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Fact, fiction and faction : a study of Richard II in the light of the historical sources and conflicting… Alston, Brent 1986

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FACT FICTION AND FACTION Study of Richard II i n the l i g h t o-f the H i s t o r i c a l Sources and C o n f l i c t i n g A t t i t u d e s Toward Man and h i s Role i n the H i s t o r i c a l Process. By ROBIN BRENT ALSTON B.A. , The U n i v e r s i t y o-f B r i t i s h Columbia, 1984 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES Department o-f Theatre We accept t h i s t h e s i s as con-forming to the r e q u i r e d standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH November 1986 ffl Robin Brent A l s t o n , COLUMBIA 1986 In presenting t h i s thesis i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the Library s h a l l make i t f r e e l y available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of t h i s thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. I t i s understood that copying or publication of t h i s thesis for f i n a n c i a l gain s h a l l not be allowed without my written permission. R.B. A l s t o n Department of T h e a t r e The University of B r i t i s h Columbia 1956 Main Mall Vancouver, Canada V6T 1Y3 _ . 19 August 1986 Date E-6 (3/81) ABSTRACT A n a r r a t i v e d e s c r i p t i o n o-f an h i s t o r i c a l event r e f l e c t s the nature o-f such an event as seen -from a p a r t i c u l a r p e r s p e c t i v e . However, Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s equate h i s t o r y and drama by r e - p r e s e n t i n g the drama i m p l i c i t i n events t h a t are surrounded by s p e c u l a t i o n and i n t e r p r e t a t i o n . The audience i s thereby placed i n the p o s i t i o n o-f having t o i n t e r p r e t the drama t h a t p u r p o r t s to be both "dramatic" and " h i s t o r i c a l " or accept the i m p o s s i b i l i t y o-f understanding h i s t o r y . Con-fronted with a r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n o-f a past event, the audience i s thrown back upon i t s own a t t i t u d e s towards man i n the world: the drama merely r e f l e c t s human nature as the observer experiences and a r t i c u l a t e s h i s view o-f the h i s t o r i c a l drama. Con-founded by what I term the " t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e " — a p e r s p e c t i v e that the audience i s encouraged t o e x p e r i e n c e — t h e audience's p r e j u d i c e s a re purged, momentarily. F i n a l l y , the t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e encourages the audience t o adopt a p a r a d o x i c a l view o-f man i n the world; d e s p i t e the seemingly i n c o n t r a v e r t a b l e evidence t h a t h i s t o r y a-f-fords as proof of the e s s e n t i a l l y "bad" nature of man, we are asked to adopt an e s s e n t i a l l y c r e a t i v e view t h a t assumes t h a t man i s indeed made i n the image of h i s Creator and b a s i c a l l y "good". The drama draws upon a deeply rooted hope t h a t man i s at l e a s t redeemable. Shakespeare r e v e a l s the p a r a d o x i c a l consequences of assuming t h a t man i s f u n d a m e n t a l l y " b a d " by s h o w i n g t h e human s u f f e r i n g t h a t r e s u l t s f r o m a s s u m i n g t h e w o r s t . The a u d i e n c e i s , o f c o u r s e , f r e e t o c h o o s e ; b u t o u r v i e w s o f t h e p a s t and t h e p r e s e n t t o a l a r g e e x t e n t d e t e r m i n e t h e f u t u r e . T h i s r e a l i z a t i o n i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f t h e t r a g i c h e r o ' s r e t r o s p e c t i v e w i s d o m — a wisdom t h a t i s a t t a i n e d t o o 1 a t e . By e x a m i n i n g Richard II i n t h e l i g h t o f t h e h i s t o r i c a l s o u r c e s , I h o p e t o r e v e a l how t h e a u d i e n c e i s l e f t i n an a m b i g u o u s s t a t e when i t comes t o i n t e r p r e t i ng t h e m o t i v e s o f t h e c h a r a c t e r s t h a t a r e b o t h f i c t i o n a l and h i s t o r i c a l . T h e M a c h i a v e l l i a n a t t i t u d e t o w a r d man, w h i c h g o v e r n s Richard III and i s t e m p e r e d i n Richard I I , i s o f t e n b r o u g h t t o b e a r on t h e d rama when c r i t i c s a t t e m p t t o j u d g e t h e m o t i v e s o f t h e ma in c h a r a c t e r s . In w r i t i n g H i s t o r y P l a y s , S h a k e s p e a r e i s r e c r e a t i n g a m b i g u i t y i n t h e b r o a d e s t s e n s e . M y s t e r y , a s o p p o s e d t o d e f i n i t i v e h i s t o r y , i s p e r h a p s t h e t r u e s u b j e c t a n d c o n c l u s i o n o f t h e d r a m a . S u p e r v i s o r s D r . J . K a p l a n TABLE OF CONTENTS Ab s t r a c t i i Table o-f Contents i v Acknowledgements v I n t r o d u c t i o n 1 The Role o-f the H i s t o r i a n 8 The Audience and i t s A t t i t u d e s 17 The T r a g i c P e r s p e c t i v e 38 King Richard I I ' s Loss o-f the Crown o-f England . . . 45 T r i a l 49 Passion 64 D e p o s i t i o n 78 Death 97 Co n c l u s i o n : The Burden o-f F a c t i o n 102 Notes 104 B i b l i o g r a p h y 113 i v ACKNOWLEDSEIiENTS The U n i v e r s i t y o-f B r i t i s h Columbia has provided me with the environment and kind o-f n u r t u r e t h a t I am most grate-ful -for. The u n i v e r s i t y has awarded me s e v e r a l s c h o l a r s h i p s t o help me pursue my s t u d i e s , and my a d v i s o r s have been a constant source o-f i n s p i r a t i o n t h a t i n i t s e l - f i s reward enough f o r the years of study. In being p a r t of the u n i v e r s i t y community, both as a student and as a teacher, I have been f o r t u n a t e s I have had the o p p o r t u n i t y t o work as a teacher and study as a student, or viewed i n another way, t o study at being a teacher and work at being a student; t h i s d u a l i t y i n my r o l e at the u n i v e r s i t y has been a unique and v a l u a b l e experience. My f r i e n d s have given me much support by v i r t u e of t h e i r presence, and these words of acknowledgement seem a l t o g e t h e r inadequate t o express the g r a t i t u d e I f e e l . My f r i e n d s have taught me a great deal through a c t i o n s t h a t I f e a r i t would prove too t e d i o u s t o r e l a t e . I o n l y hope that I may teach w e l l , as indeed we are a l l t e a c h e r s , as I continue t o study the drama that i s the s t u f f of l i t e r a t u r e and l i f e . v " F a i r c o u s i n , you debase your p r i n c e l y knee To make the base e a r t h proud with k i s s i n g i t . Me r a t h e r had my h e a r t miught -Feel your l o v e , Than my unpleased eye see your c o u r t e s y . " Bo Iingbroke kneeling before King Richard st Flint Castle Taken from Jean C r e t o n ' s Histoire, and reproduced with the p e r m i s s i o n of the B r i t i s h L i b r a r y Board: BL MS. H a r l e y 1319.f.50 v i INTRODUCTION ... l e t t h i s world no longer be a s t a g e To -feed c o n t e n t i o n i n a l i n g ' r i n g a c t ; 2 Henry IV I.i.155-56. In r e c o r d i n g h i s t o r i c a l e v e n t s , the h i s t o r i a n must s e l e c t and compress the i n f o r m a t i o n c o n c e r n i n g those e v e n t s i n o r d e r t o h i g h l i g h t not o n l y the major h i s t o r i c a l developments but a l s o p o s s i b l e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s o-f those e v e n t s w i t h i n a l a r g e r -frame o-f r e f e r e n c e . The documentation of an event- i s an acknowledgement of i t s s i g n i f i c a n c e , a t l e a s t i n the eyes of the r e c o r d e r , and the i n c l u s i o n of t h a t documented event w i t h i n a n a r r a t i v e d e s c r i p t i o n of a s e r i e s of e v e n t s i s f u r t h e r testament t o i t s s i g n i f i c a n c e i n a wider h i s t o r i c a l c o n t e x t . But the i n c l u s i o n of an event i n a n a r r a t i v e d e s c r i p t i o n of h i s t o r y i n v o l v e s an i m p l i c i t i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s and man's r o l e i n t h a t p r o c e s s . The t h e a t r e of h i s t o r i c a l c o n f l i c t s , with i t s c h a r a c t e r s , s i t u a t i o n s , p l o t s and s u b - p l o t s , i s i n t e r p r e t e d by the h i s t o r i a n i n h i s n a r r a t i v e d e s c r i p t i o n as opposed to s i m p l y r e - p r e s e n t e d . He may s e l e c t m a t e r i a l i n or d e r t o impose an or d e r t h a t r e f l e c t s h i s own view of e i t h e r the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s or man's r o l e i n the s h a p i n g of the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s , t h e r e b y e x t r a c t i n g e v i d e n c e t o su p p o r t a p a r t i c u l a r t h e s i s ; however, he may si m p l y Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 1 p r e s e n t the drama i n an attempt t o d e f i n e and a r t i c u l a t e the e s s e n t i a l n a t u r e af a p a r t i c u l a r c o n f l i c t . In t r a n s l a t i n g the n a r r a t i v e d e s c r i p t i o n s of h i s t o r y i n t o d r a m a t i c a c t i o n , the m a t e r i a l s under c o n s i d e r a t i o n undergo a f u r t h e r p r o c e s s of s e l e c t i o n and compression i n o r d e r t o t u r n " t h ' accomplishment of many y e a r s Into an h o u r - g l a s s " , 1 Shakespeare's " H i s t o r y P l a y s " , which i n v o l v e a combination of " f a i t h f u l l y " r e - p r e s e n t e d h i s t o r i c a