• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Shakespeare's Henry V

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Henry V Essay William Shakespeare is one of the most famous and influential writers of all time. His plays not only portray the past, but also aspects of love and hate, humour and tragedy. Henry V, written by Shakespeare, using Raphael Holinshed's historical chronicles, appealed to many of the citizens of that time, as it presented an insight into their country's past, as well as 'feel-good' nationalism. It would have been performed on stage at a time when Henry VIII had secluded the country of all contact with the Church of Rome. Providing the audience with its country's past glories and triumphs, the play counter-acts this feeling of seclusion and loss of identity with glorified achievement and renewal of patriotism. Henry V continues Shakespeare's series of historic plays; it follows Henry IV and is the predecessor to Henry VI. In Henry IV, Parts 1 & 2, the audience is introduced to Henry V. Henry is young and considered 'wild' as his days were spent in the 'Boars Head' among the likes of his dear friend, and father-figure, Sir John Falstaff, and the other members of the 'Eastcheap Mob' (Henry's 'greener days' are later referred to and mocked at by the French Dauphin). ...read more.

Middle

Another example of this is when Henry speaks to the Governor of Harfleur. Perhaps Henry is bluffing in this speech, as one is led to believe otherwise as evidence suggests that Henry was compassionate and was a marvellous persuasive rhetoric speaker, "With conscience wide as hell, mowing like grass your fresh fair virgins, and your flowering infants." Although Henry had many loyal and faithful men, he also had a few un-loyal ones. On preparing to set sail for France, Henry confronts the three traitors in a debatable manner. He gradually builds up the pressure whilst speaking to them; he somehow knows that they are traitors. Some may say that prolonging the traitor's agony was unjust and inhumane; whilst others hold the view that Henry had every right to make the traitors squirm. Henry is presented with a case where a decision needs to be made as to what to do about a man who was a little drunk the other night. He tells Exeter to set free the man, but Scroop, Grey and Cambridge (traitors) disagree and express that they think that the man should be punished, "that's mercy, but too much security," "let him be punished." ...read more.

Conclusion

This is a great part to Henry's character, he shows passion, care, insecurity: this is a side to Henry that the audience have not witnessed before and is another attempt from Shakespeare to make Henry look as good as possible; perhaps also this is an indication as to what Shakespeare thinks about Henry VIII, in that, he should try to make the relationship work before marriage. Henry seems very nervous and, at first, a little reluctant. He soon progresses and finds out that courage on the battlefields isn't the same as courage in the bedroom. To conclude, one is manipulated to believe that Henry V was a great man and King, whose principals are strongly religious and are just and fair. However, one must acknowledge that Henry V, as it has been presented, is a creation, an adaptation of what Raphael Holinshed researched and of what William Shakespeare interpreted Henry to be like, or to what an ideal king should consist of. Further more, Henry, as Shakespeare viewed him, was a true star of England, who did give great, inspirational speeches to persuade his army, who did woo Katherine, and who did choose his responsibilities over friendship. However, the true Henry lies in Shakespeare. Shakespeare is the creator, the puppeteer; Shakespeare is the man who wrote the speeches, it was he who wooed Katherine. Jack Howard January 2003 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level British History: Monarchy & Politics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level British History: Monarchy & Politics essays

  1. Henry V, written by Shakespeare, using Raphael Holinshed's historical chronicles, appealed to many of ...

    The chorus eloquently suggests that Henry is 'the star of England' and 'the mirror of all Christian kings'. Are they correct in their assumption: is Henry a great king, or does William Shakespeare merely include this as a biased opinion to enforce onto the audience, so as to prosper the basis of patriotism already built earlier?

  2. Henry V Character Analysis

    Shakespeare has made this contrast even more poignant as Henry orders that all of his dead men - the majority of whom were commoners- be buried and that "Let there be sung Non nobis and Te Deum,/The dead with charity enclosed in clay", which highlights his respect for them.

  1. What kind of king does Shakespeare create in Act 3 Scenes 1 and 2? ...

    fearfully as doth a gall�d rock o'erhang and jutty has confounded base, swilled with the wild and wasteful ocean." Henry is describing a rock in a perilous position over a terrible ocean but isn't scared to look, by describing this image Henry is asking his men to let their heads overwhelm the image.

  2. William Shakespeare.

    three parts), Richard III, and Henry IV (in two parts), which often showed cynical political wisdom; and tragedies, such as Hamlet, Macbeth, and King Lear. He also wrote numerous sonnets. early plays Born in Stratford-on-Avon, the son of a wool dealer, he was educated at the grammar school, and in 1582 married Anne Hathaway.

  1. How do the poets in 'Charlotte O'Neils song' and 'Nothing Changed' show their feelings ...

    Or, they could continue working and if they didn't like the way they were treated it would be easy to leave and find better work. They were also able to earn a lot more than in England. 'Nothing's Changed' is a far more angry poem.

  2. If only they could talk

    The owner of the cow that supposedly suffered from lightening had demanded James Herriot for insulting and mistreating him! CHAPTER THIRTY: James goes to see Tricky his nephew (Mrs. Pumphrey's dog). James was surprised because of the size of the dog it was hugely fat; as a result, of the food that Mrs.

  1. the perfect lie

    I'm only fifteen, only fifteen and I have to look after Charles and look after the whole of the house. What am I going to do? The black taxi arrived that Charles had called for. There was silence throughout the whole of the journey.

  2. Shakespeare: Richard II, Henry IV and Henry V

    The imagery of bruising, butchery and blood in the king's opening speech not only shows the depressed state of the king in accordance with Richard's curse 'your care is gain of care by new care won' but depicts the kingdom in a state of unrest as a direct consequence of Henry's illegal action.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work