Macbeth by William Shakespeare

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      arthur peace
      Keymaster

       

      ACT I

      SCENE I. A desert place.

      Thunder and lightning. Enter three Witches

      First Witch

      When shall we three meet again
      In thunder, lightning, or in rain?

      Second Witch

      When the hurlyburly’s done,
      When the battle’s lost and won.

      Third Witch

      That will be ere the set of sun.

      First Witch

      Where the place?

      Second Witch

      Upon the heath.

      Third Witch

      There to meet with Macbeth.

      First Witch

      I come, Graymalkin!

      Second Witch

      Paddock calls.

      Third Witch

      Anon.

      ALL

      Fair is foul, and foul is fair:
      Hover through the fog and filthy air.
      Exeunt

      SCENE II. A camp near Forres.

      Alarum within. Enter DUNCAN, MALCOLM, DONALBAIN, LENNOX, with Attendants, meeting a bleeding Sergeant

      DUNCAN

      What bloody man is that? He can report,
      As seemeth by his plight, of the revolt
      The newest state.

      MALCOLM

      This is the sergeant
      Who like a good and hardy soldier fought
      ‘Gainst my captivity. Hail, brave friend!
      Say to the king the knowledge of the broil
      As thou didst leave it.

      Sergeant

      Doubtful it stood;
      As two spent swimmers, that do cling together
      And choke their art. The merciless Macdonwald–
      Worthy to be a rebel, for to that
      The multiplying villanies of nature
      Do swarm upon him–from the western isles
      Of kerns and gallowglasses is supplied;
      And fortune, on his damned quarrel smiling,
      Show’d like a rebel’s whore: but all’s too weak:
      For brave Macbeth–well he deserves that name–
      Disdaining fortune, with his brandish’d steel,
      Which smoked with bloody execution,
      Like valour’s minion carved out his passage
      Till he faced the slave;
      Which ne’er shook hands, nor bade farewell to him,
      Till he unseam’d him from the nave to the chaps,
      And fix’d his head upon our battlements.

      DUNCAN

      O valiant cousin! worthy gentleman!

      Sergeant

      As whence the sun ‘gins his reflection
      Shipwrecking storms and direful thunders break,
      So from that spring whence comfort seem’d to come
      Discomfort swells. Mark, king of Scotland, mark:
      No sooner justice had with valour arm’d
      Compell’d these skipping kerns to trust their heels,
      But the Norweyan lord surveying vantage,
      With furbish’d arms and new supplies of men
      Began a fresh assault.

      DUNCAN

      Dismay’d not this
      Our captains, Macbeth and Banquo?

      Sergeant

      Yes;
      As sparrows eagles, or the hare the lion.
      If I say sooth, I must report they were
      As cannons overcharged with double cracks, so they
      Doubly redoubled strokes upon the foe:
      Except they meant to bathe in reeking wounds,
      Or memorise another Golgotha,
      I cannot tell.
      But I am faint, my gashes cry for help.

      DUNCAN

      So well thy words become thee as thy wounds;
      They smack of honour both. Go get him surgeons.
      Exit Sergeant, attended

      Who comes here?
      Enter ROSS

      MALCOLM

      The worthy thane of Ross.

      LENNOX

      What a haste looks through his eyes! So should he look
      That seems to speak things strange.

      ROSS

      God save the king!

      DUNCAN

      Whence camest thou, worthy thane?

      ROSS

      From Fife, great king;
      Where the Norweyan banners flout the sky
      And fan our people cold. Norway himself,
      With terrible numbers,
      Assisted by that most disloyal traitor
      The thane of Cawdor, began a dismal conflict;
      Till that Bellona’s bridegroom, lapp’d in proof,
      Confronted him with self-comparisons,
      Point against point rebellious, arm ‘gainst arm.
      Curbing his lavish spirit: and, to conclude,
      The victory fell on us.

      DUNCAN

      Great happiness!

      ROSS

      That now
      Sweno, the Norways’ king, craves composition:
      Nor would we deign him burial of his men
      Till he disbursed at Saint Colme’s inch
      Ten thousand dollars to our general use.

      DUNCAN

      No more that thane of Cawdor shall deceive
      Our bosom interest: go pronounce his present death,
      And with his former title greet Macbeth.

      ROSS

      I’ll see it done.

      DUNCAN

      What he hath lost noble Macbeth hath won.
      Exeunt

      SCENE III. A heath near Forres.

      Thunder. Enter the three Witches

      First Witch

      Where hast thou been, sister?

      Second Witch

      Killing swine.

      Third Witch

      Sister, where thou?

      First Witch

      A sailor’s wife had chestnuts in her lap,
      And munch’d, and munch’d, and munch’d:–
      ‘Give me,’ quoth I:
      ‘Aroint thee, witch!’ the rump-fed ronyon cries.
      Her husband’s to Aleppo gone, master o’ the Tiger:
      But in a sieve I’ll thither sail,
      And, like a rat without a tail,
      I’ll do, I’ll do, and I’ll do.

      Second Witch

      I’ll give thee a wind.

      First Witch

      Thou’rt kind.

      Third Witch

      And I another.

      First Witch

      I myself have all the other,
      And the very ports they blow,
      All the quarters that they know
      I’ the shipman’s card.
      I will drain him dry as hay:
      Sleep shall neither night nor day
      Hang upon his pent-house lid;
      He shall live a man forbid:
      Weary se’nnights nine times nine
      Shall he dwindle, peak and pine:
      Though his bark cannot be lost,
      Yet it shall be tempest-tost.
      Look what I have.

      Second Witch

      Show me, show me.

      First Witch

      Here I have a pilot’s thumb,
      Wreck’d as homeward he did come.
      Drum within

      Third Witch

      A drum, a drum!
      Macbeth doth come.

      ALL

      The weird sisters, hand in hand,
      Posters of the sea and land,
      Thus do go about, about:
      Thrice to thine and thrice to mine
      And thrice again, to make up nine.
      Peace! the charm’s wound up.
      Enter MACBETH and BANQUO

      MACBETH

      So foul and fair a day I have not seen.

      BANQUO

      How far is’t call’d to Forres? What are these
      So wither’d and so wild in their attire,
      That look not like the inhabitants o’ the earth,
      And yet are on’t? Live you? or are you aught
      That man may question? You seem to understand me,
      By each at once her chappy finger laying
      Upon her skinny lips: you should be women,
      And yet your beards forbid me to interpret
      That you are so.

      MACBETH

      Speak, if you can: what are you?

      First Witch

      All hail, Macbeth! hail to thee, thane of Glamis!

      Second Witch

      All hail, Macbeth, hail to thee, thane of Cawdor!

      Third Witch

      All hail, Macbeth, thou shalt be king hereafter!

      BANQUO

      Good sir, why do you start; and seem to fear
      Things that do sound so fair? I’ the name of truth,
      Are ye fantastical, or that indeed
      Which outwardly ye show? My noble partner
      You greet with present grace and great prediction
      Of noble having and of royal hope,
      That he seems rapt withal: to me you speak not.
      If you can look into the seeds of time,
      And say which grain will grow and which will not,
      Speak then to me, who neither beg nor fear
      Your favours nor your hate.

      First Witch

      Hail!

      Second Witch

      Hail!

      Third Witch

      Hail!

      First Witch

      Lesser than Macbeth, and greater.

      Second Witch

      Not so happy, yet much happier.

      Third Witch

      Thou shalt get kings, though thou be none:
      So all hail, Macbeth and Banquo!

      First Witch

      Banquo and Macbeth, all hail!

      MACBETH

      Stay, you imperfect speakers, tell me more:
      By Sinel’s death I know I am thane of Glamis;
      But how of Cawdor? the thane of Cawdor lives,
      A prosperous gentleman; and to be king
      Stands not within the prospect of belief,
      No more than to be Cawdor. Say from whence
      You owe this strange intelligence? or why
      Upon this blasted heath you stop our way
      With such prophetic greeting? Speak, I charge you.
      Witches vanish

      BANQUO

      The earth hath bubbles, as the water has,
      And these are of them. Whither are they vanish’d?

      MACBETH

      Into the air; and what seem’d corporal melted
      As breath into the wind. Would they had stay’d!

      BANQUO

      Were such things here as we do speak about?
      Or have we eaten on the insane root
      That takes the reason prisoner?

      MACBETH

      Your children shall be kings.

      BANQUO

      You shall be king.

      MACBETH

      And thane of Cawdor too: went it not so?

      BANQUO

      To the selfsame tune and words. Who’s here?
      Enter ROSS and ANGUS

      ROSS

      The king hath happily received, Macbeth,
      The news of thy success; and when he reads
      Thy personal venture in the rebels’ fight,
      His wonders and his praises do contend
      Which should be thine or his: silenced with that,
      In viewing o’er the rest o’ the selfsame day,
      He finds thee in the stout Norweyan ranks,
      Nothing afeard of what thyself didst make,
      Strange images of death. As thick as hail
      Came post with post; and every one did bear
      Thy praises in his kingdom’s great defence,
      And pour’d them down before him.

      ANGUS

      We are sent
      To give thee from our royal master thanks;
      Only to herald thee into his sight,
      Not pay thee.

      ROSS

      And, for an earnest of a greater honour,
      He bade me, from him, call thee thane of Cawdor:
      In which addition, hail, most worthy thane!
      For it is thine.

      BANQUO

      What, can the devil speak true?

      MACBETH

      The thane of Cawdor lives: why do you dress me
      In borrow’d robes?

      ANGUS

      Who was the thane lives yet;
      But under heavy judgment bears that life
      Which he deserves to lose. Whether he was combined
      With those of Norway, or did line the rebel
      With hidden help and vantage, or that with both
      He labour’d in his country’s wreck, I know not;
      But treasons capital, confess’d and proved,
      Have overthrown him.

      MACBETH

      [Aside] Glamis, and thane of Cawdor!
      The greatest is behind.
      To ROSS and ANGUS

      Thanks for your pains.
      To BANQUO

      Do you not hope your children shall be kings,
      When those that gave the thane of Cawdor to me
      Promised no less to them?

      BANQUO

      That trusted home
      Might yet enkindle you unto the crown,
      Besides the thane of Cawdor. But ’tis strange:
      And oftentimes, to win us to our harm,
      The instruments of darkness tell us truths,
      Win us with honest trifles, to betray’s
      In deepest consequence.
      Cousins, a word, I pray you.

      MACBETH

      [Aside] Two truths are told,
      As happy prologues to the swelling act
      Of the imperial theme.–I thank you, gentlemen.
      Aside

      Cannot be ill, cannot be good: if ill,
      Why hath it given me earnest of success,
      Commencing in a truth? I am thane of Cawdor:
      If good, why do I yield to that suggestion
      Whose horrid image doth unfix my hair
      And make my seated heart knock at my ribs,
      Against the use of nature? Present fears
      Are less than horrible imaginings:
      My thought, whose murder yet is but fantastical,
      Shakes so my single state of man that function
      Is smother’d in surmise, and nothing is
      But what is not.

      BANQUO

      Look, how our partner’s rapt.

      MACBETH

      [Aside] If chance will have me king, why, chance may crown me,
      Without my stir.

      BANQUO

      New horrors come upon him,
      Like our strange garments, cleave not to their mould
      But with the aid of use.

      MACBETH

      [Aside] Come what come may,
      Time and the hour runs through the roughest day.

      BANQUO

      Worthy Macbeth, we stay upon your leisure.

      MACBETH

      Give me your favour: my dull brain was wrought
      With things forgotten. Kind gentlemen, your pains
      Are register’d where every day I turn
      The leaf to read them. Let us toward the king.
      Think upon what hath chanced, and, at more time,
      The interim having weigh’d it, let us speak
      Our free hearts each to other.

      BANQUO

      Very gladly.

      MACBETH

      Till then, enough. Come, friends.
      Exeunt

      SCENE IV. Forres. The palace.

      Flourish. Enter DUNCAN, MALCOLM, DONALBAIN, LENNOX, and Attendants

      DUNCAN

      Is execution done on Cawdor? Are not
      Those in commission yet return’d?

      MALCOLM

      My liege,
      They are not yet come back. But I have spoke
      With one that saw him die: who did report
      That very frankly he confess’d his treasons,
      Implored your highness’ pardon and set forth
      A deep repentance: nothing in his life
      Became him like the leaving it; he died
      As one that had been studied in his death
      To throw away the dearest thing he owed,
      As ’twere a careless trifle.

      DUNCAN

      There’s no art
      To find the mind’s construction in the face:
      He was a gentleman on whom I built
      An absolute trust.
      Enter MACBETH, BANQUO, ROSS, and ANGUS

      O worthiest cousin!
      The sin of my ingratitude even now
      Was heavy on me: thou art so far before
      That swiftest wing of recompense is slow
      To overtake thee. Would thou hadst less deserved,
      That the proportion both of thanks and payment
      Might have been mine! only I have left to say,
      More is thy due than more than all can pay.

      MACBETH

      The service and the loyalty I owe,
      In doing it, pays itself. Your highness’ part
      Is to receive our duties; and our duties
      Are to your throne and state children and servants,
      Which do but what they should, by doing every thing
      Safe toward your love and honour.

      DUNCAN

      Welcome hither:
      I have begun to plant thee, and will labour
      To make thee full of growing. Noble Banquo,
      That hast no less deserved, nor must be known
      No less to have done so, let me enfold thee
      And hold thee to my heart.

      BANQUO

      There if I grow,
      The harvest is your own.

