Last updated: February 22, 2019
Topic: ArtTheatre
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Macbeth: Leader Or Monoarch Essay, Research Paper

A Oppressive Leader:

A oppressive leader is one who has absolute power derived from oppressive or barbarous usage of force. It is one non chosen by others or appointed by Godhead rights, but instead one who takes the power without restraint by Torahs either moral or mortal.

A Benevolent Sovereign:

A benevolent sovereign is one who reins over a land with the intent of good will. He is one who has preeminent power. He works for the intent of making good.

Macbeth-A Leader:

A leader may be either, or both, a autocrat and benevolent, although non at the same minute. This describes Macbeth. He was both a benevolent sovereign and a oppressive leader within his reign. The difference occurs in the beginning.


This paper will concentrate on the traits of a oppressive leader and a benevolent sovereign as described by Shakespeare in Act IV, scene three, and show how they apply to Macbeth and other characters involved in the drama. Furthermore, this paper will turn to how the features are magnified depending on which beginning is being reviewed by the reader.


Shakespeare outlines the traits of both a autocrat and a benevolent sovereign in the duologue between Malcolm and Macduff in Act IV, scene three.

& # 8220 ; Luxurious, covetous, false, fallacious, sudden, malicious, slap of every wickedness that has a name & # 8230 ; my lecherousness, and my desire & # 8230 ; . & # 8221 ; ( Pg. 73 )

Here Malcolm lists those traits, which he proclaims to hold which he genuinely does non. These are the traits Shakespeare sees as those of a oppressive leader. One who is excessive and greedy in his ways. A autocrat is a leader who leads through prevarications and fraudulence that lacks forbearance or empathy. Shakespeare sees a autocrat as one who is evil and iniquitous ; one who lusts after adult females and desires all things that are non his.

A benevolent sovereign, on the other manus, would be one who possesses none of the traits of a autocrat. One who has kingly graces would be,

& # 8220 ; As justness, truth, temp & # 8217 ; rance, stability, premium, doggedness, clemency, humbleness, devotedness, forbearance, bravery, fortitude & # 8230 ; & # 8221 ; ( pg. 74 )

A benevolent leader is one who comes from godly right. He would be true, generous, and low in his actions. His motivations would stem from award and a desire for the greatest good.

Macbeth & # 8211 ; Holinshed:

In Holinshed & # 8217 ; s histories, Macbeth is portrayed as an ambitious captain ; nevertheless, he reins for about 10 old ages as a benevolent monarch/leader. He acts for the common good and leads the people in his service through good times. Even in the act of killing Duncan, Holinshed has Macbeth remaining slightly distant by holding his & # 8220 ; trustie friends & # 8221 ; the head of which is Banquho, do the existent slaying of Duncan and transport away his organic structure organize his ain palace.

When Macbeth is seen as a autocrat, Holinshed shows Duncan and Banquho as benevolent to stress merely how & # 8220 ; bad & # 8221 ; Macbeth had really become. Macbeth does non kill Banquho or Duncan out of some revengeful or hurt grounds ; he kills them out of mere greed and aspiration. He is planful of their blackwashs.


In Shakespeare & # 8217 ; s Macbeth, Macbeth is shown as nil but immorality. His oppressive province is elaborated on by Shakespeare by the fact that he personally kills Duncan with his ain custodies. Furthermore, he has no ground to kill Duncan. It has already been shown that the disclosures of the three enchantresss will come true, but Macbeth interferes anyway due to his greed. Macbeth is non a rightful male monarch ; he was non selected by godly intercession and hence has no right to the Crown. Shakspere shows Macbeth as happening & # 8220 ; such sugariness by seting his Lords therefore to decease & # 8230 ; & # 8221 ; Merely an immorality, iniquitous adult male could happen enjoyment in the act of killing.


As usual, Shakespeare has taken one historical event and molded it to run into his demands of the twenty-four hours. In the instance of Macbeth, Shakespeare was modeling the drama to run into his demands in delighting the new King James I of England. He took what historically was a adult male who reined for 10 old ages as a benevolent sovereign and turned him into a strictly oppressive leader for the benefit of the drama and the theatre. Showing how all traits are in all work forces and that one must be wary of the motivations within himself before moving to cognize which side of the duality he lies on.