At the start of the play Macbeth return from the battle field victorious and has won the title. Thane of Glamis
When Macbeth arrives at the camp he is known as “brave Macbeth, well he deserves that name”. People thought highly of him even king Duncan. “The king hath happily received Macbeth news of thy success”.
On the journey home he came across three witches. They predicted that he would become Thane of Cawdor and king of Scotland. People believed that witches spoke the truth and so did Macbeth after what they said “all hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, Thane of Glamis!
All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, Thane of Cawdor!
All hail, Macbeth! That shalt be king hereafter” He felt confused by their supernatural predictions.
There was a cheerful atmosphere in the camp but he had a deep thought in the back of his mind about what the three witches had said to him “fair is foul and foul is fair”. He realises that to achieve what they had predicted he would have to scheme and plot his way to the top by fair means or foul.
Macbeth was haunted by the horrible image in his mind of the killing that was to take place if he was to succeed with his plan to murder king Duncan. “Whose horrid image doth unfix my hair and make my seated heart knock at my ribs”. His heart beats hard in his chest with fear.
... and second prophecies that the witches foretell come true, they only turn Macbeth greedy. After Macbeth becomes Thane of Cawdor, Macbeth is amazed with the ... to murder what is in your way: MACBETH: They hailed him father to a line of kings Upon my head they placed a ... beginning of the play, “Fair is foul, and foul is fair: hover through the fog and filthy air.” Things that may ...
Lady Macbeth receives the letter from Macbeth telling her of the three witches and what they had said to him about becoming the king of Scotland. She immediately likes the idea and believes that it is all possible but thinks that Macbeth is too weak of character. ” Yet do I fear thy nature it is too full of the milk of human kindness “. She knows she will have to become the mastermind behind the vicious plot.
Lady Macbeth becomes very quickly power hungry she says to the spirits in her soliloquy “fill me, from head to toe, top-full of direst cruelty make my blood, stop up th’acces and passage to remorse”.
She too dabbles in the supernatural and asks to be made more masculine and ruthless in her ways.
“Come you spirits that tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here”
She is in the driving seat urging Macbeth on at every opportunity but he begins to have doubts. “We will proceed no further in this business” he feels that people have a good opinion of him and that king Duncan has given him many honours. “He hath honoured me of late, and I have bought Golden opinions from all sorts of people”.
Lady Macbeth is furious that he his refusing to go through with the murder and calls him a coward. She uses reverse psychology to change his mind “what beast was then that made you break this enterprise to me? When you durst, then you were a man”.
By the end of act 1 the Macbeths are in different states of mind. Lady Macbeth is convinced the plan will work and she wants to proceed with their plans to murder king Duncan. Macbeth on the other hand is not convinced the plan will work and is not so keen to go through with their plan. Lady Macbeth has now taken control of the situation and there is no going back.