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Macbeth Introduction

Written by William Shakespeare in 1605  Macbeth is a man who overthrows the rightful King of Scotland  Shakespeare wrote Macbeth at the beginning of King James I reign


James succeeded Elizabeth I he was king of Scotland  Placing the play in James homeland probably pleased him

Will the real Macbeth please stand up?

Macbeth was a real king of Scotland  He did kill King Duncan  Reigned from 1040-1057 1040 Unlike the Macbeth in Shakespeare s play


real Macbeth had a legitimate claim to the throne  The real Macbeth was a strong leader  The real Macbeth s reign was successful  The real Macbeth was killed at Lumphanan as opposed to Dunsinane

Connections for British Society

Remember, remember the fifth of November Gunpowder, treason and plot. I see no reason why gunpowder, treason Should ever be forgot... In November 1605 the Gunpowder Plot was discovered
Guy Fawkes and his followers (Roman Catholics) planned to blow up Parliament  They wanted to bring down the British government and put a Catholic rulers on the throne  The plot was discovered and the men involved were tried and killed as traitors

Shakespeare sided with the king and seemed to think that a play about treason and death would find an audience at this time

So this is a comedy


Macbeth is one of Shakespeare s most famous tragedies (it is also his shortest)  Aside from the violent nature of the plot Shakespeare uses several literary devices to enhance the feeling of evil

creates a serious and sinister mood by having most of the play take place at night  There is a heavy emphasis on the supernatural (witches, dreams, spells, and ghosts)

A little taste of Macbeth

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Macbeth Act 1 - Scene 1

Witches - Supernatural influences  Fair being Foul - Paradox  King Duncan - Scotland  Duncan s sons- Malcolm and Donaldbain sons Generals - Macbeth and Banquo  Thunder , lightning , and rain - sense of doom


Macbeth Act 1 - Scene 2

Macdonaldwald s rebellion  Ross tells Duncan of Norway s rebellion King of Norway - Sweno  Thane of Cawdor rebels against Duncan  Scotland wins - Macbeth gets title Thane of Cawdor - THE SPOILS OF WAR  Macbeth and Banquo - Two spent swimmers


Macbeth Act 1 Scene 3

The witches first prophesy has come true - Thane of Cawdor  Macbeth - So foul and fair a day , I have not seen - recalls witches first scene  Banquo - The instrument of darkness tell us truths - only to betray us

Macbeth Act 1 Scene 4

Execution of Cawdor  You can t tell what is in a person s heart by looking at his face  Nothing in his life became him like the leaving of it  Duncan- Malcolm to be King Duncan Macbeth- Let not light see my black and Macbethdeep desires


Macbeth Act 1 Scene 5

Macbeth s home - Castle of Inverness  Lady Macbeth comes up with plan to kill Duncan - Husband weak  The milk of human kindness  Lady Macbeth - Must pour spirits in their ear. (Hamlet killed that way)


Macbeth Act 1 Scene 6

Lady Macbeth - chameleon - perfect hostess  Duncan s speech full of dramatic irony castle pleasant - air is sweeter sees a martlet (a summer bird)  to Duncan the castle appears to be a paradise


Macbeth Act 1 Scene 7

LadyMacbeth - convinces Macbeth to do the horrid deed  Macbeth s Soliloquy - marked by confusion Duncan - Kinsman and his subject , a good King and virtuous man , a popular King , and death would bring sorrow to Scotland  Lady Macbeth Argument- What could Argumenthave been when he can be King Would kill her own baby to do this


Macbeth Act 2 Scene 1

Past midnight - Moon has set and the Candles of heaven cannot be seen dark brooding  Banquo draws sword - irony doesn t know Macbeth is going to kill Duncan  Dagger Speech - Mental disturbance  Is this a dagger which I see before me,The handle toward my hand? Macbeth, 2.1.42 3


Lady Macbeth - That which have made them drunk, hath made me bold, What hath quenched them have given me fire  Drunk with boldness and on fire with passion  Lady Macbeth -would have murdered Duncan had he not looked like her father  Macbeth has two concerns - he has murdered sleep , bloodiness of deed  Lady Macbeth - blood is only like paint wash it off


Macbeth Act 2 Scene 2

Scene 2
Knocking - knocking of their consciences actual knock  With all great Neptune s ocean wash this blood Clean from my hand? Macbeth, 2.2.78 9


Macbeth Act 2 Scene 3

Porter - light comedy  farmer and equivocator have specific religious and historical connotations  A few months before Macbeth performed Gunpowder plot - King James Guy Fawkes and John Garnett (nickname the farmer)  Lennox - extraordinary weather -unnatural events - The universe and events related


Scene 3
Equivocation - The practice of lying in court about one s religion  Lady Macbeth faints when Macbeth proclaims he has killed the guards avenge the act of treasonous malice - not in the plan  Malcolm - England  Donalbain - Ireland


Scene 3
Macbeth says he has killed servants Lady Macbeth faints  Macbeth and other Thanes swear to meet in manly rediness to avenge this act of treasonous malice  There s daggers in men s smiles  Donaldbain - Ireland  Malcolm - England


Macbeth Act 2 Scene 4

Macbeth has become King  Donaldbain and Malcolm have fled  Old Man - Traditional figure in lit represents what has been  owl kills falcon - daylight has been replaced by night - horses of the King s stable have eaten each other  The world he has known has been turned on its head


