Macduff's Son
Physical Description
Gender Male
Personal Info
Status Deceased
Relatives Macduff (Father)
Lady Macduff (Mother)
Play Macbeth
v - e
Macduff's Son is from Macbeth. He, obviously, is the son of Macduff (he was never given a real name). He is probably around 7 to 10 years old in the play. During his only appearance in Act IV, Scene ii, he is told by his mother that his father is dead. He doesn't believe her and says that if Macduff were really dead, she'd cry for him, and if she didn't then it would "be a good sign that I [the boy] should quickly have a new father."

The two begin to joke with each other, but suddenly a messenger arrives, telling the boy's mother that she should quickly get out of the castle with her children, because they're in terrible danger.

But it's too late. The three murderers arrive. When they say that Macduff was a traitor, the boy bravely leaps forward and defends his father. Sadly, upon doing this, one of the murderers stabs him. Before he dies however, he tells his mother to run away.


Act 4, Scene 2:

  • Lady Macduff: Sirrah, your father’s dead. And what will you do now? How will you live?
  • As birds do, Mother.
  • What, with worms and flies?
  • With what I get, I mean, and so do they.
  • Poor bird! Thou ’dst never fear the net nor lime, The pitfall nor the gin.
  • Why should I, Mother? Poor birds they are not set for. My father is not dead, for all your saying.
  • Yes, he is dead. How wilt thou do for a father?
  • Nay, how will you do for a husband?
  • Why, I can buy me twenty at any market.
  • Son: Then you’ll buy 'em to sell again.
  • Thou speak’st with all thy wit; and yet, i' faith, With wit enough for thee.
  • Was my father a traitor, Mother?
  • Ay, that he was.
  • What is a traitor?
  • Why, one that swears and lies.
  • And be all traitors that do so?
  • Every one that does so is a traitor and must be hanged.
  • And must they all be hanged that swear and lie?
  • Every one.
  • Who must hang them?
  • Why, the honest men.
  • Then the liars and swearers are fools, for there are liars and swearers enough to beat the honest men and hang up them.
  • Now, God help thee, poor monkey! But how wilt thou do for a father?
  • 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.
  • Poor prattler, how thou talk’st!


v - e - dMacbeth
Macbeth | Lady Macbeth | Banquo | Fleance | Duncan | Lady Macduff | Macduff | Macduff's Son | The Three Witches | Malcolm | Lennox | Donalbain | Macdonwald | Ross | Angus | Sweno | Thane of Cawdor | Sinel | Ross | Angus | Thane of Cawdor | Lennox | Donalbain | Ross | Angus | Donalbain | Lennox | Ross | Angus | Macbeth | Macbeth | Donalbain | Lennox | Ross | Lennox | Ross | Hecate | Edward | Siward | Hecate | Lennox | Ross | Menteith | Caithness | Angus | Lennox | Seyton