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Macbeth Violence Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (Act.Scene.Line) from the Folger Shakespeare Library

Quote #4

So they doubly redoubled strokes upon the foe.
Except they meant to bathe in reeking wounds
Or memorize another Golgotha,
I cannot tell— (1.2.42-45)

Check out how the captain describes the battle: as "another Golgotha." But Golgotha is traditionally the place where Christ was said to have been crucified. To us, that sounds like a pretty ominous way of describing the battlefield.

Quote #5

But I am faint; my gashes cry for help. 

So well thy words become thee as thy wounds:
They smack of honor both.—Go get him surgeons. (1.2.46-48)

Oh, BTW, the captain is totally bleeding through his long recitation about the battle. Notice that the Captain compares the flow of blood that gushes from his wounds to a voice that "cries for help," and King Duncan picks up on the association between "wounds" and "words." Duncan replies that the Captain's gashes and his verbal report of what's been taking place on the field of battle make him an honorable man. It looks like not all violence involves blood, and sometimes words can hurt.

Quote #6

[...] Come, you spirits
That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here,
And fill me from the crown to the toe top-full
Of direst cruelty. Make thick my blood.
Stop up th' access and passage to remorse,
That no compunctious visitings of nature
Shake my fell purpose, nor keep peace between
Th' effect and it. (1.5.47-54)

Lady Macbeth asks the spirits to make her "cruel," and what's cool is that, where the men in this play are constantly going around bleeding, Lady Macbeth wants her blood to stop. What does this say about the relationship between violence and gender?

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