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SCENE III.-A Heath.
Enter the three Witches.
1st Witch. Where hast thou been, sister?
2nd Witch. Killing swine.
3rd Witch. Sister, where thou?
1st Witch. A sailor's wife had chestnuts in her lap, And mounch'd and mounch'd and mounch'd ;-Give me, quoth I:
Aroint thee, witch! the rump-fed ronyon cries.
Her husband's to Aleppo gone, master o' the Tiger:
But in a sieve I'll thither sail,
3rd Witch. A drum, a drum: Macbeth doth come.
All. The weird sisters, hand in hand,
Enter MACBETH and BANQUO.
Macb. So foul and fair a day I have not seen.
So wither'd, and so wild in their attire;
That man may question? You seem to understand me,
By each at once her choppy finger laying
Macb. Speak, if you can ;-What are you? 1st Witch. All hail, Macbeth! hail to thee, thane of Glamis ! 2nd Witch. All hail, Macbeth! hail to thee, thane of Cawdor! 3rd Witch. All hail, Macbeth! that shalt be king hereafter. Ban. Good sir, why do you start; and seem to fear Things that do sound so fair ?—I' the name of truth, Are ye fantastical, or that indeed
Which outwardly ye show? My noble partner
That he seems wrapt withal; to me you speak not:
And say, which grain will grow, and which will not;
Your favors, nor your 1st Witch. Hail!
2nd Witch. Hail! 3rd Witch. Hail!
1st Witch. Lesser than Macbeth, and greater.
2nd Witch. Not so happy, yet much happier.
3rd Witch. Thy children shall be kings, though thou be none: So all hail, Macbeth and Banquo!
1st Witch. Banquo, and Macbeth, all hail!
Macb. Stay, you imperfect speakers, tell me more:
No more than to be Cawdor. Say, from whence
Ban. The earth hath bubbles, as the water has,
Ban. Were such things here, as we do speak about?
That takes the reason prisoner?
Macb. Your children shall be kings.
Macb. And thane of Cawdor, too; went it not so?
You shall be king.
Enter ROSSE and ANGUS.
Rosse. The king hath happily received, Macbeth,
Rosse. And, for an earnest of a greater honor,
What, can the devil speak true? Macb. The thane of Cawdor lives; Why do you dress me In borrowed robes ?
Glamis, and thane of Cawdor:
Cousins, a word, I pray you.
Two truths are told,
As happy prologues to the swelling act
Cannot be ill; cannot e good:-If ill,
My thought, whose murder yet is but fantastical,
But what is not.
Look, how our partner's rapt.
Macb. If chance will have me king, why, chance may crown me Without my stir.
New honors come upon him
Like our strange garments; cleave not to their mould,
But with the aid of use.
The leaf to read them.-Let us toward the king.-
Our free hearts each to other.
Macbeth goes to Fores to pay his duty to King Duncan, who confirms him in his title of Thane of Cawdor, and as a farther proof of the royal favor, the King announces his intention of visiting Macbeth at his Castle in Inverness. Macbeth leaves the King to be the "harbinger" of the monarch's proposed visit.
The Scene changes to the Castle of Macbeth, and Lady Macbeth enters, reading a Letter she has just received from her husband.
Inverness. A Room in Macbeth's Castle.
Enter Lady Macbeth, reading a letter.
Lady M. They met me in the day of success; and I have learned by the perfectest report, they have more in them than mortal knowledge. When I burned in desire to question them further, they made themselves—air, into which they vanished. Whiles I stood rapt in the wonder of it, came missives from the king, who all-hailed me, Thane of Cawdor; by which title, before, these weird sisters saluted me, and referred me to the coming on of time, with, Hail, king that shalt be
This have I thought good to deliver thee, my dearest partner of my greatness; that thou mightest not lose the dues of rejoicing, by being ignorant of what greatness is promised thee. Lay it to thy heart, and farewell.
Glamis thou art, and Cawdor; and shalt be
What thou art promis'd :-Yet do I fear thy nature;
To catch the nearest way. Thou would'st be great;
The illness should attend it. What thou would'st highly,
And that which rather thou dost fear to do,
Enter an Attendant.
Atten. The king comes here to-night.
Thou'rt mad to say it:
Is not thy master with him? who, wer't so,
Atten. So please you, it is true; our thane is coming:
One of my fellows had the speed of him :
Who, almost dead for breath, had scarcely more
That croaks the fatal entrance of Duncan
You wait on nature's mischief! Come, thick night,
That my keen knife see not the wound it makes;