      DUNCAN

      My plenteous joys,
      Wanton in fulness, seek to hide themselves
      In drops of sorrow. Sons, kinsmen, thanes,
      And you whose places are the nearest, know
      We will establish our estate upon
      Our eldest, Malcolm, whom we name hereafter
      The Prince of Cumberland; which honour must
      Not unaccompanied invest him only,
      But signs of nobleness, like stars, shall shine
      On all deservers. From hence to Inverness,
      And bind us further to you.

      MACBETH

      The rest is labour, which is not used for you:
      I’ll be myself the harbinger and make joyful
      The hearing of my wife with your approach;
      So humbly take my leave.

      DUNCAN

      My worthy Cawdor!

      MACBETH

      [Aside] The Prince of Cumberland! that is a step
      On which I must fall down, or else o’erleap,
      For in my way it lies. Stars, hide your fires;
      Let not light see my black and deep desires:
      The eye wink at the hand; yet let that be,
      Which the eye fears, when it is done, to see.
      Exit

      DUNCAN

      True, worthy Banquo; he is full so valiant,
      And in his commendations I am fed;
      It is a banquet to me. Let’s after him,
      Whose care is gone before to bid us welcome:
      It is a peerless kinsman.
      Flourish. Exeunt

      SCENE V. Inverness. Macbeth’s castle.

      Enter LADY MACBETH, reading a letter

      LADY MACBETH

      ‘They met me in the day of success: and I have
      learned by the perfectest report, they have more in
      them than mortal knowledge. When I burned in desire
      to question them further, they made themselves air,
      into which they vanished. Whiles I stood rapt in
      the wonder of it, came missives from the king, who
      all-hailed me ‘Thane of Cawdor;’ by which title,
      before, these weird sisters saluted me, and referred
      me to the coming on of time, with ‘Hail, king that
      shalt be!’ This have I thought good to deliver
      thee, my dearest partner of greatness, that thou
      mightst not lose the dues of rejoicing, by being
      ignorant of what greatness is promised thee. Lay it
      to thy heart, and farewell.’
      Glamis thou art, and Cawdor; and shalt be
      What thou art promised: yet do I fear thy nature;
      It is too full o’ the milk of human kindness
      To catch the nearest way: thou wouldst be great;
      Art not without ambition, but without
      The illness should attend it: what thou wouldst highly,
      That wouldst thou holily; wouldst not play false,
      And yet wouldst wrongly win: thou’ldst have, great Glamis,
      That which cries ‘Thus thou must do, if thou have it;
      And that which rather thou dost fear to do
      Than wishest should be undone.’ Hie thee hither,
      That I may pour my spirits in thine ear;
      And chastise with the valour of my tongue
      All that impedes thee from the golden round,
      Which fate and metaphysical aid doth seem
      To have thee crown’d withal.
      Enter a Messenger

      What is your tidings?

      Messenger

      The king comes here to-night.

      LADY MACBETH

      Thou’rt mad to say it:
      Is not thy master with him? who, were’t so,
      Would have inform’d for preparation.

      Messenger

      So please you, it is true: our thane is coming:
      One of my fellows had the speed of him,
      Who, almost dead for breath, had scarcely more
      Than would make up his message.

      LADY MACBETH

      Give him tending;
      He brings great news.
      Exit Messenger

      The raven himself is hoarse
      That croaks the fatal entrance of Duncan
      Under my battlements. Come, you spirits
      That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here,
      And fill me from the crown to the toe top-full
      Of direst cruelty! make thick my blood;
      Stop up the access and passage to remorse,
      That no compunctious visitings of nature
      Shake my fell purpose, nor keep peace between
      The effect and it! Come to my woman’s breasts,
      And take my milk for gall, you murdering ministers,
      Wherever in your sightless substances
      You wait on nature’s mischief! Come, thick night,
      And pall thee in the dunnest smoke of hell,
      That my keen knife see not the wound it makes,
      Nor heaven peep through the blanket of the dark,
      To cry ‘Hold, hold!’
      Enter MACBETH

      Great Glamis! worthy Cawdor!
      Greater than both, by the all-hail hereafter!
      Thy letters have transported me beyond
      This ignorant present, and I feel now
      The future in the instant.

      MACBETH

      My dearest love,
      Duncan comes here to-night.

      LADY MACBETH

      And when goes hence?

      MACBETH

      To-morrow, as he purposes.

      LADY MACBETH

      O, never
      Shall sun that morrow see!
      Your face, my thane, is as a book where men
      May read strange matters. To beguile the time,
      Look like the time; bear welcome in your eye,
      Your hand, your tongue: look like the innocent flower,
      But be the serpent under’t. He that’s coming
      Must be provided for: and you shall put
      This night’s great business into my dispatch;
      Which shall to all our nights and days to come
      Give solely sovereign sway and masterdom.

      MACBETH

      We will speak further.

      LADY MACBETH

      Only look up clear;
      To alter favour ever is to fear:
      Leave all the rest to me.
      Exeunt

      SCENE VI. Before Macbeth’s castle.

      Hautboys and torches. Enter DUNCAN, MALCOLM, DONALBAIN, BANQUO, LENNOX, MACDUFF, ROSS, ANGUS, and Attendants

      DUNCAN

      This castle hath a pleasant seat; the air
      Nimbly and sweetly recommends itself
      Unto our gentle senses.

      BANQUO

      This guest of summer,
      The temple-haunting martlet, does approve,
      By his loved mansionry, that the heaven’s breath
      Smells wooingly here: no jutty, frieze,
      Buttress, nor coign of vantage, but this bird
      Hath made his pendent bed and procreant cradle:
      Where they most breed and haunt, I have observed,
      The air is delicate.
      Enter LADY MACBETH

      DUNCAN

      See, see, our honour’d hostess!
      The love that follows us sometime is our trouble,
      Which still we thank as love. Herein I teach you
      How you shall bid God ‘ild us for your pains,
      And thank us for your trouble.

      LADY MACBETH

      All our service
      In every point twice done and then done double
      Were poor and single business to contend
      Against those honours deep and broad wherewith
      Your majesty loads our house: for those of old,
      And the late dignities heap’d up to them,
      We rest your hermits.

      DUNCAN

      Where’s the thane of Cawdor?
      We coursed him at the heels, and had a purpose
      To be his purveyor: but he rides well;
      And his great love, sharp as his spur, hath holp him
      To his home before us. Fair and noble hostess,
      We are your guest to-night.

      LADY MACBETH

      Your servants ever
      Have theirs, themselves and what is theirs, in compt,
      To make their audit at your highness’ pleasure,
      Still to return your own.

      DUNCAN

      Give me your hand;
      Conduct me to mine host: we love him highly,
      And shall continue our graces towards him.
      By your leave, hostess.
      Exeunt

      SCENE VII. Macbeth’s castle.

      Hautboys and torches. Enter a Sewer, and divers Servants with dishes and service, and pass over the stage. Then enter MACBETH

      MACBETH

      If it were done when ’tis done, then ’twere well
      It were done quickly: if the assassination
      Could trammel up the consequence, and catch
      With his surcease success; that but this blow
      Might be the be-all and the end-all here,
      But here, upon this bank and shoal of time,
      We’ld jump the life to come. But in these cases
      We still have judgment here; that we but teach
      Bloody instructions, which, being taught, return
      To plague the inventor: this even-handed justice
      Commends the ingredients of our poison’d chalice
      To our own lips. He’s here in double trust;
      First, as I am his kinsman and his subject,
      Strong both against the deed; then, as his host,
      Who should against his murderer shut the door,
      Not bear the knife myself. Besides, this Duncan
      Hath borne his faculties so meek, hath been
      So clear in his great office, that his virtues
      Will plead like angels, trumpet-tongued, against
      The deep damnation of his taking-off;
      And pity, like a naked new-born babe,
      Striding the blast, or heaven’s cherubim, horsed
      Upon the sightless couriers of the air,
      Shall blow the horrid deed in every eye,
      That tears shall drown the wind. I have no spur
      To prick the sides of my intent, but only
      Vaulting ambition, which o’erleaps itself
      And falls on the other.
      Enter LADY MACBETH

      How now! what news?

      LADY MACBETH

      He has almost supp’d: why have you left the chamber?

      MACBETH

      Hath he ask’d for me?

      LADY MACBETH

      Know you not he has?

      MACBETH

      We will proceed no further in this business:
      He hath honour’d me of late; and I have bought
      Golden opinions from all sorts of people,
      Which would be worn now in their newest gloss,
      Not cast aside so soon.

      LADY MACBETH

      Was the hope drunk
      Wherein you dress’d yourself? hath it slept since?
      And wakes it now, to look so green and pale
      At what it did so freely? From this time
      Such I account thy love. Art thou afeard
      To be the same in thine own act and valour
      As thou art in desire? Wouldst thou have that
      Which thou esteem’st the ornament of life,
      And live a coward in thine own esteem,
      Letting ‘I dare not’ wait upon ‘I would,’
      Like the poor cat i’ the adage?

      MACBETH

      Prithee, peace:
      I dare do all that may become a man;
      Who dares do more is none.

      LADY MACBETH

      What beast was’t, then,
      That made you break this enterprise to me?
      When you durst do it, then you were a man;
      And, to be more than what you were, you would
      Be so much more the man. Nor time nor place
      Did then adhere, and yet you would make both:
      They have made themselves, and that their fitness now
      Does unmake you. I have given suck, and know
      How tender ’tis to love the babe that milks me:
      I would, while it was smiling in my face,
      Have pluck’d my nipple from his boneless gums,
      And dash’d the brains out, had I so sworn as you
      Have done to this.

      MACBETH

      If we should fail?

      LADY MACBETH

      We fail!
      But screw your courage to the sticking-place,
      And we’ll not fail. When Duncan is asleep–
      Whereto the rather shall his day’s hard journey
      Soundly invite him–his two chamberlains
      Will I with wine and wassail so convince
      That memory, the warder of the brain,
      Shall be a fume, and the receipt of reason
      A limbeck only: when in swinish sleep
      Their drenched natures lie as in a death,
      What cannot you and I perform upon
      The unguarded Duncan? what not put upon
      His spongy officers, who shall bear the guilt
      Of our great quell?

      MACBETH

      Bring forth men-children only;
      For thy undaunted mettle should compose
      Nothing but males. Will it not be received,
      When we have mark’d with blood those sleepy two
      Of his own chamber and used their very daggers,
      That they have done’t?

      LADY MACBETH

      Who dares receive it other,
      As we shall make our griefs and clamour roar
      Upon his death?

      MACBETH

      I am settled, and bend up
      Each corporal agent to this terrible feat.
      Away, and mock the time with fairest show:
      False face must hide what the false heart doth know.
      Exeunt

      ACT II

      SCENE I. Court of Macbeth’s castle.

      Enter BANQUO, and FLEANCE bearing a torch before him

      BANQUO

      How goes the night, boy?

      FLEANCE

      The moon is down; I have not heard the clock.

      BANQUO

      And she goes down at twelve.

      FLEANCE

      I take’t, ’tis later, sir.

      BANQUO

      Hold, take my sword. There’s husbandry in heaven;
      Their candles are all out. Take thee that too.
      A heavy summons lies like lead upon me,
      And yet I would not sleep: merciful powers,
      Restrain in me the cursed thoughts that nature
      Gives way to in repose!
      Enter MACBETH, and a Servant with a torch

      Give me my sword.
      Who’s there?

      MACBETH

      A friend.

      BANQUO

      What, sir, not yet at rest? The king’s a-bed:
      He hath been in unusual pleasure, and
      Sent forth great largess to your offices.
      This diamond he greets your wife withal,
      By the name of most kind hostess; and shut up
      In measureless content.

      MACBETH

      Being unprepared,
      Our will became the servant to defect;
      Which else should free have wrought.

      BANQUO

      All’s well.
      I dreamt last night of the three weird sisters:
      To you they have show’d some truth.

      MACBETH

      I think not of them:
      Yet, when we can entreat an hour to serve,
      We would spend it in some words upon that business,
      If you would grant the time.

      BANQUO

      At your kind’st leisure.

      MACBETH

      If you shall cleave to my consent, when ’tis,
      It shall make honour for you.

      BANQUO

      So I lose none
      In seeking to augment it, but still keep
      My bosom franchised and allegiance clear,
      I shall be counsell’d.

      MACBETH

      Good repose the while!

      BANQUO

      Thanks, sir: the like to you!
      Exeunt BANQUO and FLEANCE

      MACBETH

      Go bid thy mistress, when my drink is ready,
      She strike upon the bell. Get thee to bed.
      Exit Servant

      Is this a dagger which I see before me,
      The handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee.
      I have thee not, and yet I see thee still.
      Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible
      To feeling as to sight? or art thou but
      A dagger of the mind, a false creation,
      Proceeding from the heat-oppressed brain?
      I see thee yet, in form as palpable
      As this which now I draw.
      Thou marshall’st me the way that I was going;
      And such an instrument I was to use.
      Mine eyes are made the fools o’ the other senses,
      Or else worth all the rest; I see thee still,
      And on thy blade and dudgeon gouts of blood,
      Which was not so before. There’s no such thing:
      It is the bloody business which informs
      Thus to mine eyes. Now o’er the one halfworld
      Nature seems dead, and wicked dreams abuse
      The curtain’d sleep; witchcraft celebrates
      Pale Hecate’s offerings, and wither’d murder,
      Alarum’d by his sentinel, the wolf,
      Whose howl’s his watch, thus with his stealthy pace.
      With Tarquin’s ravishing strides, towards his design
      Moves like a ghost. Thou sure and firm-set earth,
      Hear not my steps, which way they walk, for fear
      Thy very stones prate of my whereabout,
      And take the present horror from the time,
      Which now suits with it. Whiles I threat, he lives:
      Words to the heat of deeds too cold breath gives.
      A bell rings

      I go, and it is done; the bell invites me.
      Hear it not, Duncan; for it is a knell
      That summons thee to heaven or to hell.
      Exit

      SCENE II. The same.

