out, damned spot!

Cultural Dictionary

Out, damned spot! definition


A sentence from the play Macbeth by William Shakespeare, spoken by Lady Macbeth, the wife of the title character. Her husband has killed the king of Scotland at her urging, but her guilt over the murder gradually drives her insane. When she speaks this line she is sleepwalking, and she imagines that a spot of the king's blood stains her hand.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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