All things have an appearance, usually a good or a bad one. Depending on the appearance something has we form an opinion about it. Sometimes the appearance something has can mislead one in forming an accurate opinion about it. In Macbeth, Shakespeare shows us that things are not always as they appear to be. This is shown through the duplicity of Macbeth and his wife, the king’s sons and the servants being blamed for Duncan’s death and King Duncan’s inaccurate opinions.
In the beginning of the play Macbeth is a well respected hero who appears to be a great man.
However, by the end of the play it is clear that Macbeth is a selfish, troubled man with a conscience that seems to serve no purpose. In Act 1, Scene 2, Macbeth tells how he must hide his dark side from the world. “Away, and mock the time with fairest show, False face must hide what the false heart doth know.
” In Act 2, Scene 3, Macbeth does well in hiding his dark side before finding the dead king with Macduff. “Is the king stirring, worthy Thane? ” asks Macduff. “Not yet,” replies Macbeth. — “Goes the king hence today? ” asks Lenox. “He does-he did appoint so. ” answers Macbeth.
Although Macbeth has full knowledge of the king’s death, he plays it off well and appears to know nothing. Lady Macbeth appears to be a nice hospitable woman. However, her heart is dark and full of evil.
In Act 1, Scene 6, the king talks to Lady Macbeth, telling her of the honour and love that he has for her. “See, see, our honoured hostess. – The love That follows us sometime is our trouble, Which still we thank as love. Herein I teach you How you shall bid God yield us for your pains And thank us for your trouble. ” His opinion of Lady Macbeth highly exceeds that of which it should.
He has such a high opinion of Lady Macbeth because he is misled by her good appearance. It is ironic that Duncan thinks so highly of Macbeth and his wife, as in Act 1, Scene 4, when he says. “There’s no art To find the mind’s construction in the face. ” This is ironic because it directly applies to the king and Macbeth, which is that, the king does not know Macbeth’s true mind construction. It is also ironic that he gets a good feeling about being at Macbeth’s castle and also that Banquo sees a temple-haunting martlet outside of the castle, the martlet suggesting heaven’s invitation to the castle.
This is ironic because Macbeth and his wife are inside planning Duncan’s murder as he sits outside with Banquo talking about his good feelings about the castle. Macbeth’s castle appears to be a good, safe place to Duncan, when in actuality it is the place where he will be slain. There are some characters in Macbeth who appear to be guilty of something although they are not. The two servants are found disoriented and covered with the king’s blood in the morning which makes them appear to be the murderers. Malcolm and Donaldbain are next in line to the throne, so they appear to be the ones who had the servants kill the king.
Macbeth and his wife appeared to be honourable people. Even so, they had wicked hearts. The castle appeared to be a safe place, but it actually turned out to be the king’s meeting place with death. The king’s sons appeared to be the murderers though they had done nothing wrong. From the evidence gathered it is clear that things aren’t always as they appear to be. Because of this, it is important that we take care in forming opinions which are based on appearance alone. More importantly, we should not weigh appearances too heavily because of the inaccuracy that our opinions may have.