1. Education
Send to a Friend via Email
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

'Macbeth' Quotes

William Shakespeare's Famous Tragedy

By

Macbeth - William Shakespeare

Macbeth - William Shakespeare

W.W. Norton & Co.
Macbeth is one of William Shakespeare's great tragedies. There's murder, battles, supernatural portents, and all the other elements of a well-worked drama. Here are a few quotes from Macbeth.
  • "First Witch: When shall we three meet again
    In thunder, lightning, or in rain?
    Second Witch: When the hurlyburly's done,
    When the battle's lost and won."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.1

  • "Fair is foul, and foul is fair."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.1

  • "What bloody man is that?"
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.2

  • "Sleep shall neither night nor day
    Hang upon his pent-house lid."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "Shall he dwindle, peak, and pine."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "The weird sisters, hand in hand,
    Posters of the sea and land,
    Thus do go about, about."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "What are these
    So wither'd and so wild in their attire,
    That look not like the inhabitants o' the earth,
    And yet are on 't?"
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "If you can look into the seeds of time,
    And say which grain will grow and which will not."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "Stands not within the prospect of belief."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "Say, from whence
    You owe this strange intelligence? or why
    Upon this blasted heath you stop our way
    With such prophetic greeting?"
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "Or have we eaten on the insane root
    That takes the reason prisoner?"
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "What! can the devil speak true?"
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1. 3

  • Two truths are told,
    As happy prologues to the swelling act
    Of the imperial theme."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "Present fears
    Are less than horrible imaginings."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "Nothing is
    But what is not."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "If chance will have me king, why, chance may crown me."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "Come what come may,
    Time and the hour runs through the roughest day."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.3

  • "Nothing in his life
    Became him like the leaving it; he died
    As one that had been studied in his death
    To throw away the dearest thing he owed,
    As 't were a careless trifle."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.4

  • "There's no art
    To find the mind's construction in the face."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.4

  • "More is thy due than more than all can pay."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.4

  • "Yet do I fear thy nature;
    It is too full o' the milk of human kindness."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.5

  • "What thou wouldst highly,
    That wouldst thou holily; wouldst not play false,
    And yet wouldst wrongly win."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.5

  • "Come, you spirits
    That tend on mortal thoughts! unsex me here,
    And fill me from the crown to the toe top full
    Of direst cruelty; make thick my blood,
    Stop up the access and passage to remorse,
    That no compunctious visitings of nature
    Shake my fell purpose."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.5

  • "Come to my woman's breasts,
    And take my milk for gall, you murdering ministers."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.5

  • "Come, thick night,
    And pall thee in the dunnest smoke of hell,
    That my keen knife see not the wound it makes,
    Nor heaven peep through the blanket of the dark,
    To cry, 'Hold, hold!'"
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.5

  • "Your face, my thane, is as a book where men
    May read strange matters. To beguile the time,
    Look like the time; bear welcome in your eye,
    Your hand, your tongue: look like the innocent flower,
    But be the serpent under 't."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.5

  • "This castle hath a pleasant seat; the air
    Nimbly and sweetly recommends itself
    Unto our gentle senses."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.6

  • "The heaven's breath
    Smells wooingly here: no jutty, frieze,
    Buttress, nor coign of vantage, but this bird
    Hath made his pendent bed and procreant cradle:
    Where they most breed and haunt, I have observed,
    The air is delicate."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.6

  • "If it were done when 'tis done, then 'twere well
    It were done quickly: if the assassination
    Could trammel up the consequence, and catch
    With his surcease success; that but this blow
    Might be the be-all and the end-all here,
    But here, upon this bank and shoal of time,
    We'd jump the life to come. But in these cases
    We still have judgment here; that we but teach
    Bloody instructions, which being taught, return
    To plague the inventor: this even-handed justice
    Commends the ingredients of our poisoned chalice
    To our own lips."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.7

  • "Besides, this Duncan
    Hath borne his faculties so meek, hath been
    So clear in his great office, that his virtues
    Will plead like angels, trumpet-tongued, against
    The deep damnation of his taking-off;
    And pity, like a naked new-born babe,
    Striding the blast, or heaven's cherubim, horsed
    Upon the sightless couriers of the air,
    Shall blow the horrid deed in every eye,
    That tears shall drown the wind. I have no spur
    To prick the sides of my intent, but only
    Vaulting ambition, which o'erleaps itself,
    And falls on the other."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.7

  • "I have bought
    Golden opinions from all sorts of people."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.7

  • "Was the hope drunk,
    Wherein you dress'd yourself? hath it slept since,
    And wakes it now, to look so green and pale
    At what it did so freely? From this time
    Such I account thy love."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.7

  • "Letting 'I dare not" wait upon 'I would,'
    Like the poor cat i' the adage."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.7

  • "I dare do all that may become a man;
    Who dares do more is none."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.7

  • "I have given suck, and know
    How tender 'tis to love the babe that milks me:
    I would, while it was smiling in my face,
    Have plucked my nipple from his boneless gums,
    And dash'd the brains out, had I so sworn as you
    Have done to this."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.7

  • "Screw your courage to the sticking-place,
    And we'll not fail."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.7

  • "Bring forth men-children only;
    For thy undaunted mettle should compose
    Nothing but males."
    - William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.7

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.