Macbeth Act 3 Scene 1

Banquo suspects Macbeth - gains comfort from 2nd prediction - his own children will be Kings  Even with new title Macbeth does not feel at ease  calls murderers dogs but he shows his inhumanity and imperfections -also wants to kill Fleance


Act 3 Scene 2
Macbeth plans murder not Lady Macbeth  Macbeth and Lady Macbeth s world not at peace  Macbeth wants to get rid of his bond with humanity  We have scorched the snake, not killed it. Macbeth, 3.2.15  Duncan is in his grave; After life s fitful fever he sleeps well. Macbeth, 3.2.24 5


Act 3 Scene 3
Banquo killed - Murderers lantern extinguished - Fleance escapes  Forces of darkness are at odds with light  Murderers capable of poetry  Escape of Fleance turning point Peripeteia - sudden reversal of fortune  Banquo s dying words to revenge


Macbeth has Thanes of Scotland over Macduff not there  Murderers tell Macbeth what happened Macbeth losses it  Macbeth sees ghost - goes into a fit  Macbeth has lost control  Macbeth will kill Macduff and visit three sisters  It will have blood, they say: blood will have blood. Macbeth, 3.4.152 53


Act 3 Scene 4

Act 3 Scene 5
Hecate joins three sisters  Some say this scene was not in the orginal play


Act 3 Scene 6
Lennox reveals doubts about Macbeth Did he kill the guards hastily?  Macduff has fled to England to join forces with Malcolm also asks help from King Edward of England


Macbeth Act 4 Scene 1

Double, double, toil and trouble; Fire burn, and cauldron bubble. Witches, 4.1.10 1  Macbeth goes to weird sisters and demands to be shown apparitions of the future  1. disembodied head of a warrior who warns Macbeth of revenge  2. blood-covered child who cannot be bloodkilled by any man of woman born


3. a child wearing a crown promises Macbeth cannot lose in battle until Birnam wood moves to Dunsinane  Macbeth asks about Banquo s sons and sees a procession of Banquo and future kings  Macbethless future  Macduff has fled to England and Macbeth announces revenge of Macduff s wife and children  I ll make assurance double sure. Macbeth, 4.1.93


Act 4 Scene 2
Lady Macduff feels Macduff has acted dishonestly  Son says the world is full of dishonest men


Act 4 Scene 3
At one fell swoop. Macduff, 4.3.256  Malcolm tests Macduff s loyalty - says he would be a great tyrant - reverse psychology  Macduff still hates Macbeth - Malcolm has gotten what he wants Macduff s loyalty  Ross tells him of the slaughter of wife and child - Macduff vows revenge


Macbeth Act 5 Scene 1

Out, damned spot! out, I say! Lady Macbeth, 5.1.31  All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand. Lady Macbeth, 5.1.46 7  What s done cannot be undone. Lady Macbeth, 5.1.62 3  Played in dark except one candle  Lady Macbeth has gone mad - sleepwalks and tells fragments of events


overheard by doctor and lady-in-waiting lady-in Lady Macbeth is seen rubbing her hands (quotes at the beginning)  Lady Macbeth needs a divine  Spiritual darkness - 1 candle



Macbeth Act 5 Scene 2

Four lords of Scotland - Lennox, Mentith, Angus, and Caithness resolve to join Malcolm and English forces who are at Birnam Wood  Caithness speech - warrior hero - valiant fury - but not righteous - Distemper d Cause


Macbeth Act 5 Scene 3

Macbeth dismisses reports of invasion ( confident tyrant)  Trusts the prophecies  Servant ( cream faced lilly livered) announces huge army  Doctor tells of Lady Macbeth  yellow leaf - fall of his own reputation


Macbeth Act 5 Scene 4

English and Scotish armies under leadership of Malcolm meet at Birnam Wood  Malcolm orders soldiers to cut a branch and carry it in front of them as camouflage To shadow the number of our host  taken from Holinshed s Chronicles - 1577


Macbeth Act 5 Scene 5

Macbeth fully armed - brave rhetoric  shriek offstage - The queen is dead  Birnam Wood appears to have uprooted itself advancing towards Dunsinane  Shakespeare - Power-seeking tyrants tend Powertoward self-destruction self I have supped full with horrors. Macbeth, 5.5.14 - Banquo s ghost  Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow. Macbeth, 5.5.21


Macbeth Act 5 Scene 6

Malcolm and his troops have reached Dunsinane  Siward first to advance - age  Macduff order of troops- discipline troopsharbinger or sign of what is to come


Macbeth Act 5 Scene 7

Macbeth challenged by son of Siward  Macbeth s forces have surrendered Dunsinane Castle  They have tied me to a stake: I cannot fly  kills young Siward - Thou wast born of woman  Macduff - ironic timing- takes place of timingSiward


Macbeth Act 5 Scene 8

Macbeth and Macduff finally face to face  words are tossed  Macbeth ponders suicide but hey I can t die  Macduff tells him he entered the world Untimely ripp d from mothers womb  Macbeth realizes witches are imperfect speakers  Macbeth dies


Macbeth Act 5 Scene 9

Malcolm proclaimed new king of Scotland  true friends we miss loyalty he will rule with graciousness and humility  Macduff enters with Macbeth s head