Light And Dark Imagery Depicted In Shakespeare's Macbeth

680 words - 3 pages

The natural order of the world is disrupted; this is made obvious from the start of the play. Even though they generally speak in riddle, the three witches are significant characters because of their foresight and knowledge of future atmosphere.

‘Fair is foul and foul is fair.’
~Act 1, Scene 1~

Because this chant is towards the beginning of the play, the audience immediately see the supernatural control over things.
Throughout the play of Macbeth the audience is made aware of the differences in dark and light. This could be seen as being metaphorical for many other binary oppositions one of which being good and evil. This example supports the power of the witches, representing evil and the dark.
Another scene that shows Macbeth is a play of light and dark is act 1 scene 4 Macbeth whispers to himself.

‘Stars; hide your fires / let not light see my black and deep desires’
~Act 1, Scene 4~

The dark is seen as a mask that can disguise and hide, this is foreshadowed when King Duncan at the announcement of his successor says; ‘but signs of nobleness, like stars, shall shine / on all deservers.’ Earlier in that same scene King Duncan continues to suggest that the evil is the dark that hides true motives when he says ‘there’s no art / to find the mind’s construction in the face’ this is supported in other scenes such as when in Lady Macbeth’s soliloquy she asks ‘come thick night / and pall thee … through the blanket of the dark.’
Lady Macbeth is portrayed with sinister intent after she is taken over by evil spirits and she asks them to;

‘Come you spirits / that tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here.’
~Act 1, Scene 5~

After this, Lady Macbeth is seen as possessed by these same spirits; this can be interpreted as the reason she drives Macbeth to kill King Duncan, and later on Macduff’s family and Banquo. However, we do not meet Lady Macbeth before she asks for the spirits to help her, so the audience are...

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