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Dec 29, 2001 06:56 AM 10415 Views
(Updated Dec 29, 2001 07:03 AM)



Why is the bard-of-avon,the husband of Anne Hathway such a great literateur?Well for one his complete grasp of the human mind is without peer.His ability to combine the pyrotechnics to please the rabblerousers and yet be sublime was an unique gift.His use of imagery,references to classical history and his understanding of the stage and props makes him the most celebrated dramatist ever.

'Macbeth',a tragedy in five acts is about the life and times of the Thane of Glamis,who lives at Inverness,Scotland.This nobleman Macbeth has a very harridan type spouse much like Goneril and Regan in 'King Lear'.A great victory over the tyrant Thane of Cawdor at Macbeth's hands convinces Duncan,scottish monarch Duncan that Macbeth should be the new Thane of Cawdor.Macbeth,who has overheard witches making prophesies about his future kingship invites Duncan to Inverness along with his sons and grooms.Also invited is another thane Banquo,whom Macbeth despises and Macduff.

In the meanwhile Lady Macbeth(LM) tries to convince her husband to kill Duncan.Macbeth is indebted to Duncan and is thus hesitant.But LM,a barren woman eggs him on by saying that she would kill 'the baby she has given suck',if she had determined to do it.In the dead of the night Macbeth kills Duncan and also the grooms who are blamed for the murder.

LM faints when the news is broken to her in public.Since Macbeth is next in line,he proceeds to Dunsinane to take charge as king.Here he throws a lavish banquet.Banquo and son are invited.While coming to Dunsinane on horseback they are murdered by four killers one of whom is Macbeth himself.

As the party sits down to eat,the ghost of Banquo appears to Macbeth.The invitees think that he is going crazy.

The remorse process is now in full swing.LM is driven to suicide by swallowing hot coals.Macbeth tries everything to protect his suzerainty,including attempting murder of Malcolm,Duncan's son who flees to England.

Macbeth meets the witches again and comes to know that his end will come when Birnam wood comes to Dunsinane.Thinking that impossible he wages war against Macduff and who as witches foretold was 'drawn from his mother's stomach'.As Macduff's warriors covered in camouflage leaves emerge from Birnam wood,Macbeth thinks his end is near and panics.In the end,Macduff chops off his head and Malcolm is declared king of Scotland.

A few points about Macbeth.This was written at a time when the king was like God.Yet,the bard was clever enough to package the antics of king Macbeth in such human clothing that he became a real,credible man.One senses Macbeth's dilemma as the attempts of a childless man to achieve eternal glory.The drama has moments of gore,funny moments like the porter scene and ofcourse gruesome scene of Macduff holding Macbeth's severed head.


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MacBeth - William Shakespeare