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Examine act 3 scene 4, the Banquet scene. Consider how effective this is on stage and how important it is to the rest of the play.

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Examine act 3 scene 4, the Banquet scene. Consider how effective this is on stage and how important it is to the rest of the play. The Banquet scene fits into the play very well as this is when Macbeth really becomes uncontrollable and all he cares about is power. He tries to convince the lords he is completely in control but does not and guests describe him as a "Tyrant" and he shows that his relationship with Lady Macbeth is falling apart. This scene is very important to the play because this is when the Lords turn against Macbeth. This scene leads to the innocent slaughtering of Macduff's wife, children and everybody inside the castle. At the beginning of Act 3 Scene 4 Macbeth is greeted by the 1st murderer. The first thing Macbeth says to him is," There's blood upon thy face." The murderer then says that it is Banquo's blood and Macbeth replies," Tis better thee without than thee within." This means that it is better to have Banquo's blood on the outside of you than on the inside of Banquo. Macbeth then asks the murderer," That did the like for Fleance. If thou didst it, Thou art the nonpareil." Macbeth is unhappy to hear that Fleance escaped. The murderer then says," Ay, my good Lord: safe in a ditch he bides with twenty trenched gashes on his head." ...read more.


Lady Macbeth then speaks to Macbeth privately and says," This is the very painting of your fear. This air-drawn dagger which you said led you to Duncan." Lady Macbeth is suggesting that he is seeing things and she is very ashamed of his behaviour. When Macbeth returns to the banquet he finds that Banquo has gone. He then apologises for his behaviour and sits down and drinks wine. He then gives a toast to the general joy of the whole table. The ghost of Banquo returns to the room. He then gives a toast and says," And to our dear friend Banquo, whom we miss would he were here. To all, and him, we thirst, and all to all. Macbeth then sees the ghost and his anger returns. Simon Haworth Page 2 He then tells Banquo that if he were to come in any other form he wouldn't be scared but no in the form of Banquo. The ghost then leaves and Macbeth wants to carry on the banquet but Lady Macbeth thinks that he will talk of the murders and says to the lords," I pray you speak not; he grows worse and worse. Question enrages him. At once, good night. Stand not on the order of your going. But go at once. The lords then leave but they are very suspicious as you are supposed to leave in order of your rank but they leave regardless. ...read more.


You can tell that Macbeth is becoming more evil as at the end of the scene he uses lots of rhyming couplets like hand scanned, good blood and self-use abuse. This reminds me of the 3 witches earlier in the play. When the first murderer tells Macbeth of Banquo death he sounds brutal as he says," With twenty trenched gashes on his head. The least a death to nature." It sounds brutal as he uses alliteration on the letter T. It creates a horrible picture in my head as the murderer says that any one of the gashes would have killed him and so 20 gashes would just make his face unrecognisable to anybody. From this scene you know that Macbeth is suspicious of Macduff as he says," How say'st thou, that Macduff denies his person at our great bidding?" Shakespeare also uses puns in this scene so the reader thinks about the true meaning of what is being said. Like when Macbeth says," Which of you have done this." Macbeth could mean who is playing a trick on me or who killed Banquo. This scene is very effective on stage and shouldn't be left out, as it would ruin the entire play. I have not yet seen a production where this scene has been cut out. This scene is very important for the rest of the play because this is when there is no turning back for Macbeth and when his tragic flaw of wanting power starts to get the better of him. Simon Haworth Page 4 ...read more.

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