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Glamis, and thane of Cawdor;
The greatest is behind.—Thanks for your pains.-
Do you not hope your children shall be kings,
When those that gave the thane of Cawdor to me,
Promised no less to them?

That, trusted home,
Might yet enkindle 2 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 us
In deepest consequence.-
Cousins, a word, I pray you.

Two truths are told
As happy prologues to the swelling act
Of the imperial theme.--I thank you, gentlemen.-
This supernatural soliciting
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 smothered in surmise; and nothing is,
But what is not.

Look, how our partner's rapt.
Macb. If chance will have me king, why, charce

may crown me, Without my stir. Вап.

New honors come upon him Like our strange garments; cleave not to their mould, But with the aid of use.

1 i. e. entirely, thoroughly relied on.
2 “Encourage you to expect the crown.”

3 By his single state of man, Macbeth means his simple condition of human nature.




Come what come may; Time and the hour runs through the roughest day.

Ban. Worthy Macbeth, we stay upon your leisure. Macb. Give me your favor ; -my dull brain was

wrought With things forgotten. Kind gentlemen, your pains Are registered where every day I turn The leaf to read them.-Let us toward the king.-Think upon what hath chanced; and, at more times, The interim having weighed it, let us speak Our free hearts each to other. Ban.

Very gladly. Macb. Till then, enough.-Come, friends.



SCENE IV. Fores. A Room in the Palace.


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Enter Duncan, Malcolm, DONALBAIN, LENOx, and


Dun. Is execution done on Cawdor? Are not
Those in commission yet returned ?

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 confessed 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.

There's no art,
To find the mind's construction in the face.4



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1 Favor is countenance, good will, and not pardon, as it has been here interpreted. Vide Hamlet, Act v. Sc. 2.

2 Studied in his death, is instructed in the art of dying. 3 Owed, owned, possessed.

4 We cannot construe the disposition of the mind by the lineaments of the face.

He was a gentleman on whom I built
An absolute trust.-0 worthiest cousin!

Enter MACBETH, BANQUO, Rosse, and ANGUS. 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.

Macb. 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 honor.

Dun. Welcome hither;
I have begun to plant thee, and will labor
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 infold thee,
And hold thee to my heart.

There if I

The harvest is your own.

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 honor must

1 Holinshed says, “ Duncan having two sons, &c. he made the elder of them, called Malcolm, prince of Cumberland, as it was thereby to appoint him his successor in his kingdome immediatelie after his decease. Macbeth sorely troubled herewith, for that he saw by this means his hope sore hindered (where, by the old laws of the realme the ordinance was, that if he that should succeed were not of able age to take the charge upon himself, he that was next of blood unto him should be admitted), he began to take counsel how he might usurpe the kingdome by force, having a just quarrel so to doe (as he tooke the matter) for that Duncane did what in him lay to defraud him of all manner of title and claime, which he might in time to come pretend, unto the crowne.'

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.

Macb. The rest is labor, 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.

My worthy Cawdor! Macb. The prince of Cumberland !—That is a step, On which I must fall down, or else o'erleap,

[Aside. For in my way it lies. Stars, hide your fires ! Let not light see my black and deep desires.

wink at the hand! yet let that be, Which the eye fears, when it is done, to see.

[Exit. Dun. True, worthy Banquo; he is full so valiant; And in his commendations I am fed; It is a banquet to me. Let us after him, Whose care is gone before to bid us welcome. It is a peerless kinsman. [Flourish. Exeunt.

The eye

SCENE V. Inverness. A Room in Macbeth's Castle.

Enter Lady MACBETH, reading a letter. Lady M. 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 great

ness ; 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’dst 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 2 aid doth seem To have thee crowned withal.—What is your tidings ?

Enter an Attendant.

Lady M.

Attend. The king comes here to-night.

Thou’rt mad to say it.
Is not thy master with him? who, wer't so,
Would have informed for preparation.
Attend. So please you, it is true; our thane is

One of my fellows had the speed of him;
Who, almost dead for breath, had scarcely more
Than would make


Give him tending;

his message

Lady M.

1 6 That I may pour my spirits in thine ear.” So in Lord Sterline's Julius Cæsar, 1607:

6 Thou in my bosom used to pour thy spright.2 “Which fate and metaphysical aid,” &c. ; i. e. supernatural aid. We find metaphysics explained things supernatural” in the old dictionaries. “ To have thee crowned," is to desire that you should be crowned.

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