First folio
Modern text


Key line

Thunder. Enter the three Witches.Thunder. Enter the three Witches Mac IV.i.1.1
Thrice the brinded Cat hath mew'd.Thrice the brinded cat hath mewed.brinded (adj.)
streaked, striped, tabby
Mac IV.i.1
Thrice, and once the Hedge-Pigge whin'd.Thrice, and once the hedge-pig whined.hedge-pig (n.)

old form: Hedge-Pigge
Mac IV.i.2
Harpier cries, 'tis time, 'tis time.Harpier cries! 'Tis time, 'tis time!. Mac IV.i.3
Round about the Caldron go:Round about the cauldron go; Mac IV.i.4
In the poysond Entrailes throwIn the poisoned entrails throw: Mac IV.i.5
Toad, that vnder cold stone,Toad that under cold stone Mac IV.i.6
Dayes and Nights, ha's thirty one:Days and nights has thirty-one. Mac IV.i.7
Sweltred Venom sleeping got,Sweltered venom, sleeping got,sweltered (adj.)

old form: Sweltred
oozing, dripping [in the manner of sweat]
Mac IV.i.8
Boyle thou first i'th' charmed pot.Boil thou first i'the charmed pot.charmed (adj.)
bewitched, enchanted, placed under a spell
Mac IV.i.9
Double, double, toile and trouble;Double, double, toil and trouble; Mac IV.i.10
Fire burne, and Cauldron bubble.Fire burn, and cauldron bubble. Mac IV.i.11
Fillet of a Fenny Snake,Fillet of a fenny snakefenny (adj.)
fen-living, marshland-dwelling
Mac IV.i.12
In the Cauldron boyle and bake:In the cauldron boil and bake; Mac IV.i.13
Eye of Newt, and Toe of Frogge,Eye of newt, and toe of frog, Mac IV.i.14
Wooll of Bat, and Tongue of Dogge:Wool of bat, and tongue of dog, Mac IV.i.15
Adders Forke, and Blinde-wormes Sting,Adder's fork, and blindworm's sting,fork (n.)

old form: Forke
forked tongue
Mac IV.i.16
blindworm (n.)

old form: Blinde-wormes
Lizards legge, and Howlets wing:Lizard's leg and howlet's wing,owlet, howlet (n.)
young owl, owl
Mac IV.i.17
For a Charme of powrefull trouble,For a charm of powerful trouble, Mac IV.i.18
Like a Hell-broth, boyle and bubble.Like a hell-broth, boil and bubble. Mac IV.i.19
Double, double, toyle and trouble,Double, double, toil and trouble; Mac IV.i.20
Fire burne, and Cauldron bubble.Fire burn, and cauldron bubble. Mac IV.i.21
Scale of Dragon, Tooth of Wolfe,Scale of dragon, tooth of wolf, Mac IV.i.22
Witches Mummey, Maw, and GulfeWitch's mummy, maw and gulfmaw (n.)
belly, stomach; throat, gullet
Mac IV.i.23
gulf (n.)

old form: Gulfe
huge stomach, voracious gut
Of the rauin'd salt Sea sharke:Of the ravined salt sea shark,ravined, ravened (adj.)

old form: rauin'd
stuffed with prey, glutted
Mac IV.i.24
Roote of Hemlocke, digg'd i'th' darke:Root of hemlock digged i'the dark,hemlock (n.)
variety of poisonous plant
Mac IV.i.25
Liuer of Blaspheming Iew,Liver of blaspheming Jew, Mac IV.i.26
Gall of Goate, and Slippes of Yew,Gall of goat, and slips of yewslip (n.)

old form: Slippes
seedling, sprig, shoot, cutting
Mac IV.i.27
gall (n.)
bile [reputed for its bitterness]
Sliuer'd in the Moones Ecclipse:Slivered in the moon's eclipse,sliver (v.)

