Macbeth

Ambition

Act 1

Macbeth learns his prophecy that he will become king and wants to become king. Macbeth's ambition and desire drive him to kill Duncan.


Pg. 15 "It were done quickly: if the assassination could trammel up the consequence, and catch, with his surcease, success, that but this blow... we'ld jump the life to come."

Act 3

Macbeth's ambition to stay king because of the second of the prophecy that Banquoes sons will become king drives him to kill Banquoe and Fleance.

Pg. 37 "Acquiant you with the perfect spy o' the time the moment on't ; for't must be done tonight... to leave no rub nor botches in work."

Act 4

Macduff's ambition to kill Macbeth because Macbeth murdered his family.

Pg. 10 "Oh, I could play the woman with mine eyes

And braggart with my tongue! But, gentle heavens,

Cut short all intermission. Front to front

Bring thou this fiend of Scotland and myself.

Within my sword’s length set him; if he ’scape,

Heaven forgive him too."

Shakespeare's effectiveness

Shakespeare's effectiveness at portraying ambition was good. In Macbeth Shakespeare has multiple examples of characters having a strong desire to acheive what they want.