l f a c t s , f a c t s which may be c o r r o b o r a t e d by r e f e r r i n g t o v a r i o u s s o u r c e s , and a d d i t i o n a l t h e a t r i c a l f i c t i o n s , which i n c o n t r a s t d i v e r g e s i g n i f i c a n t l y from the s o u r c e s , r e f l e c t two ve r y d i f f e r e n t E l i z a b e t h a n a t t i t u d e s towards both the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s and man's r o l e i n t h a t p r o c e s s . The l i v e s of Ki n g R i c h a r d II and King R i c h a r d I I I p r o v i d e the h i s t o r i c a l frame t h a t encompasses an e r a of E n g l i s h h i s t o r y t h a t Shakespeare adapted to the l i m i t a t i o n s of h i s s t a g e ; j u s t as Richard II and Richard III p r o v i d e the t h e a t r i c a l frame t h a t encompasses Shakespeare's two t e t r a l o g i e s , t h e i r l i v e s and t h e s e two p l a y s may be e i t h e r viewed as the r e s u l t and m a n i f e s t a t i o n of p a t t e r n s of vengeance and r e t r i b u t i o n based upon and prompted by the p r i n c i p l e s of M a c h i a v e l l i a n Real paIitik or as the i n c o n c l u s i v e r e s u l t and p a r t i a l m a n i f e s t a t i o n of a P r o v i d e n t i a l p a t t e r n t h a t i s c o n t i n u a l l y e v o l v i n g w i t h time as the p r o g r e s s i v e r e v e l a t i o n of the Ward of God i s e f f e c t e d . Although Richard III precedes Richard II i n Shakespeare's c h r o n o l o g y , the d e p o s i t i o n of K i n g R i c h a r d II by Henry B o l i n g b r o k e i s the l o g i c a l s t a r t i n g p o i n t f o r the e x p l o r a t i o n of the d i s i n t e g r a t i o n of the commonwealth t h a t c u l m i n a t e d i n the d e p o s i t i o n of the Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 2 " M a c h i a v e l l i a n " K i n g R i c h a r d I I I by the E a r l o-f Richmond. In or d e r t o r e - p r e s e n t the h i s t o r i c a l drama on the s t a g e i n such a way as t o accommodate these two opposing views, or a t t i t u d e s , towards man and h i s r o l e i n the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s , Shakespeare must m a n i p u l a t e h i s s o u r c e s . Shakespeare's s e l e c t i o n o-f i n f o r m a t i o n -from the s o u r c e s r e f l e c t s h i s own p a r t i c u l a r h i e r a r c h y of s i g n i f i c a n c e , but when he r a d i c a l l y d i v e r g e s from the s o u r c e s the drama becomes p u r e l y f i c t i o n a l . These moments when the a c t i o n p r e s e n t e d on the s t a g e i s s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t from the n a r r a t i v e d e s c r i p t i o n s as they appear i n the s o u r c e s may be regarded as b r o a d l y i n t e r p r e t a t i v e of the a c t i o n as a whole; s i m i l a r l y , the moments when the a c t i o n p r e s e n t e d on the s t a g e c l o s e l y resembles the h i s t o r i c a l e v i d e n c e , i n terms of c h a r a c t e r p o r t r a y a l , words spoken, and "deeds performed", may be regarded as the c e n t r a l h i s t o r i c a l moments t h a t demand i n t e r p r e t a t i o n — t h e s e a r e the moments when f i c t i o n and f a c t , drama and h i s t o r y , and i n t e n t i o n and a c t i o n become c o n c e p t u a l l y i n s e p a r a b l e . J u s t as the h i s t o r i a n i s engaged i n a r e t r o s p e c t i v e view of h i s t o r i c a l e vents, l i k e w i s e the "p r e s e n t " audience at one of Shakespeare's " H i s t o r y P l a y s " i s engaged i n a r e t r o s p e c t i v e view of h i s t o r i c a l e v e n t s t h a t a r e r e - p r e s e n t e d on the s t a g e ; the rea d e r , however, who i s p e r m i t t e d the r e t r o s p e c t i v e a n a l y s i s of the p l a y s themselves i n the l i g h t of the h i s t o r i c a l s o u r c e s may d i s c e r n Shakespeare's r o l e as h i s t o r i a n , as a " p l a y w r i g h t -Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 3 h i s t o r i a n " , through the o b s e r v a t i o n of h i s " a c t " of s e l e c t i o n , o r g a n i z a t i o n , and r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n of h i s t o r i c a l e v e n t s . If the H i s t o r y P l a y may be seen as the r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n of an h i s t o r i c a l a c t i o n as opposed t o the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of h i s t o r i c a l e v ents, and i f i t s o b j e c t i v e i s the marriage of i n t e n t i o n and a c t i o n , then by g l i m p s i n g Shakespeare's r o l e as a p l a y w r i g h t -h i s t o r i a n through an a n a l y s i s of h i s " a c t " of s e l e c t i o n , o r g a n i z a t i o n , and r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n one may i n f e r Shakespeare's i n t e n t i o n . However, t h i s approach t o the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of i n t e n t i o n through the a n a l y s i s of a c t i o n may o n l y be accomplished in r e t r o s p e c t . The H i s t o r y P l a y i t s e l f merely c o n f r o n t s the audience with the p r e s e n t a t i o n of p r e s e n t a c t i o n s t h a t demand i n t e r p r e t a t i o n ; but the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the p r e s e n t c o n t i n u a l l y c o n f r o n t s man with the inadequacy of h i s v i s i o n , f o r he i s denie d a r e t r o s p e c t i v e a n a l y s i s of h i s own a c t i o n s u n t i l they a r e complete. Although man must a c t w i t h i n a h i s t o r i c a l frame t h a t he may not be f u l l y aware o f , the audience i s t h e r e b y c o n f r o n t e d with an e s s e n t i a l l y t r a g i c view of man's l i f e : the thoughts, words, and deeds of a l i f e t i m e d e f i n e an i n d i v i d u a l , and t h a t d e f i n i t i o n can o n l y be completed i n death. The words and deeds of a h i s t o r i c a l f i g u r e d e f i n e h i s c h a r a c t e r i n the eyes of h i s p u b l i c , j u s t as the words and deeds of an a c t o r on the sta g e d e f i n e h i s c h a r a c t e r i n the eyes of h i s audience; and y e t t h i s t r a g i c view of man's l i f e , t h i s t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e , i n which man i s n e v e r t h e l e s s r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the a c t i o n s t h a t he may o n l y be p a r t i a l l y aware o f , I would argue i s the o n l y o b j e c t i v e view D f man bound upon the wheel of h i s t o r y . Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 4 The a c t o r on the sta g e and the Ki n g upon h i s throne a r e both t o r n between two world s : the p a s t and the -future, and the p r e s e n t t h a t l i e s between thes e two worlds may be e i t h e r regarded as governed by a predetermined s c r i p t or s u b j e c t t o governance by man himsel-f. What i s c e r t a i n , however, i s t h a t man must a c t and s u f f e r f o r h i s a c t i o n s w i t h i n an u l t i m a t e l y i n c o m p r e h e n s i b l e world. And y e t i f i t were p o s s i b l e t o "read the book of f a t e " and r e t r o s p e c t i v e l y a n a l y z e a l i f e b e f o r e i t were l i v e d , then The h a p p i e s t youth, v i e w i n g h i s p r o g r e s s through What p e r i l s p a s t , what c r o s s e s to ensue, Would shut the book, and s i t him down and d i e . = While t h i s c y n i c a l view of man i n the world may f i n d ample su p p o r t and e v i d e n c e t o suggest the f u t i l i t y of man's l i f e , i n the l i g h t of such a t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e t h e r e emerges a s o r t of "ho p e l e s s optimism" t h a t i s i n f a c t born of t h i s v e r y d e s t r u c t i v e s k e p t i c i s m w i t h r e g a r d to man and h i s r o l e i n the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s . I t i s t h i s e s s e n t i a l c o n f l i c t between two d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed views of man i n the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s t h a t f i n d s i t s analogue i n the c o n f l i c t of c h a r a c t e r i n a c t i o n on the st a g e t h a t merely h o l d s a m i r r o r up t o na t u r e , an a c t i o n t h a t i s i t s e l f subsumed by the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s t h a t encompasses i t w h i l e p u r p o r t i n g t o r e - p r e s e n t h i s t o r y i t s e l f as t h e s u b j e c t matter; and t h i s c o n f l i c t t h a t i s so apparent t o the audience t h a t p e r c e i v e s the dramati c i r o n y t h a t hangs over the a c t i o n i n Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s i s f u r t h e r generated and r e v e a l e d i n the a u d i e n c e ' s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s of the sta g e a c t i o n . The audience and i t s a t t i t u d e s towards man and h i s r o l e i n the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s t h e r e f o r e becomes the t r u e s u b j e c t of the Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 5 drama: he who would i n t e r p r e t h i s t o r y as a v a s t c o r r o b o r a t i o n of a p a r t i c u l a r t h e s i s d i s t o r t s the f a c t s t o p r e s e n t h i s own p a r t i c u l a r f i c t i o n , which i s i n t u r n based upon p r i n c i p l e s t h a t make c e r t a i n assumptions about the na t u r e of man i n the world; he who would merely r e f l e c t d r a m a t i c a c t i o n , whether i t be " r e a l " or " f i c t i o