Why would we consider Macbeth a tragic hero?

Updated 21 March, 2023
Macbeth is considered a tragic hero because he starts as a respected and noble character, but his desire for power and ambition ultimately leads to his downfall. As the play progresses, Macbeth makes decisions that lead to his own destruction, but he also experiences a sense of remorse and regret for his actions. He realizes that his pursuit of power was futile and that it ultimately cost him everything he held dear. Macbeth's tragic flaw is his unchecked ambition, which leads him to commit heinous acts and ultimately leads to his tragic end.
Detailed answer:

Macbeth, the protagonist of Shakespeare's play of the same name, is widely considered a tragic hero due to his noble birth, tragic flaw, and downfall. As a nobleman and warrior, Macbeth possesses great potential for greatness, but his tragic flaw is his overwhelming ambition, which ultimately leads to his downfall. He is described as "valiant" and "worthy" by others in the play, and his tragic flaw is what ultimately makes him a tragic hero.

Macbeth's downfall is caused by his ambition and his willingness to do whatever it takes to achieve his goals, even if it means committing terrible crimes. He murders King Duncan to gain the throne, but this act of regicide weighs heavily on his conscience and leads to a spiral of further bloodshed. His downfall is also caused by his own internal conflict, as he struggles with guilt, fear, and paranoia.

Despite his tragic flaws, Macbeth is a sympathetic character, and his downfall is a result of his own actions and decisions. He is not simply a victim of fate or circumstance, but rather an active participant in his own tragic story. This combination of noble birth, tragic flaw, and downfall, makes Macbeth a classic example of a tragic hero in literature.

As the play progresses, Macbeth's tragic flaw becomes increasingly evident, and his downfall seems inevitable. The witches' prophecies, coupled with Lady Macbeth's manipulation, serve as catalysts for his actions, but ultimately, Macbeth is responsible for his own fate. His tragic end is a result of his own choices, and his story serves as a cautionary tale about the dangers of unchecked ambition.

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