Tuesday, 7 April 2015
Mini History Blogs: King James, Witchcraft and Shakespeare
It was very superstitious King James and his views on witchcraft that may have given Shakespeare the ideas for the witches in his play Macbeth. This plays was first performed in James’s court in 1606. It is thought to be the very first time in history that an English play depicted witches gathering to cast spells.
Act 4 Scene 1 Macbeth
Thrice the brinded cat hath mew'd.
Thrice and once, the hedge-pig whin'd.
Harpier cries:—'tis time! 'tis time!
Round about the caldron go;
In the poison'd entrails throw.—
Toad, that under cold stone,
Days and nights has thirty-one;
Swelter'd venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first i' the charmed pot!
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and caldron bubble.