n a l " , l i k e the d r a m a t i s t , sees f a c t i o n i t s e l f as the r e a l i t y . To d e f i n e t h i s word " f a c t i o n " i s perhaps analogous t o beheading "the many-headed Hydra", but the d r a m a t i s t seems t o acc e p t and accommodate f o r the n o t i o n of a s o r t of u n i v e r s a l c o n f l i c t i n a l l t h i n g s , and Shakespeare seems t o see the world i t s e l f as some v a s t and u n i v e r s a l t h e a t r e of human c o n f l i c t : which, i n a word, I c a l l " f a c t i o n " . While the audience i s a c t u a l l y o b s e r v i n g the drama, i t i s engaged i n the a c t of i n t e r p r e t i n g , and i n i n t e r p r e t i n g the a c t i o n each member of the audience does so a c c o r d i n g t o c e r t a i n p r i n c i p l e s t h a t determine what w i l l become hi_s d e s c r i p t i o n of the a c t i o n . And the way i n which one i n t e r p r e t s an a c t i o n i s i n e x t r i c a b l y bound to one's emotional response t o i t . In tragedy the audience v i c a r i o u s l y e x p e r i e n c e s an u n d e r s t a n d i n g of human a c t i o n t h a t a t the same time confounds u n d e r s t a n d i n g . In Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s , the audience h e l p l e s s l y o b s e r v e s c h a r a c t e r s t h a t come t o r e t r o s p e c t i v e u n d e r s t a n d i n g s of t h e i r s i t u a t i o n s when i t i s too l a t e t o e f f e c t any change; The audience, by o b s e r v i n g the a c t i o n s of h i s t o r i c a l f i g u r e s l i t e r a l l y on the s c a f f o l d , e x p e r i e n c e s the " a l e m b i c a t i o n " , to use one of Kenneth Burke's terms, of an a t t i t u d e . The p u r i f i e d Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 6 d i s t i l l a t e of an a t t i t u d e t h a t informs the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the a c t i o n i s , as Yeats would say, "wrought t o c r i s i s . " 3 Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 7 THE ROLE OF THE HISTORIAN T h i s wide and u n i v e r s a l t h e a t r e P r e s e n t s more wa-ful pageants than the scene Wherein we p l a y i n . As You Like It I I . v i i . 1 3 7 - 3 9 . H i s t o r y i s a s k i l l e d d r a m a t i s t , w i t h d r a m a t i c i r o n y as the main -feature o-f the p l o t . Kenneth Burke. The h i s t o r i a n i s engaged i n what E.H. C a r r c a l l s "a p r o c e s s of s e l e c t i o n i n terms of h i s t o r i c a l s i g n i f i c a n c e " 1 t h a t c u l m i n a t e s i n what W.H. Walsh c a l l s "a s i g n i f i c a n t r e c o r d . " 3 H i s t o r y i s comprised of many such r e c o r d s , but the events themselves a r e l o s t t o time. J u s t as a p e b b l e s i n k s beneath the s u r f a c e t o l e a v e the t e l l - t a l e r i p p l e s of i t s momentary presence, so too the a c t s of men a r e surrounded by i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s and e x p l a n a t i o n s t h a t r e c o r d t h e i r a c t s , the t r u e n a t u r e of which ar e l o s t to time i n the waters of o b l i v i o n . The p e b b l e f a l l s and s e t s up waves of r e p e r c u s s i o n s ; the h i s t o r i a n , by o b s e r v i n g those waves, may attempt t o i m a g i n a t i v e l y r e c o n s t r u c t the o r i g i n a l event, but such a r e c o n s t r u c t i o n can a t best be merely a d i s t o r t e d r e f l e c t i o n of the r e a l i t y and cannot be e m p i r i c a l l y v e r i f i e d because the event i t s e l f i s l o s t to time. Even t h i s view of the h i s t o r i a n ' s r o l e i n r e c o n s t r u c t i n g p a s t e v e n t s i s e x t remely s i m p l i s t i c because i s o l a t e d a c t s do not i n r e a l i t y o c c u r , as a l l a c t s a r e i n t e r r e l a t e d to g r e a t e r and l e s s e r degrees. Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 8 U l t i m a t e l y , the events t h a t the h i s t o r i a n d e a l s with must be r e c o n s t r u c t e d i n h i s i m a g i n a t i o n -from the p e r i p h e r a l e v i d e n c e t h a t he may draw upon, and -from the a v a i l a b l e e v i d e n c e he t r i e s to e s t a b l i s h a n a r r a t i v e o-f the drama, -from h i s p e r s p e c t i v e , w i t h a c o r r e s p o n d i n g " h i e r a r c h y of s i g n i f i c a n c e . " However, the e v i d e n c e t h a t he must draw upon, the " f a c t s and documents ... e s s e n t i a l t o the h i s t o r i a n t h a t do not by themselves c o n s t i t u t e h i s t o r y , " 3 i s merely a c o l l a t i o n of v a r i o u s p e r s p e c t i v e s with r e g a r d t o a p a r t i c u l a r event or s e r i e s of e v e n t s . Because the d e s c r i p t i o n and e x p l a n a t i o n of a s i t u a t i o n i s i n e x t r i c a b l e from the a u t h o r ' s p e r s p e c t i v e , the e v i d e n c e a v a i l a b l e t o the h i s t o r i a n i s comprised of s e l e c t i v e a s p e c t s of an event, or s e r i e s of events, t h a t have been f i l t e r e d through a s e l e c t i o n of a u t h o r i a l p e r s p e c t i v e s . And as the problems i n h e r e n t i n j u d g i n g past a c t i o n s a r e connected with the problems i n h e r e n t i n j u d g i n g the p r e s e n t , the r e a d e r of h i s t o r y as opposed to the w r i t e r of h i s t o r y i s u l t i m a t e l y c o n f r o n t e d with the s u b j e c t i v i t y of judgments made by p a s t h i s t o r i a n s , h i s t o r i a n s of the p a s t , and those who attempt t o p r o g n o s t i c a t e f u t u r e developments based on p r e s e n t a t t i t u d e s towards man and h i s r o l e i n the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s . To observe an event as i t happens and then d e s c r i b e the event a-fterwards, whether t h a t event i s the phrase I have j u s t w r i t t e n i n a sentence t h a t I am i n the p r o c e s s of w r i t i n g , or the d e p o s i t i o n of K i n g R i c h a r d II and i t s s i g n i f i c a n c e w i t h i n the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s , i s to be engaged i n a " p r o c e s s of s e l e c t i o n " not u n l i k e t h a t of the h i s t o r i a n . I m p l i c i t i n such a p r o c e s s Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 9 i s what Kenneth Burke terms the "sub-stance" o-f the p e r c e i v e r , and i t i s t h i s "sub-stance", w i t h i t s c o r r e s p o n d i n g p r i n c i p l e s , t h a t governs the p r o c e s s of s e l e c t i o n . The v e r y o b s e r v a t i o n of an event i s s e l e c t i v e ; t h a t s e l e c t i o n i s r e v e a l e d i n the a r t i c u l a t i o n of a s u b j e c t i v e p o i n t of view; and t h e r e f o r e the a r t i c u l a t i o n of an event i s i n t e r p r e t a t i v e i n t h a t i t c o l o u r s the o r i g i n a l event. Thus, the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of an event i s r e f l e c t e d i n i t s a r t i c u l a t i o n , whether i t i s p o e t i c , n a r r a t i v e , or d r a m a t i c i n i t s form, and r e v e a l s a s e t of v a l u e s t h a t cannot be d i v o r c e d from the " c h a r a c t e r " of the o b s e r v e r . In d e s c r i b i n g and i n t e r p r e t i n g an event, the o b s e r v e r r e v e a l s a p o i n t of view t h a t , at the same time, r e v e a l s the nature of a p a r t i c u l a r event as seen from such a p e r s p e c t i v e . The d e s c r i p t i o n of an event mustj to a c e r t a i n e x t e n t , be a d i s t o r t i o n of i t , w h i l e r e v e a l i n g i t s n a t u r e as seen from a p a r t i c u l a r " s t a n c e " . However, d e s p i t e the s k e p t i c a l view of h i s t o r y t h a t t h i s argument i m p l i e s , we may, as C a r r hopes, l e a r n from the e x p e r i e n c e such a study a f f o r d s . We may hope t o l e a r n about the p r e s e n t i n the l i g h t of the p a s t and l e a r n about the p a s t i n the l i g h t of the p r e s e n t : The f u n c t i o n of h i s t o r y i s t o promote a profounder u n d e r s t a n d i n g of both p a s t and p r e s e n t through the i n t e r r e l a t i o n between them.'' Thus, the o b s e r v a t i o n and judgment t h a t f i n d c o m p l e t i o n i n a sentence, i n the thought made complete, are i n t r i n s i c a l l y p a r t of the c h a r a c t e r of the o b s e r v e r , and i t i s t h e r e f o r e p o s s i b l e to l_earn from an o b j e c t i v e view of the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s t h a t t a k e s Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 10 i n t o account the m u l t i p l i c i t y o-f p e r s p e c t i v e s t h a t surround an event. Consequently, i f the c h r o n i c l e i s a v a l u a b l e and y e t an u n r e l i a b l e s o u r c e of e v i d e n c e because the c h r o n i c l e r i s prone to judgmental d i s t o r t i o n s t h a t the o b s e r v e r i s s u b j e c t t o , then the h i s t o r i a n who would o b j e c t i v e l y observe an h i s t o r i c a l event w i l l s t r i v e towards an i m a g i n a t i v e r e c o n s t r u c t i o n of the h i s t o r i c a l drama. In h i s Philosophy of History, Walsh s t a t e s t h a t the h i s t o r i c a l i d e a l i s always t o get away from the s t a g e of c h r o n i c l e and a t t a i n t h a t of h i s t o r y i t s e l f . What every h i s t o r i a n seeks f o r i s not a bare r e c i t a l of unconnected f a c t s , but a smooth n a r r a t i v e i n which every event f a l l s as i t were i n t o i t s n a t u r a l p l a c e and b e l o n g s t o an i n t e l l i g i b l e whole. In t h i s r e s p e c t , the i d e a l of the h i s t o r i a n i s i n p r i n c i p l e i d e n t i c a l w i t h t h a t of the n o v e l i s t or d r a m a t i s t . 