the everlasting value of it, as all these elements combined with ill ambition, craving for high political position, becoming enormously rich in a dishonest way, etc., characterize modern societies in our time.
Mac Bethad mac Findlaich or Macbeth for short in English was a Scottish king (1040-1057) who ruled successfully and wisely after killing his predecessor Duncan (1034-1040), who on the other hand was a weak and terrible leader. Macbeth was killed in 1057 in a battle led at Lumphanan in Aberdeenshire on 15th August against Malcolm, Duncan’s rightful heir to the throne. The events that took place shortly before Duncan’s murder and until Macbeth’s defeat were described in Shakespeare’s play “Macbeth” written sometime between 1604 and 1606. (“Mala Enciklopedija Prosveta” Belgrade, 1970, vol.2, p.15).
Having a broad knowledge of Raphael Holinshed’s “Chronicles of England, Scotland and Ireland” (1587), Shakespeare apparently used it as a main source for writing this play. According to Holinshed, Duncan, the king of Scotland was a young and incapable ruler, but Shakespeare deliberately depicted him as an old and almost saint person in order to darken Macbeth’s crime even more than it actually was. Shakespeare used this chronicle to write a tragedy, not a historic play. George Buchanan’s “History of Scotland in Twenty Books” (2 volumes, 1733) written originally in Latin could have been another source for some scenes in the play. There are also things which must have been products of Shakespeare’s fantasy (the scene with the banquet and the appearance of Banquo’s ghost or Lady Macbeth’s sleepwalking). Some critics even claim certain scenes were influenced by the Roman history, and some give credit to the legends Shakespeare knew so well.
Yet, whatever the sources, “there is no doubt that the tragic status of Macbeth would be far weaker, were it not for the facts given in the Holinshed’s chronicle that Duncan was weak,