In Macbeth, what are three times Macbeth shows his treacherous nature?

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literaturenerd eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Macbeth, in William Shakespeare's tragic play Macbeth, is guilty of treachery. In order to understand the different ways Macbeth was treacherous, one must first understand what the word means.

Treachery is when one betrays the trust of another or when one is deceptive in action or in their nature.

Therefore, based upon these definitions, one can find many different places in the text where Macbeth is treacherous.

1. Macbeth is guilty of treachery when he both plots to murder Duncan and when he actually murders Duncan. By planning to murder Duncan, Macbeth is treacherous. He has betrayed the trust of Duncan simply by planning the murder. Macbeth is also guilty of treachery when he actually goes through with the murder of Duncan.

2. Macbeth is guilty of treachery when he plans the murder of Banquo. Given that Banquo is his friend, Macbeth betrays their friendship by planning his murder. At the same time, Macbeth's treachery grows when the murder is actually carried out.

3. One last example of Macbeth's treacherous nature is the fact that he tried to cover up the fact that he knew about Duncan's murder. Macbeth lied about knowing that Duncan had been murdered.

William Delaney eNotes educator| Certified Educator

If you mean three acts of treachery, Macbeth murders Duncan, has Banquo murdered, and sends soldiers to murder Macduff's wife and children. He also usurps the throne by falsely accusing Duncan's son Malcolm of murdering his father, forcing the young man to flee to England.