0 T h i s of c o u r s e presupposes t h a t h i s t o r i c a l e v e n t s can be r a t i o n a l l y understood as p a r t of an " i n t e l l i g i b l e whale". But Walsh goes on t o say t h a t h i s t o r y i s " p r o p e r l y concerned with human thoughts and e x p e r i e n c e s " and t h a t "because of t h i s , h i s t o r i c a l u n d e r s t a n d i n g i s of a unique and immediate c h a r a c t e r . The c h r o n i c l e r ' s n a r r a t i v e d e s c r i p t i o n and the d r a m a t i s t ' s i m a g i n a t i v e r e c o n s t r u c t i o n of the p a s t a r e both s e l e c t i v e and i n t e r p r e t a t i v e and a l s o r e v e a l the a u t h o r i a l p o i n t of view and the i m p l i c i t s e t of v a l u e s a s s o c i a t e d with such a view. As C a r r says, " i n t e r p r e t a t i o n i n h i s t o r y i s ... always bound up with v a l u e judgments, and c a u s a l i t y i s bound up with i n t e r p r e t a t i o n . ' " " Fact Fiction and Faction Page 11 Thus, any approach t o a h i s t o r i c a l -Figure, event, or s e r i e s o-f even t s i s i n e x t r i c a b l y connected with the o b s e r v e r ' s s e t of v a l u e s ; and when the h i s t o r i a n i s engaged i n a s c e r t a i n i n g p e r s o n a l or p o l i t i c a l m o t i v e s and reas o n s f o r c e r t a i n a c t s , he i engaged i n i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s t h a t a r e s u b j e c t t o assumptions about human na t u r e and the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s t h a t a r e u l t i m a t e l y u n v e r i f i a b l e when they a r e made e x p l i c i t . As C a r r s t a t e s , the h i s t o r i a n needs t o p e n e t r a t e i n t o forms of human behaviour i n which the w i l l i s a c t i v e , t o a s c e r t a i n why the human b e i n g s who a r e the o b j e c t of h i s study w i l l e d t o a c t as they d i d . T h i s s e t s up a r e l a t i o n ... between the o b s e r v e r and what i s observed. The p o i n t of view of the h i s t o r i a n e n t e r s i r r e v o c a b l y i n t o every o b s e r v a t i o n which he makes; h i s t o r y i s shot through and through with r e l a t i v i t y . " Although the h i s t o r i a n may succumb to the tendency t o pass moral judgments upon the dramatis personae i n the h i s t o r i c a l drama, j u s t as the audience may i n o b s e r v i n g a d r a m a t i c event, C a r r argues t h a t the h i s t o r i a n ' s judgmental f a c u l t i e s s h o u l d be brought t o bear on the "more p r o f i t a b l e q u e s t i o n of the p a s s i n g of moral judgments not on i n d i v i d u a l s , but on e v e n t s , i n s t i t u t i o n s , or p o l i c i e s of the p a s t . W a l s h goes even f u r t h e r to suggest t h a t because every h i s t o r i a n l o o k s a t the past from a c e r t a i n p o i n t of view, h i s t o r i c a l d i s p u t e s a r e at bottom concerned not with what i s t r u e or f a l s e , but with what i s and what i s not d e s i r a b l e and fundamental h i s t o r i c a l judgments ar e i n consequence not s t r i c t l y c o g n i t i v e but " e m o t i v e " . x o The tendency i s thus away from a p u r e l y r a t i o n a l u n d e r s t a n d i n g o h i s t o r y towards an emotional response t h a t i s s u b j e c t i v e l y e x p e r i e n c e d . The a r t i c u l a t i o n of what the h i s t o r i a n comprehend i s u l t i m a t e l y a d i s t o r t i o n of a t r u t h t h a t may o n l y be Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 12 i m a g i n a t i v e l y apprehended. Not o n l y i s the n a t u r e o-f h i s t o r y i t s e l f f a c t i o n a l i n t h a t i t more o f t e n than not d e a l s w i t h major c o n f l i c t s , but a l s o the n a t u r e of h i s t o r i c a l i n t e r p r e t a t i o n i s n e c e s s a r i l y f a c t i o n a l . In t r y i n g t o make e x p l i c i t the m o t i v a t i n g f a c t o r s t h a t the h i s t o r i a n sees a t work i n a p a r t i c u l a r s e r i e s of e v e n t s , the h i s t o r i a n i s c o n f r o n t e d w i t h a f u r t h e r c o n s i d e r a t i o n - - t h a t i s , i f he i s to attempt t o be at a l l o b j e c t i v e — a n d i t i s with r e g a r d to h i s own m o t i v a t i o n i n the a c t of w r i t i n g about h i s t o r y . In i n t e r p r e t i n g h i s t o r y he i s i n v o l v e d i n d e t e r m i n i n g m o t i v e s f o r a c t i o n s . T h i s i s a h i g h l y p r o b l e m a t i c o b j e c t i v e , because as Burke s t a t e s , i n h i s Permanence and Change, a v o c a b u l a r y of m o t i v a t i o n a l terms i s s p e c i f i c a l l y d esigned t o a c t u a l l y d e f i n e and r e d e f i n e s i t u a t i o n s a c c o r d i n g t o v a r i o u s p e r s p e c t i v e s . He m a i n t a i n s t h a t words f o r motives a r e merely shorthand d e s c r i p t i o n s of si.tuati.ons. One tends to t h i n k of a d u a l i t y here, t o assume some k i n d of breach between a s i t u a t i o n and a response. Yet the two a r e i d e n t i c a l . When we wish t o i n f l u e n c e a man's response, f o r i n s t a n c e , we emphasize f a c t o r s which he had u n d e r s t a t e d or n e g l e c t e d , and minimize f a c t o r s which he had l a i d g r e a t weight upon. T h i s amounts t o n o t h i n g o t h e r than an attempt t o r e d e f i n e the s i t u a t i o n i t s e l f . In t h i s r e s p e c t , our whole v o c a b u l a r y of m o t i v a t i o n i s t a u t o l o g i c a l . I t i s D.9.t t a u t o l o g i c a l i f we c o n s i d e r i t as merely an e l l i p t i c a l way of de-fining a s i t u a t i o n . I t i s t a u t o l o g i c a l i f we c o n s i d e r i t as though t h e r e were both s i t u a t i o n s and motives. The s i t u a t i o n was our motive, and our word f o r the motive c h a r a c t e r i z e s the s i t u a t i o n . 1 1 The h i s t o r i a n uses m o t i v a t i o n a l terms t o d e f i n e h i s t o r i c a l Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 13 s i t u a t i o n s , and h i s a r t i c u l a t i o n of the m o t i v e s o-f c e r t a i n i n d i v i d u a l s , i n s t i t u t i o n s , or n a t i o n s under c e r t a i n c i r c u m s t a n c e s d e f i n e s and c h a r a c t e r i z e s not o n l y the s i t u a t i o n but a l s o the c h a r a c t e r of the h i s t o r i a n h i m s e l f and the n a t u r e of h i s " s t a n c e " w i t h r e g a r d t o the event, or s e r i e s of e v e n t s . Hence, the a t t i t u d e of the h i s t o r i a n becomes a d e t e r m i n i n g f a c t o r t h a t must be taken i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n . The c o n t i n u a l r e d e f i n i t i o n of h i s t o r y - - t h e m o t i v e s of i t s h i s t o r i c a l f i g u r e s and i t s h i s t o r i a n s — i s a c o n t i n u a l and e v o l u t i o n a r y p r o c e s s : the p r e s e n t i s c o n t i n u a l l y i n the p r o c e s s of r e d e f i n i n g i t s r e l a t i o n t o the p a s t ; but whether t h a t e v o l u t i o n i s u l t i m a t e l y r e g r e s s i v e or p r o g r e s s i v e i s u n c e r t a i n . Although the h i s t o r i a n i s denied a p u r e l y o b j e c t i v e view of the p a s t , he may c o l l a t e d i v e r g e n t a c c o u n t s i n o r d e r t o r e c o n s t r u c t the drama at the h e a r t of the h i s t o r i c a l e v i d e n c e a v a i l a b l e to him. However, f o r such a r e c o n s t r u c t i o n to be f a i t h f u l t o the o r i g i n a l e v e n t — s o m e t h i n g t h a t , of c o u r s e , cannot be v e r i f i e d by any s c i e n t i f i c o b s e r v a t i o n - - i t must accommodate f o r the v a r i o u s p o s s i b l e m o t i v a t i o n s t h a t a r e i n f a c t documented i n the e v i d e n c e . Thus, the h i s t o r i a n who would attempt t o be o b j e c t i v e w i t h r e g a r d t o h i s m a t e r i a l must w r i t e with an a c u t e sense of h i s t o r i c a l , or d r a m a t i c , i r o n y . T h i s i s o b v i o u s l y a i d e d by h i s r e t r o s p e c t i v e v i e w p o i n t . A f a i t h f u l r e c r e a t i o n and r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n of the o r i g i n a l s i t u a t i o n t h e r e b y p l a c e s the onus of i n t e r p r e t a t i o n on the r e a d e r , or, i n the case of a d r a m a t i c r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n of an Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 14 h i s t o r i c a l event, on the au d i e n c e . i 3 The audience, i n i n t e r p r e t i n g the drama i s engaged i n the p r o c e s s o-f i n t e r p r e t i n g complete as the audience i s c o n f r o n t e d with the problems i n h e r e n t i n j u d g i n g human a c t i o n . Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s c o n f r o n t the audience w i t h d r a m a t i c s i t u a t i o n s t h a t p u r p o r t t o be h i s t o r i c a l on the one hand and y e t a r e n e v e r t h e l e s s p r e s e n t e d w i t h i n the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s i t s e l f on the o t h e r . The au d i e n c e ' s judgments of the p r e s e n t m i r r o r the judgments made by o t h e r s of the past as each j u d g e s a c c o r d i n g t o h i s p r e d i s p o s i t i o n . T h i s fundamental paradox has a dual i m p l i c a t i o n : the p l a y i t s e l f i s the r e b y p l a c e d w i t h i n a m e t a t h e a t r i c a l frame which i s the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s and the p l a y becomes a p l a y w i t h i n a u n i v e r s a l drama, and w h i l e the h i s t o r i c a l c o n t e n t i t s e l f r e c e d e s even f u r t h e r i n t o an i r r e c o v e r a b l e and u n v e r i f i a b l e p a s t the audience c o n s t r u c t s i t s own i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s of the a c t i o n r e -pr e s e n t e d on the s t a g e i n what i s e n i g m a t i c a l l y c a l l e d the H i s t o r y P l a y , and those i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s r e f l e c t t h o s e of the c h r o n i c l e r s i n the f i r s t p l a c e . Shakespeare manages t o r e c r e a t e h i s t o r y on the s t a g e - - " h i s t o r y " i n the most ambiguous sense of the word. By v i e w i n g the past i n the g u i s e of the p r e s e n t , the audience i s u l t i m a t e l y c o n f r o n t e d with i t s own prejudgments and judgments of man i n the world and h i s r o l e i n the sh a p i n g of h i s t o r y , because i m p l i c i t i n ev e r y a r t i c u l a t i o n of an event t h e r e both the p a s t and the p r e s e n t s i m u l t a n e o u s l y . The c y c l e i s thus Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 15 l i e s an in-forming e t h i c — t h a t o-f the o b s e r v e r . Thus, the r e -p r e s e n t a t i o n of h i s t o r i c a l c h a r a c t e r s i n h i s t o r i c a l s i t u a t i o n s merely h o l d s the m i r r o r up to human nature, and we a r e l e f t t o a-f-forded by a m i r r o r i s i s o m e r i c ; i t i s u l t i m a t e l y di-f-ferent from r e a l i t y and may not be superimposed on the " o r i g i n a l " t h a t i t the m i r r o r i n which the audience i s g i v e n the o p p o r t u n i t y to see i t s e l f . A c h i l l e s , a l t h o u g h f a i l i n g t o understand the i m p l i c a t i o n s of what he says, c l e a r l y a r t i c u l a t e s t h i s i d e a when he says the f o l l o w i n g to U l y s s e s i n Trailus and Cressidai The beauty t h a t i s borne here i n the f a c e The b e a r e r knows not, but commends i t s e l f To o t h e r s * eyes; nor doth the eye i t s e l f , That most pure s p i r i t of sense, behold i t s e l f , Not g o i n g from i t s e l f ; but eye t o eye opposed S a l u t e s each other w i t h each o t h e r ' s form; For s p e c u l a t i o n t u r n s not t o i t s e l f T i l l i t hath t r a v e l l e d and i s m a r r i e d t h e r e Where i t may see i t s e l f . 1 2 a r t i c u l a t e our judgments as we w i l l . However, the image p u r p o r t s t o r e f l e c t . In t h i s r e s p e c t the H i s t o r y P l a y p r o v i d e s Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 16 THE AUDIENCE AND ITS ATTITUDES If we be enemies t D o u r s e l v e s , Whither s h a l l we -fly? P r o verb When A l b e r t Camus, i n The Myth of Sisyphus, s a y s t h a t the " h i s t o r i c a l s p i r i t and the a r t i s t both want to remake the w o r l d " , 1 he i n f e r s t h a t both the h i s t o r i a n and the a r t i s t d i s t o r t r e a l i t y . T h i s r e c o g n i t i o n l e a d s us t o a c a r e f u l c o n s i d e r a t i o n of the l i m i t s t h a t both the h i s t o r i a n and the a r t i s t , and by i m p l i c a t i o n the audience of any event, are s u b j e c t t o . Any p e r s p e c t i v e with r e g a r d to the world must remain an a t t i t u d e ; however, a t t i t u d e s h e l d by c o l l e c t i v e s become extremely powerful -forces in the s h a p i n g of the world. Burke, i n Permanence and Change, s t a t e s t h a t "the a r t i s t u l t i m a t e l y a p p e a l s to an a u d i e n c e ' s a t t i t u d e s , which are u l t i m a t e l y grounded i n n a t u r a l s u s c e p t i b i l i t i e s q u i t e o u t s i d e t h e i r r o l e i n any one s p e c i f i c t r a d i t i o n . " = These n a t u r a l s u s c e p t i b i l i t i e s may be s e p a r a t e d i n t o two m u t u a l l y e x c l u s i v e and opposing views of man i n the world t h a t f i n d t h e i r p a r t i c u l a r e x p r e s s i o n s i n d i f f e r e n t g u i s e s i n d i f f e r e n t ages. In the R e n aissance the c o n f l i c t between s c i e n t i f i c o b s e r v a t i o n and r e l i g i o u s t e a c h i n g and the subsequent c l a s h of p r i n c i p l e s found e x p r e s s i o n i n the w r i t i n g s of M a c h i a v e l l i , who Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 17 merely e x p r e s s e d h i s o b s e r v a t i o n s with r e g a r d t o man i n a h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s , and the t e a c h i n g s o-f the Church, which through i t s m i n i s t e r s a d m i n i s t e r e d the Word of God and "commanded" f a i t h f u l obedience to both s e c u l a r and r e l i g i o u s laws. The former view of man i s based upon the premise t h a t man i s a p o l i t i c a l animal; the l a t t e r , t h a t man i s made i n the image of h i s c r e a t o r and t h a t . h i s i n s t i t u t i o n s are d i v i n e l y s a n c t i o n e d . These two views of the world have p r o f o u n d l y d i f f e r e n t consequences when they are brought t o bear on i n t e r p r e t i n g a c t i o n . Because n e i t h e r view i s u l t i m a t e l y v e r i f i a b l e i n r e a l i t y , each i n d i v i d u a l must, a c c o r d i n g t o h i s b e l i e f - - a b e l i e f t h a t may be e i t h e r a r i g h t b e l i e f or a mere d e l u s i o n — i n t e r p r e t the world he p e r c e i v e s a c c o r d i n g l y . The i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of an a c t i o n i s t h e r e f o r e an a c t of f a i t h , and as a l l a c t s i n the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s have consequences I would argue t h a t the p r i n c i p l e i s i n f a c t the consequence because the consequence i s i m p l i c i t i n the p r i n c i p l e . Look at the world from a p a r t i c u l a r p o i n t of view and the world w i l l f u r n i s h you w i t h ample e v i d e n c e t o support your p e r s p e c t i v e . Because thes e apposing a t t i t u d e s t h a t so dominated Renaissance thought a r e so c a r e f u l l y b a l a n c e d in Shakespeare's p l a y s , and because these a t t i t u d e s f i n d e x p r e s s i o n i n d i f f e r e n t ages under d i f f e r e n t g u i s e s , or d i f f e r e n t r h e t o r i c s , A.W. S c h l e g e l c o u l d say t h a t Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s f u r n i s h us with "examples of the p o l i t i c a l c o u r s e of the world, a p p l i c a b l e to a l l t i m e s . " 3 Our p r e s e n t views of h i s t o r y may l i k e w i s e be accommodated f o r i n Shakespeare's r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n of Fact F ict ion and Faction Page 18 e v e n t s t h a t may appear to be -far removed -from contemporary s i t u a t i o n s . Although the problem o-f k i n g s h i p i s remote to us, the a c t i o n s of those i n s e a r c h of power i n the p o l i t i c a l "realm" a r e f a m i l i a r t o everyone. In h i s book e n t i t l e d Attitudes Towards History, Burke s a y s t h a t " i n d e c i d i n g why people do as they do, we get the c l u e s t h a t p l a c e us with r e l a t i o n to them. Hence a v o c a b u l a r y of motives i s important f o r the f o r m i n g of both p r i v a t e and p u b l i c r e l a t i o n s h i p s . " " T h i s i s the a c t of i n t e r p r e t j _ n g t h a t we are a l l engaged i n whether we are p a r t i c i p a n t s i n a p a r t i c u l a r event, o b s e r v e r s of t h a t event, or a f a r removed audience watching an i m a g i n a t i v e r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n of what has become an h i s t o r i c a l event. And the p r i n c i p l e s t h a t inform such a c t s a r e of paramount concern t o the c r i t i c who would attempt t o encompass the drama w i t h i n as wide a frame of r e f e r e n c e as i s p o s s i b l e . The fundamental d i f f e r e n c e between M a c h i a v e l l i a n p r i n c i p l e s and r e l i g i o u s p r i n c i p l e s , as opposed t o the " r h e t o r i c of r e l i g i o n " , i s t h a t the l a t t e r a r e concerned with u n i v e r s a l v a l u e s , w h i l e the former a r e concerned with e s s e n t i a l l y n a t i o n a l i s t i c " v a l u e s " . As Burke says, the p r i n c i p l e s of Mach i a v e 1 1 i * s " R e a l p o l i t i k " l a i d the f o u n d a t i o n s f o r the m a t e r i a l i s t i c emphasis, i n p u t t i n g forward the cuj_t of p_ower as the b a s i s of human m o t i v a t i o n . 0 T h i s m a t e r i a l i s t i c emphasis i s by d e f i n i t i o n opposed t o the t r a n s c e n d e n t a l , and i t i s t h i s Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 19 n o n - t r a n s c e n d e n t a l t h e o r y o-f motives, i n a u g u r a t e d with M a c h i a v e l 1 i ' s d i s c o u r s e on w o r l d l y power, [ t h a t ] p r o v i d e d a r a t i o n a l i z a t i o n of a c t s i n f r a n k accordance with c r i t e r i a of m a t e r i a l aggrandizement.