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Macbeth A Tragic Hero Essay

597 words - 3 pages

In Macbeth, the imagery of animals behavior and class status advances the theme ofanimals in relation to human characteristics. The examples discussed in my paper willmake it quite clear that this imagery is evident, throughout the play. In Act 1 sc. 3 line 8, the first witch chants and says that the sailor is the master ofthe Tiger. The witch is comparing the man to a Tiger. The tiger is a very good animal andis near the top of the Elizabethan World Picture. Hence the man is good. Furthermorethe witch say's that she herself is like a rat without a tail. Thus she is missing somethingimportant. The witch is ...view middle of the document...

Lady Macbeth is telling Macbeth that he is likethe cat because he wants to become king but he won't get his hands bloody. HoweverLady Macbeth would find someone else to get their feet wet, someone to do her dirtywork. In act 2 scene 4 line 15, the old man and Ross talk about the recent murder. Theold man says that the killer, an owl made sure no one was looking and attacked the falconand killed it. The owl, lower then the falcon on the chain of being usually eats mice, whichis low on the hierarchy. But this time the owl eats the falcon whom is usually on the topof the hierarchy. Later in the play during act 3 Macbeth talks bout the list of dogs and the list ofmen. On line 140 in sc.1 Macbeth compares the murders with the lowliest of dogs. Inthe next act, Act 4 three witches use very lowly animals to describe Macbeths kingship. Insc. 1 lines 1-30 the witches say that Macbeths is very similar to the hedgehog, toads andlizards. These animals describe Macbeth in different ways. The hedge hog shows thatMacbeth is as greedy as a pig. The lizard shows that he is as slippery and slimy as a lizard.Finally the toad might be symbolic of Macbeths soul, his soul is as ugly as a toad. Throughout the play the animals behavior and status relate to humancharacteristics. Sometimes these relationships are very abstract and sometimes they arequite evident. To conclude the animals represent human characteristics very accurately.

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