Role of Ambition in Macbeth Essay

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The play Macbeth written by William Shakespeare is based upon old Scotland and this is used as the general time frame. During this time, Monarchy still existed and Scotland is in war with Whales. There are many emotions that arise throughout the play, but the most important of all is ambition. “Ambition is the desire for personal achievement. Ambitious persons seek to be the best at what they choose to do for attainment, power, or superiority” (“Ambition”). The motif of ambition in the play is that being ambitious leaves one blind to certain areas and can drive one insane to reach the intended goal. Numerous characters that showed this trait throughout the play were Banquo, Macduff, Lady Macbeth, and Macbeth.
Banquo was a noble warrior …show more content…

Later in the story, Macbeth does in fact gave Banquo killed and attempts to kill his lineage in fear that Banquo's line will take his throne.
Macduff's ambition in this play was to be loyal to his country by taking out Macbeth. Too much of his time is spent plotting against Macbeth, which throws off Macduff’s values. He abandons his family and left for England to find Malcolm so he could wage war against Macbeth. Later, Macbeth hears that the recent absence of Macduff at the banquet and at Duncan’s funeral was because he had fled to England, to find Malcolm. So Macbeth reacts to this by sending murderers to kill Macduff's family. Once Macduff finds out that his family is dead, he starts to exhibit some emotion. At this time he is about to wage war on Macbeth with Malcolm; Malcolm say's to Macduff "Dispute it like a man"(4.3.259). Macduff then replies,
I shall do so;
But I must also feel as a man.
I cannot but remember such things were
That were most precious to me. Did heaven look on
And would not take their part? Sinful Macduff,
They were all struck for thee! Naught that I am,
Not for their own demerits, but for mine,
Feel slaughter on their souls. Heaven rest them now. (4.3.260-7)
At this point, Macduff realizes that his mistake of leaving his family in Scotland will cause him a life of pain. Ambition is what ultimately caused this because without the ambition to kill Macbeth then he would of never left his family.
Lady Macbeth's ambition

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