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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: April ::
Re: *Mac.* 3.4; Another *Mac.* Question
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0288.  Wednesday, 12 April 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Roger D. Gross <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 11 Apr 1995 17:08:33 -0500 (CDT)
        Subj:   MAC. 3.4
 
(2)     From:   Scott Shepherd <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 11 Apr 1995 22:50:38 -0400
        Subj:   Macbeth Act3 Sc4
 
(3)     From:   Dave Laing <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 11 Apr 1995 21:22:49 EDT
        Subj:   Macbeth question
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Roger D. Gross <
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Date:           Tuesday, 11 Apr 1995 17:08:33 -0500 (CDT)
Subject:        MAC. 3.4
 
Re: Anna Cole's question on MAC, 3.4, here's my reading:
 
Lady Mac doesn't know of Macduff's murder, though she would have to be pretty
slow not to make a few guesses based on Mac's strange party behavior.
 
Mac is making a feeble attempt to cover for his strangeness and asks her what
she thinks of Macduff's REFUSAL to come. Oops (an early version of the
detective saying "how did you know he was strangled?  I just said he was
dead?")  She says, in effect, "Refused?  I didn't know that (though I knew he
was absent).  How do you know he refused?  Did you send to him and get that
refusal in return?"  Mac:  "Well, no; I just heard a rumor. But I'll send
someone for his excuse and we'll see if he 'denied' his person."  There might
be many reasons Macduff missed but a refusal to attend would be very serious
business indeed.  It's a pretty clumsy cover-up.
 
Does this make sense to you?
 
Roger Gross
Univ. of Arkansas
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Scott Shepherd <
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Date:           Tuesday, 11 Apr 1995 22:50:38 -0400
Subject:        Macbeth Act3 Sc4
 
> How sayst thou that Macduff denies his person
> At our great bidding?
>
> Did you send to him sir?
>
> I hear it by the way, but I will send.
 
I think "Did you send to him" means did you send to find out why he didn't come
(not did you invite him), and what Macbeth hears by the way is that Macduff has
no excuse but simply refuses to attend the tyrant's feast (ie, "it" = "that
Macduff denies his person").
 
By the way, what about this
 
> Here had we now our country's honor roof'd
> Were the grac'd person of our Banquo present
 
which pretty clearly says Banquo is the only top player missing, when actually
Macduff is absent too?
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Dave Laing <
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Date:           Tuesday, 11 Apr 1995 21:22:49 EDT
Subject:        Macbeth question
 
I have a little textual puzzle that I can't figure out and I'm looking for
help.  Does anyone know where the (mis)-quotation-- "Lead on
Macduff"--originates from?  The original reads "Lay on Macduff" and then
Macbeth and Macduff exit fighting.  I have checked both acting and literary
editions and can find no 'authoritative' source for this error.  Can anyone
help?  Are there others out there who have heard this quote or is it just me?
 
D. Laing.
 

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