Holinshed’s Chronicles and Macbeth

In Holinshed’s version Banquo… was an accomplice in Duncan’s murder
England and Scotland are mentioned in the play because it emphasised the renewed bond between them during James I’s reign
Shakespeare made Banquo a victim not a villain because James I believed he was a descendant of Banquo’s
The real Lady Macbeth’s name was Gruoch
The real Macbeth and Lady Macbeth were married for 24 years
The real Macbeth’s reign lasted for 17 years
As a leader, the real Macbeth was strong and competent
The most powerful family in Fife in the medieval ages was the Macduff clan
Who killed the real Macbeth? Malcolm
The real Macbeth ruled in which century? 11th centry
What historical text did Shakespeare use as inspiration for ‘Macbeth’? Holinshed’s Chronicles
How were the witches in Holinshed’s Chronicles different from Shakespeare’s witches? They were beautiful and youthful nymphs and fairies
How does Shakespeare portray Edward the Confessor (King of England)? As the antithesis (opposite) of the corrupt Macbeth
When were Holinshed’s Chronicles published? 1577

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