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Historical Context of Macbeth by William Shakespeare

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Juliana Gallo B

on 15 February 2013

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Transcript of Historical Context of Macbeth by William Shakespeare

Historical Context of Macbeth
By Shakespeare By: Martin Isaza and Juliana Gallo Macbeth was a play written in 1606 by the English writer William Shakespeare.
The play was intended for King James 1. Even though it was written in the seventeenth century, it is plotted in Scotland in the eleventh century and it was inspired on the real Macbeth, King of Scotland from 1040 to 1057. This play contains the names of real people although it is no based on a true story. Macbeth Science was undeveloped at the time and people sought for explanations of why things were how they were. As there was no reasonable explanations, beliefs and superstitions were created and their popularity increased. King James 1 believed in witches, he even wrote a book and made various legislation's about this kinds of superstitions. Since it was one of the main interests of the King, and at the time in general Shakespeare included it in his play. The King's Interests: The King was interested in Christianism, which played a huge role in the seventeenth century. Religion was a big influence at the time and as the King was a powerful and influential figure he supported religion, specially Christianism, he published two books of Christian poetry, after their publication their popularity increased and many people read these books. Christianism was a very strong religion, it could be said that the most influential and powerful at the time in political terms.
Literature was read and plays were seen, it was a form of learning and entertaining the people. They became an exclusive advantage that only some could afford. The play was set in Scotland because Shakespeare was making the play to please King James 1 of England, he wanted to honor the King's original nationality, who used to be King James the VI of Scotland. Fraser, Antonia. King James VI of Scotland and James I of England. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1974.

Willson, D.H. King James VI and I. London: Jonathan Cape, 1958.

SparkNotes Editors. (2002). SparkNote on Macbeth. Retrieved February 14, 2013, from http://www.sparknotes.com/shakespeare/macbeth/ Some more information of the time:
The 31st of January of 1606, a man called Guy Fawkes was assassinated because he was convicted to treason to King James 1, after having tried to assassinate him with a group of English Catholics, attempt known as the Gunpowder Plot The King and the Play The King James 1, was known to be descended from a line of Kings that claimed to be related to the historical Banquo, and in Macbeth, Shakespeare turns this character to the companion of the King when he goes to talk to the three witches.
Also the good vs evil that Shakespeare uses throughout his play in the battle of Macbeth against Duncan represent what was going on at the moment with James developing in the royal court of England the theory of the divine right.
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