Macbeth and the death of lady macbeth

Words: 101-200

Skills: Figurative Language Main / Central Idea Theme

Grades: 10th 11th 12th

Topics: Dramatic Tragedies

Genres: Drama Poetry

Lexile Range: 740L - 1050L

Lexile Measure: 830L

CCSS: Reading: Literature

Themes:

Macbeth and the Death of Lady Macbeth


by William Shakespeare from Macbeth

Act V, Scene 5 passage: This passage is a speech from Shakespeare’s tragedy "Macbeth." The title character Macbeth is a Scottish general who receives a prophecy that he would one day be King of Scotland. He becomes ambitious and eager to make the prophecy come true. He is encouraged by his wife, Lady Macbeth. He kills the reigning king and becomes king, but the resulting wars lead to more murders and death. The power that Macbeth and his wife desire eventually leads to their destruction. In this speech Macbeth is reacting to the news that his wife has died.

Reading Comprehension Passage

Macbeth and the Death of Lady Macbeth

by William Shakespeare from Macbeth

This passage is a speech from Shakespeare’s tragedy Macbeth. The title character Macbeth is a Scottish general who receives a prophecy that he would one day be King of Scotland. He becomes ambitious and eager to make the prophecy come true. He is encouraged by his wife, Lady Macbeth. He kills the reigning king and becomes king, but the resulting wars lead to more murders and death. The power that Macbeth and his wife desire eventually leads to their destruction.

In this speech Macbeth is reacting to the news that his wife has died.

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She should have died hereafter;

There would have been a time for such a word.

— To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,

Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,

To the last syllable of recorded time;

And all our yesterdays have lighted fools

The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!

Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player

That struts and frets his hour upon the stage

And then is heard no more. It is a tale

Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury

Signifying nothing.


Passage Only

Reading Comprehension Questions

1. What is the main theme of  Macbeth’s speech?




2. Shakespeare uses several metaphors in this speech. Identify one and explain it.




3. What is one example of alliteration in the passage?




4. Explain the contradiction, “full of  sound and fury/ Signifying nothing.”

Vocabulary List

Vocabulary List


Each of the vocabulary words below are used in the reading passage. As you read the passage, pay attention to context clues that suggest the word’s meaning.

  1. hereafter
  2. petty
  3. struts
  4. frets
  5. signifying

Context Clues

Context Clues


Using context clues from the sentences in the passage, underline the correct meaning of the word in boldface.

1) “She should have died hereafter

a. quietly or easily     b. with medical care     c. later; in the future     d. someplace else; nearby

2) “Creeps in this petty pace from day to day”

a. minor; trivial     b. joyful; happy     c. touchy; anxious     d. quickly; furiously

3) “a poor player /That struts and frets his hour upon the stage”

a. plays music     b. dies or collapses     c. toils; works hard     d. walks proudly; parades

4) "a poor player /That struts and frets his hour upon the stage”

a. counts; watches     b. uses a stringed instrument     c. shows distress or emotion     d. speaks

5) “full of sound and fury/Signifying nothing”

a. forgetting      b. meaning; indicating     c. remembering; recollecting     d. excusing; justifying