Gruoch or Lady Macbeth
"I have given suck, and know how tender 'tis to love the babe that milks me: I would, while it was smiling in my face, have pluck'd my nipple from his boneless gums, and dash'd the brains out, had I so sworn as you have done to this." With these words Lady Macbeth spurs Macbeth into killing King Duncan.
So, where’s this babe?
Indeed, the historical Gruoch gave birth to a son, Luloch, when she was 13 years old. Two years later Macbeth killed her husband; she and her child therefore became his property, to keep or to kill.
Gruoch, or Lady Macbeth opens with Gruoch fleeing the conflagration of her husband, fearing for her and her son's lives. She finds safety in a shelter for homeless families run by three other witches who assist her in becoming Queen of Scotland to use her power to revenge the persecution of witches (a passion of King James I, for whom Macbeth was written, as you may know).
Romance and betrayal follow. As do dark comedy. And tragedy.
The play addresses issues of gender inequality, religious intolerance, child sexual abuse, and torture.