Macbeth Quotes and Summaries- Act 5

Mabeth Quotes, Summaries and Analysis. 

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  • Created by: Soka12
  • Created on: 21-04-14 15:53

Act 5 Scene 1

-Lady Macbeth's lady-in-waiting sends for a doctor, they both watch to see if Lady Macbeth sleepwalks. 

-Lady Macbeth refers to the deaths of Duncan, Macduff's wife and Banquo.

-Doctor says he can't deal with such cases.


'No more o'that'- Lady Macbeth reproach's Macbeth.

'What's done cannot be undone'- Her present is overwhelmed by her past.

'Will these hands ne'er be clean?'- She stills sees the blood of the murders on her hands, the opposite of when she said 'A little water clears us of this deed' (Lady Macbeth starts to speak in prose, demonstrating her derrangement) 

'Unnatural deeds/ Do breed unnatural troubles'- The doctor, a commoner, remarking on the unnatural events occuring. 

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Act 5 Scene 2

-Scottish nobles go to Brinam Wood to join the English army. Donalbain is not with them.

-Macbeth becomes more desperate and only mercenaries stand with him.


'Loose about him, like a giant's robe/ Upon a dwarfish thief'- Describes Macbeth's title, imagery of clothing implies that he is unfit to be King and should be removed from the throne.

Macbeth is unable to 'buckle his distempered cause/ Within the belt of rule' he cannot control his frenzied behaviour. 

Doctor and patient imagery: 'medicine, sickly and purged' (Possible to say both Macbeth and Lady Macbeth are suffering from mental illnesses having killed Duncan)

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Act 5 Scene 3

-Macbeth is besieged in Dunsinane Castle, he still trusts the Witches.

-Dispairs of finding a cure for his wife.


Macbeth believes his life 'is fallen into the sere, the yellow leaf'- Audience believes that the murders and rise to power have not brought happiness to him and his wife.

He knows that he will not have 'honour, love, obedience, troops of friends' because of his tyranny. 

'I have lived long enough: my way of life/ Is fallen into the sere, the yellow leaf'- Macbeth says he has lost a reason to live, his life is withering away like an autumn leaf.

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Act 5 Scene 4&5

-English and Scottish army meet at Birnam Wood.-

-Malcolm orders his army to use branches as camoflage.

-Macbeth learns his wife has died, hears that Birnam Wood is moving towards Dunsinane.

-Witches' promise is revealed to bbe open to different interpretations. 


'Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow'- Macbeth's life has no meaning.

'Life's but a walking shadow, a poor palyer/ That struts and frets his hour upon the stage/ And then is heard no more'- Macbeth says that life is an illusion, Shakespeare is trying to envoke sympathy for Macbeth. 

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Act 5 Scene 6

-English and Scottish army throw down their brances and Malcolm gives the order.

-Macbeth kills Young Seyward but is then killed by Macduff.

-Malcolm is hailed as the new Scottish King.


The Witches are described as 'juggling fiends'- they are meddling evil creatures, Macbeth finally realises the truth.

Macbeth's death- He still clings onto the prophecy and fights Macduff with nonchalance. When Macduff's birth is revealed to him he fights to the death rather than accept humilation and the audience is moved by his helplessness.

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