Macbeth's Allusions
  • Allusion-An indirect reference to another event, person, or work with which the writer assumes the reader is familiar.


Important allusions in Macbeth that develop the theme of decay

"Who's there, i' the name of Belzebub?" ( II, iii, 3-4)

external image devil.jpg
external image devil.jpg
This is an allusion because the word Belzebub, refers to the devil.
"Will all great Neptune's ocean wash this blood clean from my hand." (II, ii, 75-76)

external image 195981487_d9c4f366ab.jpg
external image 195981487_d9c4f366ab.jpg
external image 72995671_06362ca549.jpg
external image 72995671_06362ca549.jpg

This is an allusion because it is referring to neptune, the god of the sea.

"With Tarquin's ravishing strides, towards his design." (II, i, 63)
external image tarquinius-priscus.jpg
external image tarquinius-priscus.jpg

This last one is an allusion because it is referring to Tarquin the proud like in the picture.


Period 1

"Angels are bright still, though the brighest fell. (IV,iii,26)
external image falling_angels_detail.jpg
external image falling_angels_detail.jpg
This is allusion because the falling angels symbolizes Macbeth turning from good to bad.


...Or heavens cherubin in horsed upon the sightless countries of the air. (I, VII, 22-23)
external image 2226,1120422046,2.jpg
external image 2226,1120422046,2.jpg
This is allusion because Macbeth is being compared to a cherubin that is in a sightless country. Macbeth is in his own world of guilt and evilness.

"Is this a dagger which I see before me, The handle toward my hand? Come let me clutch thee." (II,I, 41-42)
external image macbeth-dagger-words-SM.jpg
external image macbeth-dagger-words-SM.jpg
This is an illusion (not allusion-do you know the difference?) because Macbeth is guilty about killing Duncan but nobody knows. He is feeling guilty because he keeps seeing a floating dagger wherever he goes or he sees the ghost of Duncan.

Trellina Crews,Melissa Boone, & Justin Moore
Golgotha
The Golgotha is the hill where Jesus was crucified. This refers to how bloody the fight against Norway was in the begining.
" Except they meant to bathe in reeking wounds, or memorize another Golgotha"
external image Wild%20Bill%20Garnett%20II-%20Golgotha-%20oil%20on%20canvas-%2040%20x%2030%20in..jpg
external image Wild%20Bill%20Garnett%20II-%20Golgotha-%20oil%20on%20canvas-%2040%20x%2030%20in..jpg

Gorgon
A monster that turns anyone who looked at her into stone. This refers to the death of king Duncan and how the event has stuned everyone in the kingdom.
"Approach the chamber and destroy your sight with a new Gorgon.

external image gorgon.jpg
external image gorgon.jpg

Charnel house
A tomb or vault for the bones of the dead. Orignally, these held remains that were uncovered or displaced when new graves were dug.Macbeth can see Banquo's ghost and he wronders how someone who is dead can come back.
"If charnel houses and our graves must send those that we bury back, our monuments shall be the maws of kites."
external image 300px-Charnel_house_S.jpg
external image 300px-Charnel_house_S.jpg