      Enter LADY MACBETH

      LADY MACBETH

      That which hath made them drunk hath made me bold;
      What hath quench’d them hath given me fire.
      Hark! Peace!
      It was the owl that shriek’d, the fatal bellman,
      Which gives the stern’st good-night. He is about it:
      The doors are open; and the surfeited grooms
      Do mock their charge with snores: I have drugg’d
      their possets,
      That death and nature do contend about them,
      Whether they live or die.

      MACBETH

      [Within] Who’s there? what, ho!

      LADY MACBETH

      Alack, I am afraid they have awaked,
      And ’tis not done. The attempt and not the deed
      Confounds us. Hark! I laid their daggers ready;
      He could not miss ’em. Had he not resembled
      My father as he slept, I had done’t.
      Enter MACBETH

      My husband!

      MACBETH

      I have done the deed. Didst thou not hear a noise?

      LADY MACBETH

      I heard the owl scream and the crickets cry.
      Did not you speak?

      MACBETH

      When?

      LADY MACBETH

      Now.

      MACBETH

      As I descended?

      LADY MACBETH

      Ay.

      MACBETH

      Hark!
      Who lies i’ the second chamber?

      LADY MACBETH

      Donalbain.

      MACBETH

      This is a sorry sight.
      Looking on his hands

      LADY MACBETH

      A foolish thought, to say a sorry sight.

      MACBETH

      There’s one did laugh in’s sleep, and one cried
      ‘Murder!’
      That they did wake each other: I stood and heard them:
      But they did say their prayers, and address’d them
      Again to sleep.

      LADY MACBETH

      There are two lodged together.

      MACBETH

      One cried ‘God bless us!’ and ‘Amen’ the other;
      As they had seen me with these hangman’s hands.
      Listening their fear, I could not say ‘Amen,’
      When they did say ‘God bless us!’

      LADY MACBETH

      Consider it not so deeply.

      MACBETH

      But wherefore could not I pronounce ‘Amen’?
      I had most need of blessing, and ‘Amen’
      Stuck in my throat.

      LADY MACBETH

      These deeds must not be thought
      After these ways; so, it will make us mad.

      MACBETH

      Methought I heard a voice cry ‘Sleep no more!
      Macbeth does murder sleep’, the innocent sleep,
      Sleep that knits up the ravell’d sleeve of care,
      The death of each day’s life, sore labour’s bath,
      Balm of hurt minds, great nature’s second course,
      Chief nourisher in life’s feast,–

      LADY MACBETH

      What do you mean?

      MACBETH

      Still it cried ‘Sleep no more!’ to all the house:
      ‘Glamis hath murder’d sleep, and therefore Cawdor
      Shall sleep no more; Macbeth shall sleep no more.’

      LADY MACBETH

      Who was it that thus cried? Why, worthy thane,
      You do unbend your noble strength, to think
      So brainsickly of things. Go get some water,
      And wash this filthy witness from your hand.
      Why did you bring these daggers from the place?
      They must lie there: go carry them; and smear
      The sleepy grooms with blood.

      MACBETH

      I’ll go no more:
      I am afraid to think what I have done;
      Look on’t again I dare not.

      LADY MACBETH

      Infirm of purpose!
      Give me the daggers: the sleeping and the dead
      Are but as pictures: ’tis the eye of childhood
      That fears a painted devil. If he do bleed,
      I’ll gild the faces of the grooms withal;
      For it must seem their guilt.
      Exit. Knocking within

      MACBETH

      Whence is that knocking?
      How is’t with me, when every noise appals me?
      What hands are here? ha! they pluck out mine eyes.
      Will all great Neptune’s ocean wash this blood
      Clean from my hand? No, this my hand will rather
      The multitudinous seas in incarnadine,
      Making the green one red.
      Re-enter LADY MACBETH

      LADY MACBETH

      My hands are of your colour; but I shame
      To wear a heart so white.
      Knocking within

      I hear a knocking
      At the south entry: retire we to our chamber;
      A little water clears us of this deed:
      How easy is it, then! Your constancy
      Hath left you unattended.
      Knocking within

      Hark! more knocking.
      Get on your nightgown, lest occasion call us,
      And show us to be watchers. Be not lost
      So poorly in your thoughts.

      MACBETH

      To know my deed, ’twere best not know myself.
      Knocking within

      Wake Duncan with thy knocking! I would thou couldst!
      Exeunt

      SCENE III. The same.

      Knocking within. Enter a Porter

      Porter

      Here’s a knocking indeed! If a
      man were porter of hell-gate, he should have
      old turning the key.
      Knocking within

      Knock,
      knock, knock! Who’s there, i’ the name of
      Beelzebub? Here’s a farmer, that hanged
      himself on the expectation of plenty: come in
      time; have napkins enow about you; here
      you’ll sweat for’t.
      Knocking within

      Knock,
      knock! Who’s there, in the other devil’s
      name? Faith, here’s an equivocator, that could
      swear in both the scales against either scale;
      who committed treason enough for God’s sake,
      yet could not equivocate to heaven: O, come
      in, equivocator.
      Knocking within

      Knock,
      knock, knock! Who’s there? Faith, here’s an
      English tailor come hither, for stealing out of
      a French hose: come in, tailor; here you may
      roast your goose.
      Knocking within

      Knock,
      knock; never at quiet! What are you? But
      this place is too cold for hell. I’ll devil-porter
      it no further: I had thought to have let in
      some of all professions that go the primrose
      way to the everlasting bonfire.
      Knocking within

      Anon, anon! I pray you, remember the porter.
      Opens the gate

      Enter MACDUFF and LENNOX

      MACDUFF

      Was it so late, friend, ere you went to bed,
      That you do lie so late?

      Porter

      ‘Faith sir, we were carousing till the
      second cock: and drink, sir, is a great
      provoker of three things.

      MACDUFF

      What three things does drink especially provoke?

      Porter

      Marry, sir, nose-painting, sleep, and
      urine. Lechery, sir, it provokes, and unprovokes;
      it provokes the desire, but it takes
      away the performance: therefore, much drink
      may be said to be an equivocator with lechery:
      it makes him, and it mars him; it sets
      him on, and it takes him off; it persuades him,
      and disheartens him; makes him stand to, and
      not stand to; in conclusion, equivocates him
      in a sleep, and, giving him the lie, leaves him.

      MACDUFF

      I believe drink gave thee the lie last night.

      Porter

      That it did, sir, i’ the very throat on
      me: but I requited him for his lie; and, I
      think, being too strong for him, though he took
      up my legs sometime, yet I made a shift to cast
      him.

      MACDUFF

      Is thy master stirring?
      Enter MACBETH

      Our knocking has awaked him; here he comes.

      LENNOX

      Good morrow, noble sir.

      MACBETH

      Good morrow, both.

      MACDUFF

      Is the king stirring, worthy thane?

      MACBETH

      Not yet.

      MACDUFF

      He did command me to call timely on him:
      I have almost slipp’d the hour.

      MACBETH

      I’ll bring you to him.

      MACDUFF

      I know this is a joyful trouble to you;
      But yet ’tis one.

      MACBETH

      The labour we delight in physics pain.
      This is the door.

      MACDUFF

      I’ll make so bold to call,
      For ’tis my limited service.
      Exit

      LENNOX

      Goes the king hence to-day?

      MACBETH

      He does: he did appoint so.

      LENNOX

      The night has been unruly: where we lay,
      Our chimneys were blown down; and, as they say,
      Lamentings heard i’ the air; strange screams of death,
      And prophesying with accents terrible
      Of dire combustion and confused events
      New hatch’d to the woeful time: the obscure bird
      Clamour’d the livelong night: some say, the earth
      Was feverous and did shake.

      MACBETH

      ‘Twas a rough night.

      LENNOX

      My young remembrance cannot parallel
      A fellow to it.
      Re-enter MACDUFF

      MACDUFF

      O horror, horror, horror! Tongue nor heart
      Cannot conceive nor name thee!

      MACBETH LENNOX

      What’s the matter.

      MACDUFF

      Confusion now hath made his masterpiece!
      Most sacrilegious murder hath broke ope
      The Lord’s anointed temple, and stole thence
      The life o’ the building!

      MACBETH

      What is ‘t you say? the life?

      LENNOX

      Mean you his majesty?

      MACDUFF

      Approach the chamber, and destroy your sight
      With a new Gorgon: do not bid me speak;
      See, and then speak yourselves.
      Exeunt MACBETH and LENNOX

      Awake, awake!
      Ring the alarum-bell. Murder and treason!
      Banquo and Donalbain! Malcolm! awake!
      Shake off this downy sleep, death’s counterfeit,
      And look on death itself! up, up, and see
      The great doom’s image! Malcolm! Banquo!
      As from your graves rise up, and walk like sprites,
      To countenance this horror! Ring the bell.
      Bell rings

      Enter LADY MACBETH

      LADY MACBETH

      What’s the business,
      That such a hideous trumpet calls to parley
      The sleepers of the house? speak, speak!

      MACDUFF

      O gentle lady,
      ‘Tis not for you to hear what I can speak:
      The repetition, in a woman’s ear,
      Would murder as it fell.
      Enter BANQUO

      O Banquo, Banquo,
      Our royal master ‘s murder’d!

      LADY MACBETH

      Woe, alas!
      What, in our house?

      BANQUO

      Too cruel any where.
      Dear Duff, I prithee, contradict thyself,
      And say it is not so.
      Re-enter MACBETH and LENNOX, with ROSS

      MACBETH

      Had I but died an hour before this chance,
      I had lived a blessed time; for, from this instant,
      There ‘s nothing serious in mortality:
      All is but toys: renown and grace is dead;
      The wine of life is drawn, and the mere lees
      Is left this vault to brag of.
      Enter MALCOLM and DONALBAIN

      DONALBAIN

      What is amiss?

      MACBETH

      You are, and do not know’t:
      The spring, the head, the fountain of your blood
      Is stopp’d; the very source of it is stopp’d.

      MACDUFF

      Your royal father ‘s murder’d.

      MALCOLM

      O, by whom?

      LENNOX

      Those of his chamber, as it seem’d, had done ‘t:
      Their hands and faces were an badged with blood;
      So were their daggers, which unwiped we found
      Upon their pillows:
      They stared, and were distracted; no man’s life
      Was to be trusted with them.

      MACBETH

      O, yet I do repent me of my fury,
      That I did kill them.

      MACDUFF

      Wherefore did you so?

      MACBETH

      Who can be wise, amazed, temperate and furious,
      Loyal and neutral, in a moment? No man:
      The expedition my violent love
      Outrun the pauser, reason. Here lay Duncan,
      His silver skin laced with his golden blood;
      And his gash’d stabs look’d like a breach in nature
      For ruin’s wasteful entrance: there, the murderers,
      Steep’d in the colours of their trade, their daggers
      Unmannerly breech’d with gore: who could refrain,
      That had a heart to love, and in that heart
      Courage to make ‘s love kno wn?

      LADY MACBETH

      Help me hence, ho!

      MACDUFF

      Look to the lady.

      MALCOLM

      [Aside to DONALBAIN] Why do we hold our tongues,
      That most may claim this argument for ours?

      DONALBAIN

      [Aside to MALCOLM] What should be spoken here,
      where our fate,
      Hid in an auger-hole, may rush, and seize us?
      Let ‘s away;
      Our tears are not yet brew’d.

      MALCOLM

      [Aside to DONALBAIN] Nor our strong sorrow
      Upon the foot of motion.

      BANQUO

      Look to the lady:
      LADY MACBETH is carried out

      And when we have our naked frailties hid,
      That suffer in exposure, let us meet,
      And question this most bloody piece of work,
      To know it further. Fears and scruples shake us:
      In the great hand of God I stand; and thence
      Against the undivulged pretence I fight
      Of treasonous malice.

      MACDUFF

      And so do I.

      ALL

      So all.

      MACBETH

      Let’s briefly put on manly readiness,
      And meet i’ the hall together.

      ALL

      Well contented.
      Exeunt all but Malcolm and Donalbain.

      MALCOLM

      What will you do? Let’s not consort with them:
      To show an unfelt sorrow is an office
      Which the false man does easy. I’ll to England.

      DONALBAIN

      To Ireland, I; our separated fortune
      Shall keep us both the safer: where we are,
      There’s daggers in men’s smiles: the near in blood,
      The nearer bloody.

      MALCOLM

      This murderous shaft that’s shot
      Hath not yet lighted, and our safest way
      Is to avoid the aim. Therefore, to horse;
      And let us not be dainty of leave-taking,
      But shift away: there’s warrant in that theft
      Which steals itself, when there’s no mercy left.
      Exeunt

      SCENE IV. Outside Macbeth’s castle.

      Enter ROSS and an old Man

      Old Man

      Threescore and ten I can remember well:
      Within the volume of which time I have seen
      Hours dreadful and things strange; but this sore night
      Hath trifled former knowings.

      ROSS

      Ah, good father,
      Thou seest, the heavens, as troubled with man’s act,
      Threaten his bloody stage: by the clock, ’tis day,
      And yet dark night strangles the travelling lamp:
      Is’t night’s predominance, or the day’s shame,
      That darkness does the face of earth entomb,
      When living light should kiss it?

      Old Man

      ‘Tis unnatural,
      Even like the deed that’s done. On Tuesday last,
      A falcon, towering in her pride of place,
      Was by a mousing owl hawk’d at and kill’d.

