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The Tragedy of Macbeth

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Full title

Macbeth

Author

William Shakespeare

Type of work

Play

Genre

Tragedy

Language

English

Time and place written

1606, England

Date of first publication

First Folio edition, 1623

Publisher

John Heminges and Henry Condell, two senior members of Shakespeare's acting troupe

Narrator

Not applicable (drama)

Point of view

Not applicable (drama)

Tone

Dark and ominous, suggestive of a world turned topsy-turvy by foul and unnatural crimes

Tense

Not applicable (drama)

Setting (time)

The Middle Ages, specifically the eleventh century

Setting (place)

Various locations in Scotland; also England, briefly

Protagonist

Macbeth

Major conflicts

The struggle within Macbeth between his ambition and his sense of right and wrong; the struggle between the murderous evil represented by Macbeth and Lady Macbeth and the best interests of the nation, represented by Malcolm and Macduff

Rising action

Macbeth and Banquo's encounter with the witches initiates both conflicts; Lady Macbeth’s speeches goad Macbeth into murdering Duncan and seizing the crown.

Climax

Macbeth's murder of Duncan in Act II represents the point of no return, after which Macbeth is forced to continue butchering his subjects to avoid the consequences of his crime.

Falling action

Macbeth's increasingly brutal murders (of Duncan's servants, Banquo, Lady Macduff and her son); Macbeth's second meeting with the witches Macbeth's final confrontation with Macduff and the opposing armies

Themes

The corrupting nature of unchecked ambition; the relationship between cruelty and masculinity; the difference between kingship and tyranny

Motifs

The supernatural, hallucinations, violence, prophecy

Symbols

Blood; the dagger that Macbeth sees just before he kills Duncan in Act II; the weather

Foreshadowing

The bloody battle in Act I foreshadows the bloody murders later on; when Macbeth thinks he hears a voice while killing Duncan, it foreshadows the insomnia that plagues Macbeth and his wife; Macduff's suspicions of Macbeth after Duncan's murder foreshadow his later opposition to Macbeth; all of the witches' prophecies foreshadow later events.

Free Printable Word Search Puzzles
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Shakespeare: Macbeth
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Find and circle all of the words relating to Macbeth that are hidden in the grid.
The remaining letters spell a secret message - a quotation from Macbeth.
 
Note: MACBETH and LADY MACBETH are hidden separately and do not overlap. The same goes for MACDUFF and LADY MACDUFF.
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word search puzzle
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ANGUS
APPARITIONS
BANQUO
BIRNAM WOOD
BLOOD
CAITHNESS
CAPTAIN
CASTLE
CAULDRON
CAWDOR
COLMEKILL
CONSCIENCE
CUMBERLAND
spacer DAGGER
DOCTOR
DONALBAIN
DUNCAN
DUNSINANE
ENGLAND
FLEANCE
GENTLEWOMAN
GLAMIS
GUILT
HEATH
HECATE
INVERNESS
spacer IRELAND
LADY MACBETH
LADY MACDUFF
LENNOX
MACBETH
MACDUFF
MADNESS
MALCOLM
MENTEITH
MURDERERS
NORWAY
PORTER
PROPHECY
spacer QUEEN
REGICIDE
ROSS
SCONE
SCOTLAND
SEYTON
SIWARD
SLEEPWALKING
SOLILOQUY
THANE
WEIRD SISTERS
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