Can anyone tell me a short summary of Macbeth please?

1 Answer
Oct 11, 2017

I can give a short summary.


Macbeth is a Shakesperean tragedy. It involves the inevitable fate of someone, Macbeth, who challenges the natural order of things.

Macbeth defeats the enemies of King Duncan when all seems lost. He is greeted by the witches after the battle and declared Thane of Glamis, Thane of Cawdor and the future king of Scotland.

Macbeth reacts in a way which surprises his companion Banquo. This is because it reflects his own secret ambitions, namely to become king.

Duncan stays overnight at Macbeth's castle. Encouraged by his wife Lady Macbeth who is also ambitious for power. Macbeth murders Duncan and lays the blame on Duncan's guards who he kills.

So begins an inevitable downward spiral for both into increasing violence, isolation, madness and death.

Macbeth murders anyone who he sees as a potential rival including Macduff's wife and children. He also has Banquo murdered but his son Fleance escapes. This confirms the prophecy of the witches that Banquo's line would produce future kings.

Macbeth is eventually isolated as all desert him. His wife, now insane, dies. Macbeth confronts the opposing army safe in the knowledge that, as the witches predicted, no man born of woman can kill him. When he fights Macduff, the latter tells Macbeth that he was born by what we would know call Caeserean.

Macbeth knows his fate is sealed and is slain by Macduff. Duncan's son Malcolm becomes king and the normal balance of society is restored.