Macbeth's Guilty Conscience

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William Shakespeare was considered to be the most famous English playwright and poet of all time. His prolific works comprise of 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems and other verses that continue to be commended up to this day. In his later years, he began to compose tragedies. These compositions present universal disposition in its characters when they are put in difficult situations, most resulting in fatal conclusions. One of his shortest and most brutal tragedies is Macbeth, which tells of a Scottish general who is told of a prophecy that he will become the king of Scotland. His erroneous decisions and the influence his demanding wife lead him to murder King Duncan along with those who stand in the way of his kingship. Guilt…show more content…
He envisions an image of a bloody dagger that points towards the direction of his destination. Macbeth’s conscience reflects his inconclusive thoughts towards his first killing. This gives him the option to repudiate the plan. His conscious continues to evoke him of his wrongdoing even after the deed is done, “Sleep no more! Macbeth does murder sleep – the innocent sleep, Sleep that knits up the raveled sleave of care, The death of each day’s life, sore labor’s bath, Balm of hurt minds, great nature’s second course, Chief nourisher in life’s feast” (2.2.35-40). Sleep will no longer be a retreat for them to return to. Instead it will bring about insomnia for him and Lady Macbeth because of their increasing anxiety. Sleep is granted a whole new meaning since it won’t be a time of rest and escape. Owing to the fact that Macbeth murdered the King, he also murdered sleep because of the accumulation of regret. Lady Macbeth also ignores the warnings of the resemblance of Duncan to her father when she sees him asleep in his chamber. She deserts morality in exchange for strength to overcome her indecision. Their lost of innocence will later cause them to commit more bloodshed. Sleep has lost its rejuvenating sense in which Macbeth will never be able to reach the state of
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