In the tragic play “Macbeth”, Shakespeare greatly illustrates and effectively deepens our understanding of themes. The main themes in this play are the conflict between good and evil, fate/self determination and ambition. The fight between good and evil is portrayed through the constant decisions Macbeth makes, and if he can ignore the temptation of evil during the process (which he fails to do). Fate and self-determination is shown through Macbeth trying to resist the temptation of evil or if it is useless to even try’.
Lastly ambition is presented through the extremity Lady Macbeth and Macbeth would go through to make themselves king and queen. Macbeth is a prime example Of how one man, who was considered a great hero and a respectable man, can lose the fight of good versus evil by giving into the temptations of evil. The main character, Macbeth, conscientiously makes decisions that continuously push him towards evil, until he is finally engulfed by it, and it all begins when the three witches greet him and Banquet and tell them of the prophecies.
The witches then leave Banquet and Macbeth guzzled and full of doubt, until a messenger arrives and notifies Macbeth of his new title, Thane of Castor, just as the witches had prophesied. This event plants the seed of ambition in Macbeth, who begins to experience inner turmoil as the idea of killing his king, and thus hastening the prophecy, takes shape, but smart Banquet gives him advice “Oftentimes, to win us to our harm, the instruments of darkness tells us truths”.
Banquet warns that “the instruments of darkness” do not necessarily have to lie, but sometimes say true things in order to tempt people into harming themselves and making woeful things happen, but Macbeth does not listen and begins to plot King Dunce’s murder. Metaphor is used here to show the similarities be;en the witches and instruments, as they are both alluring and convincing.
Verbal irony is used here to say that there is another “instrument”, which is Lady Macbeth, another person who led Macbeth to further darkness. Macbeth was not born evil. At the start of the play Macbeth was a worthy and honorable man. The moment he hears the prophecies of the three witches, he begins his journey towards evil. The metaphoric language Macbeth uses hen he says that the right of ascendancy is “A step on which must fall down, or else Orleans” shows his struggles between good and evil.
He now has another obstacle to pass in order to be king, and even while he does want to be king, he still shows signs of goodness and sanity in him by asking himself if he should or not kill to achieve his dream. It was only the little nudge he gets from his wife, Lady Macbeth, that he finally completes his transformation into an evil man by having her question his masculinity with rhetorical questions “Was the hope drunk? ” and ‘When you durst do it you ere a man?