What 2 strange occurrences are reported by Lord and Lady Macbeth in Act 2 of "Macbeth"?William Shakespeare's "Macbeth"

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Shakespeare's "Macbeth," the motif of "things are not what they seem" is certainly played out.  After Banquo confesses that he has been disturbed in his sleep over the prophecies of the witches, Macbeth counsels him to not think about them.  However, as Macbeth walks toward his bedchamber, he is confronted by the vision of a bloody dagger as he ponders his plan of murdering Duncan:

Is this a dagger which I see before me,/The handle toward my hand?  Come let me clutch thee./I have thee not, and yet I see thee still.  Art thou not, fatal vision, sensble/ To feeling as to sight, or art thou but/A dagger of the mind, a false creation,/Proceeding from the heart-oppressed brain. (II,ii,33-39)

Then, in her chambers, as Lady Macbeth fears for Macbeth and the completion of his assassination of the king, she imagines that she hears the shrill screech of an owl., "the fatal bellman."  When Macbeth returns, he does not report to Lady Macbeth that he has imagined seeing a dagger, but he does tell her that he has heard a voice cry

"sleep no more!/Macbeth does murder sleep"--the innocent sleep (II,ii,34-35).

Because of his superstitious tendencies, Macbeth does not report the appearance of the dagger out of fear of its being so bizarre.