Homework Help

Macbeth Act I scene 2: Identify a Literary Device in the scene and explain how the...

user profile pic

simontimon | Honors

Posted May 5, 2012 at 12:42 AM via web

dislike 1 like

Macbeth Act I scene 2: Identify a Literary Device in the scene and explain how the literary device is used in these words?

Give the number of the lines in brackets.

Tagged with act i, literature, macbeth, scene 2

1 Answer | Add Yours

user profile pic

Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 5, 2012 at 2:35 AM (Answer #1)

dislike 1 like

Act 1, Scene 2, from Macbeth is rich in figurative language. 


"And Fortune, on his damned quarrel smiling, showed like a rebel's whore; but at all's too weak" (14-15).  Shakespeare personifies fortune, giving it human-like attributes of quarreling and smiling.  The emotions ascribed to Fortune portray 'him' to be contrary, leaving the reader to understand that not only does fate have a role in the play, but also shows itself to be fickle.


"For brave Macbeth...disdaining fortune, with his brandished steel which smoked with bloody execution" (16-18).    Shakespeare uses descriptive details that appeal to the audience's emotions and imaginations.  Duncan's captain describes Macbeth as "disdaining fortune," which later proves to be ironic since one of Macbeth's tragic flaws is his ambition.  The description of Macbeth's sword as an instrument of execution foreshadows later murderous events in the play. 


Kristen Lentz

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes