In William Shakespeare’s Macbeth, the prophecy of three witches drives the noble Thane’s ambition beyond that of morality. His relationships with others, his dignity, and his sense of self-worth are all sacrificed for the title of King. The witches’ prophecy inflates Macbeth’s ambition and ego, causing him to take destiny into his own hands. Happiness, however, did not foresee his gain and eventually ruin was all that found him.
At the beginning of the play Macbeth was a dedicated soldier for Scotland and its King, Duncan. He risked his life fighting for honor and the King’s favor. After the battle with Norway, where he proved himself so by wining for his country, the witches told him of his destiny. After their first premonition was proved to be true, the witches words of, “King hereafter” (1.3.) began to affect Macbeth’s ego. He wanted to be King and after Malcolm was said to be the next heir to the throne, Macbeth felt the only way he was to be King was to murder Duncan. Even after his plan reported to his wife, the doubts were still there, but he pushed them aside and betrayed the King regardless. For even Lady Macbeth longed to be queen and saw the murder necessary. His ambition just grew and grew. With every new obstacle he faced, killing seemed to be the only option.
The witches’ prophecy even affected his relationships. At the beginning of the play Macbeth and Lady Macbeth were extremely close they shared everything together. They loved each other and it was evident. After the murder of Duncan though Lady Macbeth began to feel remorse but the new King (Macbeth) made justifications for the action. From then on when Macbeth saw fit an action of malice the Queen was not to no of it. They isolated themselves from one another while Macbeth’s own desire was tearing them apart. He also began killing people he respected as men and friends. When Banquo was told that he would be the father to a line of Kings Macbeth saw this as a huge threat to his well earned thrown. He hired men to kill him not thinking twice about it until the guilt made him mad. At one time he respected Macduff but now seeing him as a traitor he killed his wife and children with no remorse at all. He began to think of only himself and the throne that gave him no content.
When Macbeth decided to go back to the witches their apparitions caused a new reason for downfall. Macbeth saw himself as immortal for if no man born of woman could harm him to what would he have been born, and if worry not begin until Burnum wood come to Dunsinane then who has seen trees unroot and scatter the land. With every word of the witches tongue Macbeth grew more and more cold. His entire personality shifted and keeping the throne his main goal. He neglected his wife and felt no pain upon her death. They had grown completely apart and then it was Macbeth standing alone against Macduff, Malcomm, and the English army.