* Although t h i s t h e o r y f i n d s i t s most l u c i d advocate i n M a c h i a v e l l i , the p r i n c i p l e s themselves seem to be deeply r o o t e d i n the s o c i e t i e s , i n s t i t u t i o n s , and r h e t o r i c s t h a t man t h i s thought i s t h a t man's order i s supreme, but a c c o r d i n g to M a c h i a v e l l i , man's h i s t o r y i s a c o n t i n u a l r e p e t i t i o n of c y c l i c a l p a t t e r n s t h a t r e v e a l the c h a o t i c r e s u l t s t h a t a r e i n f a c t the supreme and y e t s e l f - d e s t r u c t i v e . Set i n o p p o s i t i o n to t h i s view of man i n the world and i t s consequent view of the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s i s the r e l i g i o u s p e r s p e c t i v e based upon the p a r a d o x i c a l premise t h a t man i s made in the image of a God t h a t i s Good and i s p l a c e d w i t h i n an h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s t h a t r e v e a l s p r o v i d e n t i a l p a t t e r n s t h a t r e f l e c t man's g r a d u a l e v o l u t i o n towards h i s G o d — a n e v o l u t i o n t h a t w i l l be e f f e c t e d i n time. The i d e a of p r o g r e s s i s f i r m l y embedded i n the C h r i s t i a n view of man i n the world. In h i s book e n t i t l e d Shakespeare's Eden, B.L. Joseph s t a t e s t h a t The d o c t r i n e of P r o v i d e n c e a s s e r t s t h a t when God c r e a t e d the world He d i d not withdraw H i s c o n t r o l and leave i t t o develop i n d e p e n d e n t l y , but c o n t i n u e d and c o n t i n u e s t o govern i t and w i l l do so up to i t s d i s s o l u t i o n on the Day of Judgment. P r o v i d e n c e i s the way i n which the d i v i n e power of c o n t r o l m a n i f e s t s i t s e l f . 5 " Thus, i n such a scheme of t h i n g s order i s seen at the h e a r t of e s t a b l i s h e s t o impjose order on the world. The i m p l i c a t i o n of consequences of such a view. Order i s t h e r e f o r e seen t o be both the u n i v e r s e . What may appear t o be c h a o t i c , l i k e p o l i t i c a l Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 20 c o n f l i c t s or even the c o n f l i c t s between i n d i v i d u a l s i n the p r i v a c y of the home, may be seen as p a r t of a u n i v e r s a l " v i o l a t i o n " of the d i v i n e o r d e r , which i s of c o u r s e a statement f r a u g h t with p a r a d o x i c a l i m p l i c a t i o n s . Man i s a f a l l e n c r e a t u r e , and i t i s the F a l l of M a n - - i t s e l f prompted by the F a l l of L u c i f e i t h a t i s both the cause and consequence of r e b e l l i o n a g a i n s t a l l o r d e r . However, the almost i n v i s i b l e hand of God may be p e r c e i v e d , i t i s argued, by the p u n c t i l i o u s o b s e r v e r of man and h i s h i s t o r y . Two views of man and two views of man's r o l e i n the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s . M a c h i a v e l l i would t r y t o stamp out r e b e l l i o n a g a i n s t the order of the s t a t e ; the Church would t r y to accommodate f o r the i d e a of r e b e l l i o n and e x h o r t obedience. The former i s p r e s c r i p t i v e whereas the l a t t e r i s p r e s c r i p t i v e . The former would teach and propagate p r i n c i p l e s t h a t i n f a c t encourage f a c t i o n a l i s m , whereas the l a t t e r would teach p r i n c i p l e s t h a t endeavour t o reduce f a c t i o n a l i s m . M a c h i a v e l l i sees h i s t o r y as n a u s e a t i n g l y r e p e t i t i v e , and the Church sees h i s t o r y as the p r o g r e s s i v e r e v e l a t i o n of the Word of God to man. Burke argues t h a t M a c h i a v e 1 1 i ' s view of man i s based upon a t r a n s v a l u a t i o n of r e l i g i o u s p r i n c i p l e s i n t o the s e c u l a r world, a t r a n s v a 1 u a t i o n from u n i v e r s a l t o p a r t i c u l a r v i r t u e s , which i s i n e f f e c t a t r a n s f e r e n c e towards e s s e n t i a l l y f a c t i o n a l p r i n c i p l e s . The Renaissance was p a r t i c u l a r l y e x e r c i s e d by M a c h i a v e l l i because he so a c c u r a t e l y r e p r e s e n t e d the t r a n s v a l u a t i o n of v a l u e s i n v o l v e d i n the r i s e of n a t i o n a l i s m . A t r a n s v a l u a t i o n was c a l l e d f o r , because Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 21 J2fLLi.Si.SJ2 aimed at u n i v e r s a l v i r t u e s , whereas the v i r t u e s of n a t i o n a l i s m would n e c e s s a r i l y be £actionai, i n s o f a r as v i c e from the s t a n d p o i n t o-f u n i v e r s a l r e l i g i o u s v a l u e s might r e a d i l y be viewed as adm i r a b l e i-f i t helped some i n t e r e s t s p r e v a i l over o t h e r s . T h i s t w i s t g r e a t l y e x e r c i s e d M a c h i a v e l l i . But though (-from the u n i v e r s a l p o i n t o-f view) n a t i o n s c o n f r o n t one another as f a c t i o n s , from the s t a n d p o i n t of any one n a t i o n f a c t i o n a l i s m i s c o n c e i v e d i n a narrower sense, with n a t i o n a l i s m i t s e l f t a k i n g over the r o l e of the un i v e r s a l . s A c c o r d i n g to such p r i n c i p l e s , u n i t y i s o n l y a c h i e v e d at the expense of i n c r e a s e d f a c t i o n a l i s m , and the ve r y i d e a of communion, or even communication, i s thereby pre-empted. Co n g r e g a t i o n i s thus a c h i e v e d by s e g r e g a t i o n . The p r i n c i p l e s of n a t i o n a l i s m may be seen as founded upon d i v i s i v e p r e c e p t s : to argue f o r a n a t i o n a l u n i t y l i t e r a l l y at the expense of a n o t h e r ' s i s e s s e n t i a l l y i d e n t i c a l i n terms of m o t i v a t i o n to the i n d i v i d u a l who would e s t a b l i s h h i s v i r t u e by means of v i t u p e r a t i v e d e n e g r a t i o n of h i s opponent. Such a p a t t e r n dominates the e n t i r e sweep of Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s , i s p a r t i c u l a r l y apparent i n the Tudor view of the p e r i o d of h i s t o r y t h a t the p l a y s d e a l w i t h , and i s unambiguously s t a t e d by King Henry IV when he sa y s t o h i s son, my Harry, Be i t thy c o u r s e to busy giddy minds With f o r e i g n q u a r r e l s , t h a t a c t i o n thus borne out May waste the memory of the former days,* U n i v e r s a l v a l u e s a r e thereby b a s t a r d i z e d i n the form of a n a t i o n a l c r e e d t h a t i s e s s e n t i a l l y a g g r e s s i v e . Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s c l e a r l y r e v e a l a p r e o c c u p a t i o n with such f a c t i o n -a l i s m , which i s the s t u f f of drama. Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 22 U l t i m a t e l y , drama i s concerned with d i a l e c t i c , and the d r a m a t i c -form i s t h e r e f o r e , by d e f i n i t i o n , oD.p.osed to the p o l e m i c . To be more a c c u r a t e , i t accommodates f o r the d i d a c t i c i s m of the opposing arguments t h a t the drama encompasses. The H i s t o r y P l a y i s , by e x t e n s i o n of the argument, opposed to the s i m p l i s t i c and o n e - s i d e d i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s of h i s t o r y t h a t the h i s t o r i a n i s s u b j e c t t o . As Burke says , In e q u a t i n g "dramatic" with " d i a l e c t i c " , we a u t o m a t i c a l l y have a l s o our p e r s p e c t i v e f o r the a n a l y s i s of h i s t o r y , which i s a " dramatic" p r o c e s s , i n v o l v i n g d i a l e c t i c a l o p p o s i t i o n s . And i f we keep t h i s always i n mind, we a r e reminded, t h a t ©very document bequeathed us by h i s t o r y must be t r e a t e d as a s t r a t e g y f o r encomp_assi.ng a s i t u a t i o n . 1 ° Edward H a l l ' s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of h i s t o r y , L i l y B. Campbell's i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s i n the l i g h t of c e r t a i n p o l i t i c a l e v e n t s t h a t were contemporaneous with the performances of the p l a y s ; and my i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of Richard II are a l l attempts t o determine d i f f e r e n t " a c t s " . I am appreaching the act of Shakespeare as an i n t e r p r e t e r of h i s t o r y i n i t s widest p o s s i b l e frame, and thus the t r u e s u b j e c t of the drama i s seen t o be the a u d i e n c e ' s a t t i t u d e s towards man h i m s e l f . And because the drama i s concerned with d i a l e c t i c , the audience i t s e l f , and I r e f e r to the c o l l e c t i v e as w e l l as the i n d i v i d u a l s themselves, a r e c o n f r o n t e d with p o e t i c meanings C t h a t l cannot be d i s p o s e d of on the t r u e - o r - f a l s e b a s i s . Rather, they are r e l a t e d to one another l i k e a s e t of c o n c e n t r i c c i r c l e s , of wider and wider scope. Those of wider diameter do not c a t e g o r i c a l l y e l i m i n a t e those of narrower diameter. There i s , r a t h e r , a p r o g r e s s i v e encompassment. 