'Macbeth' - Act 3 Key Quotations

"Upon my head they placed a fruitless crown / and a barren sceptre in my gripe."

- MACBETH -

CONTEXT:

Macbeth is unhappy with how kingship feels and plans to kill Banquo to further himself.

THEMES:

Thought; Nature

LANGUAGE:

Adjective = "fruitless" - pointless/unhealthy/unsatisfying.

Adjective = "barren" - deserted/dry/empty.

Noun = "gripe" - grip, but sounds as if he is complaining.

"If you have a station in the file, not i' the worst rank of manhood"

- MACBETH -

CONTEXT:

Macbeth is recruiting murderers to do his dirty work for him.

THEMES:

Duality

LANGUAGE:

Superlative = "worst" - is Macbeth talking about the murderer or himself?

"But now I am cabined, cribbed, confined, bound in To saucy doubts and fears."

- MACBETH -

CONTEXT:

Macbeth is told his plan is only half successful as Fleance escaped the assassination attempt that killed his father.

THEMES:

Thoughts; Fears

LANGUAGE:

Repetition = "saucy doubts and fears" - repetition of the obstacles to his success.

"I am in bloody steeped so far that...returning were as tedious as go o'er."

- MACBETH -

CONTEXT:

Macbeth has given up on thinking or repenting. He now just wants to act.

THEMES:

Thinking; Doing; Acting

LANGUAGE:

Motif = "blood" - links to Duncan, Lady Macbeth, murderer's faces.

Adjective = "tedious" - suggests that Macbeth is finding his role/life boring.