Macbeth Act 5 Scene 9: ISC Class 12 workbook answers

Macbeth Act 5 Scene 9
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Get notes, workbook solutions, summary, questions and answers, and pdf of the drama/play Macbeth (Act 5 Scene 9) by William Shakespeare, which is part of ISC Class 12 English. However, the notes should only be treated as references, and changes should be made according to the needs of the students.

If you notice any errors in the notes, please mention them in the comments


This final scene marks the end of the play, bringing closure to the conflict and ushering in a new era of hope and peace for Scotland. It is a moment of mixed emotions – grief for the fallen heroes and jubilation for the end of tyranny.

Ross arrives, bearing the news of Young Siward’s heroic death in battle. Although saddened by the loss, Old Siward finds solace in his son’s bravery and honorable death. He embodies the stoic warrior spirit, accepting the sacrifices that come with war and focusing on the greater victory achieved.

Macduff enters, carrying the severed head of Macbeth, a powerful symbol of the tyrant’s defeat and the end of his reign of terror. The sight of Macbeth’s head evokes joy and relief among the gathered thanes and soldiers, signifying the restoration of order and justice.

Malcolm, the rightful heir to the throne, is hailed as the new King of Scotland. He outlines his plans to rebuild the nation and heal the wounds inflicted by Macbeth’s tyranny. He promises to reward those who remained loyal and to recall those who were unjustly exiled. He invites the thanes and kinsmen to witness his coronation at Scone, the traditional site for crowning Scottish kings.

Workbook answers

Multiple Choice Questions

1. Ross brings the news of

a. young Siward’s death
b. Macbeth’s death
c. the victory being cheaply bought
d. Macduff’s death

Answer: a. young Siward’s death

2. Macduff enters with

a. the head of Macbeth on a pole
b. the head of Macbeth in a tray
c. the head of young Siward
d. the bloody sword of Macbeth

Answer: a. the head of Macbeth on a pole

3. Malcolm’s coronation will take place at

a. Dunsinane
b. Scone
c. Inverness
d. Fife

Answer: b. Scone

4. Malcolm refers to Macbeth as a “dead….” -and Lady Macbeth as a “……queen”.

a. butcher – fiend
b. king – gentle
c. soldier – noble
d. tyrant – beloved

Answer: a. butcher – fiend

5. Everyone accepts Malcolm as

a. the Prince of Cumberland
b. the rightful heir to the throne of Scotland
c. the Thane of Fife
d. the Thane of Glamis

Answer: b. the rightful heir to the throne of Scotland

Context questions

1. Ross: Your son, my Lord, has paid a soldier’s debt
He only liv’d but till he was a man.
The which no sooner had his prowess confirm’d
In the unshrinking station where he fought.
But like a man he died.

a. What did Old Siward say immediately when he heard that his son died like a man? What is the significance of his words?

Answer: Old Siward asked, “Then he is dead?” He inquires if his son had fought front to front. The significance of his words shows his acceptance of his son’s fate as a soldier, where dying bravely in battle is seen as honorable and expected.

b. Explain the last two lines of the speech of Ross.

Answer: Ross explains that Young Siward confirmed his prowess and did not shrink from the battle, dying bravely like a true man. This highlights the valor and heroism expected of soldiers.

c. What is Old Siward’s greatest comfort?

Answer: Old Siward’s greatest comfort is that his son died a heroic death on the battlefield, fighting bravely and facing his enemy, which is considered the fairest death for a soldier.

d. How does Ross praise the son of Siward after the extract?

Answer: Ross praises Young Siward by confirming his courage and valor in the battlefield and remarking on his noble death, which aligns with the highest ideals of heroism of the time.

e. What does this extract show about heroism as displayed at that time?

Answer: The extract shows that heroism at the time was defined by bravery in battle, facing one’s enemy directly, and dying honorably. Such acts were held in high regard, reflecting societal values centered around courage and honor in warfare.

