Act 1, Scene 5
Inverness. Macbeth’s castle.
- Enter Macbeth’s Wife alone, with a letter.
Lady Macbeth2 - 32
- “They met me in the day of success; and I have learn’d by
- the perfect’st report, they have more in them than mortal
- knowledge. When I burnt in desire to question them further,
- they made themselves air, into which they vanish’d. Whiles I
- stood rapt in the wonder of it, came missives from the King,
- who all-hail’d me “Thane of Cawdor,” by which title, before,
- these weird sisters saluted me, and referr’d 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 promis’d thee. Lay it
- to thy heart, and farewell.”
- Glamis thou art, and Cawdor, and shalt be
- What thou art promis’d. Yet do I fear thy nature,
- It is too full o’ th’ 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 valor 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 Macbeth’s Messenger.
- What is your tidings?
- The King comes here tonight.
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- Thou’rt mad to say it!
- Is not thy master with him? Who, were’t so,
- Would have inform’d for preparation.
Macbeth’s Messenger37 - 40
- 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.
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- Give him tending,
- He brings great news.
- Exit Macbeth’s 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 topful
- Of direst cruelty! Make thick my blood,
- Stop up th’ access and passage to remorse,
- That no compunctious visitings of nature
- Shake my fell purpose, nor keep peace between
- Th’ effect and it! Come to my woman’s breasts,
- And take my milk for gall, you murd’ring 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.
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- My dearest love,
- Duncan comes here tonight.
- And when goes hence?
- Tomorrow, as he purposes.
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- 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 th’ 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.
- We will speak further.
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- Only look up clear:
- To alter favor ever is to fear.
- Leave all the rest to me.