Man's greatest desires can lead them as an individual to commit the most heinous of crimes, which will ultimately lead to their self destruction. As evident in William Shakespeare's 27th play Macbeth, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth are both represented differently, yet show some similarities. Both of them lust for the throne, but their determination is what sets them apart from each other. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth's desire to be at the top of the throne is ignited by the revealing of the witches prophecies. But as Lady Macbeth's longing of the throne gets passionately stronger as the story goes along, at the same time Macbeth's gets weaker.
Initially, Macbeth's desire for the throne comes to fruition after the revealing of the witches prophecy, in which they foreshadow Macbeth is going to be the next King. Macbeth automatically sees himself murdering King Duncan when he says," My thought whose murder is yet fantastical/Shakes so my single state of man that function/is smother'd in surmise; and nothing is/but what is not"(1.3.149-152). The witches prophecy awakens a new side of Macbeth , a secret murderous ambition. On the other hand, Lady Macbeth receives the news via letter sent by Macbeth and her thoughts immediately turn to murder. Lady Macbeth questions his character by saying, "Glamis thou art, and Cawdor, and shalt be/ What thou art promised: yet do I fear thy nature;/ It is too full o' the milk of human kindness...Art not without ambition, but without/the illness should attend it"(1.5.14-16.18-19) Lady Macbeth believes that Macbeth is too kind and sweet to do what is necessary to be the King. Furthermore, Macbeth's emotions have overcome him and he decides that killing Macbeth is just too hard."We will proceed no more in this business/ He hath honor'd me of late, and I have bought /Golden opinions from all sorts of people/ Which should be worn in their newest gloss/not cast aside so soon"(1.7.33-36). Macbeth is worried about what other people will think and how the news will devastate the people of the kingdom. Lady Macbeth, unlike Macbeth is ready to kill King Duncan and is not hesitant on doing so. She shows that she is a much more stronger person than Macbeth and he is a coward for being scared, "Which thou esteem'st the ornament of life/and live a coward in thine own esteem," (1.7.46-47). She is using her tactics to attack his character to get him to agree with the plan, but it does not work out. In a further attempt to make her dream a reality, Lady Macbeth attempts to convince Macbeth to kill Duncan by saying that he was a man when he wanted to kill King Duncan, "When you durst do it, then you were a man"(1.7.54).
Macbeth was ready to commit the crime right from the start, until he flooded his mind with doubt and procrastination. But then Lady Macbeth displays her greed by showing devil like characteristics,"Unsex me here/and fill me, from the crown to the toe, top full/ of direst cruelty"(1.5.45-46). This convinces Macbeth to question his own bravery, which he has displayed constantly in wars, yet can not do in this situation. Macbeth finally gives in to his wife's words and agrees to kill King Duncan. With Lady Macbeth using her manipulation skills to entice Macbeth to agree to her every word, this is all she needs to fulfill her desires of being on top of the throne. But, her cunning ways will also lead Macbeth to his eventual self destruction which will be found in the book later.