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Macbeth- Hamartia Essay

  • Submitted by: samsisonx
  • on August 17, 2015
  • Category: Shakespeare
  • Length: 1,622 words

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Below is an essay on "Macbeth- Hamartia" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

The notion of a tragic hero was studied among other notions in Greek Mythology. Aristotle, a Greek philosopher and scientist shared his ideas on the characteristics of a tragic hero, stating "a man doesn't become a hero, until he sees the root of his downfall" . The Greek definition of a tragic hero is "a person of noble birth with heroic or potentially heroic qualities, this person is fated by the Gods or some supernatural force to doom and destruction or to great suffering, but the hero struggles mightily against this fate and this cosmic conflict wins our admiration." In the Elizabethan era; poet and scriptwriter, William Shakespeare applied these characteristics to the Scottish warrior Macbeth. Macbeth is a tragic hero because he is perceived as the saviour of Scotland with almighty potential, but falls into the dark and selfish instincts of his conscience, as he affirmed “the firstling of my heart shall be the firstlings of my hand” (Act IV. Scene I); markedly led by the witches prophecies, and his wife’s imperious nature. All that is left in the end is the guilt and shame he has brought to Scotland as a deranged King.

Initially, Macbeth is portrayed as the gallant warrior of Scotland, well-regarded for his valour and talent; unlike the thane of Cawdor. The Thane of Cawdor was perceived to have committed treason, granted that he led the Scottish Army into a fight they weren’t capable of winning. This is explicitly stated by Ross to Macduff as he asserted “The thane of Cawdor, began a dismal conflict”(Act I. Scene II). On the contrary, Macbeth led the discouraged Scottish Army into victory against the Norwegians; thus saving Scotland, and consequently Duncan’s life. Provided that he saved Scotland; Duncan gave the title Thane of Cawdor to Macbeth as he significantly stated “No more that Thane of Cawdor shall deceive, Our bosom interest:go pronounce his present death, And with this former title great Macbeth.” (Act I Scene II). Duncan then confronts Macbeth;...

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