow, and which grain wont, Speak the to me,…” with this remark the witches state that, Witch 2 “Not so Happy yet much happier”Witch 3 “Thou shalt get kings, though thou be non: So all hail Macbeth and Banquo!, this imply that Banquo won’t be king “Not so Happy…” but will have descendents who will be kings, “Thou shalt get kings, though thou be non…”. After meeting with the witches Macbeth and Banquo are then located in King Duncan’s Palace with the king and his men, in this scene Macbeth is announced Thane of Cawdor, a prediction that the witches made that has been fulfilled. With this Macbeth decides to tell his wife about what has occurred and that King Duncan will be joining them at their castle.

Paragraph 3:

Once Macbeth has returned back to his castle his wife greets him but then ridicules him about how he is weak and wont strive to achieve success “Your face, My thane, is a book, where men May read strange matters. To beguile the time, look like the time, bear welcome in yout eye”

One Comment

  1. Your idea and paragraph one are excellent.

    Paragraph two has strengths and weaknesses. The strength is in the accuracy of your observations and the level of detailed evidence you offer. Where it goes off-track though, is that it becomes a bit of a summary of the plot. Remember your essay is about the language effects that Shakespeare uses. In your first paragraph you clearly identify the use of simile (arguably, this is a metaphor) – this is what you must do for all your quotes – explore the language effects – or explore the dramatic techniques, like soliloquy or dramatic irony – that Shakespeare uses to convey these ideas.

    Let me know if you’d like my assistance to identify and name these. Also, have a look back at the plan we wrote together, and see if that helps you keep to the topic.

    The language you are using to express yourself is strong.



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