In Act 3, Scene 5, what are some reasons Hecate gives for being upset with the weird sisters?

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teachertaylor | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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In Act 3 Scene 5, Hecate tells the witches that she is angry with them for telling Macbeth his future.  She calls Macbeth a "wayward son" because he is confused and selfish.  Because he is guided by his own misinterpretation of the witches' prophecy, Macbeth has sought to fulfill his ambition by evil means.  Hecate says that Macbeth is only concerned with his own security and power and that he cares nothing for the workings of fate and destiny.  Hecate tells the witches that they should not have traded information with Macbeth, and she commands them to set things straight.  At the end of the scene, Hecate indirectly predicts Macbeth's downfall.

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dule05 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Assistant Educator

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Hecate is upset with the witches because they did not consult her when they talked to Macbeth about his future and the prophecy regarding Macbeth's promotion. Hecate gives them a reprimand because she is their boss and an expert on witchcraft, so they should have consulted her because they are nothing without her. More importantly, she rebukes them for sharing their information with a man who she thinks is an awful human being:

All you have done
Hath been but for a wayward son,
Spiteful and wrathful, who, as others do,
Loves for his own ends, not for you.

Hecate describes Macbeth as someone who is arrogant, malicious, and selfish, so he deserves to be punished for his evil intentions. She tells the witches that they can "make amends" by helping her create such illusions which will lure Macbeth into a false sense of security:

He shall spurn fate, scorn death, and bear
He hopes 'bove wisdom, grace and fear:
And you all know, security
Is mortals' chiefest enemy.

Together, they will cause him to make bad decisions which will lead to his inevitable downfall.


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