K. MACB. How now, you secret, black, and midnight hags!
What is 't you do?

. A deed without a name.
K. MACB. I conjure you, by that which you profess, so
(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 bladeda corn be lodg'd, 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 germins* tumble altogether,
Even till destruction sicken,-answer me
To what I ask you.

Speak. 2 WITCH.

Demand. 3 WITCH.

We'll answer. 1 WITCH. Say, if thou 'dst rather hear it from our mouths, Or from our masters'?

K. MACB.. Call 'em, let me see 'em.

1 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. An Apparition of an armed Head rises.b K. MACB. Tell me, thou unknown power, 1 WITCH.

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

App. Macbeth! Macbeth! Macbeth! beware Macduff; Beware the thane of Fife.—Dismiss me:-enough. [Descends.

K. MACB. Whate'er thou art, for thy good caution, thanks; Thou hast harp'd my fear aright:-But one word more,

al . (*) old text, Germaine; corrected by Theobald. . Though bladed corn be lodg'd, &c.] Mr. Collier's annotator proposes to read, "bleaded corn;" and, although the impropriety of the alteration has been clearly shown, Mr. Collier bas not hesitated to substitute it for the genuine word. Had he turned to chap, iv. Book I. of “Scot's Discovery of Witchcraft,”—a work the poet was undoubtedly well read in-he would have found, among other actions imputed to witches, that they can transferre corn in the blade from one place to another." And from the article on Husbandry in Comenius, Janua Linguarum, 1673, he might have learned that “ As soon as standing corn shoots up to a blade, it is in danger of scathe by a tempest."

b - an armed Head-] “The armed head represents, symbolically, Macbeth's head cut off and brought to Malcolm by Macduff. The bloody child is Macduff, untimely ripped from his mother's womb. The child with a crown on his head and a bough in his hand is the royal Malcolm, who ordered his soldiers to hew them down a bough, and bear it before them to Dunsinane."-UPTON.

c Dismiss me :-enough.] See note ), p. 395, Vol. III.

1 WITCH. He will not be commanded : here's another, More potent than the first.

Thunder. An Apparition of a bloody Child rises. APP.

Macbeth! Macbeth! Macbeth! K. MACB. Had I three ears, I'd hear thee.

APP. Be bloody, bold, and resolute; laugh to scorn The power of man, for none of woman born - 8.0 Shall harm Macbeth.

K. MACB. 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.— What is this,
Thunder. An Apparition of a Child crowned, with a tree in his hand,

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

Listen, but speak not to’t.
APP. 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 Dunsinaneb hill
Shall come against him.

[Descends. K. MACB.

That will never be!
Who can impress the forest; bid the tree
Unfix his earth-bound root ? Sweet bodements! good!
Rebellious head rise never, till the wood
Of Birnam rise, and our high-plac'd 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 ?

Seek to know no more.
K. MACB. I will be satisfied : deny me this,
And an eternal curse fall on you! Let me know :
Why sinks that caldron ? and what noise is this? [Hautboys.

- the round

And top of sovereignty?]
Query, “And type of sovereignty?” Thus in “Henry VI.” Part I. Act I. Sc. 4,-

“Thy father bears the type of king of Naples;” and in “Richard III.” Act IV. Sc. 4,

“The high imperial type of this earth's glory.” b- to high Dunsinane hill-] The accent of Dunsinane, in this instance, is correctly placed; but Shakespeare elsewhere pronounces the word Dunsināne. There is authority, however, for both quantities.

Rebellious head-] So Theobald; the old text having, “ Rebellious dead.Mr. Collier's annotator, following Hanmer, has “Rebellion's head," a reading Mr. Dyce declares " is evidently the right one."

1 WITCH. Show! 2 WITCH. Show! 3 WITCH. Show!

ALL. Show his eyes, and grieve his heart; - 110
Come like shadows, so depart !
Eight Kings appear, and pass over in order, the last with a glass in his

hand; BANQUO folkowing.
K. MACB. 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 sceptres carry.
Horrible sight !-Now, I see, 't is true;
For the blood-bolter'da Banquo smiles upon me,
And points at them for his.- What, is this so?

1 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; - 130
That this great king may kindly say,
Our duties did his welcome pay.

[Music. The Witches dance, and then vanish.
K. MACB. Where are they? Gone ?—Let this pernicious hour
Stand aye accursed in the calendar!
Come in, without there!


What's your grace's will ?
K. MACB. Saw you the weird sisters ?

No, my lord.
K. MacB. Came they not by you ?

No, indeed, my lord.
K. MACB. 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 ?

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

1- blood-bolter'd-] Blood-clotted. The term, according to Malone, is well known in Warwickshire. “When a horse, sheep, or other animal perspires much, and any of the hair or wool, in consequence of such perspiration, or any redundant humour, becomes matted in tufts with grime and sweat, he is said to be bolter'd; and whenever the blood issues out and coagulates, forming the locks into hard clotted bunches, the beast is said to be blood-bolter'd."

6 — sprites,-) The customary pronunciation of spirits in Shakespeare's time.


Fled to England I
LEN. Ay, my good lord.

K. MACB. Time, thou anticipat’st 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; -157
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.


SCENE II.-Fife. A Room in Macduff's Castle.

Enter LADY MACDUFF, her Son, and Ross.
L. MacD. What had he done, to make him fly the land ?
Ross. You must have patience, madam.
L. MacD.

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

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

L. MACD. 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.

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; a
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

I- yet know not what we fear;] “The times are cruel when we are led by our fears to believe every rumour of danger we hear, yet are not conscious to ourselves of any erime for which we should be disturbed with those fears."-STEEVENS.

To what they were before.- My pretty cousin,
Blessing upon you!

L. MACD. 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.

[Erit. L. MACD.

Sirrah, your father's dead; 30 · And what will you do now? How will you live?

Son. As birds do, mother.

What, with worms and flies ?
Son. With what I get, I mean; and so do they.

L. MACD. Poor bird! thou ’dst never fear the net nor lime,
The pit-fall nor the gin.

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

L. MAÇD. Yes, he is dead; how wilt thou do for a father?
Son. Nay, how will you do for a husband ?
L. MACD. Why, I can buy me twenty at any market.
Son. Then you'll buy 'em to sell again.

L. MacD. Thou speak'st with all thy wit; and yet, i' faith,
With wit enough for thee.

Son. Was my father a traitor, mother ?
L. MACD. Ay, that he was.
Son. What is a traitor ?
L. Macd. Why, one that swears and lies.
Son. And be all traitors that do so?
L. Macd. Every one that does so is a traitor, and must be hanged.
Son. And must they all be hanged that swear and lie?
L. MACD. Every one.
Son. Who must hang them?
L. MACD. 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.

L. MacD. Now God help thee, poor monkey! But how wilt thou do for a father ? 60

Son. If he were dead, you'd weep for him: if you would not, it were a good sign that I should quickly have a new father L. MACD. Poor prattler ! how thou talk’st !

Enter a Messenger.
MESS. 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. L. MACD.

Whither should I fly? I have done no harm. But I remember now

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