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Macbeth - Act 3, scene 6
Last updated: Fri, Jul 31, 2015
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Navigate this workMacbeth - Act 3, scene 6
Act 3, scene 6
Lennox and an unnamed lord discuss politics in Scotland. Lennox comments sarcastically upon Macbeth’s “official” versions of the many recent violent deaths. The nameless lord responds with news of Macduff’s flight to England to seek help in overthrowing Macbeth.Enter Lennox and another Lord.
1423 My former speeches have but hit your thoughts,
1424 Which can interpret farther. Only I say
1425 Things have been strangely borne. The gracious
1427 5 Was pitied of Macbeth; marry, he was dead.
1428 And the right valiant Banquo walked too late,
1429 Whom you may say, if ’t please you, Fleance killed,
1430 For Fleance fled. Men must not walk too late.
1431 Who cannot want the thought how monstrous
1432 10 It was for Malcolm and for Donalbain
1433 To kill their gracious father? Damnèd fact,
1434 How it did grieve Macbeth! Did he not straight
1435 In pious rage the two delinquents tear
1436 That were the slaves of drink and thralls of sleep?
1437 15 Was not that nobly done? Ay, and wisely, too,
1438 For ’twould have angered any heart alive
1439 To hear the men deny ’t. So that I say
1440 He has borne all things well. And I do think
1441 That had he Duncan’s sons under his key
1442 20 (As, an ’t please heaven, he shall not) they should
1444 What ’twere to kill a father. So should Fleance.
p. 1151445 But peace. For from broad words, and ’cause he
1447 25 His presence at the tyrant’s feast, I hear
1448 Macduff lives in disgrace. Sir, can you tell
1449 Where he bestows himself?
LORD 1450 The ⌜son⌝ of Duncan
1451 (From whom this tyrant holds the due of birth)
1452 30 Lives in the English court and is received
1453 Of the most pious Edward with such grace
1454 That the malevolence of fortune nothing
1455 Takes from his high respect. Thither Macduff
1456 Is gone to pray the holy king upon his aid
1457 35 To wake Northumberland and warlike Siward
1458 That, by the help of these (with Him above
1459 To ratify the work), we may again
1460 Give to our tables meat, sleep to our nights,
1461 Free from our feasts and banquets bloody knives,
1462 40 Do faithful homage, and receive free honors,
1463 All which we pine for now. And this report
1464 Hath so exasperate ⌜the⌝ King that he
1465 Prepares for some attempt of war.
LENNOX 1466 Sent he to Macduff?
1467 45 He did, and with an absolute “Sir, not I,”
1468 The cloudy messenger turns me his back
1469 And hums, as who should say “You’ll rue the time
1470 That clogs me with this answer.”
LENNOX 1471 And that well might
1472 50 Advise him to a caution ⌜t’ hold⌝ what distance
1473 His wisdom can provide. Some holy angel
1474 Fly to the court of England and unfold
1475 His message ere he come, that a swift blessing
1476 May soon return to this our suffering country
1477 55 Under a hand accursed.
LORD 1478 I’ll send my prayers with him.