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The tragedy of Macbeth (1908) PDF by William Shakespeare

The tragedy of Macbeth 

The tragedy of Macbeth
The tragedy of Macbeth 



The fatal consequence of the intervention of malignant supernatural powers in human affairs has fascinated the deepest minds in all ages and in all lands. It is the theme of Greek tragedy; it is the germ idea of the Faust legend; it is the essential element in Paradise Lost. 

The story of Macbeth, as we have it in Shakespeare, belongs to that great cycle of temptation themes which, developing naturally from the story of the fall in the Genesis narrative, became in the Middle Ages the legend of the man who sells his soul to the devil in exchange for fortune, power, or universal knowledge. The Main Story the Macbeth of history "Modern research -^ has established that the Macbeth of history was, for his time, a worthy and beneficent monarch, thoroughly deserving the title of " the liberal king " given to The History of the Norman conquest, 1867-1879; Skene's Celtic Scotland, 1876-1S80; Professor Hume Brown's The History of Scotland (Cambridge Historical Series); Robertson.

In the special title prefixed to The Description of Scotland in the edition of 1586-1587, given in facsimile on the following page (Figure 3), Holinshed's indebtedness to Boece and to Bellenden is clearly set forth. This is the edition undoubtedly used by Shakespeare, and it is not improbable that the mention of these authorities would stimulate him to read them at first hand. While the dramatist follows closely Holinshed's account of the reigns of Duncan and Macbeth, he transfers to the murder of Duncan such details as the drugging of the grooms, the portents, the tempest, etc., from the narrative of the murder of Duff, Lady Macbeth's great-grandfather.


Edited by Henry Norman Hudson.
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