Macbeth Study Guide (Act 1)

1.1 – Three witches vow to meet Macbeth after the battle. They respond to the calls of their familiar spirits. They leave, chanting ominous words.
1.2 – The wounded captain reports that although the rebel Macdonwald had strong forces, Macbeth personally killed him. Facing as assault by fresh Norwegian troops, Macbeth and Banquo fought of fearlessly.Ross tells that Macbeth has triumphed, capturing Cawdor and obtaining ransom and a favorable peace treaty from the King of Norway. King Duncan sentences Cawdor to death for treason and bestows his title on Macbeth
1.3 – The witches await Macbeth. They plot to torment a sea captain whose wife has insulted them. A drum signals the approach of Macbeth.The witches chant a spell to prepare for their meeting with Macbeth. They amaze him with predictions that he will be the Thane of Cawdor and King of Scotland. Banquo demands to know his own future.The witches prophesize that Banquo’s descendants will be kings, but he himself will not. Refusing to answer Macbeth’s questions, the witches vanish. Ross brings news of King Duncan’s delight in Macbeth’s victory.Macbeth is amazed to hear that he is now Thane of Cawdor. Angus explains that the treacherous thane has been sentenced to death. Banquo warns that the witches’ predictions might lead to evil.Macbeth weighs the moral implications of the witches’ prediction. He is horrified at the thought of killing King Duncan, but resolves to accept whatever has to be. He proposes that he and Banquo talk together at a later time.
1) Thane of Glamis2) Thane of Cawdor3) King of Scotland What are Macbeth’s three prophecy’s?
1) Lesser than Macbeth and greater2) Not so happy yet much happier3) Thou shalt get kings, though thou be none What are Banquo’s three prophecy’s?
Are we on drugs? Are we hallucinating? Rephrase Banquo’s question, “Or have we eaten from the insane root, that takes the reason prisoner?”
1.4 – Malcolm reports that the Thane of Cawdor died a repentant and dignified death. Duncan reflects that it is impossible to judge anyone by his or her outward appearance. He warmly welcomes Macbeth.Macbeth declares his loyalty to Duncan, who (after promising honors to Macbeth and Banquo) announces that his son, Malcolm, shall succeed to the throne. Macbeth is appalled and broods ominously.
1.5 – Lady Macbeth reads her husband’s letter telling of the witches’ prophecy of kingship. She analyzes his nature, fearing he is too decent and squeamish to murder Duncan for the crown.The attendant gives news that Macbeth is approaching. Lady Mabceth calls on evil spirits to assist her plans for Duncan’s murder. She greets Macbeth with thoughts of future greatness. At the end of the scene Lady Macbeth urges Macbeth to hide his deadly intentions behind welcoming looks. She will manage the killing of Duncan. Banquo and Duncan comment on the benign appearance of Macbeth’s castle.
Look happy and like a good host, but you are actually going to kill our guest. Lady Macbeth tells Macbeth to “Look like th’innocent flower, but be the serpent under’t”
1.6 – Lady Macbeth welcomes Duncan with elaborately courteous language. She speaks of loyalty, obedience, and gratefulness for past honors.
1.7 – Macbeth struggles with his conscience: killing King Duncan will result in vengeance; there are compelling reasons against the murder. Heaven itself will abhor the deed. Only ambition spurs him on.Macbeth says he has decided to not kill Duncan. Lady Macbeth accuses him of cowardice and lack of manliness. She would kill her own child rather than break such a promise.Lady Macbeth will make the king’s bodyguards so drunk that murdering Duncan (and blaming the bodyguards) will be easy. Macbeth applauds her. He says that they should veil their designs with pleasant looks.
1) Duncan has honored him and been good to him2) Everyone loves him and he is well-liked What are Macbeth’s 2 reasons why he should not kill Duncan?

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