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Simplified Macbeth Essay Guide: Summary, Key themes, Topics and Examples

By Evans Jan 07 2021

Have you ever been so excited about something that you threw reason out of the window? Maybe a palm reader tells you that you will marry your celebrity crush and you end a long term relationship to pave way for this celebrity crush? We have all been silly at some point in life, ambition making us forsake the voice of reason. This is basically what Macbeth is all about; a prophecy that ruins the life of a gallant soldier as he attempts to bite more than he can chew. Before we learn how to write a Macbeth essay, let's begin by looking at the summary and key themes in Macbeth

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Summary of Macbeth

Shakespeare's Macbeth starts with two Scotland generals, Macbeth and Banquo. The two are on their way after fighting two separate enemies. On the way, they meet with three witches who prophesy that Macbeth will be made thane and will later on become king of Scotland. They also tell Banquo that although he will never become king, he will sire a line of kings. When the first part of the prophecy is fulfilled, Macbeth is full of ambition that he does not see reason. He kills King Duncan and becomes the king in his place. Afraid of the rest of the prophecy coming true, Macbeth, instigated by his wife, kills Banquo, and his downfall begins. Macbeth will destroy anything and anyone to protect his power. He is so determined to ensure that the last part of the prophecy does not come true, which only leads to people hating his tyrannical rule and him facing an untimely death.

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Macbeth key themes


'Ambition is a drug that makes its addicts potential madmen.' Before the prophecy, Macbeth seems okay with his life. However, the moment he learns that he can become much more, he loses all control and allows ambition to blind him. At first, he kills King Duncan against his better judgment. However, once he kills to clinch power, he can't seem to stop. He kills whoever tries to oppose him, and finally, he ends up dead.


The supernatural plays a massive role in Macbeth. Macbeth is thrown into a frenzy when the witches tell him that he will be made thane and that later on, he will become king of Scotland. When the first part happens on its own, Macbeth decides to give the prophecy a push and kills King Duncan. Later on, he will do anything to make sure that the rest of it doesn't come to pass.


Guilt plays quite a significant theme in Macbeth. Macbeth feels guilty for killing King Duncan and Banquo. He chooses to deal with that guilt by killing more people, which makes it worse. Macbeth is not the only one being eaten up by guilt. Lady Macbeth slowly loses her sanity after encouraging her husband to kill against his better judgment. She begins sleepwalking, believing that the king's blood is in her hands and there is nothing she can do to wash it off. She does not get a way out of the guilt that is slowly costing her sanity.

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How to write a Macbeth essay

There's nothing as sweet as getting lost in one of Shakespeare's tragic drama. Macbeth is an interesting play to read. However, reading it for school might not be as fun since it involves a lot more than just reading a beautiful story for its beauty. You have to read it, understand it, and analyze it for whatever essay you are supposed to write. Lucky for you, you do not need to worry about that. has a team of the best writers who excel in writing literary essays. You do not have to worry about failing in your Macbeth assignment with the right writer.

Macbeth essay topics

There are so many topics that one can write about when it comes to Macbeth. In some cases, the professor will provide you with a given topic and ask you to write a Macbeth essay on it. However, you might be required to choose the essay topic for yourself in some cases. You do not need to worry about how to go about it in such a case. Paper per hour  has provided a list of Macbeth essay topics that you can choose from.

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Critical essay topics for Macbeth

  1. Macbeth is the villain of the play. discuss 
  2. Discuss the influence that the witches have on Macbeth.
  3. What is the role of the women in Macbeth? How does society treat women?
  4. Is Lady Macbeth responsible for bringing Macbeth to power or for ruining him?
  5. What do Macbeth's visions symbolize?

Analysis essay topics for Macbeth Essay

  1. Analyze the prophecies given by the witches. Do all the prophecies come to pass?
  2. What are the roles of Macduff and Malcolm?
  3. Analyze contributions of two minor characters
  4. The role of light and darkness in the play
  5. Development of Macbeth as a character in the play
  6. Analyze Banquo's reaction to the witches' prophecy
  7. Look at the lies, and the half-lies told in the play and their significance.
  8. Analyze Macbeth as a tragedy drama

Comparative essay topics for Macbeth

  1. Compare and contrast Macbeth and Banquo. Are there any similarities between them? What sets them apart? Can we easily dismiss Macbeth as the villain of the play?
  2. How do Macbeth and Banquo react to the news of the prophecy? How does the prophecy bring out their true selves?
  3. Compare between Macbeth, the main character, and Vladimir Putin. How are they similar? What differences do they have?

Controversial essay topics on Macbeth

  1. Describe the seven sin in Macbeth
  2. How does Macbeth fit in the Greek mythology?
  3. Who is responsible for the death of Macbeth?
  4. Who would make the best king for Scotland?

Why you should let paper per hour write the Macbeth essay for you

Getting the right essay topic is the first step to answering a Macbeth question. However, if you are not yet sure of what to write about, worry not; our experts are here to help you out. You do not need to struggle with a Macbeth essay while we have experts whose joy comes from working on such essays. With paper per hour, you are assured of:

High-quality essay

A good Macbeth essay writer knows how to analyze the play, answer the question correctly, and write the paper in a flawless manner. With us, quality is assured.

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Working with experts

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