      ROSS

      And Duncan’s horses–a thing most strange and certain–
      Beauteous and swift, the minions of their race,
      Turn’d wild in nature, broke their stalls, flung out,
      Contending ‘gainst obedience, as they would make
      War with mankind.

      Old Man

      ‘Tis said they eat each other.

      ROSS

      They did so, to the amazement of mine eyes
      That look’d upon’t. Here comes the good Macduff.
      Enter MACDUFF

      How goes the world, sir, now?

      MACDUFF

      Why, see you not?

      ROSS

      Is’t known who did this more than bloody deed?

      MACDUFF

      Those that Macbeth hath slain.

      ROSS

      Alas, the day!
      What good could they pretend?

      MACDUFF

      They were suborn’d:
      Malcolm and Donalbain, the king’s two sons,
      Are stol’n away and fled; which puts upon them
      Suspicion of the deed.

      ROSS

      ‘Gainst nature still!
      Thriftless ambition, that wilt ravin up
      Thine own life’s means! Then ’tis most like
      The sovereignty will fall upon Macbeth.

      MACDUFF

      He is already named, and gone to Scone
      To be invested.

      ROSS

      Where is Duncan’s body?

      MACDUFF

      Carried to Colmekill,
      The sacred storehouse of his predecessors,
      And guardian of their bones.

      ROSS

      Will you to Scone?

      MACDUFF

      No, cousin, I’ll to Fife.

      ROSS

      Well, I will thither.

      MACDUFF

      Well, may you see things well done there: adieu!
      Lest our old robes sit easier than our new!

      ROSS

      Farewell, father.

      Old Man

      God’s benison go with you; and with those
      That would make good of bad, and friends of foes!
      Exeunt

      ACT III

      SCENE I. Forres. The palace.

      Enter BANQUO

      BANQUO

      Thou hast it now: king, Cawdor, Glamis, all,
      As the weird women promised, and, I fear,
      Thou play’dst most foully for’t: yet it was said
      It should not stand in thy posterity,
      But that myself should be the root and father
      Of many kings. If there come truth from them–
      As upon thee, Macbeth, their speeches shine–
      Why, by the verities on thee made good,
      May they not be my oracles as well,
      And set me up in hope? But hush! no more.
      Sennet sounded. Enter MACBETH, as king, LADY MACBETH, as queen, LENNOX, ROSS, Lords, Ladies, and Attendants

      MACBETH

      Here’s our chief guest.

      LADY MACBETH

      If he had been forgotten,
      It had been as a gap in our great feast,
      And all-thing unbecoming.

      MACBETH

      To-night we hold a solemn supper sir,
      And I’ll request your presence.

      BANQUO

      Let your highness
      Command upon me; to the which my duties
      Are with a most indissoluble tie
      For ever knit.

      MACBETH

      Ride you this afternoon?

      BANQUO

      Ay, my good lord.

      MACBETH

      We should have else desired your good advice,
      Which still hath been both grave and prosperous,
      In this day’s council; but we’ll take to-morrow.
      Is’t far you ride?

      BANQUO

      As far, my lord, as will fill up the time
      ‘Twixt this and supper: go not my horse the better,
      I must become a borrower of the night
      For a dark hour or twain.

      MACBETH

      Fail not our feast.

      BANQUO

      My lord, I will not.

      MACBETH

      We hear, our bloody cousins are bestow’d
      In England and in Ireland, not confessing
      Their cruel parricide, filling their hearers
      With strange invention: but of that to-morrow,
      When therewithal we shall have cause of state
      Craving us jointly. Hie you to horse: adieu,
      Till you return at night. Goes Fleance with you?

      BANQUO

      Ay, my good lord: our time does call upon ‘s.

      MACBETH

      I wish your horses swift and sure of foot;
      And so I do commend you to their backs. Farewell.
      Exit BANQUO

      Let every man be master of his time
      Till seven at night: to make society
      The sweeter welcome, we will keep ourself
      Till supper-time alone: while then, God be with you!
      Exeunt all but MACBETH, and an attendant

      Sirrah, a word with you: attend those men
      Our pleasure?

      ATTENDANT

      They are, my lord, without the palace gate.

      MACBETH

      Bring them before us.
      Exit Attendant

      To be thus is nothing;
      But to be safely thus.–Our fears in Banquo
      Stick deep; and in his royalty of nature
      Reigns that which would be fear’d: ’tis much he dares;
      And, to that dauntless temper of his mind,
      He hath a wisdom that doth guide his valour
      To act in safety. There is none but he
      Whose being I do fear: and, under him,
      My Genius is rebuked; as, it is said,
      Mark Antony’s was by Caesar. He chid the sisters
      When first they put the name of king upon me,
      And bade them speak to him: then prophet-like
      They hail’d him father to a line of kings:
      Upon my head they placed a fruitless crown,
      And put a barren sceptre in my gripe,
      Thence to be wrench’d with an unlineal hand,
      No son of mine succeeding. If ‘t be so,
      For Banquo’s issue have I filed my mind;
      For them the gracious Duncan have I murder’d;
      Put rancours in the vessel of my peace
      Only for them; and mine eternal jewel
      Given to the common enemy of man,
      To make them kings, the seed of Banquo kings!
      Rather than so, come fate into the list.
      And champion me to the utterance! Who’s there!
      Re-enter Attendant, with two Murderers

      Now go to the door, and stay there till we call.
      Exit Attendant

      Was it not yesterday we spoke together?

      First Murderer

      It was, so please your highness.

      MACBETH

      Well then, now
      Have you consider’d of my speeches? Know
      That it was he in the times past which held you
      So under fortune, which you thought had been
      Our innocent self: this I made good to you
      In our last conference, pass’d in probation with you,
      How you were borne in hand, how cross’d,
      the instruments,
      Who wrought with them, and all things else that might
      To half a soul and to a notion crazed
      Say ‘Thus did Banquo.’

      First Murderer

      You made it known to us.

      MACBETH

      I did so, and went further, which is now
      Our point of second meeting. Do you find
      Your patience so predominant in your nature
      That you can let this go? Are you so gospell’d
      To pray for this good man and for his issue,
      Whose heavy hand hath bow’d you to the grave
      And beggar’d yours for ever?

      First Murderer

      We are men, my liege.

      MACBETH

      Ay, in the catalogue ye go for men;
      As hounds and greyhounds, mongrels, spaniels, curs,
      Shoughs, water-rugs and demi-wolves, are clept
      All by the name of dogs: the valued file
      Distinguishes the swift, the slow, the subtle,
      The housekeeper, the hunter, every one
      According to the gift which bounteous nature
      Hath in him closed; whereby he does receive
      Particular addition. from the bill
      That writes them all alike: and so of men.
      Now, if you have a station in the file,
      Not i’ the worst rank of manhood, say ‘t;
      And I will put that business in your bosoms,
      Whose execution takes your enemy off,
      Grapples you to the heart and love of us,
      Who wear our health but sickly in his life,
      Which in his death were perfect.

      Second Murderer

      I am one, my liege,
      Whom the vile blows and buffets of the world
      Have so incensed that I am reckless what
      I do to spite the world.

      First Murderer

      And I another
      So weary with disasters, tugg’d with fortune,
      That I would set my lie on any chance,
      To mend it, or be rid on’t.

      MACBETH

      Both of you
      Know Banquo was your enemy.

      Both Murderers

      True, my lord.

      MACBETH

      So is he mine; and in such bloody distance,
      That every minute of his being thrusts
      Against my near’st of life: and though I could
      With barefaced power sweep him from my sight
      And bid my will avouch it, yet I must not,
      For certain friends that are both his and mine,
      Whose loves I may not drop, but wail his fall
      Who I myself struck down; and thence it is,
      That I to your assistance do make love,
      Masking the business from the common eye
      For sundry weighty reasons.

      Second Murderer

      We shall, my lord,
      Perform what you command us.

      First Murderer

      Though our lives–

      MACBETH

      Your spirits shine through you. Within this hour at most
      I will advise you where to plant yourselves;
      Acquaint you with the perfect spy o’ the time,
      The moment on’t; for’t must be done to-night,
      And something from the palace; always thought
      That I require a clearness: and with him–
      To leave no rubs nor botches in the work–
      Fleance his son, that keeps him company,
      Whose absence is no less material to me
      Than is his father’s, must embrace the fate
      Of that dark hour. Resolve yourselves apart:
      I’ll come to you anon.

      Both Murderers

      We are resolved, my lord.

      MACBETH

      I’ll call upon you straight: abide within.
      Exeunt Murderers

      It is concluded. Banquo, thy soul’s flight,
      If it find heaven, must find it out to-night.
      Exit

      SCENE II. The palace.

      Enter LADY MACBETH and a Servant

      LADY MACBETH

      Is Banquo gone from court?

      Servant

      Ay, madam, but returns again to-night.

      LADY MACBETH

      Say to the king, I would attend his leisure
      For a few words.

      Servant

      Madam, I will.
      Exit

      LADY MACBETH

      Nought’s had, all’s spent,
      Where our desire is got without content:
      ‘Tis safer to be that which we destroy
      Than by destruction dwell in doubtful joy.
      Enter MACBETH

      How now, my lord! why do you keep alone,
      Of sorriest fancies your companions making,
      Using those thoughts which should indeed have died
      With them they think on? Things without all remedy
      Should be without regard: what’s done is done.

      MACBETH

      We have scotch’d the snake, not kill’d it:
      She’ll close and be herself, whilst our poor malice
      Remains in danger of her former tooth.
      But let the frame of things disjoint, both the
      worlds suffer,
      Ere we will eat our meal in fear and sleep
      In the affliction of these terrible dreams
      That shake us nightly: better be with the dead,
      Whom we, to gain our peace, have sent to peace,
      Than on the torture of the mind to lie
      In restless ecstasy. Duncan is in his grave;
      After life’s fitful fever he sleeps well;
      Treason has done his worst: nor steel, nor poison,
      Malice domestic, foreign levy, nothing,
      Can touch him further.

      LADY MACBETH

      Come on;
      Gentle my lord, sleek o’er your rugged looks;
      Be bright and jovial among your guests to-night.

      MACBETH

      So shall I, love; and so, I pray, be you:
      Let your remembrance apply to Banquo;
      Present him eminence, both with eye and tongue:
      Unsafe the while, that we
      Must lave our honours in these flattering streams,
      And make our faces vizards to our hearts,
      Disguising what they are.

      LADY MACBETH

      You must leave this.

      MACBETH

      O, full of scorpions is my mind, dear wife!
      Thou know’st that Banquo, and his Fleance, lives.

      LADY MACBETH

      But in them nature’s copy’s not eterne.

      MACBETH

      There’s comfort yet; they are assailable;
      Then be thou jocund: ere the bat hath flown
      His cloister’d flight, ere to black Hecate’s summons
      The shard-borne beetle with his drowsy hums
      Hath rung night’s yawning peal, there shall be done
      A deed of dreadful note.

      LADY MACBETH

      What’s to be done?

      MACBETH

      Be innocent of the knowledge, dearest chuck,
      Till thou applaud the deed. Come, seeling night,
      Scarf up the tender eye of pitiful day;
      And with thy bloody and invisible hand
      Cancel and tear to pieces that great bond
      Which keeps me pale! Light thickens; and the crow
      Makes wing to the rooky wood:
      Good things of day begin to droop and drowse;
      While night’s black agents to their preys do rouse.
      Thou marvell’st at my words: but hold thee still;
      Things bad begun make strong themselves by ill.
      So, prithee, go with me.
      Exeunt

      SCENE III. A park near the palace.

      Enter three Murderers

      First Murderer

      But who did bid thee join with us?

      Third Murderer

      Macbeth.

      Second Murderer

      He needs not our mistrust, since he delivers
      Our offices and what we have to do
      To the direction just.

      First Murderer

      Then stand with us.
      The west yet glimmers with some streaks of day:
      Now spurs the lated traveller apace
      To gain the timely inn; and near approaches
      The subject of our watch.

      Third Murderer

      Hark! I hear horses.

      BANQUO

      [Within] Give us a light there, ho!

      Second Murderer

      Then ’tis he: the rest
      That are within the note of expectation
      Already are i’ the court.

      First Murderer

      His horses go about.

      Third Murderer

      Almost a mile: but he does usually,
      So all men do, from hence to the palace gate
      Make it their walk.

      Second Murderer

      A light, a light!
      Enter BANQUO, and FLEANCE with a torch

      Third Murderer

      ‘Tis he.

      First Murderer

      Stand to’t.

      BANQUO

      It will be rain to-night.

      First Murderer

      Let it come down.
      They set upon BANQUO

      BANQUO

      O, treachery! Fly, good Fleance, fly, fly, fly!
      Thou mayst revenge. O slave!
      Dies. FLEANCE escapes

      Third Murderer

      Who did strike out the light?

      First Murderer

      Wast not the way?

      Third Murderer

      There’s but one down; the son is fled.

      Second Murderer

      We have lost
      Best half of our affair.

      First Murderer

      Well, let’s away, and say how much is done.
      Exeunt

      SCENE IV. The same. Hall in the palace.

      A banquet prepared. Enter MACBETH, LADY MACBETH, ROSS, LENNOX, Lords, and Attendants

      MACBETH

      You know your own degrees; sit down: at first
      And last the hearty welcome.

      Lords

      Thanks to your majesty.

      MACBETH

      Ourself will mingle with society,
      And play the humble host.
      Our hostess keeps her state, but in best time
      We will require her welcome.

      LADY MACBETH

      Pronounce it for me, sir, to all our friends;
      For my heart speaks they are welcome.
      First Murderer appears at the door

      MACBETH

      See, they encounter thee with their hearts’ thanks.
      Both sides are even: here I’ll sit i’ the midst:
      Be large in mirth; anon we’ll drink a measure
      The table round.
      Approaching the door

      There’s blood on thy face.

