Macbeth: Act I, Scene vii


Macbeth.         Act 1, Scene 7.      Macbeth

(This text is featured in our interview with Maria-Christina Oliveras and Nance Williamson)

(This text is also featured in our interview with Ty Jones)

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Click here to open a First Folio Version.

  1.  If it were done when ’tis done, then ’twere well
  2.  It were done quickly: if the assassination
  3.  Could trammel up the consequence, and catch
  4.  With his surcease success; that but this blow
  5.  Might be the be-all and the end-all here,
  6.  But here, upon this bank and shoal of time,
  7.  We’ld jump the life to come. But in these cases
  8.  We still have judgment here; that we but teach
  9.  Bloody instructions, which, being taught, return
  10.  To plague the inventor: this even-handed justice
  11.  Commends the ingredients of our poison’d chalice
  12.  To our own lips. He’s here in double trust;
  13.  First, as I am his kinsman and his subject,
  14.  Strong both against the deed; then, as his host,
  15.  Who should against his murderer shut the door,
  16.  Not bear the knife myself. Besides, this Duncan
  17.  Hath borne his faculties so meek, hath been
  18.  So clear in his great office, that his virtues
  19.  Will plead like angels, trumpet-tongued, against
  20.  The deep damnation of his taking-off;
  21.  And pity, like a naked new-born babe,
  22.  Striding the blast, or heaven’s cherubim, horsed
  23.  Upon the sightless couriers of the air,
  24.  Shall blow the horrid deed in every eye,
  25.  That tears shall drown the wind. I have no spur
  26.  To prick the sides of my intent, but only
  27.  Vaulting ambition, which o’erleaps itself
  28.  And falls on the other.

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