What does Banquo think/feel before he is murdered by MacbethIn Act 3 Scene 1  Macbeth

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Kristen Lentz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Act three, scene one of Macbeth begins as Banquo ponders the weird sisters' prediction.  Banquo is cautiously optimistic that the witches' prophecy will be realized for him as it is Macbeth.  Banquo clearly has his own suspicions of Macbeth's character and motives:

"Thou hast it now: King, Cawdor, Glamis, all,
As the weird women promised, and I fear
Thou play'dst most foully for't:"  (III.i.1-3).

Although Banquo suspects Macbeth of having a hand in foul deeds to bring about his reign of king, Banquo is careful not to alert Macbeth to any of those suspicions.    He feigns loyalty to Macbeth, reminding him of his sense of duty and utmost commitment:

Let your Highness
Command upon me, to the which my duties
Are with a most indissoluble tie
Forever knit. (III.i.17-20). 

Ultimately, Banquo plays into Macbeth's hand.  Banquo's need to appear loyal to Macbeth leaves him little room for deception.  Banquo unfortunately reveals his and Fleance's afternoon plans of horseback riding to Macebeth, who will only moments later plan a murderous trap to ensare both Banquo and son.