Act 4 Scene 1

  1. Thunder. Enter the three Witches.

  2. First Witch:

    Thrice the brinded cat hath mewed.

  3. Second Witch:

    Thrice, and once the hedge-pig whined .

  4. Third Witch:

    Harpier cries – ’Tis time, ’tis time.

  5. First Witch:

    Round about the cauldron go:
    In the poisoned entrails throw.
    Toad, that under cold stone
    Days and nights has thirty-one,
    Sweltered venom sleeping got,
    Boil thou first i’ th’ charmèd pot!

  6. All:

    Double, double, toil and trouble;
    Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

  7. Second Witch:

    Fillet of a fenny snake,
    In the cauldron boil and bake.
    Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
    Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
    Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting,
    Lizard’s leg, and howlet’s wing.
    For a charm of powerful trouble,
    Like a hell-broth, boil and bubble.

  8. All:

    Double, double, toil and trouble,
    Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

  9. Third Witch:

    Scale of dragon, tooth of wolf,
    Witch’s mummy, maw and gulf
    Of the ravined salt-sea shark,
    Root of hemlock, digged i’ th’ dark,
    Liver of blaspheming Jew,
    Gall of goat, and slips of yew
    Slivered in the moon’s eclipse,
    Nose of Turk, and Tartar’ s lips,
    Finger of birth-strangled babe
    Ditch-delivered by a drab,
    Make the gruel thick and slab.
    Add thereto a tiger’s chaudron,
    For th’ ingredients of our cauldron.

  10. All:

    Double, double, toil and trouble,
    Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

  11. Second Witch:

    Cool it with a baboon’s blood,
    Then the charm is firm and good.

  12. Enter Hecate, and three other Witches.

  13. Hecate:

    O well done! I commend your pains,
    And every one shall share i’ th’ gains.
    And now about the cauldron sing,
    Like elves and fairies in a ring,
    Enchanting all that you put in.

  14. Music, they sing a song, putting in more ingredients as they dance round the cauldron.

  15. Second Witch:

    By the pricking of my thumbs,
    Something wicked this way comes.

  16. Exit Hecate and the other three witches.

  17. Second Witch:

    Open, locks, whoever knocks!

  18. Enter Macbeth.

  19. Macbeth:

    How now, you secret, black and midnight hags?
    What is’t you do?

  20. All:

    A deed without a name.

  21. Macbeth:

    I conjure you, by that which you profess,
    Howe’er you come to know it, answer me.
    Though you untie the winds and let them fight
    Against the churches, though the yeasty waves
    Confound and swallow navigation up,
    Though bladed corn be lodged , and trees blown down,
    Though castles topple on their warders’ heads
    Though palaces and pyramids do slope
    Their heads to their foundations, though the treasure
    Of nature’s germens tumble all together,
    Even till destruction sicken. Answer me
    To what I ask you.

  22. First Witch:


  23. Second Witch:


  24. Third Witch:

    We’ll answer.

  25. First Witch:

    Say, if th’ hadst rather hear it from our mouths,
    Or from our masters ?

  26. Macbeth:

    Call ’em. Let me see ’em.

  27. First Witch:

    Pour in sow’s blood that hath eaten
    Her nine farrow, grease that’s sweaten
    From the murderer’s gibbet, throw
    Into the flame.

  28. All :

    Come high or low:
    Thyself and office deftly show!

  29. Thunder.

  30. An Apparition appears, it is a head wearing armour.

  31. Macbeth:

    Tell me, thou unknown power.

  32. First Witch:

    He knows thy thought.
    Hear his speech, but say thou naught.

  33. 1st Apparition:

    Macbeth, Macbeth, Macbeth! Beware Macduff!
    Beware the Thane of Fife! Dismiss me. Enough.

  34. 1st Apparition descends.

  35. Macbeth:

    Whate’er thou art, for thy good caution, thanks.
    Thou hast harped my fear aright. But one word more.

  36. First Witch:

    He will not be commanded. Here’s another,
    More potent than the first.

  37. Thunder.

  38. Second Apparition appears, it is a bloody child .

  39. 2nd Apparition:

    Macbeth, Macbeth, Macbeth!

  40. Macbeth:

    Had I three ears, I’d hear thee.

  41. 2nd Apparition:

    Be bloody, bold, and resolute. Laugh to scorn
    The power of man, for none of woman born
    Shall harm Macbeth

  42. 2nd Apparition descends.

