What is Macbeth's reaction to Duncan's murder? How does Macbeth feel after Duncan's death?  

Expert Answers info

William Delaney eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write5,416 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Macbeth's strongest reaction to Duncan's murder does not come over him until Macduff discovers the King's dead body and raises a general alarm. Macbeth didn't want to be present when this happened, but the knocking at the gate forced him to stop playing possum and come down to see why nobody was opening the gate. Macbeth expresses his feelings in the following lines in Act 2, Scene 3:

Had I but died an hour before this chance,
I had lived a blessed time; for from this instant
There's nothing serious in mortality.
All is but toys. Renown and grace is dead.
The wine of life is drawn, and the mere lees
Is...

(The entire section contains 4 answers and 632 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Kristen Lentz eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2012

write2,471 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences




Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

litteacher8 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2008

write15,968 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Queen Langosh eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write5,603 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial


bandana | Student

After murdering Duncan,Macbeth becomes aware of the sin he has committed and the goodness and peace he has lost for ever.He cannot say 'Amen' when he hears a prayer.He feels that Duncan has escaped all cares and worries of life which he is left to bear.He has to carry his cross.He contrasts Duncan's serene face with his own guilt laced visage silently and says,"There lies Duncan/After life's fitful fever he sleeps well."He is jealous that Duncan has escaped the fever and frets of life to death's dateless night where he will lie in eternal sleep.