The name "weird sisters" is found in most modern editions of Macbeth. The weyward Sisters, hand in hand, Posters of the Sea and Land In later scenes in the first folio the witches are called "weyward", but never "weird". The Wiktionary etymology for "weird" includes this observation:
This perspective is complicated, however, once we see Macbeth interact with the three witches. We realize that his physical courage is joined by a consuming ambition and a tendency to self-doubt—the prediction that he will be king brings him joy, but it also creates inner turmoil.
These three attributes—bravery, ambition, and self-doubt—struggle for mastery of Macbeth throughout the play. Shakespeare uses Macbeth to show the terrible effects that ambition and guilt can have on a man who lacks strength of character.
Macbeth, great warrior though he is, is ill equipped for the psychic consequences of crime. Before he kills Duncan, Macbeth is plagued by worry and almost aborts the crime. After the murder, however, her powerful personality begins to disintegrate, leaving Macbeth increasingly alone.
These fluctuations reflect the tragic tension within Macbeth: As things fall apart for him at the end of the play, he seems almost relieved—with the English army at his gates, he can finally return to life as a warrior, and he displays a kind of reckless bravado as his enemies surround him and drag him down.
Instead, he goes down fighting, bringing the play full circle:Macbeth. Because we first hear of Macbeth in the wounded captain’s account of his battlefield valor, our initial impression is of a brave and capable warrior. Detailed explanatory notes and analysis of Macbeth's meeting with the Witches on the heath.
Witches in William Shakespeare's Macbeth Essay - Witches in William Shakespeare's Macbeth In , William Shakespeare first performed the play Macbeth to .
Introduction to the Main Characters in Macbeth Macbeth The horrific and detestable acts perpetrated by Macbeth mirror the crimes of Shakespeare's great villains -- Aaron the Moor, Iago, Richard III, Edmund -- all at the ready to slaughter women and children, usurp divinely appointed kings, and butcher their closest friends to satisfy ambitious cravings.
The witches’ words seem almost comical, like malevolent nursery rhymes. Despite the absurdity of their “eye of newt and toe of frog” recipes, however, they are clearly the most dangerous characters in the play, being both tremendously powerful and utterly wicked ().
The Role of Witches in Macbeth by William Shakespeare The witches present modern directors with great difficulties. Consider the role of the witches and suggest how they can be made as successful for a modern audience as they would have been for a contemporary audience.