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Scene 3.1

Scene 3.1 - The royal palace at Forres
Banquo, alone on stage, declares that everything the witches predicted for Macbeth have come true, and that might mean what they predicted about Banquo fathering a line of kings will also come true. The newly crowned Macbeth and his train enter. In front of the others, Macbeth requests Banquo's company at this evening's feast. In passing, he confirms that Banquo will go horseback riding with his son in the afternoon. Macbeth bids everyone depart, except a servant to fetch the two murderers he has hired to kill Banquo.
Macbeth recounts the events of the last few days. Given the truth of the witches' predictions on his behalf, it is likely that Banquo's children shall be kings. If that is true, Macbeth believes that he has sold his soul to the devil and suffered all this torment for Banquo's children, not for his because he will not have any sons to succeed him. If he kills Banquo and his only son, then he will defeat fate.
The two murderers enter, and Macbeth argues why they should kill Banquo and his son. Macbeth explains to them, as he did in their first meeting, that Banquo is responsible for their misfortune and poverty. Macbeth promises them that killing Banquo and his son will make them men worthy to be in his company. Macbeth tells them that he could easily murder Banquo himself were it not for the common friends they shared; Macbeth must pretend to be sorrowful at Banquo's death, and that is why he needs the murderers' assistance. He will provide everything except any evidence that will trace the murders back to him, but he demands that both the Banquo and son be slain.

Browse all book notes

Historical Context
Main Characters
Points to Ponder
Did You Know
Plot Summary
Scenes 1.1 and 1.2
Scene 1.3 - An open place
Scenes 1.4 and 1.5
Scenes 1.6 and 1.7
Scenes 2.1 and 2.2
Scene 2.3 and 2.4
Scene 3.1
Scenes 3.2 and 3.3
Scene 3.4
Scenes 3.5 and 3.6
Scene 4.1
Scene 4.2
Scene 4.3
Scenes 5.1 and 5.2
Scenes 5.3 and 5.4
Scenes 5.5, 5.6, 5.7, and 5.8
Scenes 5.9, 5.10, and 5.11



 






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