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Ambition in Macbeth

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Ambition in Macbeth

      A key issue involved in Macbeth is ambition. Ambition is created when determination gets out of hand. It finds its most significant expressions in the plays two main characters, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth. The main reason why it all gets started is because of the witches' interference by putting suggestions into Macbeth's mind. Lady Macbeth's ambition forces him to act on these ambitions as well. The couple proves that unchecked ambition will ultimately destroy.


Macbeth is a brave man who is not naturally inclined to perform evil deeds, yet he desperately wants and desires power and succession. At the end, he is not happy with what he has accomplished, "I am afraid to think what I have done; look on `t again I dare not" (Shakespeare Macbeth 2.2.51-52). He kills Duncan against his own logical judgement and later drowns in paranoia and guilt. Macbeth is led to wicked thoughts by the prophecies of the three witches, especially after the witches' prophecy that he will be made Thane of Cawdor comes true. Macbeth is a powerful man and...

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