Lady Macbeth advises her husband to "Look like the innocent flower, But be the serpent under it." What are examples of things in the modern world that present themselves as "innocent flowers" even...

Lady Macbeth advises her husband to "Look like the innocent flower, But be the serpent under it." What are examples of things in the modern world that present themselves as "innocent flowers" even though they are really "serpents?"

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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

1. Relationships can often present themselves as metaphorical "innocent flowers," even though they are really "serpents." Significant others can initially present themselves as amiable, relatable, honest individuals, but turn out to be malevolent, dishonest, capricious people. Marriages can end in divorce because people initially view their significant others as "innocent flowers" but discover that they are actually harmful "serpents."

2. Business partners can also present themselves as "innocent flowers," even though they are really "serpents." Business partners may be shady and present themselves as legitimate partners while they attempt to steal money or defraud the company.

3. Business deals or contracts can also present themselves as "innocent flowers" and actually be "serpents." Individuals may agree to sign contracts believing they will benefit from them financially, even though they are actually agreeing to bad terms that rob them.

4. Prescription drugs can also present themselves as "innocent flowers" and actually be "serpents." People may initially feel relief from prescription drugs and continue taking more than they are prescribed. People can then become addicted to the prescription drug of their choice, which can ruin their life.

favoritethings eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Politicians sometimes present themselves as "innocent flowers" when they are really "serpents." Before they are elected, some politicians make all kinds of promises to gain votes. After they are elected, though, politicians may neglect to keep their promises because they never intended to in the first place. 

Even a new job could be presented to a candidate as an "innocent flower" but really be a "serpent." If a candidate is offered certain perks or made particular promises about a new role or job, and then the job turns out to be dramatically different — less prestigious or more menial, for example — than they were told, this would qualify.

A house could also appear to be an "innocent flower" but actually be a "serpent." A house might seem like a great investment, and people might believe a particular house would make a wonderful home. If someone buys that house and later learns it needs a new roof, has cracks in the foundation, or faulty wiring, the house could easily be revealed as a serpent that will ruin the new owner's finances.

These are all examples of things that look good but are actually bad, just as Lady Macbeth tells Macbeth to be before they murder Duncan.

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Macbeth

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