old form: Sliuer'd
cut off [a piece], split off, tear away
Mac IV.i.28
Nose of Turke, and Tartars lips:Nose of Turk, and Tartar's lips,Tartar (n.)
someone from Tartary, C Asia; known for pitilessness; also, a stereotype of dark complexion
Mac IV.i.29
Finger of Birth-strangled Babe,Finger of birth-strangled babe, Mac IV.i.30
Ditch-deliuer'd by a Drab,Ditch-delivered by a drab,drab (n.)
harlot, slut, whore
Mac IV.i.31
ditch-delivered (adj.)born in a ditch
Make the Grewell thicke, and slab.Make the gruel thick and slab.slab (adj.)
coagulated, congealed, viscous
Mac IV.i.32
Adde thereto a Tigers Chawdron,Add thereto a tiger's chaudron,chaudron, chawdron (n.)
entrails [of a beast]
Mac IV.i.33
For th' Ingredience of our Cawdron.For the ingredience of our cauldron.ingredience (n.)
composition, ingredients, contents
Mac IV.i.34
Double, double, toyle and trouble,Double, double, toil and trouble; Mac IV.i.35
Fire burne, and Cauldron bubble.Fire burn, and cauldron bubble. Mac IV.i.36
Coole it with a Baboones blood,Cool it with a baboon's blood; Mac IV.i.37
Then the Charme is firme and good.Then the charm is firm and good. Mac IV.i.38
Enter Hecat, and the other three Witches.Enter Hecat and the other three Witches Mac IV.i.38
O well done: I commend your paines,O well done! I commend your pains;commend (v.)
praise, admire, extol
Mac IV.i.39
And euery one shall share i'th' gaines:And everyone shall share i'the gains. Mac IV.i.40
And now about the Cauldron singAnd now about the cauldron sing Mac IV.i.41
Like Elues and Fairies in a Ring,Live elves and fairies in a ring, Mac IV.i.42
Inchanting all that you put in.Enchanting all that you put in. Mac IV.i.43
Musicke and a Song. Blacke Spirits, &c.Music and a song: ‘ Black spirits,’ etc. Mac IV.i.43
Exeunt Hecat and the other three Witches Mac IV.i.43
By the pricking of my Thumbes,By the pricking of my thumbs, Mac IV.i.44
Something wicked this way comes:Something wicked this way comes. Mac IV.i.45
Open Lockes, who euer knockes.Open, locks, whoever knocks! Mac IV.i.46
Enter Macbeth.Enter Macbeth Mac IV.i.46
How now you secret, black, & midnight Hags?How now, you secret, black, and midnight hags!secret (adj.)
magical, mystical, occult
Mac IV.i.47
What is't you do?What is't you do? Mac IV.i.48.1
A deed without a name.A deed without a name. Mac IV.i.48.2
I coniure you, by that which you Professe,I conjure you, by that which you profess,conjure (v.)

old form: coniure
ask solemnly, entreat earnestly, beseech
Mac IV.i.49
(How ere you come to know it) answer me:Howe'er you come to know it, answer me – Mac IV.i.50
Though you vntye the Windes, and let them fightThough you untie the winds and let them fight Mac IV.i.51
Against the Churches: Though the yesty WauesAgainst the churches; though the yesty wavesyesty (adj.)
[as of yeast] foaming, frothy
Mac IV.i.52
Confound and swallow Nauigation vp:Confound and swallow navigation up;navigation (n.)

old form: Nauigation
shipping, vessels
Mac IV.i.53
Though bladed Corne be lodg'd, & Trees blown downe,Though bladed corn be lodged and trees blown down;lodge (v.)

old form: lodg'd
beat down, flatten, make level
Mac IV.i.54
bladed (adj.)
many-bladed, abounding in shoots
Though Castles topple on their Warders heads:Though castles topple on their warders' heads; Mac IV.i.55
Though Pallaces, and Pyramids do slopeThough palaces and pyramids do slope Mac IV.i.56
Their heads to their Foundations: Though the treasureTheir heads to their foundations; though the treasure Mac IV.i.57
Of Natures Germaine, tumble altogether,Of nature's germens tumble all togethergermen (n.)

