• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
Page
  1. 1
    1
  2. 2
    2

How is Richard III Portrayed in the First Three Scenes of the Play?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How is Richard III Portrayed in the First Three Scenes of the Play? Richard III is supposedly known for his murderous yet manipulative ways. It is the character that has aroused many questions as to what type of personality he actually possessed. There are many words that could describe Richard III throughout this play. Yet Shakespeare wrote this play in the times of Queen Elizabeth, so as to how reliable they are as to show his true character, we cannot be certain. However, it is this play that outlines many of Richard's qualities, and downfalls, and even in the very first three scenes of the play, one can get a very good idea of what the Elizabethans thought of Richard III. The play starts with Richard alone. This already can hint how Richard prefers to be. Yet with his soliloquy, we can get a much greater picture. From the very first few lines we can sense Richard's bitterness towards his brother, the King 'And now, instead of mounting barbed steeds /...He capers nimbly in a lady's chamber' Not only does Richard envy his brother's position as King, but he also believes that he does not do a good job of honouring this position. He carries on this soliloquy demonstrating even more bitterness, mainly targeted towards his own deformity and lack of love, to later hint towards his scheming nature 'And therefore, since I cannot prove a ...read more.

Middle

These actions repeat themselves when Richard comes across Lady Anne. Whereas at the end of the last scene, Richard was scheming that he would just marry her as a way to further himself as a means of achieving the crown, when he actually speaks to her, his persona entirely changes. His spiteful and bitter ways all turn to sweet adulations, and although as the audience we have witnessed Richard's many bad conspiracies, we are still fooled by this new portrayal of Richard. This portrayal of him is charming and perhaps even alluring. The language he uses is all so sweet, but yet so contriving and canny, for example 'He that bereft thee, lady, of thy husband / Did it to help thee to a better husband.' This language shows that he almost tries to excuse himself of killing someone as a way to admit love, which he carries on with. He does not admit that he just killed him for being in a bad mood at the time. However, he easily entices Anne, enough so that she can go from loathing him and wanting him dead, as to later on wearing Richard's ring. His character is just that manipulative that it is so effective for him to get whatever he wants. This then portrays him to seem as if he suffers from some sort of schizophrenia, where he can't help but be an ever-changing character. ...read more.

Conclusion

He twists the others actions to make them feel bad for troubling the ill King with petty arguments. Yet, when Margaret appears all this hatred, from everyone in this scene, is directed to her, which again is used as an advantage for Richard. However, he is still portrayed as the heinous villain as Margaret expresses her true enmity for him, 'Why strew'st thou sugar on that bottled spider / Whose deadly web ensnareth thee about?' It is only Margaret who can see Richard for the devious person he is, yet the irony in that she is the only person that no one seems to listen to just adds to the portrayal Richard has of being so cunning. The overall character of Richard is very hard to understand, as there are many different sides to him, an advantage to him as it enables him to get almost exactly what he wants, with generally no one being any wiser and figuring out this scheming side to him. It is Richard's determined mind, and lack of guilt that make him a hated character. However, what is even more chilling is the fact that even this most contriving of characters can be liked by the audience due to his powerful, and intelligent speeches. It is still this dominant character that confuses the minds of many people by his many personalities, and it is this character, and his many different portrayals that grips many readers to the play. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Richard III 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 GCSE Richard III essays

  1. 'In his depiction of Richard III Shakespeare has created much more than a simple ...

    People may be suspicious of him but never fear him, as he is too devious to catch their attention to what he is actually up to. Through his various captivating talks to the audience, he is attractive, intimate and conspiratorial, telling us what is going to happen when his soon-to-be victims have very little clue indeed.

  2. In 'Richard III', how is it that we can be so interested in Richard, ...

    This shows he is saddened by what has happened to Clarence, but in fact it is because of Richard's orders that Clarence is imprisoned. Richard also acts the part of the innocent man, unable to hide his real nature: 'Because I cannot flatter and look fair, Smile in men's faces,

  1. In Shakespeares play King Richard III, Richard; the protagonist of the play, is portrayed ...

    which emphasises how he feels, young people never live long. The fact that he is planning his own cousin's murders to get to the throne emphasises how he is willing to let nothing stand in his way to prevent him reaching his goal.

  2. Richard III's Character in the Play and History

    He convinces the Lord Mayor that Hastings was an enemy and so he had reason to kill him. "We live to tell it, that the subtle traitor this day had plotted, in the council house," By giving the Mayor a reason why Hastings deserved to be killed, the Citizens would

  1. How does Shakespeare reveal Richard III's characteristics and skills to be both repulsive and ...

    As well as our sympathy escalating, Anne's anger towards Richard escalates through her opening speech.

  2. Richard III how is he repulsive and impressive

    Shakespeare shows the audience Richard is unattractive and that his deformities handicap him 'I that am not shaped for sportive tricks ... I that am rudely stamped.' The audience feels sorry for Richard but also feel disgusted by his description.

  1. How does our opinion of Richard alter throughout the first 3 scenes of Shakespeares

    Obviously, at the time when the play had just been written and performed, Queen Elizabeth I was on the throne. As a descendent from the Lancastrian line, the portrayal of the Yorkists becomes almost derogatory because it would portray the Queen's family in a positive light.

  2. Discuss how the climatic scenes from Edward Scissorhands and Sleepy Hollow make use of ...

    This innocence is illustrated when Edward attempts to calm Kevin down and the people of suburbia think he's attacking him. He is already in trouble for other things yet when the police come, the policemen lets Edward get away, and shoots his gun in the air.

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