By playing on Macbeth’s deepest ambition, it brought forth thoughts of evil and as a result, it leads Macbeth down a violent path. Lady Macbeth also has a part to play as she is the driving force, who plotted and urged Macbeth into committing the hideous act. Lady Macbeth attacked qualities of Macbeth’s manhood, telling him when he commits the murder then he “[is] a man”. Shakespeare suggests that Macbeth lacks the strength of character, but through manipulation of his ambitions, he gains the strength to carry out the act. Straight after the murder of Duncan, Macbeth is shaken by what he has committed and says will all “great Neptune’s ocean, wash this blood/clean from my hands”, reveals that he is now regretting his decision and is making an attempt to get rid of the evidence.
In Act 2 Scene 1 of Macbeth by William Shakespeare, Shakespeare explores the psychology behind guilt and vulnerability, and how they play a role in Macbeth’s mental instability. Macbeth shows the impact of guilt and vulnerability through his hallucinations, affected sleep, and credulity in the higher power. In this soliloquy, Macbeth’s growing uncertainty with murdering Duncan is being expressed despite the earlier convincing of his wife, Lady Macbeth. While waiting for the dinner bell that will initiate this bloody expedition, he sees a dagger pointing towards Duncan’s chambers. Though first confused by the dagger, he later concludes that is a figment of his imagination from a guilt-ridden mind.
In William Shakespeare’s play, Macbeth, the leading motif, ambition, equally serves as the catalyst for Macbeth’s demise. Throughout the play, Shakespeare gradually exposes Macbeth’s weak character and internal darkness as he presents Macbeth with the seductive illusion of power and ambition. Macbeth’s ambition turned him from a noble Thane to a murdering King, encouraged by his wife until his tender character turned ruthless, and eventually led to the final deaths Lady Macbeth and himself. In the beginning of Macbeth, the protagonist possessed respectable qualities. Similar to Oedipus, Macbeth desired to save their kingdoms either from the plague or Scottish traitors.
Lady Macbeth’s constant questioning of his manhood early on lead to an even greater amount of pressure on Macbeth to gain power through any means necessary. As stated by 19th century English writer Lord Acton, “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Macbeth starts as a man who has been praised for murder he committed on the battlefield and soon becomes the very enemy he originally fought against by rebelling against higher power.With his inherited power Macbeth gains the access to do whatever he wants with those who oppose him. When he is confronted with the apparition that Macduff must be bewared he states, “The very firstlings of my heart shall be the firstlings of my hand.” (4.I.167-168) Macbeth’s anxiety about his power somehow being in jeopardy, even though the witches reveal no one can harm him, leads to him murdering Macduff’s family. Macbeth has an idea in his head that he must follow his first impulse so he can retain his power. Macbeth is a classic dicator, a power hungry individual who will do anything to maintain his power.
He says “I have no spur / To prick the sides of my intent, but only / Vaulting ambition which o’erleaps itself / And falls on th’other”(ActⅠScene ⅶ) Macbeth has enough self-awareness to realize the dangers of killing the king yet his temptation to complete the prophecy is too strong. Another example of ambition is when Lady Macbeth plans the murder of Duncan and continually urges Macbeth to do it in order to fulfill the prophecy and desire. Lady Macbeth puts aside her reasoning and lets her temptation run her actions. Ambition is what drives the both of them to commit such atrocities. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth wanted to be powerful so bad that they were willing to compromise their morals in order to be successful.
Present fears are less than horrible imaginings” (1.3.150). The show that Macbeth thought has terrify himself that he think in order to the prophecy come true he has to kill King Duncan. After Lady Macbeth has found out about the witches’ prophecy of Macbeth latter. Her strong desire and ambition of power has led Macbeth to assassinate Duncan by insulted him “wouldst thou have that Which thou esteem 'st the ornament of life, And live a coward in thine own esteem, Letting “I
The entire driving force of the play is Macbeth’s desperate desire to become king. And in order to achieve that, he must get rid of the current king, King Duncan. He expresses these desires in act one during which he is in a discussion and says aside “Stars, hide your fires;/ Let not light see my back and deep desires./ The eye wink at the hand, yet let that be/ Which the eye fears, when it is done, to see” (I.iv.57-60). From early on Macbeth exhibits these evil minded ambitions. He experiences guilt and questions whether or not he should go through with killing Duncan.
After being responsible for the deaths of two people, Duncan and Banquo, Macbeth is in a state where he feels the need to keep murdering people that could possibly get in his way of becoming king. Macbeth exclaims his internal battle when planning for the death of Macduff: “I am in blood, Stepped in so far that, should I wade no more,” (3.4 141-143). When Macbeth says this he is expressing that he feels so far into this game of murder, and Shakespeare dramatically describes this as Macbeth figuratively, being in blood. Macbeth believes that he has “waded” so far into this blood that it would not make sense for him to stop, but to keep murdering anyone that could prevent him from becoming king. Macbeth and his men are not successful in killing Macduff, but do kill Macduff’s wife and son.
Macbeth’s eagerness leads him to attempt to fulfill the three prophecies by murdering for the kingship. Macbeth starts to suffer from a guilty conscience causing him to go ludicrous which leads him to his tragic demise. Some consequences of Macbeth’s ambition result to
In Shakespeare’s original text, blood imagery is used throughout many scenes to set the mood of guilt and give a sense of fear to the setting. This allows the audience to acknowledge and see into the character’s viewpoint as well as personality. An example of blood imagery is apparent during Macbeth’s soliloquy about his plan to murder King Duncan. He sees a dagger floating in the air and wonders if his mind deceiving him as the dagger becomes covered in blood. His obsession with thoughts of murder causes his hallucination, to which Macbeth says "I see thee still, and on thy blade and dudgeon gouts of blood, which was not so before" (2.1.46).