What are some "Virtues of Kingship" seen in the play Macbeth?

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teachertaylor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Act 4 Scene 3 of Macbeth, Malcolm details for Macduff the "king-becoming graces" that one must have when he rules.  Malcolm claims that a king must have "justice, verity, temp'rance, stableness, bounty, perseverance, mercy, lowliness, devotion, patience, courage, [and] fortitude."  Malcolm claims to have none of these traits.  However, his father Duncan had several of them.  For example, when King Duncan realizes that Macbeth has fought valiantly for the Scottish army, he decides to reward Macbeth by giving him an additional title.  Duncan exhibits his kingly graces by honoring the man who has fought on behalf of the kingdom.  Similarly, although Malcolm feels that he has none of these traits, he manages to exhibit them at the end of the play when the English army rushes in to overtake Macbeth.  Malcolm is brave and seeks justice for the homeland that has been disgraced by Macbeth's greed and ambition.

kc4u | Student

To what has been said and explained in the previous post, I would like to add the exemplary virtues of the English King, the virtues of caring and curing his people and contributing to the battle against evil as embodied by Macbeth. In sharp opposition to the killing tyrant of Scotland, the English King is like a healing deity. Having possessed the divine benediction, the saint-like king of England cures his people suffering from incurable maladies with the graceful healing touch of his hands. The English King thus becomes an ideal example of the idea of divine kingship.