Macbeth21





The Weird Sisters had an influence on Macbeth. The first apparitions made Macbeth greedy. After Macbeth
became king, they influenced him into thinking that he was invincible. This let him make for himself a safe
security which would come back to haunt him, and at the end destroy him. The Weird Sisters shaped the play into
what it is through influencing Macbeth.
The Weird Sisters start the play off. The first thing they do is tell Macbeth that he is going to become
king. This plays a major role in Macbeth s greed. This is also a foreshadowing of things to come. Denton Snider
states: Manifestly the fate of the two heroes is mysteriously wrapped up in these oracles, which in part foreshadow,
and in part cause what they foreshadow (Snider 215). What Denton Snider means is that the witches foreshadow
the play, but also through that the build up the greed to have Macbeth cause what they foreshadow. This supports
my thesis. Since Macbeth knows he is going to become king, he thinks why should he not become king now,
instead of having to wait. Hazlitt stated that the reason for all of Macbeth s crimes were the witches, who surprised
him, and he was impatient to verify their predictions, causing Duncan s murder (Hazlitt 11). Hazlitt noted that in
this statement: "...and from the superstitious awe and breathless suspense into which the communications of the
Weird Sisters throw him, is hurried on with daring impatience to verify their predictions (Hazlitt 11). This quote
shows that the witches have control over Macbeth, since he is thrown into their world and pushed on to verify their
predictions.
Before heading to the very known area, let us explore a different point of view. Did the Weird Sisters
really know that he was going to become king, or were they just playing with his mind? Now that is a very strong
conversation to take up. Most people, if they just took it from the tops of their heads would say yes, they knew
because they were demons or witches. But then, some professors that study Shakespeare say that maybe the witches
did not know, but made accurate predictions. Walter Curry believes that witches cannot read someone s mind, but
by looking at Macbeth s actions they make the apparitions that they believe will work (Curry 63). This quote
explains his ideas: Realizing that he desires the kingdom, they prophesy that he shall be king, thus arousing his
passions and influencing his imagination to the extent that nothing is but what is not (Curry 63). This quote
exactly explains what I am trying to state: that the witches cannot read minds, but they make accurate predictions
of Macbeth s fantasies. Their predictions were correct since they influenced Macbeth.
Macbeth in the beginning was a blameless character. He would not have even thought about becoming
king if the Weird Sisters did not come to him. It was hard for him to believe that he was Thane of Cawdor, and
they said he is going to become king. As Steevens put it: Macbeth deceived by the illusions of witchcraft was a
religious, temperate, and blameless character (Steevens 464). This quote means that Macbeth was a blameless
character, but he was deceived by the Weird Sisters whom made him a murderer.
It is believed that if it were not for the witches Macbeth would not even think of becoming Thane of
Cawdor, and even more king. This shows how the thesis is accurate, showing how the witches shaped the play by
influencing Macbeth. Bradley believes that the witch s apparitions were apparitions alone, and that they were not
the only influence on Macbeth, but instead they were more of a spark. (Bradley 368) This shows that the witches
were not the only influence, but they started everything. How this happened was that after Macbeth found out, he
told his wife, Lady Macbeth, through a letter about the apparitions. When Lady Macbeth found out, she right
away started supporting her husband. Brooks supports this by stating Tempted by the Weird Sisters and urged on
by his wife, Macbeth is caught between the rational and irrational (Brooks 31). This quote states that Macbeth was
tempted by the witches and urged on by his wife, and during all this he felt surrounded not knowing what to do.
Schlegel also supports the theory that Macbeth needed support to kill Duncan: Natural motives alone seem
inadequate (Schlegel 408). The third influence was