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In the Tragedy of Macbeth Why do you think Macbeth is so quick to take the witches’...

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akorkis | Student, Undergraduate | eNoter

Posted January 23, 2012 at 12:44 AM via web

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In the Tragedy of Macbeth

Why do you think Macbeth is so quick to take the witches’ predictions seriously?

Act 1 Scene 1, 2, and 3

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William Delaney | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted January 23, 2012 at 1:57 AM (Answer #1)

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I think it is common to take predictions seriously--e.g., horoscope predictions in the newspapers--if they suggest something we have already been thinking about doing. Macbeth has probably been toying with the notion of getting the throne by one means or another. He could have been thinking of leading a coup d'etat or of murdering Duncan. Evidently he has discussed these matters with his wife and she has been encouraging him to act. See all of Act 1, Scene 5. The witches frighten him because they seem to be reading his mind.

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