Ambition and Power in Shakespeare’s Macbeth

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Words: 991 |

Pages: 2|

5 min read

Published: Aug 6, 2021

Words: 991|Pages: 2|5 min read

Published: Aug 6, 2021

In Shakespeare’s Macbeth, the themes of ambition and power corrupting are conferred as vices of the protagonist, Macbeth, and serve to cause his terrible downfall. Macbeth gains power at the starting of the play once he beats the Thane of Cawdor, a traitor to European nation. The Witches told this and it caused Macbeth to believe that no matter what they same would return true. After they told him he would sooner or later become the King of European nation, he determined to take a bloody path, that handed him to more power. As his power grew, his corruption did further, and he simply got rid of somebody that vulnerable his rank by killing them. Macbeth’s power and ambition untimely commenced to direct him down a slippery, bloody downfall.

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Macbeth’s ambition is that the essential reason why he turned from a noble Thane to a violent and bloody tyrant. When gaining the title of Thane of Cawdor, he remained humble and virtuously upright. However, shortly when the conclusion, he detected of the Witches’ prophecy and accomplished the untapped ambition among himself. Though he had bump into ambition, his intention to use it had been very little. It had been Lady Macbeth that absolutely persuaded Macbeth to use his ambition so as to achieve power and position. below her influence, Macbeth dead King Duncan to complete his rank and killed the Chamberlains so as to hide up his wrongdoing. His ambition next made him to kill Banquo, a trustworthy, noble, and ethical friend. This murder showed simply however out of management Macbeth had gotten. At now, he was not below the influence of Lady Macbeth and started to look at Banquo as a threat to his advancement rather than a plus to the welfare of European nation. Finally, Macbeth conducts his last major act of violence by murdering Macduff’s family when he's warned that Macduff is in England collecting a military against Macbeth. This killing was completely purposeless. Macduff was absolute to attack, as a result of he regarded him as a tyrant. He knew male monarch was not suited to be in an exceedingly position of authority over European nation, and this solely helped his case.

The opposite effects of ambition in Macbeth had a little, however noticeable impact on the most characters. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth were each deeply afflicted attributable to their ambition. Each of them suffered from tremendous guilt as a result of their ambition, and lady Macbeth eventually killed herself over it. Together with this, Malcom knew ambition was rife throughout Macbeth’s tyranny, and he needed to forestall it from being gift within the position of the throne in the future. He ensured this interference by testing Macduff. He lies to Macduff and tells him that his vices overbear his virtues, desirous to see whether or not Macduff is honourable and trustworthy toward European nation, or whether or not he has been manipulated by Macbeth and has similar egoistic intentions in mind. However, ambition was most seen through Macbeth and his egocentric decisions. Ambition not solely turned Macbeth into an egoistic tyrant, however he continued to murder all those in his path while not once considering the repercussions that his selections would wear the welfare of European nation.

As Macbeth began to achieve additional power through his unpitying advancements, his morals and nobility were greatly corrupted. Within the starting of the play, Macbeth has done an excellent deed for European nation and received praise from King King Duncan. Additionally, to the current, Macbeth struggles greatly from an indoor ethical conflict once he was deciding to kill King Duncan. Now Macbeth had no gained any important power, however it had been clear that he possessed basic morality. When killing King Duncan, he emerged as king and failed to recall. Though littered with guilt, once he had to create a choice concerning ending someone’s life, he didn't consult his morals nor turn over. It ought to even be noted that as he wrapped into a strong position in European nation, he not would like Lady Macbeth’s stern hand to create poor decisions. As his independence grew, his pride developed and he was a tyrant. His returning into power corrupted him within the sense that he turned from a on the face of its unconquerable soul that needed to serve European nation, to a prideful tyrant that was lusting for power. This corruption was best summarized within the last act of the play once the Witches offer Macbeth their final prophecy. The same that, “…none of girl born Shall damage Macbeth,” and “Macbeth shall never vanquished be till nice Birnam Wood…Shall return against him.” when hearing this from the Witches, Macbeth is below the impression that it's physically not possible to kill him. However, his pride serves a fatal blind spot. He fails to acknowledge that Macduff was born from a caesarean delivery, which Macduff’s army would use the wood from Birnam to fight against Macbeth’s army. He failed to acquire on this as a result of what he detected from the Witches was what he needed to listen to. He needed his power to be absolute and confirmed, and it had been in his mind when their prophecy. These 2 misconceptions diode to Macbeth’s death and supreme downfall. Macbeth’s power corrupted him into turning into a tyrant, and diode him to an indoor stage wherever he fatally misconceived himself as being unconquerable.

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William Shakespeare enclosed the themes of ambition and power corrupting through the protagonist, Macbeth. Macbeth’s tragic downfall was a right away result of these 2 themes. His mind and decision-making were manipulated by the facility he gained. As a result of Macbeth was delineated as a noble thane within the starting of the play, the issues were terribly straightforward to identify. The themes of ambition and power corrupting are best seen through the character of Macbeth, as his actions and selections highlighted the transformation from noble thane to power hungry tyrant. 

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Ambition And Power In Shakespeare’s Macbeth. (2021, August 06). GradesFixer. Retrieved May 28, 2024, from
“Ambition And Power In Shakespeare’s Macbeth.” GradesFixer, 06 Aug. 2021,
Ambition And Power In Shakespeare’s Macbeth. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 28 May 2024].
Ambition And Power In Shakespeare’s Macbeth [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2021 Aug 06 [cited 2024 May 28]. Available from:
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