How does the killing of Lady Macduff differ from the previous killings in what it reaveals about Macbeth's personality and conditions in Scotland?
Brutal and treacherous though it was, Macbeth's killing Duncan had a certain cold logic to it. Duncan was king, and Macbeth wanted to be king, so the only way Macbeth could make that happen was to have Duncan assassinated. So he did. The killing of Lady Macduff and her children, however, is a completely different story. Their murder has no justification whatsoever—not even from a political angle. It's nothing more than a cold-blooded act of revenge in response to Macduff's sudden flight to England, where he intends to join up with other Scottish rebels.
The murder of Macduff's family illustrates just how much of a tyrant Macbeth has become. He's chosen to take his stand with the forces of darkness (as personified by the Weird Sisters), and as such he has effectively sold his soul to the devil in return for the Scottish throne. If...
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