Date of publication: 2017-08-31 23:38
I think this quote is trying to tell us that appearances are deceptive. In othere words what appears to be good (for macbeth) turns out to be bad, and what is meant to be bad (. the english forces led by malcom to defeat macbeth is good, or the guards charged with the murder of king duncan) are actually good.
hadijaved | Student | (Level 6) Honors
I think the witches are making a prophesy for the entire act of the play. Throughout the play things relate to that sentence, for instance, before the murder Macbeth tells Lady Macbeth to go and be beautiful in front of Duncan and his guards, but to hide her "foul" heart. Another is the first time you see Macbeth he says "So foul and fair a day I have not seen".
This is one of the last lines in Act 6 Scene 6 when the witches are foreshadowing events to come in the play. With these words, they are predicting the evil that will cloud Macbeth's judgments and that those judgments will appear to Macbeth as fair and just. This line also could refer to the witches believing that things most men consider to be foul and ugly are just and beautiful to them because they embody evil. This gives the reader insight into what actions the witches are going to encourage from Macbeth.
In Macbeth , “Fair is foul, and foul is fair” is a motif that runs throughout the play. At the most basic level, it means that appearances can be deceiving: that which seems “fair” and good is actually “foul” and evil. The best example of this motif is Macbeth himself. At the beginning of the play, King Duncan believes Macbeth to be a loyal servant but Macbeth eventually betrays Duncan’s trust and murders him to steal the throne.
This line reviles the motives and purpose of the three witches. They are going to turn everything that is fair and pleasant into something foul. What looks pleasant to Macbeth is actually evil and evil is fair to the witches. this contridictory statements suggest the paradox through out the play.