      First Murderer

      ‘Tis Banquo’s then.

      MACBETH

      ‘Tis better thee without than he within.
      Is he dispatch’d?

      First Murderer

      My lord, his throat is cut; that I did for him.

      MACBETH

      Thou art the best o’ the cut-throats: yet he’s good
      That did the like for Fleance: if thou didst it,
      Thou art the nonpareil.

      First Murderer

      Most royal sir,
      Fleance is ‘scaped.

      MACBETH

      Then comes my fit again: I had else been perfect,
      Whole as the marble, founded as the rock,
      As broad and general as the casing air:
      But now I am cabin’d, cribb’d, confined, bound in
      To saucy doubts and fears. But Banquo’s safe?

      First Murderer

      Ay, my good lord: safe in a ditch he bides,
      With twenty trenched gashes on his head;
      The least a death to nature.

      MACBETH

      Thanks for that:
      There the grown serpent lies; the worm that’s fled
      Hath nature that in time will venom breed,
      No teeth for the present. Get thee gone: to-morrow
      We’ll hear, ourselves, again.
      Exit Murderer

      LADY MACBETH

      My royal lord,
      You do not give the cheer: the feast is sold
      That is not often vouch’d, while ’tis a-making,
      ‘Tis given with welcome: to feed were best at home;
      From thence the sauce to meat is ceremony;
      Meeting were bare without it.

      MACBETH

      Sweet remembrancer!
      Now, good digestion wait on appetite,
      And health on both!

      LENNOX

      May’t please your highness sit.
      The GHOST OF BANQUO enters, and sits in MACBETH’s place

      MACBETH

      Here had we now our country’s honour roof’d,
      Were the graced person of our Banquo present;
      Who may I rather challenge for unkindness
      Than pity for mischance!

      ROSS

      His absence, sir,
      Lays blame upon his promise. Please’t your highness
      To grace us with your royal company.

      MACBETH

      The table’s full.

      LENNOX

      Here is a place reserved, sir.

      MACBETH

      Where?

      LENNOX

      Here, my good lord. What is’t that moves your highness?

      MACBETH

      Which of you have done this?

      Lords

      What, my good lord?

      MACBETH

      Thou canst not say I did it: never shake
      Thy gory locks at me.

      ROSS

      Gentlemen, rise: his highness is not well.

      LADY MACBETH

      Sit, worthy friends: my lord is often thus,
      And hath been from his youth: pray you, keep seat;
      The fit is momentary; upon a thought
      He will again be well: if much you note him,
      You shall offend him and extend his passion:
      Feed, and regard him not. Are you a man?

      MACBETH

      Ay, and a bold one, that dare look on that
      Which might appal the devil.

      LADY MACBETH

      O proper stuff!
      This is the very painting of your fear:
      This is the air-drawn dagger which, you said,
      Led you to Duncan. O, these flaws and starts,
      Impostors to true fear, would well become
      A woman’s story at a winter’s fire,
      Authorized by her grandam. Shame itself!
      Why do you make such faces? When all’s done,
      You look but on a stool.

      MACBETH

      Prithee, see there! behold! look! lo!
      how say you?
      Why, what care I? If thou canst nod, speak too.
      If charnel-houses and our graves must send
      Those that we bury back, our monuments
      Shall be the maws of kites.
      GHOST OF BANQUO vanishes

      LADY MACBETH

      What, quite unmann’d in folly?

      MACBETH

      If I stand here, I saw him.

      LADY MACBETH

      Fie, for shame!

      MACBETH

      Blood hath been shed ere now, i’ the olden time,
      Ere human statute purged the gentle weal;
      Ay, and since too, murders have been perform’d
      Too terrible for the ear: the times have been,
      That, when the brains were out, the man would die,
      And there an end; but now they rise again,
      With twenty mortal murders on their crowns,
      And push us from our stools: this is more strange
      Than such a murder is.

      LADY MACBETH

      My worthy lord,
      Your noble friends do lack you.

      MACBETH

      I do forget.
      Do not muse at me, my most worthy friends,
      I have a strange infirmity, which is nothing
      To those that know me. Come, love and health to all;
      Then I’ll sit down. Give me some wine; fill full.
      I drink to the general joy o’ the whole table,
      And to our dear friend Banquo, whom we miss;
      Would he were here! to all, and him, we thirst,
      And all to all.

      Lords

      Our duties, and the pledge.
      Re-enter GHOST OF BANQUO

      MACBETH

      Avaunt! and quit my sight! let the earth hide thee!
      Thy bones are marrowless, thy blood is cold;
      Thou hast no speculation in those eyes
      Which thou dost glare with!

      LADY MACBETH

      Think of this, good peers,
      But as a thing of custom: ’tis no other;
      Only it spoils the pleasure of the time.

      MACBETH

      What man dare, I dare:
      Approach thou like the rugged Russian bear,
      The arm’d rhinoceros, or the Hyrcan tiger;
      Take any shape but that, and my firm nerves
      Shall never tremble: or be alive again,
      And dare me to the desert with thy sword;
      If trembling I inhabit then, protest me
      The baby of a girl. Hence, horrible shadow!
      Unreal mockery, hence!
      GHOST OF BANQUO vanishes

      Why, so: being gone,
      I am a man again. Pray you, sit still.

      LADY MACBETH

      You have displaced the mirth, broke the good meeting,
      With most admired disorder.

      MACBETH

      Can such things be,
      And overcome us like a summer’s cloud,
      Without our special wonder? You make me strange
      Even to the disposition that I owe,
      When now I think you can behold such sights,
      And keep the natural ruby of your cheeks,
      When mine is blanched with fear.

      ROSS

      What sights, my lord?

      LADY MACBETH

      I pray you, speak not; he grows worse and worse;
      Question enrages him. At once, good night:
      Stand not upon the order of your going,
      But go at once.

      LENNOX

      Good night; and better health
      Attend his majesty!

      LADY MACBETH

      A kind good night to all!
      Exeunt all but MACBETH and LADY MACBETH

      MACBETH

      It will have blood; they say, blood will have blood:
      Stones have been known to move and trees to speak;
      Augurs and understood relations have
      By magot-pies and choughs and rooks brought forth
      The secret’st man of blood. What is the night?

      LADY MACBETH

      Almost at odds with morning, which is which.

      MACBETH

      How say’st thou, that Macduff denies his person
      At our great bidding?

      LADY MACBETH

      Did you send to him, sir?

      MACBETH

      I hear it by the way; but I will send:
      There’s not a one of them but in his house
      I keep a servant fee’d. I will to-morrow,
      And betimes I will, to the weird sisters:
      More shall they speak; for now I am bent to know,
      By the worst means, the worst. For mine own good,
      All causes shall give way: I am in blood
      Stepp’d in so far that, should I wade no more,
      Returning were as tedious as go o’er:
      Strange things I have in head, that will to hand;
      Which must be acted ere they may be scann’d.

      LADY MACBETH

      You lack the season of all natures, sleep.

      MACBETH

      Come, we’ll to sleep. My strange and self-abuse
      Is the initiate fear that wants hard use:
      We are yet but young in deed.
      Exeunt

      SCENE V. A Heath.

      Thunder. Enter the three Witches meeting HECATE

      First Witch

      Why, how now, Hecate! you look angerly.

      HECATE

      Have I not reason, beldams as you are,
      Saucy and overbold? How did you dare
      To trade and traffic with Macbeth
      In riddles and affairs of death;
      And I, the mistress of your charms,
      The close contriver of all harms,
      Was never call’d to bear my part,
      Or show the glory of our art?
      And, which is worse, all you have done
      Hath been but for a wayward son,
      Spiteful and wrathful, who, as others do,
      Loves for his own ends, not for you.
      But make amends now: get you gone,
      And at the pit of Acheron
      Meet me i’ the morning: thither he
      Will come to know his destiny:
      Your vessels and your spells provide,
      Your charms and every thing beside.
      I am for the air; this night I’ll spend
      Unto a dismal and a fatal end:
      Great business must be wrought ere noon:
      Upon the corner of the moon
      There hangs a vaporous drop profound;
      I’ll catch it ere it come to ground:
      And that distill’d by magic sleights
      Shall raise such artificial sprites
      As by the strength of their illusion
      Shall draw him on to his confusion:
      He shall spurn fate, scorn death, and bear
      He hopes ‘bove wisdom, grace and fear:
      And you all know, security
      Is mortals’ chiefest enemy.
      Music and a song within: ‘Come away, come away,’ & c

      Hark! I am call’d; my little spirit, see,
      Sits in a foggy cloud, and stays for me.
      Exit

      First Witch

      Come, let’s make haste; she’ll soon be back again.
      Exeunt

      SCENE VI. Forres. The palace.

      Enter LENNOX and another Lord

      LENNOX

      My former speeches have but hit your thoughts,
      Which can interpret further: only, I say,
      Things have been strangely borne. The
      gracious Duncan
      Was pitied of Macbeth: marry, he was dead:
      And the right-valiant Banquo walk’d too late;
      Whom, you may say, if’t please you, Fleance kill’d,
      For Fleance fled: men must not walk too late.
      Who cannot want the thought how monstrous
      It was for Malcolm and for Donalbain
      To kill their gracious father? damned fact!
      How it did grieve Macbeth! did he not straight
      In pious rage the two delinquents tear,
      That were the slaves of drink and thralls of sleep?
      Was not that nobly done? Ay, and wisely too;
      For ‘twould have anger’d any heart alive
      To hear the men deny’t. So that, I say,
      He has borne all things well: and I do think
      That had he Duncan’s sons under his key–
      As, an’t please heaven, he shall not–they
      should find
      What ’twere to kill a father; so should Fleance.
      But, peace! for from broad words and ’cause he fail’d
      His presence at the tyrant’s feast, I hear
      Macduff lives in disgrace: sir, can you tell
      Where he bestows himself?

      Lord

      The son of Duncan,
      From whom this tyrant holds the due of birth
      Lives in the English court, and is received
      Of the most pious Edward with such grace
      That the malevolence of fortune nothing
      Takes from his high respect: thither Macduff
      Is gone to pray the holy king, upon his aid
      To wake Northumberland and warlike Siward:
      That, by the help of these–with Him above
      To ratify the work–we may again
      Give to our tables meat, sleep to our nights,
      Free from our feasts and banquets bloody knives,
      Do faithful homage and receive free honours:
      All which we pine for now: and this report
      Hath so exasperate the king that he
      Prepares for some attempt of war.

      LENNOX

      Sent he to Macduff?

      Lord

      He did: and with an absolute ‘Sir, not I,’
      The cloudy messenger turns me his back,
      And hums, as who should say ‘You’ll rue the time
      That clogs me with this answer.’

      LENNOX

      And that well might
      Advise him to a caution, to hold what distance
      His wisdom can provide. Some holy angel
      Fly to the court of England and unfold
      His message ere he come, that a swift blessing
      May soon return to this our suffering country
      Under a hand accursed!

      Lord

      I’ll send my prayers with him.
      Exeunt

      ACT IV

      SCENE I. A cavern. In the middle, a boiling cauldron.

      Thunder. Enter the three Witches

      First Witch

      Thrice the brinded cat hath mew’d.

      Second Witch

      Thrice and once the hedge-pig whined.

      Third Witch

      Harpier cries ‘Tis time, ’tis time.

      First Witch

      Round about the cauldron go;
      In the poison’d entrails throw.
      Toad, that under cold stone
      Days and nights has thirty-one
      Swelter’d venom sleeping got,
      Boil thou first i’ the charmed pot.

      ALL

      Double, double toil and trouble;
      Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

      Second Witch

      Fillet of a fenny snake,
      In the cauldron boil and bake;
      Eye of newt and toe of frog,
      Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
      Adder’s fork and blind-worm’s sting,
      Lizard’s leg and owlet’s wing,
      For a charm of powerful trouble,
      Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.

      ALL

      Double, double toil and trouble;
      Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

      Third Witch

      Scale of dragon, tooth of wolf,
      Witches’ mummy, maw and gulf
      Of the ravin’d salt-sea shark,
      Root of hemlock digg’d i’ the dark,
      Liver of blaspheming Jew,
      Gall of goat, and slips of yew
      Silver’d in the moon’s eclipse,
      Nose of Turk and Tartar’s lips,
      Finger of birth-strangled babe
      Ditch-deliver’d by a drab,
      Make the gruel thick and slab:
      Add thereto a tiger’s chaudron,
      For the ingredients of our cauldron.

      ALL

      Double, double toil and trouble;
      Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

      Second Witch

      Cool it with a baboon’s blood,
      Then the charm is firm and good.
      Enter HECATE to the other three Witches

      HECATE

      O well done! I commend your pains;
      And every one shall share i’ the gains;
      And now about the cauldron sing,
      Live elves and fairies in a ring,
      Enchanting all that you put in.
      Music and a song: ‘Black spirits,’ & c

      HECATE retires

      Second Witch

      By the pricking of my thumbs,
      Something wicked this way comes.
      Open, locks,
      Whoever knocks!
      Enter MACBETH

      MACBETH

      How now, you secret, black, and midnight hags!
      What is’t you do?

      ALL

      A deed without a name.

      MACBETH

      I conjure you, by that which you profess,
      Howe’er you come to know it, answer me:
      Though you untie the winds and let them fight
      Against the churches; though the yesty waves
      Confound and swallow navigation up;
      Though bladed corn be lodged and trees blown down;
      Though castles topple on their warders’ heads;
      Though palaces and pyramids do slope
      Their heads to their foundations; though the treasure
      Of nature’s germens tumble all together,
      Even till destruction sicken; answer me
      To what I ask you.

