The Tragedy of Macbeth by William Shakespeare - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

1 / 27
About This Presentation

The Tragedy of Macbeth by William Shakespeare


The Tragedy of Macbeth by William Shakespeare – PowerPoint PPT presentation

Number of Views:226
Avg rating:3.0/5.0
Slides: 28
Provided by: SJW8


Transcript and Presenter's Notes

Title: The Tragedy of Macbeth by William Shakespeare

The Tragedy of Macbeth by William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
  • 1564-1616
  • There have been more words written about the
    English playwright William Shakespeare than about
    any other artist in history.
  • He wrote 37 plays, 2 long narrative poems, and
    154 sonnets all within a period of 23 years.
  • Many details of Shakespeares private life are
    shrouded in mystery.
  • Although he was married with three children, most
    scholars agree that many of his sonnets (love
    poems) were written about a man.
  • The time period in which Shakespeare lived is
    often referred to as the Elizabethan Era,
    referring to the reign of Queen Elizabeth I of
    England (1558-1603).

. . . Not of an age, but for all time.
- Ben Johnson
  • As the play begins, Macbeth is a noble and
    valiant captain who loyally serves King Duncan of
  • However, Macbeths ambition soon makes him hunger
    for greater power.
  • Provoked by his equally ambitious wife and
    encouraged by the prophecies of three witches,
    Macbeth murders Duncan and becomes king.

  • Next, Macbeth kills his former comrade-in-arms,
    Banquo, because he fears that Banquo suspects
    what he has done
  • Macbeth attempts to scare another perceived
    threat Macduff, by slaughtering the noblemans
  • Driven mad by guilt, Lady Macbeth commits
    suicide, while Macbeth continues desperately
    along a course of destruction.

  • Finally, Macduff and his supporters successfully
    besiege Macbeths castle.
  • After Macduff slays Macbeth, Duncans son Malcolm
    is proclaimed king.

The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act II Sources of the
A Play Based in History
  • Shakespeare based the main events in Macbeth on a
    book by Raphael Holinshed called Chronicles of
    England, Scotland, and Ireland.
  • Shakespeare used this book as a source for many
    of his plays.

The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act II Sources of the
Macbeth for Real
Macbeth was the real-life king of Scotland from
1040 to 1057.
However, the historical Macbeth
  • had a legitimate claim to Duncans throne
  • gained the throne with the help of other nobles
  • ruled rather successfully

The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act II Sources of the
Shakespeares Macbeth
Given the historical facts, why did Shakespeare
  • paint Macbeth as such an evil, power-hungry man?
  • give him no political allies?
  • develop Lady Macbeth into such a ruthless and
    ambitious character?
  • depict Macbeths reign as bringing nothing but
    disaster to Scotland?

The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act II Sources of the
Backdrop for the Play
In the Gunpowder Plot of 1605, several Catholic
zealots plottedunsuccessfullyto blow up King
James I and his Protestant Parliament.
King James I
The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act II Sources of the
Creative License
  • Shakespeare probably altered Holinsheds story in
    order to create a play that would
  • denounce the Gunpowder Plot specifically
  • comment on threats to an anointed king in general

By making Macbeth evil and the consequences of
his actions devastating, Shakespeare in effect
paid homage to the reigning king, James I.
The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act II Sources of the
A Play About People
Shakespeare was more interested in psychological
truth than in historical fact.
Macbeth may not be historically accurate, but it
is about real peoplemen and women tempted by
power and caught in a web of their own desires.
The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act I Introducing the
You cannot have power for good without having
power for evil too. George Bernard Shaw
The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act I Introducing the
The Domino Effect
Have you ever wondered . . .
how just one action might affect the entire
course of your life?
Can one selfish impulse lead to a chain of
decisions you will later regret?
The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act I Introducing the
The Domino Effect
In Macbeth a brave and accomplished nobleman . . .
  • deliberately murders someone to whom he should be
  • must then kill two other innocent men as a
  • finds he cannot turn away from his evil course

Where will this horrific chain of events lead?
What will the consequences be for the main
The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act I Introducing the
Amid thunder and lightning a trio of witches
arranges to meet after a battle.
At a military camp, King Duncan learns that his
generals, Macbeth and Banquo, have defeated the
The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act I Introducing the
On the heath the witches offer a prophecy. They
tell Macbeth and Banquo that Macbeth will be king
of Scotland and that Banquo will beget rulers.
Will the prophecy of the witches come true? Will
Macbeths destiny be fulfilled?
Macbeth Quick Facts
  • Protagonist   Macbeth
  •  Major conflict   The struggle within Macbeth
    between his ambition and his sense of right and
  •  Climax  Macbeths murder of Duncan in Act II
    represents the point of no return, after which
    Macbeth is forced to continue butchering his
    subjects to avoid the consequences of his crime. 
  • Theme   The corrupting nature of unchecked
  • Motifs   The supernatural, hallucinations,
    violence, prophecy
  • Symbols   Blood the dagger the weather 
  • Type of work   Play
  • Genre   Tragedy
  • Language   English
  • Time and place written   1606, England
  • Tone   Dark and ominous, suggestive of a world
    turned topsy-turvy by foul and unnatural crimes
  • Setting (time)   The Middle Ages, specifically
    the eleventh century
  • Setting (place)   Various locations in Scotland
    also England, briefly

The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act I Literary Focus
Tragedya literary work depicting serious
events, in which the main character, who is often
a high-ranking, dignified person, comes to an
unhappy end
The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act I Literary Focus
In a tragedy
  • ill-judged human actions lead to inevitable
    catastrophe, usually including one or more deaths
  • the characters bad deeds, crimes, and mistakes
    are never forgiven or rectified

By contrast, in a comedy
  • the characters can do as they please as long as
    they amuse the audience
  • the funny mess is easily cleaned up at the end

Act I Audio
MACBETHAct 1 Quick Review
When shall we three meet again, in thunder,
lightening, or in rain?
When the hurlyburlys done,when the battles lost
and won.
They agree to meet later on that day, in order to
speak to a man named Macbeth.
On a desolate heath in Scotland, three witches
discuss their plans.
That will be ere the set of sun.
News of Scotlands victory in battle reaches the
King, Duncan. He hears of the bravery of Macbeth
and Banquo and tells a nobleman, Ross, to go to
Macbeth and give him the title of Thane of
Cawdor as a reward. The man who used to hold
this title has been found to be a traitor, and is
The witches meet Macbeth and Banquo. They amaze
Macbeth by calling him...
Thane of Cawdor
and say that sometime in the future he
will,himself, be King.
They tell Banquo he will be the father of Kings,
but vanish when Macbeth starts to question them.
Macbeth is already Thane of Glamis.
Ross then enters and tells Macbeth that he is
now Thane of Cawdor.
This news disturbs him, as the prophecies are
proving to be true.
When Macbeth and Banquo are welcomed by King
Duncan, he thanks them deeply and then names
Malcolm, his son, as his heir. Macbeth admits, to
himself, that this is an obstacle to his own
ambition. He leaves to go home to Inverness, to
prepare for the Kings visit.
At Inverness, Lady Macbeth learns of all these
events and plans to persuade her husband to kill
the King that night.
When Macbeth arrives she suggests this, and then
welcomes Duncan into their castle.
Macbeth tries to prepare himself for the murder,
debating with himself, and then his wife.
Cleverly, she persuades him to do it.
Write a Comment
User Comments (0)