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Word Count: 1,397
Tragedy to the ancient Greeks included fate or the gods presenting man with an unavoidable destiny In The Tragedy of Macbeth Shakespeares witches give voice to Macbeths destiny However the unfolding action demonstrates not the inevitability of fate but Macbeths own role in what takes place By establishing an equivocal use of opposing images Shakespeare enhances his development of the conflict between fate and mans choice The continual conflict is designed to keep the tension heightened and prepare the readerviewer for the effects this has on the mind and destiny of man The blending of right and wrong good and evil and a general equivocal position begins with the ominous appearance of the witches in Act I Scene 1 of the play For Shakespeare they serve the role of the Greek gods in ancient tragedy With their comments the battles lost and won Macbeth Ii8 and Fair is foul and foul is fair Ii11 we are prepared for the equivocal uneasiness that pervades the entire work When Banquo describes the witches saying you should be women And yet your beards forbid me to interpret That you are so Iiii45-47 the overall effect of the eeriness and disturbing picture they are to present is completed Banquo shows perceptive insight into the role the witches serve and their potential affecting of the lives of both he and Macbeth when he says But tis strange And oftentimes to win us to our harm The instruments of darkness tell us truths Win us with honest trifles to betray s In deepest consequence Iiii122-125 Banquo here demonstrates a knowledge of the dangers and consequences facing him and Macbeth as they are confronted with a tantalizing hint of a bright future without a full picture Although speaking of someone else Ross comments about that most disloyal traitor The thane of Cawdor Iii52-53 foreshadow Macbeths own traitorous acts Duncan proclaims No more that thane of Cawdor shall
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