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Home :: Archive :: 1999 :: August ::
Re: The Scottish Tragedy
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.1462  Monday 23 August 1999.

[1]     From:   Stuart Manger <
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        Date:   Friday, 20 Aug 1999 13:59:43 +0100
        Subj:   SHK 10.1454 Qs: The Scottish Tragedy

[2]     From:   Eric W Beato <
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        Date:   Friday, 20 Aug 1999 09:29:57 -0400
        Subj:   SHK 10.1454 Qs: The Scottish Tragedy

[3]     From:   Melissa D. Aaron <
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        Date:   Friday, 20 Aug 1999 09:58:28 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.1454 Qs: The Scottish Tragedy

[4]     From:   Brian Haylett <
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        Date:   Friday, 20 Aug 1999 19:41:33 +0100
        Subj:   Re: Qs: The Scottish Tragedy

[5]     From:   Judy Lewis <
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        Date:   Monday, 23 Aug 1999 18:12:38 +1200
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.1454 Qs: The Scottish Tragedy


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Stuart Manger <
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Date:           Friday, 20 Aug 1999 13:59:43 +0100
Subject: Qs: The Scottish Tragedy
Comment:        SHK 10.1454 Qs: The Scottish Tragedy

Part suggestion and perhaps help:

[a] THREE sceptres because Macbeth sees that he has actually assisted
Banquo's issue to inherit a far bigger kingdom than he, Macbeth, ever
had through the murder of Duncan - hence part of his punishment on earth
is to see the truth of 'for Banquo's issue have I filed my mind'. The
witches' riddling is revealed - Macbeth is clearly fully congnisant of
what it means - i.e. a post 1600 Macbeth would know more of the
intervening history than the real historical Macbeth would have known.

[b] I suspect that the line connecting Fleance to James I was a little
'tenuous', but one that the writing member of that particular Jacobean
acting company simply had to make credible by giving it credit in stage
/ theatrical trope terms - what Stephen Orgel might term part of the
Jacobean 'illusion of power'? Remember that Holinshed is not an
unimpeachable source here!!

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Eric W Beato <
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Date:           Friday, 20 Aug 1999 09:29:57 -0400
Subject: Qs: The Scottish Tragedy
Comment:        SHK 10.1454 Qs: The Scottish Tragedy

DESCENDANCY OF KING JAMES

Banquo
Fleance                 [married a daughter of the Prince of Wales]
Walter Steward           [Lord Steward of Scotland]
Alane Steward
Alexander Steward
John Steward
Walter Steward          [married Margaret, descendant of David I]
Robert II               1371-1390 King of Scotland
Robert III              1390-1406 King of Scotland
James I         1406-1437 King of Scotland
James II                1437-1460 King of Scotland
James III               1460-1488 King of Scotland
James IV                1488-1513 King of Scotland
James V         1513-1542 King of Scotland
Mary Queen of Scots     1542-1567 Queen of Scotland
James VI of Scotland    1567-1625 King of Scotland

        James IV married Margaret, daughter of Henry VII
        James VI became James I of England 1603-1625

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Melissa D. Aaron <
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Date:           Friday, 20 Aug 1999 09:58:28 -0400
Subject: 10.1454 Qs: The Scottish Tragedy
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.1454 Qs: The Scottish Tragedy

>I am an English teacher and I have a question regarding the history of
>the real Macbeth.
>
>In the play, it is stated that Banquo's heirs will sit on the throne of
>Scotland.  "Your children shall be kings." (I;iii)  His only child
>mentioned in the play is Fleance.  Is Fleance related to King James VI
>of Scotland (King James I of England) and if so, how?
>
>In Act IV;scene i, when the show of kings come out of the cauldron, the
>first king is Robert II of Scotland.  Is he a direct descendant of
>Fleance and if so, how?

One does need to distinguish here between "real" history and
mythological history.

When I was in Fort William Scotland, I saw a large genealogical tree
that would answer this question in detail.   Fleance, according to this
chart, married into the Macduff family.  Banquo thus is the "founder" of
Clan Chattan and Macduff of Clan MacIntosh (to which I am very, very
collaterally affiliated).  Both clans have a springing cat as a heraldic
animal.  It is, however, a Jacobite chart; I leave it to you whether
that makes it biased or unreliable or not.

If this is helpful at all, Malcolm married a young relative of Edward
the Confessor, who became St. Margaret of Scotland.  Despite their
production of several heirs male, the line didn't last long.

MDA.

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Brian Haylett <
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Date:           Friday, 20 Aug 1999 19:41:33 +0100
Subject:        Re: Qs: The Scottish Tragedy

>In the play, it is stated that Banquo's heirs will sit on the throne of
>Scotland.  "Your children shall be kings." (I;iii)  His only child
>mentioned in the play is Fleance.  Is Fleance related to King James VI
>of Scotland (King James I of England) and if so, how?

Fleance is the fictitious ancestor of James I, as cited in Holinshed.

>In Act IV;scene i, when the show of kings come out of the cauldron, the
>first king is Robert II of Scotland.  Is he a direct descendant of
>Fleance and if so, how?

They are the intervening kings of Scotland, but it does not matter which
is which, surely?

>I am looking for an explanation to the "two-fold ball" reference and the
>"treble sceptre" reference from Act Four;scene i of the play.  I know
>the two-fold ball relates to France and Scotland, but what does this
>have to do with Macbeth?  Also, I know that the treble sceptre relates
>to England, Ireland and Scotland, but again, what does this have to do
>with Macbeth?

Nothing to do with France or Ireland. The two orbs are those of Scotland
and England. England uses two sceptres in its coronation service,
Scotland one - hence 'treble'.

[5]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Judy Lewis <
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Date:           Monday, 23 Aug 1999 18:12:38 +1200
Subject: 10.1454 Qs: The Scottish Tragedy
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.1454 Qs: The Scottish Tragedy

My understanding of the issue is that James believed that Banquo was his
ancestor but that there is no actual validity to this belief.  Banquo is
mentioned in Holinshead but is not, in fact, an historical figure.

James was a Stuart (Stewart), whose line was founded by Walter Steward
(the name came from his position at court as Sixth Hereditary Steward of
Scotland - the original 'steward' was called Fitzalan) who married
Marjory, only daughter of Robert the Bruce (Robert I); their son became
Robert II and the first Stuart king of Scotland.

The two-fold ball - the orb, part of the coronation regalia - refers to
the kingdoms of England and Scotland - combined in the person of James I
- and the sceptre to England, Scotland and Wales.  Incidentally, James
by rights should have been designated James VI of England and Scotland,
not James I.
 

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