  43. Macbeth:

    Then live Macduff: what need I fear of thee?
    But yet I’ll make assurance double sure,
    And take a bond of fate. Thou shalt not live,
    That I may tell pale-hearted fear it lies,
    And sleep in spite of thunder.

  44. Thunder.

  45. 3rd Apparition appears, it is a child, crowned, with a tree in its hand.

  46. Macbeth:

    What is this
    That rises like the issue of a king,
    And wears upon his baby-brow the round
    And top of sovereignty?

  47. All Witches:

    Listen, but speak not to’t.

  48. 3rd Apparition:

    Be lion-mettled , proud, and take no care
    Who chafes, who frets, or where conspirers are.
    Macbeth shall never vanquish’d be, until
    Great Birnam wood to high Dunsinane hill
    Shall come against him.

  49. 3rd Apparition descends.

  50. Macbeth:

    That will never be.
    Who can impress the forest, bid the tree
    Unfix his earth-bound root? Sweet bodements, good!
    Rebellious dead, rise never till the wood
    Of Birnam rise, and our high-placed Macbeth
    Shall live the lease of nature, pay his breath
    To time and mortal custom. Yet my heart
    Throbs to know one thing. Tell me, if your art
    Can tell so much: shall Banquo’s issue ever
    Reign in this kingdom?

  51. All Witches:

    Seek to know no more.

  52. Macbeth:

    I will be satisfied. Deny me this,
    And an eternal curse fall on you. Let me know –

  53. The cauldron descends. Music (oboes) offstage.

  54. Macbeth :

    Why sinks that cauldron? And what noise is this?

  55. First Witch:


  56. Second Witch:


  57. Third Witch:


  58. All Witches:

    Show his eyes, and grieve his heart;
    Come like shadows, so depart.

  59. A procession of eight kings, the last holding a mirror, followed by the Ghost of Banquo. They move past Macbeth during his next speech.

  60. Macbeth:

    Thou are too like the spirit of Banquo. Down!
    Thy crown does sear mine eyeballs. And thy hair,
    Thou other gold-bound brow, is like the first.
    A third, is like the former. – Filthy hags!
    Why do you show me this? – A fourth? Start, eyes!
    What, will the line stretch out to th’ crack of doom?
    Another yet!? A seventh? I’ll see no more.
    And yet the eighth appears, who bears a glass
    Which shows me many more. And some I see
    That twofold balls and treble sceptres carry.
    Horrible sight! Now I see ’tis true,
    For the blood-boltered Banquo smiles upon me,
    And points at them for his.

  61. [The procession has left the stage.]

  62. Macbeth :

    What? Is this so?

  63. First Witch:

    Ay sir, all this is so. But why
    Stands Macbeth thus amazedly?
    Come sisters, cheer we up his sprites,
    And show the best of our delights.
    I’ll charm the air to give a sound,
    While you perform your antic round.
    That this great king may kindly say,
    Our duties did his welcome pay.

  64. Music. The Witches dance, then vanish.

  65. Macbeth:

    Where are they? Gone? Let this pernicious hour
    Stand aye accursèd in the calendar. –
    Come in, without there!

  66. Enter Lennox.

  67. Lennox:

    What’s your grace’s will?

  68. Macbeth:

    Saw you the weird sisters?

  69. Lennox:

    No, my lord.

  70. Macbeth:

    Came they not by you?

  71. Lennox:

    No indeed, my lord.

  72. Macbeth:

    Infected be the air whereon they ride,
    And damned all those that trust them!.– I did hear
    The galloping of horse. who was’t came by?

  73. Lennox:

    ’Tis two or three, my lord, that bring you word.
    Macduff is fled to England.

  74. Macbeth:

    Fled to England?

  75. Lennox:

    Ay, my good lord.

  76. Macbeth:

    Time, thou anticipat’st my dread exploits.
    The flighty purpose never is o’ertook
    Unless the deed go with it. From this moment,
    The very firstlings of my heart shall be
    The firstlings of my hand. And even now
    To crown my thoughts with acts, be it thought and done
    The castle of Macduff I will surprise,
    Seize upon Fife; give to th’ edge o’ th’ sword
    His wife, his babes, and all unfortunate souls
    That trace him in his line. No boasting like a fool,
    This deed I’ll do, before this purpose cool.
    But no more sights. – Where are these gentlemen?
    Come bring me where they are.

  77. Exit Macbeth and Lennox.