Macbeth: Blood

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Tracing A Word: Blood
Act 1
1.) A. Quotation and speaker:
Lady Macbeth: Bring forth men-children only;
For thy undaunted mettle should compose
Nothing but males. Will it not be received,
When we have mark'd with blood those sleepy two
Of his own chamber and used their very daggers,
That they have done't? (1.7.72-77)
B. Paraphrase and clarification:
Hopefully you will only have male children, For you should compose nothing that isn’t masculine. When we have marked the servants with the blood of the king and use their own daggers, won’t they look like they have committed the murder? Lady Macbeth is telling Macbeth he should only have male children, because she likes masculinity and that when they cover the servants in blood, it will look like the servants killed king Duncan. C. Conclusions:

Lady Macbeth and Macbeth are using the blood and daggers to make it look like the servants killed the king.

2.) A. Quotation and speaker:
Macbeth: But in these cases
We still have judgment here, that we but teach
Bloody instructions, which, being taught, return
To plague th' inventor: this even-handed justice
Commends the ingredients of our poisoned chalice
To our own lips. He’s here in double trust:
First, as I am his kinsman and his subject,
Strong both against the deed; then, as his host,
Who should against his murderer shut the door,
Not bear the knife myself. (1.7.7-16)
B. Paraphrase and clarification: By doing violent crimes, we are only teaching others bloody instructions, and the violence of the people will plague the inventor. The king should trust me in two ways, first I am his kinsman and his subject. Second, I am his host, I should shut the door on the murderer, not hold the knife myself. Macbeth is listing reasons why he should not murder king Duncan. C. Conclusions:

The words “Bloody instructions” are being used to say “violent crimes.” General Conclusions for Act 1:
1.) “Bloody instructions” is an interesting use of the word blood as a synonym to violent crimes. 2.) In Act 1, both the uses of the word blood were relevant to violence/ murder. Both had to do with talking about King Duncan’s murder- Lady Macbeth is using blood to frame the servants for King Duncan’s murder and when Macbeth was listing reasons not to kill the king, he believes by doing violent crimes they are only teaching others bloody instructions.

Act 2
1.) A. Quotation and speaker:
Macbeth: Mine eyes are made the fools o' th' other senses,
Or else worth all the rest. I see thee still,
And on thy blade and dudgeon gouts of blood,
Which was not so before. There’s no such thing.
It is the bloody business which informs
Thus to mine eyes. (2.1.45-50)
B. My eyes must be the one sense not working right… I still see drops of blood on the blade that weren’t there before. There is no such thing, I am imagining it. It’s the murder I’m about to do that’s making it appear to my eyes. Macduff is alone in the hallways and he sees a vision of a dagger pointing towards Duncan, the dagger is bloody and he comes to the conclusion that he is imagining things from the unease he is feeling about the murder. C. Conclusions:

The bloody dagger is representing his anxiety about murdering the king. Seeing the blood on the dagger makes him feel slightly guilty and uneasy.

2.) A. Quotation and Speaker:
Lady Macbeth: Who was it that thus cried? Why, worthy thane, You do unbend your noble strength to think
So brainsickly of things. Go get some water,
And wash this filthy witness from your hand.
Why did you bring these daggers from the place?
They must lie there. Go carry them and smear
The sleepy grooms with blood. (2.2.44-50)
B. Paraphrase and clarification
Who was that? Why, worthy lord, You are bending your strength to think of such things. Get some water and wash this filthiness from your hand. Why did you bring the daggers with you? They have to stay there. Go bring them back and smear the sleepy servants with...
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