Macbeth

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

SON

Then you’ll buy 'em to sell again.

SON

If so, you’d be buying them to sell again.

LADY MACDUFF

Thou speak’st with all thy wit; and yet, i' faith,
With wit enough for thee.

LADY MACDUFF

You talk like a child, but you’re very smart anyway.

SON

45Was my father a traitor, Mother?

SON

Was my father a traitor, Mother?

LADY MACDUFF

Ay, that he was.

LADY MACDUFF

Yes, he was.

SON

What is a traitor?

SON

What is a traitor?

LADY MACDUFF

Why, one that swears and lies.

LADY MACDUFF

Someone who makes a promise and breaks it.

SON

And be all traitors that do so?

SON

And is everyone who swears and lies a traitor?

LADY MACDUFF

50Every one that does so is a traitor and must be hanged.

LADY MACDUFF

Everyone who does so is a traitor and should be hanged.

SON

And must they all be hanged that swear and lie?

SON

And should everyone who makes promises and breaks them be hanged?

LADY MACDUFF

Every one.

LADY MACDUFF

Everyone.

SON

Who must hang them?

SON

Who should hang them?

LADY MACDUFF

Why, the honest men.

LADY MACDUFF

The honest men.

SON

55Then the liars and swearers are fools, for there are liars and swearers enough to beat the honest men and hang up them.

SON

Then the liars are fools, for there are enough liars in the world to beat up the honest men and hang them.

LADY MACDUFF

Now, God help thee, poor monkey! But how wilt thou do for a father?

LADY MACDUFF

(laughing) Heaven help you for saying that, boy! (sad again) But what will you do without a father?

SON

If he were dead, you’d weep for him. If you would not, it were a good sign that I should quickly have a new father.

SON

If he were dead, you’d be weeping for him. If you aren’t weeping, it’s a good sign that I’ll soon have a new father.

LADY MACDUFF

Poor prattler, how thou talk’st!

LADY MACDUFF

Silly babbler, how you talk!