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Figurative Language in Macbeth

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Joseph Babore

on 14 April 2015

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Transcript of Figurative Language in Macbeth

"Fair is foul and foul is fair." (1/1/10)
"This is the sergeant who like a good and hardy soldier fought 'Gainst my captivity." (1/2/3-5).
"Renown and grace is dead, the wine of life is drawn, and the mere lees Is left this vault to brag of."(2/3/3-5)
Figurative Language in Macbeth
This Quote is a similie that shows how Malcolm introduces the sergeant who will tell about Macbeth's heroic victory over the Scottish traitors and the King of Norway.
This phrase is a metaphor that describes the state of affairs between Macbeth and Scotland. Evil and sinister things have taken the place of all that is good and just.
Act 1
"that but this blow might be the be-all and end-all here, but here, upon this bank and shoal of time, we'd jump the life to come." (1/7/4-7)
This metaphor shows how Macbeth compares his indecision about killing Duncan to being on the bank of a river.
Act 2
"The sleeping and the dead are but as pictures.'Tis the eye of childhood
That fears a painted devil."(2/2/2-5)
This metaphor shows Lady Macbeth's comparison of the sleeping and the dead to "pictures" exemplifies her extraordinary courage and calm state of mind after the murder.
In this metaphor, Macbeth compares his soul to an almost-empty wine bag.
"What hands are here? ha! they pluck out mine eyes. Will all great Neptune's ocean wash this blood Clean from my hand? No, this hand will rather. The multitudinous seas incarnadine, Making the green one red." (2/2/54-60)
Macbeth has come to recognize that his guilt can never be washed off, even if the blood can be washed from his hands. Instead, his guilt will poison the world around him, which he compares to an ocean.
Act 3
"There the grown serpent lies; the worm that's fled
hath nature that in time will venom breed,no teeth for th'present."(3/4/28-31)
This metaphor is important because it implies that Macbeth still considers Fleance a threat even though Banquo is dead.
In this metaphor Macbeth compares his prior state of existence to that of a rock. This defines him as being a person who used to be strong.
"Then comes my fit again: I had else been perfect,Whole as the marble, founded as the rock."(3/4/22-24)
"For my heart speaks they are welcome."(3/4/7)
Lady Macbeth's personifacation gives her heart the ability to speak.
Act 4
"I think our country sinks beneath the yoke:It weeps, it bleeds." (4/3/39-40)
In this personifacation Macduff draws a parallel between Scotland and a beast of burden. Like an abused animal, Scotland is on the verge of collapsing underneath its tyrannous master.
"To doff their dire distresses." (4/3/188)

This alliteration explains how even the women would fight to rid themselves of Macbeth’s oppression.
"This tyrant, whose sole name blisters our tongues." (4/3/11)
This hyperbole shows that this tyrant, whose mere name is so awful it hurts us to say it.
Act 5
"Our castle's strength will laugh a siege to scorn." (5/5/2-3)

This personifacation is saying our castle is strong enough to laugh off their seige.
"They have tied me to a stake." (5/7/1)
In this metaphor Macbeth is saying they have me tied to a stake. I can’t run away. I have to stand and fight, like a

"But like a man he died." (5/8/43)
This simile explains how Macbeth only lived long enough to become a man, and as soon as he proved that he was a man by fighting like one, he died.
By: Joseph Babore
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