      First Witch

      Speak.

      Second Witch

      Demand.

      Third Witch

      We’ll answer.

      First Witch

      Say, if thou’dst rather hear it from our mouths,
      Or from our masters?

      MACBETH

      Call ’em; let me see ’em.

      First Witch

      Pour in sow’s blood, that hath eaten
      Her nine farrow; grease that’s sweaten
      From the murderer’s gibbet throw
      Into the flame.

      ALL

      Come, high or low;
      Thyself and office deftly show!
      Thunder. First Apparition: an armed Head

      MACBETH

      Tell me, thou unknown power,–

      First Witch

      He knows thy thought:
      Hear his speech, but say thou nought.

      First Apparition

      Macbeth! Macbeth! Macbeth! beware Macduff;
      Beware the thane of Fife. Dismiss me. Enough.
      Descends

      MACBETH

      Whate’er thou art, for thy good caution, thanks;
      Thou hast harp’d my fear aright: but one
      word more,–

      First Witch

      He will not be commanded: here’s another,
      More potent than the first.
      Thunder. Second Apparition: A bloody Child

      Second Apparition

      Macbeth! Macbeth! Macbeth!

      MACBETH

      Had I three ears, I’ld hear thee.

      Second Apparition

      Be bloody, bold, and resolute; laugh to scorn
      The power of man, for none of woman born
      Shall harm Macbeth.
      Descends

      MACBETH

      Then live, Macduff: what need I fear of thee?
      But yet I’ll make assurance double sure,
      And take a bond of fate: thou shalt not live;
      That I may tell pale-hearted fear it lies,
      And sleep in spite of thunder.
      Thunder. Third Apparition: a Child crowned, with a tree in his hand

      What is this
      That rises like the issue of a king,
      And wears upon his baby-brow the round
      And top of sovereignty?

      ALL

      Listen, but speak not to’t.

      Third Apparition

      Be lion-mettled, proud; and take no care
      Who chafes, who frets, or where conspirers are:
      Macbeth shall never vanquish’d be until
      Great Birnam wood to high Dunsinane hill
      Shall come against him.
      Descends

      MACBETH

      That will never be
      Who can impress the forest, bid the tree
      Unfix his earth-bound root? Sweet bodements! good!
      Rebellion’s head, rise never till the wood
      Of Birnam rise, and our high-placed Macbeth
      Shall live the lease of nature, pay his breath
      To time and mortal custom. Yet my heart
      Throbs to know one thing: tell me, if your art
      Can tell so much: shall Banquo’s issue ever
      Reign in this kingdom?

      ALL

      Seek to know no more.

      MACBETH

      I will be satisfied: deny me this,
      And an eternal curse fall on you! Let me know.
      Why sinks that cauldron? and what noise is this?
      Hautboys

      First Witch

      Show!

      Second Witch

      Show!

      Third Witch

      Show!

      ALL

      Show his eyes, and grieve his heart;
      Come like shadows, so depart!
      A show of Eight Kings, the last with a glass in his hand; GHOST OF BANQUO following

      MACBETH

      Thou art too like the spirit of Banquo: down!
      Thy crown does sear mine eye-balls. And thy hair,
      Thou other gold-bound brow, is like the first.
      A third is like the former. Filthy hags!
      Why do you show me this? A fourth! Start, eyes!
      What, will the line stretch out to the crack of doom?
      Another yet! A seventh! I’ll see no more:
      And yet the eighth appears, who bears a glass
      Which shows me many more; and some I see
      That two-fold balls and treble scepters carry:
      Horrible sight! Now, I see, ’tis true;
      For the blood-bolter’d Banquo smiles upon me,
      And points at them for his.
      Apparitions vanish

      What, is this so?

      First Witch

      Ay, sir, all this is so: but why
      Stands Macbeth thus amazedly?
      Come, sisters, cheer we up his sprites,
      And show the best of our delights:
      I’ll charm the air to give a sound,
      While you perform your antic round:
      That this great king may kindly say,
      Our duties did his welcome pay.
      Music. The witches dance and then vanish, with HECATE

      MACBETH

      Where are they? Gone? Let this pernicious hour
      Stand aye accursed in the calendar!
      Come in, without there!
      Enter LENNOX

      LENNOX

      What’s your grace’s will?

      MACBETH

      Saw you the weird sisters?

      LENNOX

      No, my lord.

      MACBETH

      Came they not by you?

      LENNOX

      No, indeed, my lord.

      MACBETH

      Infected be the air whereon they ride;
      And damn’d all those that trust them! I did hear
      The galloping of horse: who was’t came by?

      LENNOX

      ‘Tis two or three, my lord, that bring you word
      Macduff is fled to England.

      MACBETH

      Fled to England!

      LENNOX

      Ay, my good lord.

      MACBETH

      Time, thou anticipatest my dread exploits:
      The flighty purpose never is o’ertook
      Unless the deed go with it; from this moment
      The very firstlings of my heart shall be
      The firstlings of my hand. And even now,
      To crown my thoughts with acts, be it thought and done:
      The castle of Macduff I will surprise;
      Seize upon Fife; give to the edge o’ the sword
      His wife, his babes, and all unfortunate souls
      That trace him in his line. No boasting like a fool;
      This deed I’ll do before this purpose cool.
      But no more sights!–Where are these gentlemen?
      Come, bring me where they are.
      Exeunt

      SCENE II. Fife. Macduff’s castle.

      Enter LADY MACDUFF, her Son, and ROSS

      LADY MACDUFF

      What had he done, to make him fly the land?

      ROSS

      You must have patience, madam.

      LADY MACDUFF

      He had none:
      His flight was madness: when our actions do not,
      Our fears do make us traitors.

      ROSS

      You know not
      Whether it was his wisdom or his fear.

      LADY MACDUFF

      Wisdom! to leave his wife, to leave his babes,
      His mansion and his titles in a place
      From whence himself does fly? He loves us not;
      He wants the natural touch: for the poor wren,
      The most diminutive of birds, will fight,
      Her young ones in her nest, against the owl.
      All is the fear and nothing is the love;
      As little is the wisdom, where the flight
      So runs against all reason.

      ROSS

      My dearest coz,
      I pray you, school yourself: but for your husband,
      He is noble, wise, judicious, and best knows
      The fits o’ the season. I dare not speak
      much further;
      But cruel are the times, when we are traitors
      And do not know ourselves, when we hold rumour
      From what we fear, yet know not what we fear,
      But float upon a wild and violent sea
      Each way and move. I take my leave of you:
      Shall not be long but I’ll be here again:
      Things at the worst will cease, or else climb upward
      To what they were before. My pretty cousin,
      Blessing upon you!

      LADY MACDUFF

      Father’d he is, and yet he’s fatherless.

      ROSS

      I am so much a fool, should I stay longer,
      It would be my disgrace and your discomfort:
      I take my leave at once.
      Exit

      LADY MACDUFF

      Sirrah, your father’s dead;
      And what will you do now? How will you live?

      Son

      As birds do, mother.

      LADY MACDUFF

      What, with worms and flies?

      Son

      With what I get, I mean; and so do they.

      LADY MACDUFF

      Poor bird! thou’ldst never fear the net nor lime,
      The pitfall nor the gin.

      Son

      Why should I, mother? Poor birds they are not set for.
      My father is not dead, for all your saying.

      LADY MACDUFF

      Yes, he is dead; how wilt thou do for a father?

      Son

      Nay, how will you do for a husband?

      LADY MACDUFF

      Why, I can buy me twenty at any market.

      Son

      Then you’ll buy ’em to sell again.

      LADY MACDUFF

      Thou speak’st with all thy wit: and yet, i’ faith,
      With wit enough for thee.

      Son

      Was my father a traitor, mother?

      LADY MACDUFF

      Ay, that he was.

      Son

      What is a traitor?

      LADY MACDUFF

      Why, one that swears and lies.

      Son

      And be all traitors that do so?

      LADY MACDUFF

      Every one that does so is a traitor, and must be hanged.

      Son

      And must they all be hanged that swear and lie?

      LADY MACDUFF

      Every one.

      Son

      Who must hang them?

      LADY MACDUFF

      Why, the honest men.

      Son

      Then the liars and swearers are fools,
      for there are liars and swearers enow to beat
      the honest men and hang up them.

      LADY MACDUFF

      Now, God help thee, poor monkey!
      But how wilt thou do for a father?

      Son

      If he were dead, you’ld weep for
      him: if you would not, it were a good sign
      that I should quickly have a new father.

      LADY MACDUFF

      Poor prattler, how thou talk’st!
      Enter a Messenger

      Messenger

      Bless you, fair dame! I am not to you known,
      Though in your state of honour I am perfect.
      I doubt some danger does approach you nearly:
      If you will take a homely man’s advice,
      Be not found here; hence, with your little ones.
      To fright you thus, methinks, I am too savage;
      To do worse to you were fell cruelty,
      Which is too nigh your person. Heaven preserve you!
      I dare abide no longer.
      Exit

      LADY MACDUFF

      Whither should I fly?
      I have done no harm. But I remember now
      I am in this earthly world; where to do harm
      Is often laudable, to do good sometime
      Accounted dangerous folly: why then, alas,
      Do I put up that womanly defence,
      To say I have done no harm?
      Enter Murderers

      What are these faces?

      First Murderer

      Where is your husband?

      LADY MACDUFF

      I hope, in no place so unsanctified
      Where such as thou mayst find him.

      First Murderer

      He’s a traitor.

      Son

      Thou liest, thou shag-hair’d villain!

      First Murderer

      What, you egg!
      Stabbing him

      Young fry of treachery!

      Son

      He has kill’d me, mother:
      Run away, I pray you!
      Dies

      Exit LADY MACDUFF, crying ‘Murder!’ Exeunt Murderers, following her

      SCENE III. England. Before the King’s palace.

      Enter MALCOLM and MACDUFF

      MALCOLM

      Let us seek out some desolate shade, and there
      Weep our sad bosoms empty.

      MACDUFF

      Let us rather
      Hold fast the mortal sword, and like good men
      Bestride our down-fall’n birthdom: each new morn
      New widows howl, new orphans cry, new sorrows
      Strike heaven on the face, that it resounds
      As if it felt with Scotland and yell’d out
      Like syllable of dolour.

      MALCOLM

      What I believe I’ll wail,
      What know believe, and what I can redress,
      As I shall find the time to friend, I will.
      What you have spoke, it may be so perchance.
      This tyrant, whose sole name blisters our tongues,
      Was once thought honest: you have loved him well.
      He hath not touch’d you yet. I am young;
      but something
      You may deserve of him through me, and wisdom
      To offer up a weak poor innocent lamb
      To appease an angry god.

      MACDUFF

      I am not treacherous.

      MALCOLM

      But Macbeth is.
      A good and virtuous nature may recoil
      In an imperial charge. But I shall crave
      your pardon;
      That which you are my thoughts cannot transpose:
      Angels are bright still, though the brightest fell;
      Though all things foul would wear the brows of grace,
      Yet grace must still look so.

      MACDUFF

      I have lost my hopes.

      MALCOLM

      Perchance even there where I did find my doubts.
      Why in that rawness left you wife and child,
      Those precious motives, those strong knots of love,
      Without leave-taking? I pray you,
      Let not my jealousies be your dishonours,
      But mine own safeties. You may be rightly just,
      Whatever I shall think.

      MACDUFF

      Bleed, bleed, poor country!
      Great tyranny! lay thou thy basis sure,
      For goodness dare not cheque thee: wear thou
      thy wrongs;
      The title is affeer’d! Fare thee well, lord:
      I would not be the villain that thou think’st
      For the whole space that’s in the tyrant’s grasp,
      And the rich East to boot.

      MALCOLM

      Be not offended:
      I speak not as in absolute fear of you.
      I think our country sinks beneath the yoke;
      It weeps, it bleeds; and each new day a gash
      Is added to her wounds: I think withal
      There would be hands uplifted in my right;
      And here from gracious England have I offer
      Of goodly thousands: but, for all this,
      When I shall tread upon the tyrant’s head,
      Or wear it on my sword, yet my poor country
      Shall have more vices than it had before,
      More suffer and more sundry ways than ever,
      By him that shall succeed.

      MACDUFF

      What should he be?

      MALCOLM

      It is myself I mean: in whom I know
      All the particulars of vice so grafted
      That, when they shall be open’d, black Macbeth
      Will seem as pure as snow, and the poor state
      Esteem him as a lamb, being compared
      With my confineless harms.

      MACDUFF

      Not in the legions
      Of horrid hell can come a devil more damn’d
      In evils to top Macbeth.

      MALCOLM

      I grant him bloody,
      Luxurious, avaricious, false, deceitful,
      Sudden, malicious, smacking of every sin
      That has a name: but there’s no bottom, none,
      In my voluptuousness: your wives, your daughters,
      Your matrons and your maids, could not fill up
      The cistern of my lust, and my desire
      All continent impediments would o’erbear
      That did oppose my will: better Macbeth
      Than such an one to reign.

      MACDUFF

      Boundless intemperance
      In nature is a tyranny; it hath been
      The untimely emptying of the happy throne
      And fall of many kings. But fear not yet
      To take upon you what is yours: you may
      Convey your pleasures in a spacious plenty,
      And yet seem cold, the time you may so hoodwink.
      We have willing dames enough: there cannot be
      That vulture in you, to devour so many
      As will to greatness dedicate themselves,
      Finding it so inclined.

