Ambition, Tyranny

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Mikaela Missouri 19 October 2014 AICE English Lit Richard III W.A. #3 Richard III by Shakespeare Ambition, Tyranny, and the Nature of Kingship The play, Richard III by Shakespeare tells the story of an evil, manipulative, and corrupt man who uses the power of language, political brilliancy, and intelligence to ultimately win the title of king of England. However, as it is apparent to the reader and several characters of the play, Richard is extremely undeserving of the position which brings upon several challenges to reaching his goal. In this case Richard resorts to lies, deception, and murder in order to fulfill his own misery and own his rivals, while rising from duke of Gloucester, to “Lord Protector,” to king. Throughout the play, Shakespeare…show more content…
Some of these acts include manipulating Lady Anne into marrying him even though he murdered her lover which was already mentioned. He then had his own brother Clarence killed and blamed it on his other brother King Edward to increase his illness and bring forth his death. He kills the court noblemen, has Queen Elizabeth wrongfully arrested and executed, and imprisons two young princes and hires murderers to kill them also. This is just the beginning of a long list of sinister accounts of Richards actions taken in order to become king. Not only does Richard do these things but he can easily look back on the events and not feel an ounce of conviction in his soul. From the beginning he commits himself to being a villain and lives up to his commitment. He behaves as a tornado destroying anything and anyone in his way of becoming king. During a conversation between him and Buckingham, he tells Buckingham that if Lord Hastings does not want to go along with their plans he should “Chop off his head. Something we will determine. And when I am king, claim thou of me the earldom of Hereford, and all the moveables whereof the king my brother was possessed.” (act 3, scene 1, lines 193-196). Buckingham expresses that he will look forward to the present. Tyrrel refers to Richard as “the bloody king” after explaining how the two hired murderers felt after completing the “tyrannous and bloody act” that “ever yet this land was guilty of.” (act 4, scene 3, lines 1-22). Richard does not feel conviction of all the evil and turmoil he has caused for the people around him until towards the end of the play before the breakout of the war. After Richard is startled out of his sleep at midnight with “cold fearful drops” standing “on my trembling flesh.” he acknowledges the fact that he himself is in fact a murderer. He continues to say “then fly! What, from myself? Great reason why: Lest I revenge. What myself upon
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