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Macbeth Act 5 scenes 1-3
Transcript of Macbeth Act 5 scenes 1-3
Act 5 scenes 1-3
Thematic and Dramatic significance
At night, in the king’s palace at Dunsinane, a doctor and a gentlewoman discuss Lady Macbeth’s strange habit of sleepwalking. Suddenly, Lady Macbeth enters in the room with a candle in her hand. She sleeps talks about the blood of Banquo on her hands and how she cannot wash it off. She leaves, and the doctor and gentlewoman are amazed by her madness.
Summary: Act 5, scene 2
Outside the castle, the Scottish lords are discussing the military situation. The English army starts to approach, which is led by Malcolm. The Scottish army will meet them near Birnam Wood, so they can join forces. The “tyrant” another name for Macbeth, has fortified his castle and has made much military preparations.
Summary: Act 5, scene 3
Macbeth is prepared for battle. He is very confident that he will not lose against them. However, his messenger Seyton tells him that there are ten thousands of soldiers marching to Dunsinane. Macbeth starts to lose his courage. He then starts angrily ordering his servants for his armor and insisting he wears it for battle. But the doctor then comes and tells Macbeth that Lady Macbeth is very ill.
In scene 1 the doctor shows up and discusses with the gentlewomen about Lady Macbeths illness. This dramatic plot shows that Lady Macbeths ruthlessness has been broken by her sence of guilt and paranoia. She was sleepwalking and imagining her hands were stained with blood. The illness is infering the cause of her distress, "she needed a priest more than a doctor." (5:1:65)
In scene 2, after Meneith, Caithness and Angus stated that they were going to meet with the scotish rebels in Birnam wood and take the battle on. Though the audience already knows that Macbeth will not win the battle due to the witches predictions, "Macbeth shall never vanquishd be unitl great Birnam Wood to high Dunsinane hill shall come agsinst him" (4:1:91-92).
From the audience’s point of view, Lady Macbeth becomes a person with a conscience instead of a heartless woman full of cruelty. After the death of Duncan and the framing of the guards in act two, Lady Macbeth tells Macbeth that her hands “are of your colour,” but she shames “to wear a heart so white,” making her seem like she feels no guilt for what just happened. However, in scene one of act five, she claims that “all the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand.”
Macbeth also shows great changes in his personality through this part as well. We can see that Macbeth has probably broken down mentally because he does not really think over his actions as he used to. When Lady Macbeth started encouraging the idea to kill Duncan in act one scene five, Macbeth tells her that they “will speak further” and has a whole soliloquy in act one scene seven of whether or not commit murder. However, in Act 5 scene 3, he seems to be so consumed by the thought of getting caught that he does not think his actions over.
We can see that, although Lady Macbeth had been chastising her husband for being too kind in the past, she is starting to get overwhelmed with her own guilt. This character development is important because it shows that even people who seem as cruel as Lady Macbeth actually are affected by their consciences, so this foreshadows that Macbeth is will be greatly affected by his actions as well and may lead himself to his downfall
Also, in the past Macbeth cared so much about his image in the past and even described the peoples’ respects as “golden opinions… which would be worn now in their newest gloss.” However, we can see that Macbeth starts treating people without respect or love. In act 5 scene 2, Angus claims that “those he commands, move only in command, nothing in love,” and, in act 5 scene 3, Macbeth mocks the servant by calling him a “cream-fac’d loon” and a “lily-liver’d boy.” Clearly Macbeth has become uneasy, or even desperate, and is not as intellectual or respectable as he was before. This is significant as it foreshadows his downfall.
My way of life is fall’n into the sere, the yellow leaf (5:3:23)
Macbeth is comparing himself to a leaf that is withering away, which means he can feel his own demise upon himself.
unnatural deed do breed unnatural troubles (5:1:63-64)
Foreshadowing that Lady Macbeth’s strange behaviors will lead to strange problems. This adds suspense to the story
Justification & Summary