In Macbeth, are the reasons that Macbeth offers for killing the guards believable or realistic?

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teachertaylor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Macbeth, Macbeth kills the guards while the other people at his castle woe the death of Duncan.  When Macbeth rejoins the group, he tells everyone that he killed the guards.  Macduff asks Macbeth why he felt the need to do this, and Macbeth tells him and the others that he was compelled to act based on his love for King Duncan.  He says that he had a storm of emotions including fury and sadness, so he killed the guards to get revenge for the fallen king.  Keeping in mind that the other characters obviously do not know that Macbeth is the real murderer, Macbeth's reasons seem realistic.  In the previous Act, King Duncan honored Macbeth for his valiant fighting on the battlefield and for his continued loyalty to Scotland.  The others see Macbeth as an honored nobleman, so for this reason, his actions seem realistic and believable.