The Tragedy of Macbeth
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The Tragedy of Macbeth

A comprehensive course and Macbeth Analysis - One of Shakespeare's darkest and most often performed plays.
4.6 (9 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
278 students enrolled
Created by William Lasseter
Last updated 3/2014
English
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Includes:
  • 2.5 hours on-demand video
  • 2 hours on-demand audio
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
What Will I Learn?
  • By the end of this course you will be able to read and comprehend great literature.
  • Analyze themes and images used in literature
  • Follow the journey of the characters and observe their changes throughout the work
View Curriculum
Requirements
  • High School Freshman Reading Level
Description

Written sometime around 1604, "Macbeth" is set in Scotland and tells the tale of one man's disastrous ambition. Commonly referred to as "the cursed play" or "the Scottish" play, it is notorious in the drama world not just for being Shakespeare's shortest tragedy but also for having various sinister superstitions attached to it. Such superstitions may have sprung from the subject matter of the play which includes betrayal, regicide, infanticide, murder and death. Despite such dark themes,"Macbeth" has gained a reputation for its startling depiction of the darkness of a soul committing itself to hell and remains one of Shakespeare's greatest and most oft-performed plays.

In this course you will learn to understand great Shakespearean literature like never before through video analysis that compliments the included full text and audio narration.

Who is the target audience?
  • Secondary and College Undergrads
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Curriculum For This Course
63 Lectures
04:25:54
+
Macbeth Preface
1 Lecture 08:32
This preface to the work will give you background information on William Shakespeare, Macbeth and the history of England at the time Shakespeare wrote the play.
Preview 08:32
+
Macbeth Act 1 Scene 1
3 Lectures 04:40
A quick preview of the first scene of Macbeth and how it sets up the rest of the work.
Preview 00:50

William Lasseter's reading of Scene 1.

THINGS TO LOOK FOR IN ACT I

❖ Triune imagery; the number three appears frequently throughout the play – look for it in speech, images, objects and people.

❖ Unnatural imagery; the natural world is frequently thrown into chaos in the play – look for instances of events that seem odd or contrary to nature.

❖ Baby imagery; images of babies, children, the innocent and the weak occur throughout the work – look for babies or images/ words related to babies.

❖ Sleep imagery; numerous instances of sleep, dreams, nightmares emerge during the play – look for images and words that are connected to sleep imagery.

❖ Remember that Macbeth begins the play as a good man, praised by others, honored by his king. Look for imagery, words, details that point to the goodness of Macbeth’s character at the beginning of the play.

❖ Try to note details that reveal the person of Lady Macbeth. What kind of woman, wife & queen is she? Is she unnatural? Why does she have no name?

ACT 1

MACBETH

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

Preview 00:41

Video lecture breaking down the first scene of the play.
Preview 03:09
+
Macbeth Act 1 Scene 2
2 Lectures 06:59
William Lasseter's reading of Scene 2.

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

Act 1 Scene 2 Audio and Text
03:33

Video lecture breaking down Act 1 Scene 4.
Act 1 Scene 2 Video Analysis
03:26
+
Macbeth Act 1 Scene 3
2 Lectures 14:02
William Lasseter's reading of Scene 1.

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

Act 1 Scene 3 Audio and Text
08:21

Video lecture breaking down Act 1 Scene 3.
Act 1 Scene 3 Video Analysis
05:41
+
Macbeth Act 1 Scene 4
2 Lectures 10:13

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

Act 1 Scene 4 Audio and Text
03:41

Video lecture breaking down Act 1 Scene 4.
Act 1 Scene 4 Video Analysis
06:32
+
Macbeth Act 1 Scene 5
2 Lectures 10:54
William Lasseter's reading of Scene 1.

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

Act 1 Scene 5 Audio and Text
04:52

Video lecture breaking down Act 1 Scene 5.
Act 1 Scene 5 Video Analysis
06:02
+
Macbeth Act 1 Scene 6
2 Lectures 05:50
William Lasseter's reading of Scene 6.

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

Act 1 Scene 6 Audio and Text
01:55

Video lecture breaking down Act 1 Scene 6.
Act 1 Scene 6 Video Analysis
03:55
+
Macbeth Act 1 Scene 7
2 Lectures 10:48
William Lasseter's reading of Scene 7.

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 1 Scene 7 Audio and Text
04:59

Video lecture breaking down Act 1 Scene 7.
Act 1 Scene 7 Video Analysis
05:49

Act 1 Quiz
8 questions
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Macbeth Act 2 Scene 1
3 Lectures 10:27
Video lecture setting up Act II.
Act 2 Video Preview
01:16

William Lasseter's reading of Scene 1.

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

Act 2 Scene 1 Audio and Text
04:18

Video lecture breaking down Act 2 Scene 1.
Act 2 Scene 1 Video Analysis
04:53
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Macbeth Act 2 Scene 2
2 Lectures 10:44
William Lasseter's reading of Scene 2.

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

Act 2 Scene 2 Audio and Text
04:41

Video lecture breaking down Act 2 Scene 2.
Act 2 Scene 2 Video Analysis
06:03
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About the Instructor
William Lasseter
4.9 Average rating
66 Reviews
791 Students
8 Courses

Mr. Lasseter has more than fifteen years teaching experience. He holds both a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree in English from the University of Dallas. He has an accomplished professional background, including directing the men’s chant choir at the University of Dallas and producing and directing various dramatic performances in Irving, Texas. Mr. Lasseter currently serves as a teacher of high school literature.