Macbeth Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

Macbeth book cover
Start Your Free Trial

Lady Macbeth is the Fourth witch Lady macbeth seems to act oddly in comparision to the average woman of that time period, during her soliloquoy she seems as though casting a spell, her manipulative powers are all too advanced for someone living in such a repressed era, and she plays a vital role in the witches plan could this be because she is one of them and thus in on the plan? discuss please.

Expert Answers info

Robert C. Evans eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write2,994 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Lady Macbeth would be a witch only in a metaphorical sense -- in the sense that she is associated with evil.  In some ways, in fact, she seems even more evil than the witches themselves. She is a far more active temptress of Macbeth than they are.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Lorna Stowers eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write4,625 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and History

I have to say that I have never looked at Lady Macbeth as the fourth witch (fifth, if you count Hecate ). While she does try to...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 207 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

kiwi eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2007

write1,176 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and History

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

siret | Student

She is evil and a hypocrite but i don't think she is the fourth witch. If you use the term evil to symbolize a witch then she would definately be the fourth witch but if used in literal sense i doubt the term is applicable

just-s | Student

yes, lady Macbeth was known as the fourth witch.

her actions were like the witches. she had no conscience and had many mental disturbances in her life.

falconsabs | Student

YES, we can very well say so ."I have given suck and know how tender it is to love the babe that milks me ;I would while it was smiling in my face ,dashed its brains out"--this is a clear indication of her "undaunted mettle".Earlier her speech  when she wanted to be filled with gall ,and when she invites the spirits that "tend on mortal thoughts" to make her evil enough for the committing the murder,she again exposes her that her cruelty can know no limits .But we see she is a witch only in her words .She does not have the bravery to actually do the murder ,when she says "Had he not resembled my father as he slept,I would have done it myself", though she earlier had boasted of killing her own babe .Also in the sleep walking scene she becomes all remorseful and is not even able to sleep peacefully.So we see she only poses falsely to be a witch while she is a weak hearted lady.

madihaa | Student

yes lady macbeth was fourth witch because revenge and evilness in macbeth was created not by himself but due to lady macbeth she  forced  macbeth again and again  , she would be witch in metaphorical sense in another sense she also became a part of macbeth tragic trait or flaw

cooz | Student

the thought of attaining the crown made her to do everything she could to get it but she was stiill a woman so the mental disturbances led her to her death as witches have no sense of guilt over what they did so lady macbet is not utterly the 4th witch

florine | Student

 She is also associated with the witches because of her appaling fantasized desire to commit infanticide rather than not become Queen: "I have given suck", "dash the brain". That's one of the main reasons why she is utterly evil. The imaginary dashing of the brains of the new-born babe undoubtedly bears a resemblance to the witches' throwing the body parts into the cauldron: "Finger of birth-strangled babe...." Besides, her perverse sexuality, her unbridled impulses, likens her to the witches, as they were accused of having intercourse with the devil.

bhawanipur | Student

In Vedas and even in Indian philosophy, three things are considered as the door to Hell. They are in Sanskrit- Kamini, Kanchan and Kirti. Kamini means women with unlimited aspirations, Kanchan means wealth and Kirti denotes pride. The witches symbolizes evil doers. They tempt others to have what they have not or do anything for oneself. There are several example of such characters in English literature falling prey to them. The witches, in the play, Macbeth only predicted to Macbeth. But he disclosed it to Lady Macbeth and her brain began working to fulfill those at any cost by fair or foul. Having affected by others' vices, they also become a part of them. Thus you are right to say that she is the fourth witches.

Whether man or woman who are not contented with what come their way as a result of good work or what they have are bound to fall victim to evil. Then the consequesnces of evil are to confront and the consequences are hellish.

Dr Faustus became himself a Mephistophillies by taking help from him or by affecting him.


dmlux | Student

that could mean that she is simply a much more powerful witch than the weird sisters or however your correct in saying that she is a much more powerful temptress to maceth than they, which begs the question, has she done this before? nobody could be that skilled in the art of manipulation without practice, supernatural or otherwise.