Macbeth

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

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