The witches in Macbeth: no more than an influence
According to Shakespearean scholar, A.C. Bradley, "while the influence of the witches' prophecies on Macbeth is very great, it is quite clearly shown to be an influence and nothing more. There is no sign in the play whatever that Shakespeare meant the actions of Macbeth to be forced on him by external powers." Bradley's argument is valid; the witches provide the spur Macbeth needs to act on his overbearing ambition, but it is ultimately the choice of Macbeth and Macbeth alone to pursue his thirst for the throne - to turn his thoughts into actions. The influence of the witches is indeed no…
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