Soliloquies Essay - Importance of the First Soliloquy in Macbeth
Following king Duncan's arrival at Inverness,
Macbeth delivers his first major soliloquy. This speech
summarizes his reasons for not wanting to commit murder. It is
also an image of the plot of Macbeth, as it foreshadows the
chain of events that is to follow the murder of Duncan. Although
Macbeth knows that he cannot "trammel up the consequence"
of Duncan's murder and that his actions will have repercussions,
he commits the murder and continues to kill; thus is Macbeth
shown to be a weak character who can be easily convinced to
perform terrible deeds. Although this is not apparent before the
predictions, the moments following them and his …show more content…
Cannot be ill, cannot be good; if ill,
Why hath it given me earnest of success,
Commencing in a truth? I am Thane of Cawdor:
If good, why do I yield to that suggestion
Whose horrid image doth unfix my hair
And make my seated heart knock at my ribs,
Against the use of nature?
Banquo. That, trusted home,
Might yet enkindle you unto the crown,
Besides the Thane of Cawdor. But Ôtis 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.
Macbeth allows himself to be overridden by this "horrid image"
of him murdering Duncan. If he were to have a stronger
character, as does Banquo, he would be able to recognize the
witches as "instruments of darkness" that are merely tempting
him. As it is, he plays their game and follows their plan to the
letter, proof of his moral flaw.
Macbeth says in scene three that he does not need to
do anything to make himself king: "If