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Macbeth

by William Shakespeare

Act 3, Scene 6 Easiest-to-Read Edition

 

 

 

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Macbeth Act 3, Scene 6



Forres - the palace

Enter LENNOX and another LORD

Enter LENNOX and another LORD

LENNOX

My former speeches have but hit your thoughts,

Which can interpret farther. Only I say

which can interpret farther=which you can interpret as you wish

Things have been strangely borne. The gracious Duncan

borne=conducted

Was pitied of Macbeth. Marry, he was dead.

of Macbeth=by Macbeth (sarcasm)

Marry=by the Virgin Mary

And the right-valiant Banquo walked too late,

walked=was out walking

Whom, you may say, if ’t please you, Fleance killed,

For Fleance fled. Men must not walk too late.

Who cannot want the thought how monstrous

want=escape

(monstrous – pronounced with three syllables)

(continuing sarcasm)

It was for Malcolm and for Donalbain

To kill their gracious father? Damnèd fact!

fact=the deed of murder

How it did grieve Macbeth! Did he not straight

In pious rage the two delinquents tear

tear=tear apart

That were the slaves of drink and thralls of sleep?

thralls=slaves

Was not that nobly done? Ay, and wisely, too,

For ’twould have angered any heart alive

To hear the men deny ’t. So that, I say,

He has borne all things well. And I do think

That had he Duncan’s sons under his key—

under his key=in his control

As, an’t please heaven, he shall not—they should find

What ’twere to kill a father. So should Fleance.

But, peace! For from broad words, and 'cause he failed

from broad words=because of frank words

‘cause=because

His presence at the tyrant’s feast, I hear

Macduff lives in disgrace. Sir, can you tell

Where he bestows himself?

 

LENNOX

My former speeches have but hit your thoughts,

Which can interpret farther. Only I say

Things have been strangely borne. The gracious Duncan

Was pitied of Macbeth. Marry, he was dead.

And the right-valiant Banquo walked too late,

Whom, you may say, if ’t please you, Fleance killed,

For Fleance fled. Men must not walk too late.

Who cannot want the thought how monstrous

It was for Malcolm and for Donalbain

To kill their gracious father? Damnèd fact!

How it did grieve Macbeth! Did he not straight

In pious rage the two delinquents tear

That were the slaves of drink and thralls of sleep?

Was not that nobly done? Ay, and wisely too,

For ’twould have angered any heart alive

To hear the men deny ’t. So that, I say,

He has borne all things well. And I do think

That had he Duncan’s sons under his key—

As, an’t please heaven, he shall not—they should find

What ’twere to kill a father. So should Fleance.

But, peace! For from broad words, and 'cause he failed

His presence at the tyrant’s feast, I hear

Macduff lives in disgrace. Sir, can you tell

Where he bestows himself?

 

LORD

     The son of Duncan—

From whom this tyrant holds the due of birth—

holds=withholds

Lives in the English court and is received

Of the most pious Edward with such grace

of=by

That the malevolence of fortune nothing

Takes from his high respect. Thither Macduff

Is gone to pray the holy king upon his aid

upon his aid=as a result of his aid

To wake Northumberland and warlike Siward,

Siward=Earl of Northumberland

That by the help of these—with Him above

To ratify the work—we may again

Give to our tables meat, sleep to our nights,

Free from ([at] our feasts and banquets) bloody knives,

Do faithful homage and receive free honors.

All which we pine for now. And this report

Hath so exasperated the king that he

Prepares for some attempt of war.

 

LORD

     The son of Duncan—

From whom this tyrant holds the due of birth—

Lives in the English court and is received

Of the most pious Edward with such grace

That the malevolence of fortune nothing

Takes from his high respect. Thither Macduff

Is gone to pray the holy king upon his aid

To wake Northumberland and warlike Siward,

That by the help of these—with Him above

To ratify the work—we may again

Give to our tables meat, sleep to our nights,

Free from our feasts and banquets bloody knives,

Do faithful homage and receive free honors.

All which we pine for now. And this report

Hath so exasperated the king that he

Prepares for some attempt of war.

 

LENNOX

Sent he to Macduff?

(to tell Macduff to return from England to Scotland)

 

LENNOX

Sent he to Macduff?

 

LORD

He did, and with an absolute “Sir, not I,”

with=at

The cloudy messenger “turns me” his back,

cloudy=scowling

turns me his back=turns his back on Macduff

And hums, as who should say, “You’ll rue the time

That clogs me with this answer.”

clogs me=weighs me down

 

LORD

He did, and with an absolute “Sir, not I,”

The cloudy messenger turns me his back,

And hums, as who should say “You’ll rue the time

That clogs me with this answer.”

 

LENNOX

     And that well might

that=the messenger’s behavior

Advise him to a caution t' hold what distance

His wisdom can provide. Some holy angel

Fly to the court of England and unfold

His message ere he come that a swift blessing

his message=the holy angel’s message

ere he come=before Macduff comes

May soon return to this our suffering country

Under a hand accursed!

a hand accursed=Macbeth

 

LENNOX

     And that well might

Advise him to a caution, t' hold what distance

His wisdom can provide. Some holy angel

Fly to the court of England and unfold

His message ere he come, that a swift blessing

May soon return to this our suffering country

Under a hand accursed!

 

LORD

I’ll send my prayers with him.

 

LORD

I’ll send my prayers with him.

 

Exeunt

Exeunt

 

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