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Macbeth - Characters in the First Three Acts
Compare and contrast the characters of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth in the first three Acts of Macbeth.
Macbeth, the tragedy, is a penetrating, concentrated, and harrowing study of ambition. The play itself tells the story of a man, urged by his wife and foretold by prophecy, who commits regicide in order to gain power. His ostentatious appetite for domination only leads to his triumphal downfall deeming he and his wife naught but the, "dead butcher and his fiend like queen." However, the final analogy is a product of circumstantial change made evident in the first three acts.
Macbeth is a basically good man who is troubled by his conscience and loyalty though at the same time ambitious and murderous. He is led to evil initially by the witches' prophecies, and then by his wife's provocation, which he succumbs to because of the unrequited love he has for her. In retrospect, Lady Macbeth, whilst appearing patronising and manipulative, is in essence, a good wife who loves her husband. She is also ambitious but lacks the morals and integrity her husband posesses. To achieve her ambition, she rids of herself of any kindness that might stand in the way. However, she runs out of energy to supress her conscience and commits suicide.
A foundation reputation for Macbeth is fashioned before he comes on to the stage. The Sergeant who has fought on his side harps about Macbethís valour in war, "But allís too weak | For brave Ma...