old form: Germaine
seed, life-forming elements
Mac IV.i.58
Euen till destruction sicken: Answer meEven till destruction sicken – answer me Mac IV.i.59
To what I aske you.To what I ask you. Mac IV.i.60
Speake.Speak. Mac IV.i.60.1
Demand.Demand. Mac IV.i.60.2
Wee'l answer.We'll answer. Mac IV.i.60.3
Say, if th'hadst rather heare it from our mouthes,Say, if thou'dst rather hear it from our mouths Mac IV.i.61
Or from our Masters.Or from our masters. Mac IV.i.62.1
Call 'em: let me see 'em.Call 'em. Let me see 'em. Mac IV.i.62.2
Powre in Sowes blood, that hath eatenPour in sow's blood that hath eaten Mac IV.i.63
Her nine Farrow: Greaze that's sweatenHer nine farrow; grease that's sweatenfarrow (n.)
[of pigs] litter, young, piglet
Mac IV.i.64
From the Murderers Gibbet, throwFrom the murderer's gibbet, throw Mac IV.i.65
Into the Flame.Into the flame. Mac IV.i.66.1
Come high or low:Come high or low, Mac IV.i.66.2
Thy Selfe and Office deaftly show.Thyself and office deftly (n.)
task, service, duty, responsibility
Mac IV.i.67
Thunder. 1. Apparation, an Armed HeadThunder. First Apparition, an Armed Head Mac IV.i.67
Tell me, thou vnknowne power.Tell me, thou unknown powerpower (n.)
(usually plural) god, deity, divinity
Mac IV.i.68.1
He knowes thy thought:He knows thy thought. Mac IV.i.68.2
Heare his speech, but say thou nought.Hear his speech, but say thou naught. Mac IV.i.69
Macbeth, Macbeth, Macbeth: / Beware Macduffe,Macbeth, Macbeth, Macbeth, beware Macduff! Mac IV.i.70
Beware the Thane of Fife: dismisse me. Enough.Beware the Thane of Fife! Dismiss me. Enough. Mac IV.i.71
He Descends.He descends Mac IV.i.71
What ere thou art, for thy good caution, thanksWhate'er thou art, for thy good caution, thanks; Mac IV.i.72
Thou hast harp'd my feare aright. But one word more.Thou hast harped my fear aright. But one word more –harp (v.)

old form: harp'd
guess, express in words, give voice to
Mac IV.i.73
He will not be commanded: heere's anotherHe will not be commanded. Here's another Mac IV.i.74
More potent then the first.More potent than the first. Mac IV.i.75
Thunder. 2 Apparition, a Bloody ChildeThunder. Second Apparition, a Bloody Child Mac IV.i.75
Macbeth, Macbeth, Macbeth.Macbeth, Macbeth, Macbeth! Mac IV.i.76
Had I three eares, Il'd heare thee.Had I three ears, I'd hear thee. Mac IV.i.77
Be bloody, bold, & resolute: / Laugh to scorneBe bloody, bold, and resolute; laugh to scornbloody (adj.)
bloodthirsty, warlike, ferocious
Mac IV.i.78
The powre of man: For none of woman borneThe power of man; for none of woman born Mac IV.i.79
Shall harme Macbeth.Shall harm Macbeth. Mac IV.i.80
Descends.He descends Mac IV.i.80
Then liue Macduffe: what need I feare of thee?Then live Macduff; what need I fear of thee? Mac IV.i.81
But yet Ile make assurance: double sure,But yet I'll make assurance double sure,double (adv.)
doubly, for the second time, twice over
Mac IV.i.82
assurance (n.)
security, certainty, confidence
And take a Bond of Fate: thou shalt not liue,And take a bond of fate. Thou shalt not live;bond (n.)
deed, contract, pledge
Mac IV.i.83
That I may tell pale-hearted Feare, it lies;That I may tell pale-hearted fear it lies, Mac IV.i.84
And sleepe in spight of Thunder.And sleep in spite of thunder. Mac IV.i.85.1
Thunder 3 Apparation, a Childe Crowned, with a Thunder. Third Apparition, a Child crowned, with a Mac IV.i.85.1
Tree in his handtree in his hand Mac IV.i.85.2
What is this,What is this Mac IV.i.85.2
that rises like the issue of a King,That rises like the issue of a king,issue (n.)
child(ren), offspring, family, descendant
Mac IV.i.86
And weares vpon his Baby-brow, the roundAnd wears upon his baby brow the roundround (n.)
circlet, ring, crown
Mac IV.i.87
brow (n.)
forehead [often plural, referring to the two prominences of the forehead]
And top of Soueraignty?And top of sovereignty? Mac IV.i.88.1
Listen, but speake not too't.Listen, but speak not to't. Mac IV.i.88.2
Be Lyon metled, proud, and take no care:Be lion-mettled, proud, and take no care Mac IV.i.89
Who chafes, who frets, or where Conspirers are:Who chafes, who frets, or where conspirers are; Mac IV.i.90
Macbeth shall neuer vanquish'd be, vntillMacbeth shall never vanquished be, until Mac IV.i.91
Great Byrnam Wood, to high Dunsmane HillGreat Birnan Wood to high Dunsinane HillBirnan, Birnam (n.)
Birnam, Dunkeld, near the River Tay, Scotland
Mac IV.i.92
Dunsinane (n.)
Dunsinnan, W of Dundee, E Scotland
Shall come against him.Shall come against him. Mac IV.i.93.1
Descend.He descends Mac IV.i.93
That will neuer bee:That will never be. Mac IV.i.93.2
Who can impresse the Forrest, bid the TreeWho can impress the forest, bid the treeimpress (v.)

