The tragedy Macbeth by Shakespeare conveys blood imagery throughout the play. By representing imagery in a metaphoric way, it establishes sympathy between the main character and the audience, and questions the sanity of Macbeth. By creating sympathy between the audience and Macbeth, understanding him is easier.
In the play, Macbeth becomes king by killing his way to the throne. Every one of his kills leads him to the next to cover up the one before. After Macbeth’s first kill, Duncan, he portray’s his guilty emotions when he speaks to MacDuff: "Here lay Duncan, /His silver skin laced with his golden blood," (II,iii.,ll.104-105). Macbeth is trying to gain sympathy by this statement by mourning the loss of a dear friend, and by portraying his guilty feelings to Lady Macbeth by saying: "To know my deed, ’twere best not know myself" (II.ii.,l.73). We begin sympathizing with Macbeth at the beginning of the play, because we looks as if he regrets his action, but as the killings proceed greater by Macbeth the blood images affect the audience, and sympathizing with such an ambitious man is harder.
Macbeth is affected by blood images and his sanity is questioned. Macbeth hired murders to kill Banquo and his son Fleance. After the kill has been complete, Banquo’s ghost appears at Macbeth’s dinner feast, and Macbeth rambles crazily and states: "Blood hath been shed ere now, i’ th’ olden time," (II,iv.,l.87). Macbeth’s rambling left Lady Macbeth on edge, and she clears out all the dinner guests in fear Macbeth will let out their secret. The encounter Macbeth endures with Banquo’s ghost has a large impact on his sanity, and leaves the audience wondering if Macbeth will crack for good, or if he will get through this weakening point successfully.
As Macbeth hits a weakening point in the play, he finally realizes that his evil doings have lead him down a bad path and he says to Lady Macbeth: "blood will have blood, they say; blood will have blood." (III,iv.,l.123) Macbeth begins to become very worried at this stage in the play, and he fears the guilt he has to face will haunt him with a result of his own bloodshed. Macbeth’s ambition lead him to destroy anyone in his way to righteousness, and also questioned his sanity and strength.
This tragedy establishes sympathy between the main character and the audience, and allows a reasonable question to Macbeth’s sanity. The blood imagery triggered Macbeth’s emotions, and in the end Macbeth was greatly affected.