Ambition


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Ambition

Alger, Horatio
author of a series of rags-to-riches stories. [Am. Lit.: Ragged Dick]
Bart, Lily
sacrifices her principles and her chance for love in schemes to climb the social ladder. [Am. Lit.: The House of Mirth in Hart, 385]
Chardon, Lucien
(de Rubempré) young writer determined to achieve fame and wealth. [Fr. Lit.: Balzac Lost Illusions in Magill II, 595]
Claudius
murders to gain throne; plots to keep it. [Br. Lit.: Hamlet]
Constance
ambitious for her son Arthur. [Br. Lit.: King John]
Faustus, Doctor
makes a pact with the devil to further his own ambitions. [Br. Lit.: The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus]
Golden Boy
talented young violinist gives up musical career for the sake of wealth and fame as a boxer. [Am. Lit.: Odets Golden Boy in Magill III, 422]
hollyhock
traditional symbol of ambition. [Flower Symbolism: Flora Symbolica, 174]
John, King
aspiring, self-assertive king of mediocre character. [Br. Lit.: King John]
Macbeth
aspires to political power. [Br. Lit.: Macbeth]
Macbeth, Lady
stops at nothing to gain political power for husband. [Br. Lit.: Macbeth]
mountain laurel
traditional symbol of ambition. [Flower Symbolism: Flora Symbolica, 175]
Ragged Dick
hero of a Horatio Alger rags-to-riches story. [Am. Lit.: Ragged Dick]
Roxana
sleeps with the rich to get ahead in world. [Br. Lit.: Roxana, The Fortunate Mistress]
Sejanus
chief minister of Emperor Tiberius uses seduction, conspiracy, and poisoning to gain the throne. [Br. Drama: Benét, 912]
Slope, Rev. Obadiah
vainly strives to advance himself in objectionable ways. [Br. Lit.: Trollope Barchester Towers in Magill I, 55]
Sutpen, Thomas
from poor origins, tries to gain aristocratic status. [Am. Lit.: Faulkner Absalom, Absalom in Magill I, 5]
Tamburlaine
Scythian bandit becomes king of Persia and ruler of Turkey and Babylon. [Br. Drama: Tamburlaine the Great in Magill I, 950]
What Makes Sammy Run
a dynamic but vicious opportunist attains success. [Am. Lit.: What Makes Sammy Run]
References in classic literature ?
On the one occasion when she essayed the part of the tree's romantic protector, she represented herself as feeling "so awful foolish" that she refused to undertake it again, much to the secret delight of Rebecca, who found the woodman's role much too tame for her vaulting ambition.
He was ambitious enough to be contented with nothing short of the highest rank of overseers, and persevering enough to reach the height of his ambition.
Till you chose to turn her into a friend, her mind had no distaste for her own set, nor any ambition beyond it.
John Dashwood wished it likewise; but in the mean while, till one of these superior blessings could be attained, it would have quieted her ambition to see him driving a barouche.
Catherine had kept up her acquaintance with the Lintons since her five-weeks' residence among them; and as she had no temptation to show her rough side in their company, and had the sense to be ashamed of being rude where she experienced such invariable courtesy, she imposed unwittingly on the old lady and gentleman by her ingenious cordiality; gained the admiration of Isabella, and the heart and soul of her brother: acquisitions that flattered her from the first - for she was full of ambition - and led her to adopt a double character without exactly intending to deceive any one.
Clare; "say he shall possess industry, ambition, and firmness of purpose.
Waste forces within him, and a desert all around, this man stood still on his way across a silent terrace, and saw for a moment, lying in the wilderness before him, a mirage of honourable ambition, self-denial, and perseverance.
To think that you should be the first to kindle the sparks of ambition in my umble breast, and that you've not forgot it
Here at least We shall be free; th' Almighty hath not built Here for his envy, will not drive us hence: Here we may reign secure, and in my choyce To reign is worth ambition though in Hell: Better to reign in Hell, then serve in Heav'n.
Amongst dissolute and unprincipled men, of whom the Temple Order included but too many, Albert of Templestowe might be distinguished; but with this difference from the audacious Bois-Guilbert, that he knew how to throw over his vices and his ambition the veil of hypocrisy, and to assume in his exterior the fanaticism which be internally despised.
Among the most formidable of the obstacles which the new Constitution will have to encounter may readily be distinguished the obvious interest of a certain class of men in every State to resist all changes which may hazard a diminution of the power, emolument, and consequence of the offices they hold under the State establishments; and the perverted ambition of another class of men, who will either hope to aggrandize themselves by the confusions of their country, or will flatter themselves with fairer prospects of elevation from the subdivision of the empire into several partial confederacies than from its union under one government.
If a federal Constitution could chain the ambition or set bounds to the exertions of all other nations, then indeed might it prudently chain the discretion of its own government, and set bounds to the exertions for its own safety.