old form: impresse
conscript, enlist, force into service
Mac IV.i.94
Vnfixe his earth-bound Root? Sweet boadments, good:Unfix his earth-bound root? Sweet bodements! Good!bodement (n.)

old form: boadments
omen, portent, augury
Mac IV.i.95
Rebellious dead, rise neuer till the WoodRebellious dead rise never till the wood Mac IV.i.96
Of Byrnan rise, and our high plac'd MacbethOf Birnan rise, and our high-placed Macbeth Mac IV.i.97
Shall liue the Lease of Nature, pay his breathShall live the lease of nature, pay his breath Mac IV.i.98
To time, and mortall Custome. Yet my HartTo time and mortal custom. Yet my heartmortal (adj.)

old form: mortall
human, subject to death, characterized by mortality
Mac IV.i.99
Throbs to know one thing: Tell me, if your ArtThrobs to know one thing: tell me, if your art Mac IV.i.100
Can tell so much: Shall Banquo's issue euerCan tell so much, shall Banquo's issue everissue (n.)
child(ren), offspring, family, descendant
Mac IV.i.101
Reigne in this Kingdome?Reign in this kingdom? Mac IV.i.102.1
Seeke to know no more.Seek to know no more. Mac IV.i.102.2
I will be satisfied. Deny me this,I will be satisfied! Deny me this Mac IV.i.103
And an eternall Curse fall on you: Let me know.And an eternal curse fall on you! Let me know. Mac IV.i.104
Why sinkes that Caldron?Why sinks that cauldron? Mac IV.i.105.1
HoboyesHautboys Mac IV.i.105
& what noise is this?And what noise is this?noise (n.)
musical sounds, melodious noises
Mac IV.i.105.2
Shew.Show! Mac IV.i.106
Shew.Show! Mac IV.i.107
Shew.Show! Mac IV.i.108
Shew his Eyes, and greeue his Hart,Show his eyes and grieve his heart; Mac IV.i.109
Come like shadowes, so depart.Come like shadows, so depart. Mac IV.i.110
A shew of eight Kings, and Banquo last, with A show of eight kings, and Banquo; the last king with Mac IV.i.110.1
a glasse in his handa glass in his handglass (n.)
magic mirror, crystal ball
Mac IV.i.110.2
Thou art too like the Spirit of Banquo: Down:Thou art too like the spirit of Banquo. Down! Mac IV.i.111
Thy Crowne do's seare mine Eye-bals. And thy haireThy crown does sear mine eye-balls. And thy hair, Mac IV.i.112
Thou other Gold-bound-brow, is like the first:Thou other gold-bound brow, is like the first.brow (n.)
forehead [often plural, referring to the two prominences of the forehead]
Mac IV.i.113
A third, is like the former. Filthy Hagges,A third is like the former. – Filthy hags, Mac IV.i.114
Why do you shew me this? --- A fourth? Start eyes!Why do you show me this? – A fourth? Start, eyes! Mac IV.i.115
What will the Line stretch out to'th' cracke of Doome?What, will the line stretch out to the crack of doom?doom (n.)

old form: Doome
doomsday, day of judgement
Mac IV.i.116
Another yet? A seauenth? Ile see no more:Another yet? A seventh? I'll see no more! Mac IV.i.117
And yet the eighth appeares, who beares a glasse,And yet the eighth appears, who bears a glassglass (n.)

old form: glasse
magic mirror, crystal ball
Mac IV.i.118
Which shewes me many more: and some I see,Which shows me many more. And some I see Mac IV.i.119
That two-fold Balles, and trebble Scepters carry.That twofold balls and treble sceptres carry.ball (n.)

old form: Balles
royal golden orb
Mac IV.i.120
Horrible sight: Now I see 'tis true,Horrible sight! Now I see 'tis true, Mac IV.i.121
For the Blood-bolter'd Banquo smiles vpon me,For the blood-boltered Banquo smiles upon me,blood-boltered (adj.)

