(1)1213 Level N English Richard III Teachers Introduction and Act 1

Features the language of margarets curse of richard

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Unformatted text preview: out that he has a foot in both camps. At the end of the play Derby is theoretically on the side of Richard (York), but supports Henry (Lancaster). That support is crucial in Richard’s defeat. Margaret joins the chorus against Richard, calling him devil. There is significant irony in the exchange between Rivers, Richard and the Queen that begins at line 145 ‘My Lord of Gloucester’: Rivers states that he would be loyal to Richard if he were king (he will be executed before he gets the chance to demonstrate that loyalty); Richard says he would rather be a pedlar than king, when we know it is his declared intent to become king. Questions 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. What is Richard’s special position if the King dies? Who does King Edward wish should be friends? What are the “lewd complaints” that Richard rejects? Queen Elizabeth accuses Richard of envy. What is he supposedly envious of? What does Richard accuse Queen Elizabeth of having done? Describe four things that Queen Margaret claims Richard and the court owe her. Explain the following quotes: a) “Ah, he is young and his minority/ Is put unto the trust of Richard Gloucester” (l. 11) b) “Because I cannot flatter and speak fair,/ Smile in men’s faces, smooth, deceive and cog,” (l. 48) c) “That wrens make prey where eagles dare not perch.” (l. 71) d) “To royalizehis blood, I spent my own.” (l. 125) Lesson 5: Act 1 Scene 3 Line 182 – 357 (end): Queen Margaret’s Curse Synopsis: Richard and the other courtiers remind Margaret that she brought her downfall upon herself by allowing the boy Rutland (a brother of Richard, Clarence and Edward) to be killed, which in turn provoked his father to place a curse on her. Margaret’s response is to say that if curses really work, then she will make some now. She curses King Edward, wishing death upon him; she curses Prince Edward, wishing death upon him; she curses the Queen, wishing her a long old age of pain and loss; she curses Rivers, Dorset and Hastings, wishing upon them an early death; she curses Richard most of all. Her final curse is for the Yorkists’ tenure of the throne – ‘As it was won with blood, lost be it so!’ She does not curse Buckingham, but warns him that he will regret trusting Richard. After Margaret leaves, Richard suggests that they should all feel sorry for her. Catesby brings a message from the king calling for their presence. All leave but Richard, who shares more plans with the audience before meeting with two murderers that he has hired to dispose of Clarence. At the meeting he advises the murderers not to let Clarence speak to them when they go to kill him. Features: The language of Margaret’s curse of Richard: she calls him ‘elvish‐mark’d, abortive, rooting hog’, ‘bottle spider’. She talks about his ‘deadly web’ and calls him a ‘poisonous bunchback’d toad’. The significance of the curse: everyone who is cursed suffers exactly as Margaret wishes, apart from Dorset. Richard shares his methodology with the audience: ‘The secret mischiefs that I set abroach/ I lay unto the grievous charge of others,’ ‘And thus I clothe my naked villainy/ With old odd ends stolen out of holy writ’. Questions: 1. 2. 3. 4. Wha...
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