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In William Shakespeares Macbeth there are three key factors that contribute to Macbeths downfall These factors are the prediction foretold by the 3 witches to Macbeth Lady Macbeths strong influence over her husband and most important of all Macbeths ambition and hunger for power which all lead him down to despair and ultimately death These three factors have one root - evil At the very beginning of the play Macbeth is portrayed as a brave and honest soldier to the audience and his character is seen as one of goodness and righteousness They see him as a courageous loyal and chivalrous subject of the king brave Macbeth - well he deserves that name I ii 16 What they dont see however are the flaws in his character Macbeth though basically a good man is also extremely ambitious weak and has a tendency to self-doubt Though overall we see Macbeth as an evil character he is set apart from other villains because he is consummated by evil rather than being truly evil and this is shown mainly in the first Act of the play Macbeths praiseworthy reputation is maintained until he comes across the three witches The witches represent supernatural evil in the play They predict of Macbeth not only becoming Thane of Cawdor but also King of Scotland All hail Macbeth hail to thee Thane of Cawdor I iii 49 Second Witch All hail Macbeth that shalt be King hereafter I iii 50 Third Witch Not only does Macbeth dwell on the idea that he may become king but his thoughts are also driven to the idea of how he might get there and he wonders about his future Soon after his meeting with the witches Macbeth is honoured with the title of Thane of Cawdor and he is dumbfounded that the witches prophecy had become a reality Upon hearing this Macbeth plunges into a trance-like state
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