6th April 2018

Macbeth – Act 2, Scene 3

Act 2, Scene 3 Summary

Location: A courtyard within Macbeth’s castle and outside Macbeth’s castle
Characters: Porter, Macduff, Lenox, Macbeth, Lady Macbeth, Banquo, Malcolm, Donalbain
Events: This scene begins with a soliloquy by the Porter. This speech sets the tone for how comedic and interesting the character is. He imagines himself to be the porter of hell’s gate, welcoming various kinds of sinners. Macduff and Lenox then enter and the Porter describes the 3 effects of alcohol (nose-painting, sleep and urine) to them. Macbeth enters and shows Macduff where Duncan is staying. Lenox speaks to Macbeth about the strange events that had happened the night before. Soon after, Macduff cries out in horror at the discovery of Duncan’s body. King Duncan’s sons, Malcolm and Donalbain, are told of their fathers murder which is blamed on the guards. It would be suspected by the unknowing characters (of Macbeth being the murderer) that they were the true murderers, considering they are next in line and may have killed there father because of this. Macbeth reveals that he killed the guards after discovery of his death and explains why. Malcolm and Donalbain speak aside of their fears for their own safety and how they believe they may be next. They both plan to flee, Malcolm to England and Donalbain to Ireland.
Quote/s: “The night has been unruly: where we lay,
Our Chimneys were blown down; and, as they say,
Lamentings heard i’ the air; strange screams of death,
And prophesying with accents terrible
Of dire combustion, and confused events,
New hatched to the woeful time.”

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