Macbeth ACT 1

What is the first scene literally and in reference to the play? Literally the witches are deciding when they shall meet again. As the beginning of the EXPOSITION, this scene sets the mood for the entire play, and introduces several major motifs: the witches (supernatural influences in the play), the idea of fair being foul, and the stormy fate of scotland. The main character, Macbeth, is also introduced by name, linking him to the witches.
What does Duncan call Macbeth when he hears Macbeth has defeated Macdonwald? He calls him “valient cousin! Worthy Gentleman!” (later, we find this ironic, being said to the man who will be his murderer)
Who is sentenced to death? The thane of Cawdor is sentenced to death as a traitor.
What do the witches predict in act 1 scene 3 for Macbeth? for Banquo? They predict Macbeth will be Thane of Cawdor and eventually the king. They predict that Banquo will be “lesser than Macbeth, and greater, not so happy, and yet happier” and that his descendants will be kings although he will not be one.
What news does Ross bring Macbeth? Ross tells Macbeth that Macbeth now holds the title of the Thane of Cawdor.
Banquo, like macbeth is surprised that the witches have predicted Macbeth’s new title. He is, however, leery. What does he say about the motives of the “instruments of darkness?” He says they often tell of good things which may happen without telling the bad consequences.
Malcolm describes Cawdor’s last moments before execution. What is Duncans reply? You can’t tell what is in a person’s heart by looking at his face. (things are not what they seem)
Macbeth says “stars, hide your fires, let not light see my black and deep desires.” What are Macbeths desires? He now desires to be the king, ad he realizes that something will have to be done with the present king (and his sons) before his desires can become reality.
After Lady Macbeth reads the letter, what does she tell us is her opinion of Macbeth, how does she plan to help him? In short, Lady Macbeth thinks Macbeth could be a good king , but he lacks the hardheartedness which would allow him to get to the position. she’ll talk him into it.
What is Lady Macbeth’s prayer to the spirits after she learns Duncan is coming? she wants to be filled with cruelty, given a hard heart and the thick blood necessary to do what has to be done in order to make Macbeth king.
What Advice does Lady Macbeth give Macbeth when he arrives home ? She tells him he must learn to look innocent even when his heart is full of evil. He has to learn to hide his true feelings. (things not being as they seem)
What are macbeth’s arguements to himself against killing Duncan? If Macbeth kills Duncan, the he is setting a precedent that the subjects can kill kings and be rewarded with the kingship. Macbeth is Duncans kinsmen and his subject as well as his host. Duncan is a good king and a virtuous man; he has done no particular evil. Duncan is a popular king and his death would bring sorrow and unrest upon Scotland.
What arguments does Lady Macbeth use to convince Macbeth to commit murder? She tells him not to be a coward, not to say later that he “could have been” when he could now “be” king. She tells him to be a man and go get what he wants. She says if she made the promise to do so, that she would have killed her own baby to carry out that promise.
What is Lady Macbeth’s plan? She will drug the kings grooms (guards) with their drink. Macbeth will then go into the kings room and murder him in his sleep. they will plant the weapons on the guards to make them appear guilty.