2. Macduff: Hail, king! For so thou art. Behold where stands,
Th’ usurper’s cursed head: the time is free.
I see thee compass’d with thy Kingdom’s pearl,
That speak my salutation in their minds;
Whose voices I desire aloud with mine,
Hail, King of Scotland.

a. Describe the dramatic manner in which Macduff urges everyone to welcome Malcolm as the ‘rightful heir’ to the throne of Scotland.

Answer: Macduff dramatically presents the severed head of Macbeth, proclaiming the end of tyranny and freedom for Scotland. He visually and symbolically confirms Malcolm’s status as king, urging the nobles to vocally express their support and hail Malcolm as the rightful King of Scotland.

b. How does Malcolm decide to reward and honour the Thanes and Kinsmen for their kindness?

Answer: Malcolm decides to honor the Thanes and Kinsmen by elevating them to the status of Earls, the first in Scotland’s history.

c. Malcolm says “Which would be planted newly with the time”? How are his words similar to the ones his father spoke earlier in the play? How did his father’s words prove ironical in the play?

Answer: Malcolm’s words about planting anew with time echo his father’s earlier metaphors of planting for growth and leadership. However, Duncan’s words became ironical as his nurturing led to his betrayal and murder by Macbeth, whereas Malcolm hopes for genuine restoration and renewal.

d. What is the difference we find in the wisdom of Malcolm and his father Duncan in giving out honours?

Answer: The difference in their wisdom lies in their approach; Duncan was perhaps naive, bestowing honors in hopes of loyalty, which ultimately led to his downfall. Malcolm, on the other hand, rewards after securing his position and as a means to restore and solidify the rightful order.

e. State the irony involved in the coronation at Scone at the end of the scene and the play.

Answer: The irony lies in the fact that Malcolm is to be crowned at Scone, just as Macbeth was, but under vastly different circumstances. Macbeth’s coronation was marked by illegitimacy and led to tyranny, while Malcolm’s symbolizes legitimate restoration and hopeful renewal, illustrating a return to rightful rule and the rectification of previous wrongs.

Essay question

Question: How does the conclusion of the play present a sense of courage, kindness, and optimism for a peaceful future in Scotland?

Answer: The play ends with Malcolm as a heroic figure, restoring Scotland to its former glory. Macduff’s act of slaying the tyrant and presenting his head to Malcolm symbolizes the end of oppression and the dawn of peace and prosperity for the nation. Everyone hails Malcolm as their rightful King. Even in the face of personal loss, like Siward grieving his son who died bravely in battle, there’s a sense of pride and honor. Malcolm’s promise to reward loyalty and bring back those exiled demonstrates his generosity and sets the stage for a brighter future. The play concludes with the rightful king on the throne, offering a sense of hope and stability after a period of darkness under a cruel tyrant.

Extra/additional MCQs

1. What does Malcolm plan to do to restore peace and order in Scotland?

A. Execute all tyrants B. Banish the nobles C. Recall exiled friends D. All of the above

Answer: C. Recall exiled friends

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15. Who is invited to witness Malcolm’s coronation?

A. Only the nobles B. Only the soldiers C. Only the thanes D. Earls and faithful followers

Answer: D. Earls and faithful followers

Extra/additional questions and answers

1. Who carries the severed head of Macbeth into the scene?

Answer: Macduff carries the severed head of Macbeth into the scene, symbolizing the end of tyranny.

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10. Discuss the role of Macduff in the final act of the play and its implications for the theme of justice and retribution.

Answer: Macduff’s role in the final act, where he presents Macbeth’s severed head, symbolizes the restoration of moral and social order through retributive justice. His actions are pivotal, not only concluding his personal quest for vengeance against Macbeth for the slaughter of his family but also signifying the broader theme of righteous retribution prevailing over tyrannical rule. Macduff emerges as a hero who confronts and eradicates evil, thereby setting the stage for Malcolm’s reign and the hopeful future of a healed Scotland. His presence at Malcolm’s coronation as the rightful king reinforces the theme of justice and the restoration of legitimate leadership.

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