William Shakespeare | Analysis of Macbeth: Act V.

Lady Macbeth’s behavior has been very peculiar, according to the Gentle woman, and the Doctor is summoned to witness the behavior for himself. Lady Macbeth is responding to her guilty feelings. She is trying to rid herself of her guilt, which takes the form of the blood she is unable to wash from her hands. Read More

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William Shakespeare | Analysis of Macbeth: Act IV

Hecate knows that Macbeth will not question information given to him but will act upon it. Macbeth is given information that he feels will give him immortality. He is ready to believe only what he feels will benefit him, but he is unable to distinguish the “good” from the “bad”. The “Fair is foul and Read More

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William Shakespeare | Analysis of Macbeth: Act III

Banquo says Macbeth has attained all the Witches said he would and at great cost to everyone; he feels his own prophecy should come true as well. The friendship between Banquo and Macbeth has been dissolved. Banquo no longer trusts his friend and must be cautious in his presence. Macbeth knows that all the Witches Read More

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William Shakespeare | Analysis of Macbeth: Act II

The second act opens with Banquo and his son, Fleance, walking the halls at Inverness, unable to sleep. Banquo has been plagued by dreams of the Witches. As he walks with Fleance, he hands him the sword and dagger he is wearing. Shakespeare uses this scene to foreshadow Fleance’s eventual assumption of his father’s role. Read More

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William Shakespeare | Analysis of Macbeth: Act I

Introducing the play with the Witches in the first scene creates an evil tone and mysterious setting; something sinister is about to happen. Witches were traditionally thought of in Elizabethan times as evil and connected to devil’s work. The supernatural was feared and respected. The Witches statement, “Fair is foul, and foul is fair”, clearly Read More

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William Shakespeare | Summary of Macbeth: Act I, Scene 5-7.

Scene 5 Lady Macbeth has received a letter from Macbeth stating that he has been named Thane of Cawdor. The letter reveals his ambition to be king and the prophecy given by the Witches. Lady Macbeth discloses her ambitious nature and vows to help Macbeth succeed in his ambition to be crowned King. She receives Read More

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William Shakespeare | Short Summary of Macbeth: Act I

Three witches meet Macbeth and Banquo on the heath as the men return from battle. They predict that Macbeth will be named Thane of Cawdor and King of Scotland and that Banquo will be the father of kings. The witches vanish; Ross enters to greet Macbeth with the title of Cawdor, the traitor whom King Read More

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William Shakespeare | Summary of Macbeth: Act I, Scene 1-4.

Scene 1 The play opens on a bleak and lonely stretch of land in Scotland. Three Witches report that the battle Macbeth is fighting will be over by sunset; they plan to meet with Macbeth on the barren battlefield, or “heath,” at that time. The setting is enhanced by an approaching thunder storm and three Read More

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