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Discuss the imagery in Macbeth by William Shakespeare Macbeth is the shortest of William Shakespeares plays yet contains more imagery than any other It was written for James I of England James VI of Scotland and performed before him in 1606 at Hampton Court Palace The play which contains five acts is based on a true story In reality Banquo one of King Jamess ancestors helped to kill King Duncan but Shakespeare changed this as King James may have found it offensive to have descended from the accessory to the murder Shakespeare also incorporated witches into the play as the King was interested in witchcraft and to make the play more exciting for the audience Shakespeare uses lots of Poetry in Macbeth as the Elizabethan audience enjoyed poetry Macbeth also could be interpreted as a moral lesson Regicide in Shakespeares time was viewed as the greatest of crimes - almost like killing god In Elizabethan times it was believed that the king was second in the hierarchy of society bar god - The divine right of Kings Macbeth is the story of a mighty and ambitious warrior He hears a prophecy that one day he shall be king With this in mind Macbeths ambition leads him to murder King Duncan Macbeth is elected King of Scotland but is an evil and unfair monarch Lady Macbeth is even more ambitious than her husband she pressures Macbeth into the murder without hesitation Later on in the play Lady Macbeth becomes sick and obsessed with the murder as evil and greed overpower her and she finally commits suicide As Scotland becomes sick chaos and evil spreads to every corner of the kingdom Throughout the play images of sleep light dark clothing sickness disease are repeated at some stages they are overpowering and repeated The images also highlight the appearance of opposites and parallels appearing and help the audience to become involved in the play
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