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Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Macbeth / Edition 1

Macbeth / Edition 1

by William Shakespeare, Robert S. Miola


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780393977868
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 11/26/2003
Series: Norton Critical Editions Series
Edition description: Older Edition
Pages: 416
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Robert S. Miola is Gerard Manley Hopkins Chair of English at Loyola University Maryland. He is the author of Shakespeare’s Reading, Shakespeare and Classical Comedy: The Influence of Plautus and Terence, Shakespeare and Classical Tragedy: The Influence of Seneca, and The Comedy of Errors: Critical Essays, as well as dozens of articles on sixteenth-century English literature.

Date of Death:


Place of Birth:

Stratford-upon-Avon, United Kingdom

Place of Death:

Stratford-upon-Avon, United Kingdom

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Macbeth in legend, Macbeth in history; Macbeth in the mind; Macbeth in performance; Macbeth in the mind and in performance; Recent performances and adaptations; Note on the text; List of characters; The play; Supplementary notes; Textual analysis; Appendixes: 1. Casting Macbeth; 2. Additional text and music; 3. Relineation of the Folio; Reading list.

What People are Saying About This

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"Macbeth is a expression of how captivating an evening of crackling Shakespeare can be." — Peter Marks, The Washington Post

"The explosive and overwhelming effect of a truck bomb...this horrific, riveting Macbeth ought to be seen by as many people as possible." — Terry Teachout, The Wall Street Journal

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Macbeth 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a teacher of 11th grade English, I ordered this text because I was curious about its supplementary material. Now I am committed to the Norton Critical Editions for EVERY Shakespeare play I teach in the future! My students were amazed and sometimes enthralled with the incredibly rich background material which supplemented their study of Macbeth. They especially loved comparing Lady Macbeth's invocation of evil forces, and her declaration of imagined infanticide, with Seneca's Medea, in which Medea declares she will sacrifice her children to punish her cheating husband. They were incredulous that Macbeth's witches were actually mentioned several times in Holinshed's history. The factual background for Macbeth's rise and fall, set within the context of the eleventh century, gave them a deeper understanding of his inherent brutality. They also were better able to appreciate the modern aspects of his personality as interpreted by Shakespeare by contrasting the Bard's Macbeth with Holinshed's details of the actual historical Macbeth. And they really enjoyed learning that Lady Macbeth's real name was Gruoch. (Several said they're going to name their dog or their first daughter after her! Ha, ha!) WHAT A SUPERIOR SOURCE for any teacher! Please buy this if you are reading, studying, or teaching Macbeth!
benmartin79 on LibraryThing 7 hours ago
Shakespeare is, it goes almost without saying, likely the greatest English author ever. No one else uses the language quite as well as he does. And of all his plays, Macbeth is by far my favorite. It's short and to the point, it has one of the strongest moral messages of any of his plays, contains some of his best character development in the Lord and Lady Macbeth, and it is elegantly written, posessing several of Shakespeare's most impressive soliloquies and an excellent example of his abilities at duplicitous wordplay.
benbulben on LibraryThing 1 days ago
Miscellaneous Observations on the Tragedy of MacbethShakespeare retells the story of Macbeth who was King of Scotland from 1040 to 1057. He claimed the Scottish crown after killing his cousin Duncan I in battle. He became King as the popular choice among Scottish thanes or lords. Macbeth unites North and South Scotland in a peaceful reign. Duncan¿s son Malcolm III returns to Scotland with English troops and takes the crown and country by force. The play was performed before King James I who reveled in witchcraft. He wrote a treatise on the subject. It was also said, James I descended from Banquo¿s line. The play was written in only ten days. Shakespeare was at the height of his powers when he wrote Macbeth. He was 40 years old. Macbeth is the fourth play in a quartet of tragic masterpieces (Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, and Macbeth).Shakespeare instinctively knew the human mind and heart. As Harold Bloom so aptly put, in Macbeth, Shakespeare, who understood everything that we comprehend and far more (humankind will never stop catching up to him) created a play within the mind of humankind. He presents a haunting realm of madness tied to a furious imagination and sparked with the supernatural where `fair is foul and foul is fair.¿ The play depends upon its horror of its own imaginings. A hollow man filled with an ambitious taste for power. His will controlled by his desire to be King and fueled by his thirst for blood. He chooses against living happily as the Thane of Cawdor and resides in misery as King of Scotland. Within this framework, we journey inward to Macbeth¿s heart of darkness, and find ourselves hauntingly familiar of and in, murderers to the spirit.It is unreal how Shakespeare could see into the soul of the human spirit and be able to project that vision, through the characters in his plays, unto his audience. As Elizabeth Montagu wrote in her The Genius of Shakespeare, Our author has so tempered the constitutional character of Macbeth by infusing into it the milk of human kindness and a strong tincture of honor, as to make the most violent perturbation and pungent remorse naturally attend on those steps to which he is led by the force of temptation. Here we must commend the poet¿s judgment and his invariable attention to consistency of character. But more amazing is the art with which he exhibits the movement of the human mind and renders audible the silent march of thought, traces its modes of operation in the course of deliberating¿the pauses of hesitation and the final act of decision, shows how reason checks and the passions impel, and displays to us the trepidations that precede and the horrors that pursue acts of blood. No species of dialogue but that which a man holds with himself could effect this. The soliloquy has been permitted to all dramatic writers, but its true use has been understood only by our author, who alone has attained to a just imitation of nature in this kind of self-conference.Macbeth is sure of nothing but the present moment. He begins with considerable energy and manliness of character but evolves into nothing but a bloodthirsty shell of a man. As in his battles at the beginning of the play, he seems to `carve out a passage¿ to King Duncan and then to the undoing of himself¿a road of blood that ends in his. It is a journey through the manipulations of the mind; `tempest-tossed¿, warped by temptation, seen in hallucination, and goaded by ambition that produces our tragic hero. And so I Bid thee farewell, That you may have the honor of Kings bestowed upon you in your wake of horror. ¿¿Silence a means to rapture in such time that has time for sleep and time for death. ¿¿Oh to hear!What melodious sound this morn wakes us from this our state of slumbered smirth. ¿It is the deed that barks at innocence and mourns this lifeless morn. But be not so deep in it as these words would stain upon your naked souls.For upon these words when first I came unknown fancy with blood did reignWhere winds of
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great introduction and critical essays that help bring Shakespeare to life.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Personally, I know this sounds stupid, but I love Billy Shakes! Macbeth is actually quite relatable to today, because it shows what people will do to get to the the top. Cheers!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Of all of the Master Bard's plays, Macbeth is the most mysterious in irony and dealing with evil. A descent into evil could be an alternative title as Lady Macbeth uses the weird sisters to her favor. Several things in this play are unresolved such as who was the third murderer and was Ross playing both sides. English history also is involved in this play, so the immortal bard was not immune from that either. An excellent ending to a truly tragic story.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It was the best play I have ever read!