In act 4, scene 1 of Macbeth, what four things do the witches show Macbeth, and what does each say?

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renelane's profile pic

renelane | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

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The witches offer Macbeth three apparitions.

 The first apparition is that of an armed head. The message is to beware of Macduff. The second apparition is that of a bloody child that says that no man born of woman will harm Macbeth. The third apparition  is that of a crowned head holding a tree that says, “Macbeth shall never vanquished be until Great Birnam Wood to high Dunsinane Hill shall come against him.” .

Macbeth begs them for more information about his future so they show him a procession of kings, and the last one holds a mirror with the image of Banquo in it.

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sampu88 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Valedictorian

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Macbeth was shown three apparitions by the Witches.

The first one was that of an 'armed head' that warned him to 'beware of the Thane of Fife! Macduff!'. The second was that of a 'bloody child' that told him to 'laugh at the powers of other men' since he had something noone else did. The child told him that no one born of a woman could ever hurt him. The third apparition was that of a crowned child holding a tree in one hand, that said Macbeth would not be defeated unless Birnam Wood comes marching to fight him at Dunsinane Hill.

On further probing regarding the future of Banquo's sceptre's as kings of Scotland, the Witches hesitatingly showed him a procession of 8 kings, the last one holding a mirror, in which were reflected several other king. The last king was also followed by the 'blood-clotted', and smiling Banquo who was 'pointing to' the kings 'as his'.