What weaknesses does Macbeth have in Macbeth

Quick overview
  • Is King of Scotland at the beginning of the drama; is then murdered by Macbeth.
  • Duncan is almost the ideal king:
    Strengths: kind-hearted, respectful, understanding, grateful, popular with the people
    Weaknesses: Good-heartedness -> has a weak effect on possible traitors, too trusting (does not recognize traitors)



1. Characteristics of the person


Duncan takes on the position of the ideal king in "Macbeth". He is kind, often shows gratitude, and is popular with the people. After hearing of Macbeth's bold behavior on the battlefield, he named him "Thane of Cawdor" shortly thereafter. On arrival at Macbeth's castle, he is extremely grateful for the overnight stay that the Macbeths allow him - he even gives Lady Macbeth a diamond as a gift. As King of Scotland, however, this would not be necessary at all. For a nobleman it was an honor when the king stayed with him overnight - no burden for which he should have thanked.
But Duncan's good heart also makes him vulnerable and weak - almost naive. Macdonwald, the Thane of Cawdor and Macbeth are after all three traitors together who appear and try to overthrow the king during the short time in which Duncan plays a role in the play. In fact, Duncan blindly trusted two of these three traitors and was unable to foresee their betrayal.
His good-naturedness and his trust in his subordinates are Duncan's fate in the drama and only give the tyrannical Macbeth the opportunity to take the royal throne.
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