Macbeth - the Act of Regicide

‘As soon as the Macbeths became accomplices in regicide their relationship irretrievably falls apart.’

William Shakespeare’s tragedy Macbeth tells the story of what power and greed can do. The play takes us on a journey of many different themes including honesty, loyalty, ambition and greed. It explores the consequences these all have on Macbeth and his wife. The act of committing regicide was the point at which the Macbeths’ relationship really began to fall apart. Initially, there was a lot of love between the Macbeths however the witches’ prophecies, combined with the regicide of King Duncan, caused a range of effects but what are very noticeable are the significant effects it had on both the relationship and the Macbeths’ as characters. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth appear to have had opposite reactions to the murder, with Macbeth turning into a man who would not hesitate to kill anyone who may stand in his way, Lady Macbeth, however, became so consumed with guilt at what had been done that it eventually lead to taking her own life. Though there may have been other factors that contributed to the fall of the relationship, the changes in the Macbeths after the regicide were the most significant.

Before the regicide of King Duncan the Macbeths saw each other as equals and appeared to share a love for each other untainted by evil. It is evident that the Macbeths loved each other at the start of the play and viewed each other with love and happiness and that there were no ill feelings to be seen. Macbeth is made out to be a romantic man who truly loves his wife and this love was reciprocated. In Act 1 of the play, after hearing the witches’ prophecies, Macbeth writes to his wife to share the witches’ predictions and his thoughts. Macbeth also looks to and relies on her heavily for advice on what to do and values her opinion quite a lot. He refers to Lady Macbeth as “. . . my dearest partner of greatness” and this illustrates his view of her as an equal and does...