Macbeth - Stuff That Happens In The Play

Revenge ensues...

• The King of Scotland (Duncan) and his sons (Malcolm and Donalbain) learn Macbeth and Banquo won a battle against the Scottish rebels, including the Thane of Cawdor.   Duncan orders the execution of Cawdor.

• Macbeth and Banquo encounter three witches who predict that Macbeth will become Thane of Cawdor, then King; and Banquo's children will be kings.  

• Almost immediately, King Duncan declares Macbeth the new Thane of Cawdor.

• Duncan names his son Malcolm the Prince of Cumberland, declaring that Malcolm will succeed him on the throne.  Duncan then invites himself to Macbeth's castle.

• Lady Macbeth reads a letter from Macbeth describing the witches’ prophecies.  When Macbeth arrives, she urges him to kill Duncan.

• Macbeth agrees to the deed and, after changing his mind several times, kills the sleeping King on the night he arrives at the castle.  Lady Macbeth frames the King’s guards by putting the bloody daggers in their hands while they sleep.  

• Macduff discovers the murdered King in the morning, and Macbeth kills the guards out of "violent love" for the dead King.

• Malcolm and Donalbain flee to England and Ireland, fearing they will be blamed for Duncan's murder.

• Macbeth is crowned King and, fearing the the third prophecy (Banquo's sons will be kings), orders the murders of Banquo and his son, Fleance.  Banquo is killed, but Fleance escapes.

• Banquo’s ghost appears to Macbeth at a royal banquet.  After Lady Macbeth dismisses the guests, Macbeth resolves to revisit the witches.

• The witches conjure apparitions who assure Macbeth he cannot be defeated by anyone "of woman born" or vanquished until the Birnam Forest itself attacks him at his castle.

• Lennox reveals that Macduff has fled to England.  In response to this perceived treason, Macbeth orders the death of Macduff's family.

• Macduff joins Malcolm’s army in England.  After Malcolm tests Macduff's loyalty to Macbeth, Ross reports the savage murder of Macduff's family, and Macduff swears to kill Macbeth.

• Swordfights, moving trees, and revenge ensue.