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Siward, Earl of Northumberland, General of the

English Forces:

Young Siward, his Son.

Seyton, an Officer attending on Macbeth.
Son to Macduff.

An English Doctor. A Scotch Doctor.

A Soldier. A Porter. An old Man.

Lady Macbeth.'

Lady Macduff.

Gentlewoman attending on Lady Macbeth.
Hecate, and three Witches."

Lords, Gentlemen, Officers, Soldiers, Murderers, Attendants, and Messengers.

The Ghost of Banquo, and feveral other Apparitions.

SCENE, in the End of the fourth Act, lies in England; through the rest of the Play, in Scotland; and, chiefly, at Macbeth's Caftle.

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Lady Macbeth.] Her name was Gruach, filia Bodhe. See Lord Hailes's Annals of Scotland, II. 332. RITSON.

Androw of Wyntown, in his Cronykil, informs us that this perfonage was the widow of Duncan; a circumstance with which Shakspeare must have been wholly unacquainted: Dame Grwok, hys Emys wyf,


"Tuk, and led wyth hyr his lyf,

"And held hyr bathe hys Wyf and Qweyne,
"As befor than scho had beyne

"Til hys Eme Qwene, lyvand

"Quhen he was Kyng wyth Crowne rygnand:
"For lytyl in honowre than had he

"The greys of affynyte." B. VI. 35.

From the incidents, however, with which Hector Boece has diverfified the legend of Macbeth, our poet derived greater advantages than he could have found in the original ftory, as related by Wyntown.

The 18th Chapter of his Cronykil, Book VI. together with obfervations by its accurate and learned editor, will be subjoined to this tragedy, for the fatisfaction of inquifitive readers.



three Witches.] As the play now ftands, in Act IV. fc. i. three other witches make their appearance. See note





An open Place.

Thunder and Lightning. Enter three Witches.

1 WITCH. When shall we three meet again In thunder, lightning, or in rain?

2 WITCH. When the hurlyburly's done,1 When the battle's loft and won: 2


hurlyburly's] However mean this word may feem to modern ears, it came recommended to Shakspeare by the authority of Henry Peacham, who, in the year 1577, publifhed a book profeffing to treat of the ornaments of language. It is called The Garden of Eloquence, and has this paffage: "Onomatopeia, when we invent, devife, fayne, and make a name intimating the fownd of that it fignifyeth, as hurliburly, for an uprore and tumultuous stirre." HENDERSON.

So, in a tranflation of Herodian, 12mo. 1635, p. 26:

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there was a mighty hurlyburly in the campe," &c. Again, p. 324:

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-great hurliburlies being in all parts of the empire," &c. REED.

? When the battle's loft and won :] i. e. the battle, in which Macbeth was then engaged. WARBURTON.

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"A royal battle might be won and loft."

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So alfo Speed, fpeaking of the battle of Towton : which only ftratagem, as it was conftantly averred, the battle. and day was loft and won." Chronicle, 1611. MALONE.


3 WITCH. That will be ere fet of fun.3

1 WITCH. Where the place?


Upon the heath:

3 WITCH. There to meet with Macbeth.4

ere Set of fun.] The old copy unneceffarily and harshly reads

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There to meet with Macbeth.] Thus the old copy. Mr. Pope, and, after him, other editors:

There I go to meet Macbeth.

The infertion, however, feems to be injudicious. To meet with Macbeth was the final drift of all the Witches in going to the heath, and not the particular business or motive of any one of them in diftinction from the reft; as the interpolated words, I go, in the mouth of the third Witch, would most certainly imply.

Somewhat, however, (as the verfe is evidently imperfect,) must have been left out by the tranfcriber or printer. Mr. Capell has therefore proposed to remedy this defect, by reading

There to meet with brave Macbeth.

But furely, to beings intent only on mischief, a foldier's bravery, in an honest cause, would have been no subject of encomium.

Mr. Malone (omitting all previous remarks, &c. on this paffage) affures us, that- There is here used as a diffyllable." I wish he had fupported his affertion by fome example. Thofe, however, who can fpeak the line thus regulated, and fuppofe they are reciting a verfe, may profit by the direction they have received.

The pronoun "their," having two vowels together, may be fplit into two fyllables; but the adverb "there" can only be ufed as a monofyllable, unless pronounced as if it were written "the-re," a licence in which even Chaucer has not indulged himself.

It was convenient for Shakspeare's introductory fcene, that his first Witch should appear uninftructed in her miffion. Had fhe not required information, the audience must have remained ignorant of what it was neceffary for them to know. Her fpeeches, therefore, proceed in the form of interrogatories; but, all on a fudden, an answer is given to a queftion which had not been asked. Here feems to be a chafm, which I fhall attempt

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