[an error occurred while processing this directive]
Title: Speech on Macbeth Author: "Sylvester the Cat" Sub Title: Introduction to I.vii.1-35a. ===>Use this text as a spoken intro to a reading of the lines I.vii.1-35a This is MacbethÕs first long soliloquy in the play. He is here convincing himself that he should not commit the murder. First, he imagines that the murder could be carried out perfectly, without consequence, so that the stabbing would be the last he would have to worry about the murder. He seems very interested in what happens to him on earth, and wishes to "jump" over the life to come, as if it is only momentary and life on earth is eternal. This contrasts with his speech in the last act about the poor player who "struts his hour upon the stage." He basically sums up the principles of poetic justice and the saying "what goes around comes around" by referring to "bloody instructions" which return to deliver justice upon their inventor, and a poisoned cup which eventually poisons the poisoner. He then tells himself that the murder would be immoral, that he is both related to and subordinate to Duncan. Also, to kill him would be against the proper role of a good host, who protects his guest from murderers, not bears the knife himself. He then praises Duncan, giving him godly attributes, full of virtue. Macbeth implies that, come the judgment day, the great virtues of Duncan will completely drown out his own pleas for acceptance into heaven. He then personifies pity, implying that the whole country would find out and shed many tears for him. Lady Macbeth enters and requests his presence in the dining-room. Macbeth tells her that he does not want to undertake in the murder, because a) the king has recently bestowed the new title of Thane of Cawdor upon him, and b) because he has earned very high opinions in the minds of many people, and he does not want to lose them so soon.