Macbeth is a play written by William Shakespeare that is full of imagery. This imagery is used to create a dark and spooky feeling, as well as to add to the characters’ emotions and thoughts. For example, when Macbeth is thinking about killing Duncan, he says:
“To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day
To the last syllable of recorded time,
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
In this passage, Macbeth is describing how life just slowly creeps by, until one day it’s over. He also talks about how life is just a play, and once it’s over, it’s forgotten. This imagery helps to show Macbeth’s dark and desperate state of mind.
Macbeth is a play that is full of bloodshed, and it’s likely only second in gory after his previous work, Titus Andronicus. Blood is not just an important element of the plot for obvious reasons; it’s also used as imagery to represent several different symbols throughout the play. At the start of the drama, blood suggests nobility. Later on, blood appears to suggest treason. Shakespeare uses blood at the conclusion of the drama to depict Macbeth’s guilt for all his cruel and avaricious deeds.
Macbeth is a play full of gruesome, bloody imagery. One of the most famous and quoted examples of Macbeth’s bloody imagery is the dagger scene. Macbeth has just been told by the witches that he will be king, and he is trying to figure out how he can kill Duncan without getting caught. He sees a dagger in the air before him, and he starts to talk to it as if it were an actual person.
” Macbeth: Is this a dagger which I see before me,
The handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee.
I have thee not, and yet I see thee still.
Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible
To feeling as to sight? or art thou but
A dagger of the mind, a false creation,
Proceeding from the heat-oppressed brain?”
Macbeth is trying to figure out if the dagger is real or just a figment of his imagination. He talks to it as if it were an actual person, and he refers to it as “fatal vision.” This shows that Macbeth is starting to become paranoid and that he is seeing things that aren’t really there. The image of the dagger is symbolic of Macbeth’s inner fears and doubts. It represents the darkness and evil that is growing in him.
Another example of Macbeth’s bloody imagery comes later in the play when Macduff discovers that Macbeth has killed his family. Macduff says:
” Macduff: All my pretty ones?
Did you say all? O hell-kite! All?
What, all my pretty chickens and their dam
At one fell swoop?”
Macduff is describing how Macbeth has killed his entire family, including his children. The image of Macbeth killing all of Macduff’s children is very gruesome and violent. It shows the terrible consequences of Macbeth’s thirst for power. Macduff is so angry and upset that he wishes the same death on Macbeth as he did to Macduff’s family.
The first time blood is mentioned in the play occurs when Duncan remarks, “What a bloody man is that?” (1. 2. 1) The King was referring to the brave messenger who had just returned from a war. Soon after, the bloody captain extols Macbeth’s achievements in combat, stating that he wielded his sword “Which smoked with deadly execution” (1. 2. 20), implying that Macbeth’s bravery was demonstrated by his sword smeared with hot enemy blood. After initially signifying valor, blood soon becomes a symbol for treason and treachery.
Macbeth sees Banquo’s ghost covered in blood and comments that, “Thy royal face / Shows like a bloody mask” (3. 4. 50-51). Macduff later speaks of Lady Macbeth as a “fiend-like queen” who was “All full of scorpions is her mind” (5. 5. 15-16), metaphorically referring to her using poisonous language. In the end, Macbeth himself sees blood everywhere, signifying the full extent of his murderous crimes.
Blood is used as an image to represent violence, death, and treachery throughout Macbeth. It eventually becomes a symbol of Macbeth’s guilt and the evil he has unleashed on Scotland. Macbeth’s bloody crimes are finally represented by the bloodstained dagger that he sees before his death.
The English language has a number of terms for blood: “crimson,” “chocolate,” and so on. The name itself is simply the term given to the crimson liquid that oozes from wounds when someone bleeds, which may be used as an indicator of guilt or remorse. Blood’s other meanings include treason, guilt, and regret in act 2. In addition to treason, blood stands for guilt and sorrow in act 2.
Macduff, when speaking to Macbeth about his family’s murder, says “My wife died without issue. MacBeth hath killed my children,” (4. 3. 156) Macduff is hinting that Macbeth will suffer the consequences of his actions, and that he will be punished for the deaths of Macduff’s family.
Finally, blood can also be seen as a symbol of life. For example, after Macduff learns of his family’s death, he says “Glamis hath murdered sleep, and therefore Cawdor shall sleep no more; Macbeth shall sleep no more,” (5. 5. 21-22). Here Macduff is referring to Macbeth’s reign of terror, and how it has caused people to live in fear instead of enjoying life. Macduff is saying that because of Macbeth, there is no peace or rest for anyone.
William Shakespeare’s play Macbeth is full of images that help to convey the themes and ideas of the play. One of the most important images in Macbeth is that of blood. Blood represents treason, guilt, remorse, and life throughout the play. In act one, Lady Macbeth tells Macbeth to “pour on Duncan all the qualities of grief,” (1. 7. 36) in order to make him appear sad and mourning after Duncan’s murder.