Macbeths Ambition

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In William Shakespeare’s Macbeth, uncontrolled ambition is partly to blame for Macbeth’s downfall. Macbeth degenerates from a powerful and respectable general to a desperate and insecure tyrant. His ambition leads him through regicide, the subsequent killing of his rivals and ultimately proves detrimental to his reign. His ambition was exploited by Lady Macbeth’s crafty personality and her sexual taunting of Macbeth. The supernatural forces, represented by the Witches, played an integral part in deceiving Macbeth with their misleading prophecies and implanting a false sense of security in Macbeth’s kingship.

Macbeth was seen as a brave and honourable warrior in the eyes of King Duncan. His fame on the battlefield won him great honour from the king, but his growing ambitions and his desire for power plays a major role in the way he commits the most heinous acts. His first ambitions are shown when Macbeth mentions that Malcolm’s ascendency to the throne is a step ‘On which I must fall down, or else o’erleap.’ Since the murder of Duncan, Macbeth experiences a growing sense of vulnerability and threat to his throne, telling his wife that ‘Macbeth shall sleep no more!’ Once Macbeth has had a taste of power, he seems unable and unwilling to stop killing in order to secure his position on the throne. Selfishly, Macbeth puts his own desires before the good of his country until he is reduced to a mere shell of a human being. His mind spiralled out of control through the scheming Lady Macbeth.

The ambition of Lady Macbeth and her persuasive and forceful personality corrupted Macbeth and triggered his collapse. She desired the royal titles of king and queen more than her husband, and her boldness and masculinity spurred Macbeth to kill King Duncan. She was solely concerned with power and pursued her goals with great determination. Her strength of will and sexual taunting of Macbeth, that if he ‘durst do it [kill Duncan], then you were a man,’ shows her crafty skills...
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