      MALCOLM

      With this there grows
      In my most ill-composed affection such
      A stanchless avarice that, were I king,
      I should cut off the nobles for their lands,
      Desire his jewels and this other’s house:
      And my more-having would be as a sauce
      To make me hunger more; that I should forge
      Quarrels unjust against the good and loyal,
      Destroying them for wealth.

      MACDUFF

      This avarice
      Sticks deeper, grows with more pernicious root
      Than summer-seeming lust, and it hath been
      The sword of our slain kings: yet do not fear;
      Scotland hath foisons to fill up your will.
      Of your mere own: all these are portable,
      With other graces weigh’d.

      MALCOLM

      But I have none: the king-becoming graces,
      As justice, verity, temperance, stableness,
      Bounty, perseverance, mercy, lowliness,
      Devotion, patience, courage, fortitude,
      I have no relish of them, but abound
      In the division of each several crime,
      Acting it many ways. Nay, had I power, I should
      Pour the sweet milk of concord into hell,
      Uproar the universal peace, confound
      All unity on earth.

      MACDUFF

      O Scotland, Scotland!

      MALCOLM

      If such a one be fit to govern, speak:
      I am as I have spoken.

      MACDUFF

      Fit to govern!
      No, not to live. O nation miserable,
      With an untitled tyrant bloody-scepter’d,
      When shalt thou see thy wholesome days again,
      Since that the truest issue of thy throne
      By his own interdiction stands accursed,
      And does blaspheme his breed? Thy royal father
      Was a most sainted king: the queen that bore thee,
      Oftener upon her knees than on her feet,
      Died every day she lived. Fare thee well!
      These evils thou repeat’st upon thyself
      Have banish’d me from Scotland. O my breast,
      Thy hope ends here!

      MALCOLM

      Macduff, this noble passion,
      Child of integrity, hath from my soul
      Wiped the black scruples, reconciled my thoughts
      To thy good truth and honour. Devilish Macbeth
      By many of these trains hath sought to win me
      Into his power, and modest wisdom plucks me
      From over-credulous haste: but God above
      Deal between thee and me! for even now
      I put myself to thy direction, and
      Unspeak mine own detraction, here abjure
      The taints and blames I laid upon myself,
      For strangers to my nature. I am yet
      Unknown to woman, never was forsworn,
      Scarcely have coveted what was mine own,
      At no time broke my faith, would not betray
      The devil to his fellow and delight
      No less in truth than life: my first false speaking
      Was this upon myself: what I am truly,
      Is thine and my poor country’s to command:
      Whither indeed, before thy here-approach,
      Old Siward, with ten thousand warlike men,
      Already at a point, was setting forth.
      Now we’ll together; and the chance of goodness
      Be like our warranted quarrel! Why are you silent?

      MACDUFF

      Such welcome and unwelcome things at once
      ‘Tis hard to reconcile.
      Enter a Doctor

      MALCOLM

      Well; more anon.–Comes the king forth, I pray you?

      Doctor

      Ay, sir; there are a crew of wretched souls
      That stay his cure: their malady convinces
      The great assay of art; but at his touch–
      Such sanctity hath heaven given his hand–
      They presently amend.

      MALCOLM

      I thank you, doctor.
      Exit Doctor

      MACDUFF

      What’s the disease he means?

      MALCOLM

      ‘Tis call’d the evil:
      A most miraculous work in this good king;
      Which often, since my here-remain in England,
      I have seen him do. How he solicits heaven,
      Himself best knows: but strangely-visited people,
      All swoln and ulcerous, pitiful to the eye,
      The mere despair of surgery, he cures,
      Hanging a golden stamp about their necks,
      Put on with holy prayers: and ’tis spoken,
      To the succeeding royalty he leaves
      The healing benediction. With this strange virtue,
      He hath a heavenly gift of prophecy,
      And sundry blessings hang about his throne,
      That speak him full of grace.
      Enter ROSS

      MACDUFF

      See, who comes here?

      MALCOLM

      My countryman; but yet I know him not.

      MACDUFF

      My ever-gentle cousin, welcome hither.

      MALCOLM

      I know him now. Good God, betimes remove
      The means that makes us strangers!

      ROSS

      Sir, amen.

      MACDUFF

      Stands Scotland where it did?

      ROSS

      Alas, poor country!
      Almost afraid to know itself. It cannot
      Be call’d our mother, but our grave; where nothing,
      But who knows nothing, is once seen to smile;
      Where sighs and groans and shrieks that rend the air
      Are made, not mark’d; where violent sorrow seems
      A modern ecstasy; the dead man’s knell
      Is there scarce ask’d for who; and good men’s lives
      Expire before the flowers in their caps,
      Dying or ere they sicken.

      MACDUFF

      O, relation
      Too nice, and yet too true!

      MALCOLM

      What’s the newest grief?

      ROSS

      That of an hour’s age doth hiss the speaker:
      Each minute teems a new one.

      MACDUFF

      How does my wife?

      ROSS

      Why, well.

      MACDUFF

      And all my children?

      ROSS

      Well too.

      MACDUFF

      The tyrant has not batter’d at their peace?

      ROSS

      No; they were well at peace when I did leave ’em.

      MACDUFF

      But not a niggard of your speech: how goes’t?

      ROSS

      When I came hither to transport the tidings,
      Which I have heavily borne, there ran a rumour
      Of many worthy fellows that were out;
      Which was to my belief witness’d the rather,
      For that I saw the tyrant’s power a-foot:
      Now is the time of help; your eye in Scotland
      Would create soldiers, make our women fight,
      To doff their dire distresses.

      MALCOLM

      Be’t their comfort
      We are coming thither: gracious England hath
      Lent us good Siward and ten thousand men;
      An older and a better soldier none
      That Christendom gives out.

      ROSS

      Would I could answer
      This comfort with the like! But I have words
      That would be howl’d out in the desert air,
      Where hearing should not latch them.

      MACDUFF

      What concern they?
      The general cause? or is it a fee-grief
      Due to some single breast?

      ROSS

      No mind that’s honest
      But in it shares some woe; though the main part
      Pertains to you alone.

      MACDUFF

      If it be mine,
      Keep it not from me, quickly let me have it.

      ROSS

      Let not your ears despise my tongue for ever,
      Which shall possess them with the heaviest sound
      That ever yet they heard.

      MACDUFF

      Hum! I guess at it.

      ROSS

      Your castle is surprised; your wife and babes
      Savagely slaughter’d: to relate the manner,
      Were, on the quarry of these murder’d deer,
      To add the death of you.

      MALCOLM

      Merciful heaven!
      What, man! ne’er pull your hat upon your brows;
      Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak
      Whispers the o’er-fraught heart and bids it break.

      MACDUFF

      My children too?

      ROSS

      Wife, children, servants, all
      That could be found.

      MACDUFF

      And I must be from thence!
      My wife kill’d too?

      ROSS

      I have said.

      MALCOLM

      Be comforted:
      Let’s make us medicines of our great revenge,
      To cure this deadly grief.

      MACDUFF

      He has no children. All my pretty ones?
      Did you say all? O hell-kite! All?
      What, all my pretty chickens and their dam
      At one fell swoop?

      MALCOLM

      Dispute it like a man.

      MACDUFF

      I shall do so;
      But I must also feel it as a man:
      I cannot but remember such things were,
      That were most precious to me. Did heaven look on,
      And would not take their part? Sinful Macduff,
      They were all struck for thee! naught that I am,
      Not for their own demerits, but for mine,
      Fell slaughter on their souls. Heaven rest them now!

      MALCOLM

      Be this the whetstone of your sword: let grief
      Convert to anger; blunt not the heart, enrage it.

      MACDUFF

      O, I could play the woman with mine eyes
      And braggart with my tongue! But, gentle heavens,
      Cut short all intermission; front to front
      Bring thou this fiend of Scotland and myself;
      Within my sword’s length set him; if he ‘scape,
      Heaven forgive him too!

      MALCOLM

      This tune goes manly.
      Come, go we to the king; our power is ready;
      Our lack is nothing but our leave; Macbeth
      Is ripe for shaking, and the powers above
      Put on their instruments. Receive what cheer you may:
      The night is long that never finds the day.
      Exeunt

      ACT V

      SCENE I. Dunsinane. Ante-room in the castle.

      Enter a Doctor of Physic and a Waiting-Gentlewoman

      Doctor

      I have two nights watched with you, but can perceive
      no truth in your report. When was it she last walked?

      Gentlewoman

      Since his majesty went into the field, I have seen
      her rise from her bed, throw her night-gown upon
      her, unlock her closet, take forth paper, fold it,
      write upon’t, read it, afterwards seal it, and again
      return to bed; yet all this while in a most fast sleep.

      Doctor

      A great perturbation in nature, to receive at once
      the benefit of sleep, and do the effects of
      watching! In this slumbery agitation, besides her
      walking and other actual performances, what, at any
      time, have you heard her say?

      Gentlewoman

      That, sir, which I will not report after her.

      Doctor

      You may to me: and ’tis most meet you should.

      Gentlewoman

      Neither to you nor any one; having no witness to
      confirm my speech.
      Enter LADY MACBETH, with a taper

      Lo you, here she comes! This is her very guise;
      and, upon my life, fast asleep. Observe her; stand close.

      Doctor

      How came she by that light?

      Gentlewoman

      Why, it stood by her: she has light by her
      continually; ’tis her command.

      Doctor

      You see, her eyes are open.

      Gentlewoman

      Ay, but their sense is shut.

      Doctor

      What is it she does now? Look, how she rubs her hands.

      Gentlewoman

      It is an accustomed action with her, to seem thus
      washing her hands: I have known her continue in
      this a quarter of an hour.

      LADY MACBETH

      Yet here’s a spot.

      Doctor

      Hark! she speaks: I will set down what comes from
      her, to satisfy my remembrance the more strongly.

      LADY MACBETH

      Out, damned spot! out, I say!–One: two: why,
      then, ’tis time to do’t.–Hell is murky!–Fie, my
      lord, fie! a soldier, and afeard? What need we
      fear who knows it, when none can call our power to
      account?–Yet who would have thought the old man
      to have had so much blood in him.

      Doctor

      Do you mark that?

      LADY MACBETH

      The thane of Fife had a wife: where is she now?–
      What, will these hands ne’er be clean?–No more o’
      that, my lord, no more o’ that: you mar all with
      this starting.

      Doctor

      Go to, go to; you have known what you should not.

      Gentlewoman

      She has spoke what she should not, I am sure of
      that: heaven knows what she has known.

      LADY MACBETH

      Here’s the smell of the blood still: all the
      perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little
      hand. Oh, oh, oh!

      Doctor

      What a sigh is there! The heart is sorely charged.

      Gentlewoman

      I would not have such a heart in my bosom for the
      dignity of the whole body.

      Doctor

      Well, well, well,–

      Gentlewoman

      Pray God it be, sir.

      Doctor

      This disease is beyond my practise: yet I have known
      those which have walked in their sleep who have died
      holily in their beds.

      LADY MACBETH

      Wash your hands, put on your nightgown; look not so
      pale.–I tell you yet again, Banquo’s buried; he
      cannot come out on’s grave.

      Doctor

      Even so?

      LADY MACBETH

      To bed, to bed! there’s knocking at the gate:
      come, come, come, come, give me your hand. What’s
      done cannot be undone.–To bed, to bed, to bed!
      Exit

      Doctor

      Will she go now to bed?

      Gentlewoman

      Directly.

      Doctor

      Foul whisperings are abroad: unnatural deeds
      Do breed unnatural troubles: infected minds
      To their deaf pillows will discharge their secrets:
      More needs she the divine than the physician.
      God, God forgive us all! Look after her;
      Remove from her the means of all annoyance,
      And still keep eyes upon her. So, good night:
      My mind she has mated, and amazed my sight.
      I think, but dare not speak.

      Gentlewoman

      Good night, good doctor.
      Exeunt

      SCENE II. The country near Dunsinane.

      Drum and colours. Enter MENTEITH, CAITHNESS, ANGUS, LENNOX, and Soldiers

      MENTEITH

      The English power is near, led on by Malcolm,
      His uncle Siward and the good Macduff:
      Revenges burn in them; for their dear causes
      Would to the bleeding and the grim alarm
      Excite the mortified man.

      ANGUS

      Near Birnam wood
      Shall we well meet them; that way are they coming.

      CAITHNESS

      Who knows if Donalbain be with his brother?

      LENNOX

      For certain, sir, he is not: I have a file
      Of all the gentry: there is Siward’s son,
      And many unrough youths that even now
      Protest their first of manhood.

      MENTEITH

      What does the tyrant?

      CAITHNESS

      Great Dunsinane he strongly fortifies:
      Some say he’s mad; others that lesser hate him
      Do call it valiant fury: but, for certain,
      He cannot buckle his distemper’d cause
      Within the belt of rule.

      ANGUS

      Now does he feel
      His secret murders sticking on his hands;
      Now minutely revolts upbraid his faith-breach;
      Those he commands move only in command,
      Nothing in love: now does he feel his title
      Hang loose about him, like a giant’s robe
      Upon a dwarfish thief.

      MENTEITH

      Who then shall blame
      His pester’d senses to recoil and start,
      When all that is within him does condemn
      Itself for being there?

      CAITHNESS

      Well, march we on,
      To give obedience where ’tis truly owed:
      Meet we the medicine of the sickly weal,
      And with him pour we in our country’s purge
      Each drop of us.

      LENNOX

      Or so much as it needs,
      To dew the sovereign flower and drown the weeds.
      Make we our march towards Birnam.
      Exeunt, marching

      SCENE III. Dunsinane. A room in the castle.

