In The Tragedy of Macbeth, William Shakespeare presents the tragic hero’s fall from grace as a result of his unchecked desire for power. To obtain this power, he commits the multiple murders of those in the way of his fate that was predicted by the three witches. At the end of each murder, Macbeth, including Lady Macbeth, must bear the consequences that transpire from his crimes. These consequences include the hallucinations and the guilt that displays itself in the form of blood.
As a motif, blood in the story makes itself known in soon after Macbeth murders his innocent victims such as King Duncan, his friend Banquo, and the wife and children of Macduff. However, blood does not always symbolize guilt as Macbeth shows in the beginning that it could represent bravery and courage in war while Macduff demonstrates its spilling as a means of retribution.In the beginning of the play, Macbeth earns his worthiness as a man and as a Scottish general through his victory in the war against the Irish.
Malcolm, son of King Duncan, orders the Captain to explain what occurred in the battle before he had left. To this request, the Captain recounts the heroic act of Macbeth as he slayed Macdonwald, stating “For brave Macbeth—well he deserves that name—/Disdaining fortune, with his brandished steel,/Which smoked with bloody execution,/Like valor’s minion carved out his passage/ Till he faced the slave. 1.2.16-20” Macbeth’s “bloody execution” exhibits his bravery and courage because he kills Macdonwald for his Scotland, his king, and his people. He does so as an act of valor,