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Mac Bethad
Born around 1005, the real-life inspiration for the story.
James I
Shakespeare wrote the play to please the King, focussing on topics of personal interest to him (Scotland, witchcraft etc.)
Gunpowder Plot (1605)
A failed attempt to kill James I along with the government. Regicide was therefore topical.
Great Chain of Being
A natural order, everyone having their proper place.
Divine Right of Kings
Kings were appointed by God, becoming his representative on earth, James I promoted this view to help secure his reign
Tragedy
M is a tragedy with M as a tragic hero.
Witchcraft
James I fascinated and terrified by witchcraft, writing the book “Demonologie” on the subject.
Garden of Eden
M works as an Allegory for the Bible story of Adam and Eve where man is tempted by evil, via woman to claim undeserved power.