      Enter MACBETH, Doctor, and Attendants

      MACBETH

      Bring me no more reports; let them fly all:
      Till Birnam wood remove to Dunsinane,
      I cannot taint with fear. What’s the boy Malcolm?
      Was he not born of woman? The spirits that know
      All mortal consequences have pronounced me thus:
      ‘Fear not, Macbeth; no man that’s born of woman
      Shall e’er have power upon thee.’ Then fly,
      false thanes,
      And mingle with the English epicures:
      The mind I sway by and the heart I bear
      Shall never sag with doubt nor shake with fear.
      Enter a Servant

      The devil damn thee black, thou cream-faced loon!
      Where got’st thou that goose look?

      Servant

      There is ten thousand–

      MACBETH

      Geese, villain!

      Servant

      Soldiers, sir.

      MACBETH

      Go prick thy face, and over-red thy fear,
      Thou lily-liver’d boy. What soldiers, patch?
      Death of thy soul! those linen cheeks of thine
      Are counsellors to fear. What soldiers, whey-face?

      Servant

      The English force, so please you.

      MACBETH

      Take thy face hence.
      Exit Servant

      Seyton!–I am sick at heart,
      When I behold–Seyton, I say!–This push
      Will cheer me ever, or disseat me now.
      I have lived long enough: my way of life
      Is fall’n into the sear, the yellow leaf;
      And that which should accompany old age,
      As honour, love, obedience, troops of friends,
      I must not look to have; but, in their stead,
      Curses, not loud but deep, mouth-honour, breath,
      Which the poor heart would fain deny, and dare not. Seyton!
      Enter SEYTON

      SEYTON

      What is your gracious pleasure?

      MACBETH

      What news more?

      SEYTON

      All is confirm’d, my lord, which was reported.

      MACBETH

      I’ll fight till from my bones my flesh be hack’d.
      Give me my armour.

      SEYTON

      ‘Tis not needed yet.

      MACBETH

      I’ll put it on.
      Send out more horses; skirr the country round;
      Hang those that talk of fear. Give me mine armour.
      How does your patient, doctor?

      Doctor

      Not so sick, my lord,
      As she is troubled with thick coming fancies,
      That keep her from her rest.

      MACBETH

      Cure her of that.
      Canst thou not minister to a mind diseased,
      Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow,
      Raze out the written troubles of the brain
      And with some sweet oblivious antidote
      Cleanse the stuff’d bosom of that perilous stuff
      Which weighs upon the heart?

      Doctor

      Therein the patient
      Must minister to himself.

      MACBETH

      Throw physic to the dogs; I’ll none of it.
      Come, put mine armour on; give me my staff.
      Seyton, send out. Doctor, the thanes fly from me.
      Come, sir, dispatch. If thou couldst, doctor, cast
      The water of my land, find her disease,
      And purge it to a sound and pristine health,
      I would applaud thee to the very echo,
      That should applaud again.–Pull’t off, I say.–
      What rhubarb, cyme, or what purgative drug,
      Would scour these English hence? Hear’st thou of them?

      Doctor

      Ay, my good lord; your royal preparation
      Makes us hear something.

      MACBETH

      Bring it after me.
      I will not be afraid of death and bane,
      Till Birnam forest come to Dunsinane.

      Doctor

      [Aside] Were I from Dunsinane away and clear,
      Profit again should hardly draw me here.
      Exeunt

      SCENE IV. Country near Birnam wood.

      Drum and colours. Enter MALCOLM, SIWARD and YOUNG SIWARD, MACDUFF, MENTEITH, CAITHNESS, ANGUS, LENNOX, ROSS, and Soldiers, marching

      MALCOLM

      Cousins, I hope the days are near at hand
      That chambers will be safe.

      MENTEITH

      We doubt it nothing.

      SIWARD

      What wood is this before us?

      MENTEITH

      The wood of Birnam.

      MALCOLM

      Let every soldier hew him down a bough
      And bear’t before him: thereby shall we shadow
      The numbers of our host and make discovery
      Err in report of us.

      Soldiers

      It shall be done.

      SIWARD

      We learn no other but the confident tyrant
      Keeps still in Dunsinane, and will endure
      Our setting down before ‘t.

      MALCOLM

      ‘Tis his main hope:
      For where there is advantage to be given,
      Both more and less have given him the revolt,
      And none serve with him but constrained things
      Whose hearts are absent too.

      MACDUFF

      Let our just censures
      Attend the true event, and put we on
      Industrious soldiership.

      SIWARD

      The time approaches
      That will with due decision make us know
      What we shall say we have and what we owe.
      Thoughts speculative their unsure hopes relate,
      But certain issue strokes must arbitrate:
      Towards which advance the war.
      Exeunt, marching

      SCENE V. Dunsinane. Within the castle.

      Enter MACBETH, SEYTON, and Soldiers, with drum and colours

      MACBETH

      Hang out our banners on the outward walls;
      The cry is still ‘They come:’ our castle’s strength
      Will laugh a siege to scorn: here let them lie
      Till famine and the ague eat them up:
      Were they not forced with those that should be ours,
      We might have met them dareful, beard to beard,
      And beat them backward home.
      A cry of women within

      What is that noise?

      SEYTON

      It is the cry of women, my good lord.
      Exit

      MACBETH

      I have almost forgot the taste of fears;
      The time has been, my senses would have cool’d
      To hear a night-shriek; and my fell of hair
      Would at a dismal treatise rouse and stir
      As life were in’t: I have supp’d full with horrors;
      Direness, familiar to my slaughterous thoughts
      Cannot once start me.
      Re-enter SEYTON

      Wherefore was that cry?

      SEYTON

      The queen, my lord, is dead.

      MACBETH

      She should have died hereafter;
      There would have been a time for such a word.
      To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
      Creeps in this petty pace from day to day
      To the last syllable of recorded time,
      And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
      The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
      Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
      That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
      And then is heard no more: it is a tale
      Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
      Signifying nothing.
      Enter a Messenger

      Thou comest to use thy tongue; thy story quickly.

      Messenger

      Gracious my lord,
      I should report that which I say I saw,
      But know not how to do it.

      MACBETH

      Well, say, sir.

      Messenger

      As I did stand my watch upon the hill,
      I look’d toward Birnam, and anon, methought,
      The wood began to move.

      MACBETH

      Liar and slave!

      Messenger

      Let me endure your wrath, if’t be not so:
      Within this three mile may you see it coming;
      I say, a moving grove.

      MACBETH

      If thou speak’st false,
      Upon the next tree shalt thou hang alive,
      Till famine cling thee: if thy speech be sooth,
      I care not if thou dost for me as much.
      I pull in resolution, and begin
      To doubt the equivocation of the fiend
      That lies like truth: ‘Fear not, till Birnam wood
      Do come to Dunsinane:’ and now a wood
      Comes toward Dunsinane. Arm, arm, and out!
      If this which he avouches does appear,
      There is nor flying hence nor tarrying here.
      I gin to be aweary of the sun,
      And wish the estate o’ the world were now undone.
      Ring the alarum-bell! Blow, wind! come, wrack!
      At least we’ll die with harness on our back.
      Exeunt

      SCENE VI. Dunsinane. Before the castle.

      Drum and colours. Enter MALCOLM, SIWARD, MACDUFF, and their Army, with boughs

      MALCOLM

      Now near enough: your leafy screens throw down.
      And show like those you are. You, worthy uncle,
      Shall, with my cousin, your right-noble son,
      Lead our first battle: worthy Macduff and we
      Shall take upon ‘s what else remains to do,
      According to our order.

      SIWARD

      Fare you well.
      Do we but find the tyrant’s power to-night,
      Let us be beaten, if we cannot fight.

      MACDUFF

      Make all our trumpets speak; give them all breath,
      Those clamorous harbingers of blood and death.
      Exeunt

      SCENE VII. Another part of the field.

      Alarums. Enter MACBETH

      MACBETH

      They have tied me to a stake; I cannot fly,
      But, bear-like, I must fight the course. What’s he
      That was not born of woman? Such a one
      Am I to fear, or none.
      Enter YOUNG SIWARD

      YOUNG SIWARD

      What is thy name?

      MACBETH

      Thou’lt be afraid to hear it.

      YOUNG SIWARD

      No; though thou call’st thyself a hotter name
      Than any is in hell.

      MACBETH

      My name’s Macbeth.

      YOUNG SIWARD

      The devil himself could not pronounce a title
      More hateful to mine ear.

      MACBETH

      No, nor more fearful.

      YOUNG SIWARD

      Thou liest, abhorred tyrant; with my sword
      I’ll prove the lie thou speak’st.
      They fight and YOUNG SIWARD is slain

      MACBETH

      Thou wast born of woman
      But swords I smile at, weapons laugh to scorn,
      Brandish’d by man that’s of a woman born.
      Exit

      Alarums. Enter MACDUFF

      MACDUFF

      That way the noise is. Tyrant, show thy face!
      If thou be’st slain and with no stroke of mine,
      My wife and children’s ghosts will haunt me still.
      I cannot strike at wretched kerns, whose arms
      Are hired to bear their staves: either thou, Macbeth,
      Or else my sword with an unbatter’d edge
      I sheathe again undeeded. There thou shouldst be;
      By this great clatter, one of greatest note
      Seems bruited. Let me find him, fortune!
      And more I beg not.
      Exit. Alarums

      Enter MALCOLM and SIWARD

      SIWARD

      This way, my lord; the castle’s gently render’d:
      The tyrant’s people on both sides do fight;
      The noble thanes do bravely in the war;
      The day almost itself professes yours,
      And little is to do.

      MALCOLM

      We have met with foes
      That strike beside us.

      SIWARD

      Enter, sir, the castle.
      Exeunt. Alarums

      SCENE VIII. Another part of the field.

      Enter MACBETH

      MACBETH

      Why should I play the Roman fool, and die
      On mine own sword? whiles I see lives, the gashes
      Do better upon them.
      Enter MACDUFF

      MACDUFF

      Turn, hell-hound, turn!

      MACBETH

      Of all men else I have avoided thee:
      But get thee back; my soul is too much charged
      With blood of thine already.

      MACDUFF

      I have no words:
      My voice is in my sword: thou bloodier villain
      Than terms can give thee out!
      They fight

      MACBETH

      Thou losest labour:
      As easy mayst thou the intrenchant air
      With thy keen sword impress as make me bleed:
      Let fall thy blade on vulnerable crests;
      I bear a charmed life, which must not yield,
      To one of woman born.

      MACDUFF

      Despair thy charm;
      And let the angel whom thou still hast served
      Tell thee, Macduff was from his mother’s womb
      Untimely ripp’d.

      MACBETH

      Accursed be that tongue that tells me so,
      For it hath cow’d my better part of man!
      And be these juggling fiends no more believed,
      That palter with us in a double sense;
      That keep the word of promise to our ear,
      And break it to our hope. I’ll not fight with thee.

      MACDUFF

      Then yield thee, coward,
      And live to be the show and gaze o’ the time:
      We’ll have thee, as our rarer monsters are,
      Painted on a pole, and underwrit,
      ‘Here may you see the tyrant.’

      MACBETH

      I will not yield,
      To kiss the ground before young Malcolm’s feet,
      And to be baited with the rabble’s curse.
      Though Birnam wood be come to Dunsinane,
      And thou opposed, being of no woman born,
      Yet I will try the last. Before my body
      I throw my warlike shield. Lay on, Macduff,
      And damn’d be him that first cries, ‘Hold, enough!’
      Exeunt, fighting. Alarums

      Retreat. Flourish. Enter, with drum and colours, MALCOLM, SIWARD, ROSS, the other Thanes, and Soldiers

      MALCOLM

      I would the friends we miss were safe arrived.

      SIWARD

      Some must go off: and yet, by these I see,
      So great a day as this is cheaply bought.

      MALCOLM

      Macduff is missing, and your noble son.

      ROSS

      Your son, my lord, has paid a soldier’s debt:
      He only lived but till he was a man;
      The which no sooner had his prowess confirm’d
      In the unshrinking station where he fought,
      But like a man he died.

      SIWARD

      Then he is dead?

      ROSS

      Ay, and brought off the field: your cause of sorrow
      Must not be measured by his worth, for then
      It hath no end.

      SIWARD

      Had he his hurts before?

      ROSS

      Ay, on the front.

      SIWARD

      Why then, God’s soldier be he!
      Had I as many sons as I have hairs,
      I would not wish them to a fairer death:
      And so, his knell is knoll’d.

      MALCOLM

      He’s worth more sorrow,
      And that I’ll spend for him.

      SIWARD

      He’s worth no more
      They say he parted well, and paid his score:
      And so, God be with him! Here comes newer comfort.
      Re-enter MACDUFF, with MACBETH’s head

      MACDUFF

      Hail, king! for so thou art: behold, where stands
      The usurper’s cursed head: the time is free:
      I see thee compass’d with thy kingdom’s pearl,
      That speak my salutation in their minds;
      Whose voices I desire aloud with mine:
      Hail, King of Scotland!

      ALL

      Hail, King of Scotland!
      Flourish

      MALCOLM

      We shall not spend a large expense of time
      Before we reckon with your several loves,
      And make us even with you. My thanes and kinsmen,
      Henceforth be earls, the first that ever Scotland
      In such an honour named. What’s more to do,
      Which would be planted newly with the time,
      As calling home our exiled friends abroad
      That fled the snares of watchful tyranny;
      Producing forth the cruel ministers
      Of this dead butcher and his fiend-like queen,
      Who, as ’tis thought, by self and violent hands
      Took off her life; this, and what needful else
      That calls upon us, by the grace of Grace,
      We will perform in measure, time and place:
      So, thanks to all at once and to each one,
      Whom we invite to see us crown’d at Scone.
      Flourish. Exeunt

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