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Macbeth1

Shakespeare uses a vivid selection of imagery throughout the play, Macbeth. Using imagery allows readers to get a "sense" of what their reading, and the play can become a vivid picture in their mind. The use of blood, as an image, creates a visual setting and clear picture of the violence and tragedies that occurred in the 1000's.In the first act, Macbeth is hesitant about his decision to kill Duncan. He wants the murder to be "over with." If Macbeth fails, he will not escape the punishment. "Bloody instructions, which being taught, return," meaning that if you kill and shed blood, it will someday return and haunt you.In the second act, Lady Macbeth is desperately trying to assure her husband that his overwhelming fear and guilt will never go away. She explains that "A little water cleans us of this deed." Macbeth contradicts her by saying, "Will all great Neptune's oceans wash this blood clean from my hand?" By just washing your hands and rinsing off the blood, you cannot cleanse the "wrong" done. Macbeth will now live with the tragic guilt of his awful deed.In the fifth act, Lady Macbeth begins to realize that nothing can take away the guilt from her hands. She will live with it for the rest of her life. She quotes "Here's the smell of blood still. All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand. Oh, oh, oh!" Ultimately, Lady Macbeth can no longer deal with her guilty conscience, and commits suicide.Blood is a very powerful image. Blood often symbolizes hatred, violence, and tragedy. In the three citations discussed, blood is a symbol that will not go away. The memories and guilty feelings can not be escaped....

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