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William Shakespeare and his play Richard II - Essay Example

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Written by William Shakespeare (appoximately in 1595), 'Richard II' is a historical play, first part of the 'Henriad' tetralogy, depicting last two years of King Richard's life, 1398-1400, with its original name as 'The tragedie of King Richard the second' (in the edition of 1597)…
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William Shakespeare and his play Richard II
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"William Shakespeare and his play Richard II"

Download file to see previous pages Accordingly, principal excerpts from this historical play are: firstly, King Richard II's: 'Nay, if I turn mine eyes upon myself, I find myself a traitor with the rest; For I have given here my soul's consent To undeck the pompous body of a king; Made glory base and sovereignty a slave, Proud majesty a subject, state a peasant' (Bate, 2010); secondly, also Richard's: 'Exton, thy fierce hand Hath with the king's blood stain'd the king's own land' (Bate, 2010); thirdly, Exton's: 'As full of valour as of royal blood … This dead king to the living king I'll bear Take hence the rest, and give them burial here' (Bate, 2010); then, Henry Bolingbroke's: 'Exton, I thank thee not; for thou hast wrought A deed of slander with thy fatal hand Upon my head and all this famous land' (Bate, 2010); finally, also Bolingbroke's: 'Though I did wish him dead, I hate the murderer, love him murdered. … Lords, I protest, my soul is full off woe, That blood should sprinkle me to make me grow: Come, mourn with me for that I do lament, And put on sullen black incontinent: I'll make a vayage to the Holy Land, To wish this blood off from my guilty hand' (Bate, 2010). Further on, all these excerpts' meaning will be revealed according to the question and the overall meaning of the play. To understand these excerpts properly, we need to pick up few relevant actions from the synopsis. Specifically, Henry Bolingbroke was a Richard's cousin, disputing with Thomas Mowbray in the beginning of the play. Afterwards, they both were banished by the king; when John de Gaunt, Boligbroke's father, died, Richard injustly seized de Gaunt's land. Nevertheless, Bolingbroke returned secretly, while king was administering the war with Ireland. In fact, he and his supporters won the civil war against Richard (scenes before Wales' coast and in the Flint castle), and deprived king from his land, throne of England, and even his own life (at Pomfret's scene). According to this dramaturgy, we would answer given question from 'The King's Two Bodies' perspective, concerning not only his natural and politic / spiritual body, but also a rising of the Machivellian king, Henry Bolingbroke. Then, we will discuss two different blocks within given question: whether Bolingbroke and his supporters were justified in taking the throne from King Richard; what was lost and what was gained concerning Richard's actions as king and Boligbroke's actions once he seized power. Answering these blocks we will be pedominantly focused on excerpts stated above. Primarily, Henry Bolingbroke and his supporters, Northumberland and Percy, were not fully justified in taking the throne from Richard, because Richard remained as legal king even being impisoned after revolution. Bolingbroke was Richard's cousin, and very magnificent and successful leader of nobles' party, but still the previous king became an opportunity for the loyalists to restore their power. Moreover, in the medieval ages political situation with two kings --- old and new --- was often instable, due to a fact that if almighty God only himself ruled the universe, this meant that king by only himself must have been governed the English land (Richard's 'thy fierce hand Hath with the king's blood stain'd the king's own land' (Bate, 2010)), i.e. according to the medieval assumptions on the nature of royal power in the society, king had two bodies: ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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