old form: Blood-bolter'd
with hair matted with blood, with tangled bloody knots of hair
Mac IV.i.122
And points at them for his. What? is this so?And points at them for his. What! Is this so? Mac IV.i.123
I Sir, all this is so. But whyAy, sir, all this is so. But why Mac IV.i.124
Stands Macbeth thus amazedly?Stands Macbeth thus amazedly? Mac IV.i.125
Come Sisters, cheere we vp his sprights,Come, sisters, cheer we up his spritessprite, spright (n.)
spirit, feeling, frame of mind
Mac IV.i.126
And shew the best of our delights.And show the best of our delights. Mac IV.i.127
Ile Charme the Ayre to giue a sound,I'll charm the air to give a sound, Mac IV.i.128
While you performe your Antique round:While you perform your antic round,round (n.)
circle dance, ring
Mac IV.i.129
antic, antick(e), antique (adj.)
fantastic, bizarre, weird
That this great King may kindly say,That this great king may kindly say Mac IV.i.130
Our duties, did his welcome pay.Our duties did his welcome pay. Mac IV.i.131
Musicke. The Witches Dance, and vanishMusic. The Witches dance; and vanish Mac IV.i.131
Where are they? Gone? / Let this pernitious houre,Where are they? Gone! Let this pernicious hour Mac IV.i.132
Stand aye accursed in the Kalender.Stand aye accursed in the calendar.aye (adv.)
always, ever, for eternity
Mac IV.i.133
Come in, without there.Come in, without there. Mac IV.i.134.1
Enter Lenox.Enter Lennox Mac IV.i.134
What's your Graces will.What's your grace's will? Mac IV.i.134.2
Saw you the Weyard Sisters?Saw you the Weird Sisters? Mac IV.i.135.1
No my Lord.No, my lord. Mac IV.i.135.2
Came they not by you?Came they not by you? Mac IV.i.136.1
No indeed my Lord.No, indeed, my lord. Mac IV.i.136.2
Infected be the Ayre whereon they ride,Infected be the air whereon they ride, Mac IV.i.137
And damn'd all those that trust them. I did heareAnd damned all those that trust them! I did hear Mac IV.i.138
The gallopping of Horse. Who was't came by?The galloping of horse. Who was't came by? Mac IV.i.139
'Tis two or three my Lord, that bring you word:'Tis two or three, my lord, that bring you word Mac IV.i.140
Macduff is fled to England.Macduff is fled to England. Mac IV.i.141.1
Fled to England?Fled to England! Mac IV.i.141.2
I, my good Lord.Ay, my good lord. Mac IV.i.142
Time, thou anticipat'st my dread exploits:Time, thou anticipat'st my dread exploits.dread (adj.)
frightening, terrifying, fearful
Mac IV.i.143
The flighty purpose neuer is o're-tookeThe flighty purpose never is o'ertookovertake (v.)
accomplish, achieve, fulfil
Mac IV.i.144
flighty (adj.)
swiftly conceived, quickly vanishing
purpose (n.)
intention, aim, plan
Vnlesse the deed go with it. From this moment,Unless the deed go with it. From this moment Mac IV.i.145
The very firstlings of my heart shall beThe very firstlings of my heart shall befirstling (n.)
first product, first fruits
Mac IV.i.146
The firstlings of my hand. And euen nowThe firstlings of my hand. And even now, Mac IV.i.147
To Crown my thoughts with Acts: be it thoght & done:To crown my thoughts with acts, be it thought and done; Mac IV.i.148
The Castle of Macduff, I will surprize.The castle of Macduff I will surprise, Mac IV.i.149
Seize vpon Fife; giue to th' edge o'th' SwordSeize upon Fife, give to the edge o'the sword Mac IV.i.150
His Wife, his Babes, and all vnfortunate SoulesHis wife, his babes, and all unfortunate souls Mac IV.i.151
That trace him in his Line. No boasting like a Foole,That trace him in his line. No boasting, like a fool;trace (v.)
follow on from, come from
Mac IV.i.152
This deed Ile do, before this purpose coole,This deed I'll do before this purpose cool.purpose (n.)
intention, aim, plan
Mac IV.i.153
But no more sights. Where are these Gentlemen?But no more sights! – Where are these gentlemen? Mac IV.i.154
Come bring me where they are.Come, bring me where they are. Mac IV.i.155
ExeuntExeunt Mac IV.i.155
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