explain two ways in which Lady Macbeth changes during the course of the play

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amy-lepore eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Lady Macbeth is an interesting character.  When we meet her, she is reading Macbeth's letter which tells her of the witches' prophecy.  She decides that Macbeth is too weak to make it happen, so she calls forth the powers of darkness to "unsex me" and make her more like a man so she can do it herself.  She convinces Macbeth that they must take matters into their own hands and murder Duncan to make themselves King and Queen.

The first change we see in her is one of bewilderment and weakness.  She is upset that Macbeth spends too much time away from her and that they are growing apart.  She thinks he is still upset about Duncan's murder, and she is kept in the dark about all the other evil deeds he has been orchestrating.  She is no longer in charge, and is anything but a leader.

The second major change we see in her is the toll guilt has taken on her as she sleepwalks.  The lady in waiting and doctor view this and listen to Lady Macbeth as she talks in her sleep. She has since found out about Banquo's death and the deaths of the MacDuffs.  She is no longer comfortable in the dark, so she carries a candle with her everywhere.  She is tormented by what they have done together and what she knows her husband is responsible for, and this leads to her suicide.