He was the son of Malcolm II's eldest daughter and in some eyes, including his own, had a better claim to the throne than Malcolm II's chosen successor Duncan I, who was the son of Malcolm II's second daughter.
Macbeth was a strong king and ruled over a kingdom stable enough for him to be able to leave for several months on a pilgrimage to Rome. He instituted a new form of law and order in Scotland. His reign was noted as a time of prosperity. However, in 1054, Malcolm Canmore, Duncan's son, began his campaign for the throne with the assistance of Siward, Earl of Northumbria, by capturing the south of Scotland. Macbeth was killed by Malcolm at a battle near Lumphanan and the throne passed to Macbeth's stepson, Lulach, in August, 1057.
William Shakespeare's play Macbeth is loosely inspired by his life.
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