Macbeth- Ambition

Macbeth’s ambition is a driving force throughout the play that eventually leads to his downfall. In act one there are many situations where ambition is suggested to be Macbeths fatal flaw. Macbeth is made Thane of Cawdor immediately after the strange witches’ prophecies. In this is scene the asides allow the viewer a glimpse of his ambition to become king. Macbeths aside “This supernatural soliciting/ Cannot be ill, cannot be good. If ill, Why hath it given me earnest of success, / Commencing in a truth? I am Thane of Cawdor. If good. Why do I yield to that suggestion/ Whose horrid image doth unfix my hair, / And make my seated hear knock at my ribs” demonstrates his ambitious nature as his immediate solution is to kill the king to ensure the prophecy comes true. This shows Macbeth is willing to give up everything if it means he has a chance at becoming king. He knows if caught he will end up killed. Macbeth knows what he will do is wrong “Why do I yield to that suggestion” but he gives into his own ambition, leading to his downfall.
Lady Macbeth also has a hand in making sure Macbeth acts on his desire to become king essay writer pay. When she receives the letter she fears Macbeth humanity will win out over his ambition as displayed in the quote, “Yet do I fear thy nature,/ It is too full o’ th’ milk of human kindness/Thou wouldst be great,/ Art not without ambition, but without / The illness should attend it. ”. The use of the word ‘milk’ is closely associated with babies and the colour white, both symbols for innocence and purity.
It is important to note that Lady Macbeth thinks of Macbeth as being innocent and pure, considering his change in nature further on in the play, largely related to Lady Macbeth tying her ambitions with his to insure her cruelty and lack of purity over powers his. By doing so Macbeths ambition for power takes away his humanity, leaving power crazed tyrant. Another piece of evidence to support that ambition is Macbeths fatal flaw is that he admits and foreshadows is own downfall caused by his ambition, “I have no spur/ To prick the sides of my intent, but only/ Vaulting ambition, which o’erleaps itself/ And falls on the other”.

The metaphor, “I have no spur/ To prick the sides…” creates imagery as if he is the horse and ambition is what will push im him forward, although he knows he will go too far and it will fall down onto him. Macbeth foreshadowing his downfall caused by his ambitious nature is what reinforces the idea that his fatal flaw is ambition. The examples of Macbeths having ambition associated with his eventual death are not only admitted by Macbeth himself, but also by Lady Macbeth. Macbeths own ambition is what drives him to finally commit numerous murders, signing his own death warrant at the same time making amibition Macbeths fatal flaw.

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