1 1 These ar e the emanations t h a t l e a d us to an u n d e r s t a n d i n g of not Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 23 o n l y the p a r t i c u l a r h i s t o r i c a l e v e n t s but moreover o-f the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s i t s e l - f . Whether the drama merely r e f l e c t s v a l u e s or a c t u a l l y engenders them i s , l i k e the c h i c k e n and the egg, u n c e r t a i n , u n l e s s the c o n f l i c t e x i s t s at such a depth i n the human b e i n g t h a t the c o n f l i c t t a k e s on an almost a r c h e t y p a l s i g n i f i c a n c e . But perhaps the drama r e f l e c t s c e r t a i n v a l u e s w h i l e a t the same time s u b t l y a d v o c a t i n g d i f f e r e n t v a l u e s . As R.C. K i m b e r l i n g says i n h i s d i s c u s s i o n of po p u l a r a r t , Popu l a r a r t r e f l e c t s s o c i a l v a l u e s because i t p r e s e n t s u n i v e r s a l p a t t e r n s of e x p e r i e n c e , p a t t e r n s t h a t the audience must r e c o g n i z e i f i t i s t o "understand" the work. I t engenders v a l u e s by p r e s e n t i n g s c e n a r i o s p l a c i n g o r d i n a r y v a l u e s i n c o n f l i c t s i t u a t i o n s , s i t u a t i o n s demanding t h a t some h i e r a r c h y of v a l u e s be e s t a b l i s h e d , and by s t i m u l a t i n g a u d i e nce i d e n t i f i c a t i o n with the p r o c e s s e s of v a l u e f o r m a t i o n . 1 2 These observed " p a t t e r n s of e x p e r i e n c e " are the r e s u l t of c e r t a i n v a l u e s , and they a l s o , to a c e r t a i n e x t e n t engender s i m i l a r v a l u e s i n o t h e r s . However, d e s p i t e the s e 1 f - p e r p e t u a t i n g n a t u r e of t h i s argument, Burke argues t h a t the p e r s p e c t i v e s t h a t encompass any event may be " d i s t i l l e d " i n t o two opposing camps, and t h a t the " p o e t i c i d e a l would attempt to a t t a i n a f.ul.1. moral a c t by a t t a i n i n g a p e r s p e c t i v e atop. al.!. the c o n f l i c t s of a t t i t u d e . " 1 3 T h i s i s where the p l a y w r i g h t - h i s t o r i a n , who p r o j e c t s onto h i s n e u t r a l and a b s t r a c t s t a g e the c h a r a c t e r s t h a t engage i n mock-mor t a l combat, remains n e u t r a l because f o r him the b a t t l e f i e l d Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 24 i s a p l a c e t h a t i s , l i k e M i l t o n ' s Heaven and H e l l , u l t i m a t e l y c o n c e i v e d and c r e a t e d by man; when a l l the b a t t l e s t o be -fought i n the e x t e r n a l world have been -fought, then the l a s t and most tempestuous one remains w i t h i n . As Burke says , The b a t t l e - f i e l d ... which p e r m i t s r i v a l c o n t e s -t a n t s t o j o i n i n b a t t l e , i t s e l - f " t r a n s c e n d s " t h e i r - f a c t i o n a l i s m , b e i n g " s u p e r i o r " t o i t and " n e u t r a l " t o t h e i r m o t i v e s , though the c o n d i t i o n s of the t e r r a i n may happen t o favor-one- f a c t i o n . The JBri.nci.Ei.es of war a r e not themselves w a r l i k e , and a r e u l t i m a t e l y r e d u c i b l e t o u n i v e r s a l p r i n c i p l e s of p h y s i c s and d i a l e c t i c . S i m i l a r l y , a poe t ' s i d e n t i f i c a t i o n with imagery of murder or s u i c i d e , e i t h e r one or the o t h e r , i s , from the " n e u t r a l " p o i n t of view, merely a concern with terms f o r t r a n s f o r m a t i o n i n g e n e r a l . 1 - * T h i s i s the p o i n t which the drama seeks to a t t a i n , and does so when the p r o t a g o n i s t of the drama reaches t h a t moment of r e t r o s -p e c t i v e wisdom. The p l a y w r i g h t - h i s t o r i a n , who i s e s s e n t i a l l y concerned with "symbolic a c t i o n " , t r a n s c e n d s the immediate concerns of h i s c h a r a c t e r s t D see them from above, and t o see the emanating "shock waves" s e t up by c e r t a i n e v e n t s . In A Rhetoric of flat ives, Burke argues t h a t t h e r e a r e t h r e e b a s i c t y p e s of language use: " p o e t i c language i s a k i n d of symbolic a c t i o n , of i t s e l f and i n i t s e l f , ... s c i e n t i f i c language i s a p r e p a r a t i o n f o r a c t i o n , [and! r h e t o r i c a l language i s inducement t o a c t i o n (or to a t t i t u d e , a t t i t u d e b e i n g i n c i p i e n t a c t ) . " 1 0 P o e t i c language attempts to encompass an event i n a l l i t s a m b i g u i t i e s ; s c i e n t i f i c language would examine, a n a l y z e , and d e f i n e an event; and r h e t o r i c a l language would endeavour t o ge n e r a t e i n the audience a p a r t i c u l a r s t a n c e . By r e - p r e s e n t i n g the past on the s t a g e , the p l a y w r i g h t - h i s t o r i a n i s i n e f f e c t Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 25 s a y i n g t h a t the p r e s e n t i s a -function o-f the p a s t as i t recedes i n t o the p a s t , and the a t t i t u d e s t h a t we h o l d i n r e g a r d i n g the pa s t w i l l i n t u r n shape the -future. David Hare, a contemporary w r i t e r of h i s t o r y p l a y s , s a i d i n a l e c t u r e g i v e n a t King's C o l l e g e Cambridge i n 1978 t h a t i f you w r i t e about now, j u s t today and n o t h i n g e l s e , then you seem t o be c o n f r o n t i n g s t a s i s ; but i f you b e g i n t o d e s c r i b e the movement of h i s t o r y , i f you w r i t e p l a y s t h a t cover passages of time, then you begin t o f i n d a sense of movement, of s o c i a l change, i f you l i k e ; and the f a c i l e h o p e l e s s n e s s t h a t comes from c o n f r o n t i n g the day and o n l y the day, the room and o n l y the room, b e g i n s t o d i s a p p e a r and i n i t s p l a c e the w r i t e r can o f f e r a r e c o r d of movement and change. l <-To w r i t e about the p r e s e n t i s to. w r i t e about s t a s i s , but to w r i t e about the p a s t i n the l i g h t of the p r e s e n t i s to w r i t e about change and, by i m p l i c a t i o n , the f u t u r e . The p l a y w r i g h t -h i s t o r i a n , i n t r y i n g to encompass an event w h i l e at the same time c r e a t i n g another, l e a v e s the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n up t o h i s audience; as Burke says, " i f we choose to emphasize the s h i f t i n g p a r t i c u l a r i t i e s , we approach human problems h i s t o r i c a l 1 y . Cbutl i f we choose t o emphasize the u n d e r l y i n g s i m i l a r i t i e s , we r e t u r n through symbolism t o a p h i l o s o p h y of b e i n g . X 7 r The a t t i t u d e s of an a u dience a r e t h e r e f o r e of paramount concern t o the p l a y w r i g h t , whether he i s an h i s t o r i a n or not, and an u n d e r s t a n d i n g of the s h i f t i n g a t t i t u d e s t h a t dominated Shakespeare's time a r e important t o an u n d e r s t a n d i n g of h i s p l a y s . Theodore Spenser, i n h i s Shakespeare and the Nature of flan, s t a t e s t h a t Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 26 The con-f 1 i c t was t h i s : b e l i e f i n each one of the i n t e r r e l a t e d o r d e r s - - c o s m o l o g i c a l , n a t u r a l , and po 1 i t i cal--wh i ch ... were the -frame, the b a s i c p a t t e r n of a l l E l i z a b e t h a n t h i n k i n g , was b e i n g punctured by a doubt. C o p e r n i c u s had q u e s t i o n e d the c o s m o l o g i c a l o r d e r , Montaigne had q u e s t i o n e d the n a t u r a l o r d e r , M a c h i a v e l l i had q u e s t i o n e d the p o l i t i c a l o r d e r . i e The doubt t h a t s u b s e q u e n t l y dominated l e d to the s o r t o-f s k e p t i c i s m t h a t demands an ine-f-fable s o l u t i o n , and as the •foundations of a s u s t a i n i n g f a i t h were c r u m b l i n g , the v a r i o u s m a n i f e s t a t i o n s of o r d e r i t s e l f began t o dwindle away. Montaigne became the advocate of an i n t e l l e c t u a l s k e p t i c i s m t h a t q u e s t i o n e d the v e r y n a t u r e of man's p e r c e p t i o n , and i n t r o d u c e d the i d e a of a b s o l u t e r e l a t i v i t y i n a world of s u b j e c t i v e l y e x p e r i e n c e d "appearances". To judge the appearances we r e c e i v e of t h i n g s , we s h o u l d need a j u d i c a t o r y instrument; t o v e r i f y t h i s instrument, we s h o u l d need demon-s t r a t i o n ; to r e c t i f y t h i s d e m o n s t r a t i o n we s h o u l d need an i n s t r u m e n t : and here we a r e a r g u i n g i n a c i r c l e . 1 " The i m p l i c a t i o n s of such an u n i v e r s a l r e l a t i v i t y a r e t e r r i f y i n g because the i d e a of a c r e e d , a s e t of p r i n c i p l e s t o which a man may say "I b e l i e v e " , i s t h r e a t e n e d by the a m b i g u i t y i m p l i c i t i n readi_ng. The q u e s t i o n , "What do I b e l i e v e ? " then becomes i m p l i c i t i n the statement, "I b e l i e v e " . T h i s was the c o n d i t i o n t h a t p r o v i d e d M a c h i a v e l l i with a r e c e p t i v e a u d i e n c e . M a c h i a v e l l i a r t i c u l a t e d a view of man i n the world t h a t i s founded upon a c y n i c i s m w i t h r e g a r d t o man's n a t u r e t h a t i s as a b s o l u t e and unaccommodating i n i t s c o n t r a d i c t i o n of the Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 27 p r i n c i p l e s o-f r e l i g i o n as the Church was a b s o l u t e i n i t s e x h o r t a t i o n s with r e g a r d to God and the meaning o-f the Word of God to man. And w i t h the d i s s o l u t i o n of the meaning of the Word of God carne the d i s s o l u t i o n of the meaning of a man's word, as language c o u l d be used and abused f o r the a t t a i n m e n t and maintenance of p o l i t i c a l power. As M a c h i a v e l l i s a y s i n The Prince, a prudent r u l e r cannot , and must not, honour h i s word when i t p l a c e s him a t a d i s a d v a n t a g e and when the reasons f o r which he made h i s promise no longer e x i s t . I f a l l men were good, t h i s p r e c e p t would not be good; but because men are wretched c r e a t u r e s who would not keep t h e i r word to you, you need not keep your word t o t h e m . = 0 Although the Word of God must be ambiguous t o man, whose u n d e r s t a n d i n g must remain p a r t i a l , he who has f a i t h i s r e a s s u r e d by the a s s e r t i o n t h a t at l e a s t i t s h a l l be e f f e c t e d i n time. Machiave11i's view of man as a p o l i t i c a l animal and Montaigne's view of man as merely p a r t of n a t u r e and i n no way s u p e r i o r to any o t h e r p a r t of i t merely r e v e a l two a t t i t u d e s with r e g a r d to the n a t u r e of man, depending of c o u r s e on how you read those seemingly s i m p l e s t a t e m e n t s . And as I w r i t e t h e s e words I hear, l i k e the d u l l and d i s t a n t rumblings of some awful c a t a s t r o p h e , those p a i n f u l l y s i m p l e words of the s e l f - r i g h t e o u s Hamlet, who d i e s the P r i n c e of Denmark and not the K i n g of Denmark, "I know not seems"; he l e a r n s t h a t the world i s l i t e r a l l y patched w i t h "seams", but, as i s always the case i n tragedy, he l e a r n s too l a t e . Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 23 The study o-f p o l i t i c s i s the study of man's government o-f man. Such a study, because i t must -focus on appearances i s not concerned with u n i v e r s a l v i r t u e s , and as Burke p o i n t s out i t i s d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed to the stud y o-f g e n u i n e l y C h r i s t i a n v a l u e s , v a l u e s t h a t a r e b a s i c a l l y c o h e s i v e as opposed t o d i v i s i v e : i n s o f a r as a man was g e n u i n e l y imbued with C h r i s t i a n m otives, h i s E T i y a t e v i r t u e s would be t r a i t s of c h a r a c t e r w h i c h , i f c u l t i v a t e d i n the i n d i v i d u a l , would be mast b e n e f i c i a l t o mankind as a whgl_e. But M a c h i a v e l l i i s concerned with a d i f f e r e n t k i n d of u n i v e r s a l i t y . He s t a r t s from the p r i n c i p l e t h a t men a r e uniy_ersa.l_l_y_ at odds with one £H2i!l£r.' Fof' t h i s i s what h i s s t r e s s upon p r e d a t o r y or w a r l i k e m o t i v e s amounts t o . He i s concerned with m o t i v e s which w i l l p r o t e c t s p e c i a l , i n t e r e s t s . The Prince i s l e a d i n g towards the p e r i o d when the i n t e r e s t s of a f e u d a l r u l e r w i l l be n a t i o n a l i s t i c a l l y i d e n t i f i e d , thought to r e p r e s e n t one s t a t e as o r j j D g s e d t o other s t a t e s . 3 1 T h i s t r a n s v a l u a t i a n from u n i v e r s a l v a l u e s t o i n d i v i d u a l i s t i c v a l u e s , a t r a n s v a l u a t i a n t h a t dominates the r h e t o r i c a l c o n f l i c t between the r i v a l a d v o c a t e s of C a t h o l i c i s m and P u r i t a n i s m , has a profound e f f e c t on the realm of p o l i t i c s , and the d i v i s i o n extends a l l the way to s e x u a l p o l i t i c s . Thus, even the attempt to communicate may be regarded as an attempt t o a t t a i n power. S k e p t i c i s m l e a d s to c y n i c i s m , and c y n i c i s m l e a d s t o d i s t r u s t . And, as Burke says, i f we c a r r y the M a c h i a v e l l e a n p a t t e r n down from p o l i t i c a l to p e r s o n a l r e l a t i o n s , the i n d i v i d u a l may become r e l a t e d - to o t h e r i n d i v i d u a l s as r u l e r t o r u l e d (or a t l e a s t would-be r u l e r to would-not-be r u l e d ) - - f o r here a g a i n the d i v i s i v e m o t i v e s t r e a t e d by M a c h i a v e l l i a p p l y . 5 5 3 M a c h i a v e l l i encourages the u n i v e r s a l d i v i s i o n t h a t he sees at Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 29 work i n the world and reads i t i n the pages of h i s t o r y ; and he p r o p a g a t e s d i v i s i o n by p r e s c r i b i n g a c t i o n s t h a t a r e designed t o a t t a i n power by m a n i p u l a t i o n , which i n t u r n l e a d s t o the c o n s o l i d a t i o n of power by f o r c e . When the page i n the I n d u c t i o n to The Taming of the Shrew s t a t e s t h a t the p l a y t o be p r e s e n t e d by the p l a y e r s , who a r e of c o u r s e e x p e r t s at the a r t of " a c t i n g " , i s "a k i n d of h i s t o r y " , the audience i s reminded t h a t h i s t o r y i s made by i n d i v i d u a l s , by men and women whose o f f s p r i n g a r e the f r u i t Df t h e i r l o v e , by p e o p l e who must a c t on another s t a g e where the consequences a r e very r e a l . And as one would expect, the audience i s i n v a r i a b l y s p l i t between two opposing camps: those who would-be r u l e r s , and those who would-not-be r u l e d . Does the drama engender, r e f l e c t , or r e v e a l the c o n f l i c t ? That depends on the p e r s p e c t i v e of the p e r c e i v e r , but what i s c e r t a i n t i s t h a t a c o n f l i c t e x i s t s at the h e a r t of human na t u r e , and I would argue t h a t the drama p r e s e n t s the e v e r - p r e s e n t o p p o r t u n i t y f o r the r e c o g n i t i o n of g e n u i n e l y " c o h e s i v e m o t i v e s " a t the h e a r t of man. If M a c h i a v e 1 1 i * s view of man i s couched i n a c y n i c i s m t h a t p r o p a g a t e s d i v i s i o n , then the C h r i s t i a n view of man i s c o n f r o n t e d with the problem of d e f i n i n g and t e a c h i n g the " c o h e s i v e motives" f o r a c t i o n i n the p o l i t i c a l , p e r s o n a l , and p r i v a t e realms. The e s s e n t i a l problem i s t h a t t r u e obedience cannot be commanded. Commands may be "obeyed" i n the p u r e l y l i t e r a l sense, but the s p i r i t i n which an " a c t " i s performed i s not a p p a r e n t . Again, Montaigne's s k e p t i c i s m r a i s e s i t s u g l y head. K i n g Henry V, on Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 30 the eve of the B a t t l e of A g i n c o u r t , r e a l i z e s the inadequacy of the a u t h o r i t y i m p l i c i t i n a k i n g ' s word of command (and he s i m u l t a n e o u s l y t a l k s t o the audience t h a t i s made up of monarchs, to a c e r t a i n e x t e n t ) : Canst thou, when thou command'st the beggar's knee, Command the h e a l t h of i t ? No, thou proud dream, That p l a y ' s t so s u b t l y w i t h a k i n g ' s r e p o s e ; 3 3 The a u t h o r i t y of the Church i s c o n f r o n t e d with a s i m i l a r dilemma: the i n t e r p r e t e r s of the Ward of Gad, themselves " f a l l e n " c r e a t u r e s , must s t r i v e to teach the meaning of the p a r a d o x i c a l n ature of Gqd_[_5 forbi.ddi_ng command. The author of "An Hamilie Against disobedience and Wilful I Rebel I ion" s t a t e s t h a t " n e i t h e r heaven nor p a r a d i s e c o u l d s u f f e r any r e b e l l i o n i n them, n e i t h e r be p l a c e s f o r any r e b e l s t o remain i n . " 3 " Perhaps i t i s because the t e a c h i n g s of the Church are based upon such a paradox t h a t i t s m i n i s t e r s r e s o r t t o e x h o r t a t i o n i n the i n t e r e s t s of the appearances of s o c i a l c o h e s i o n as opposed t o the emphasis upon " c o h e s i v e m o t i v e s " . As Burke says, t h i s tendency towards sermon and i n v e c t i v e Cis3 p a r t i c u l a r l y [ a p p a r e n t ! i n the t h i n k i n g of the Church, where men t r a i n e d i n p r a y e r a r e p a r t i c u l a r l y prone ... t o handle a l l untoward i s s u e s v e r b a l l y , by b e n e d i c t i o n or anathema: they would " l e g i s l a t e " a d i s o r d e r out of e x i s t e n c e . But the tendency i s not unknown even to s e c u l a r t h i n k e r s . 3 0 To e x h o r t a man to "obedience" i s a c o n t r a d i c t i o n i n terms and i s q u i t e d i f f e r e n t from imbuing him with C h r i s t i a n v i r t u e s . The sermons and h o m i l i e s t h a t were a p p o i n t e d t o be read i n Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 31 churches i n the r e i g n o-f E l i z a b e t h I p r o v i d e us w i t h h i s t o r i c a l documents t h a t r e v e a l how the Church c o n t r i b u t e d t o the s h a p i n g o-f the a t t i t u d e s o-f Shakespeare's c o n t e m p o r a r i e s . In the p r e f a c e t o the 1623 e d i t i o n , the author i n no u n c e r t a i n terms t e l l s us t h a t the sermons and h o m i l i e s a r e "the pure d e c l a r i n g of God's Word, which i s the p r i c i p a l l g u i d e and l e a d e r unto a l l g o d l i n e s s and v e r t u e . , l ! : , s However, they were p u b l i s h e d to be read i n churches i n response to r e c e n t p o l i t i c a l e v e n t s ; i n o t h e r words, they were i n f a c t used as a p o l i t i c a l e x p e d i e n t . = ? The s c r i p t u r e s were i n t e r p r e t e d i n o r d e r t o a s s e r t the d i v i n e l y s a n c t i o n e d a u t h o r i t y of o f f i c e , and obedience t o one's r u l e r i n the- s e c u l a r realm became synonymous wit h one's obedience t o God i n the s p i r i t u a l . In the h o m i l i e e n t i t l e d "An E x h o r t a t i o n C o n c e r n i n g Good Order and Obedience t o R u l e r s and M a g i s t r a t e s " , the author i n t e r p r e t s the t r i a l of C h r i s t i n the f o l l o w i n g way: The wicked Judge P i l a t e , sayd to C h r i s t , "Knowest thou not t h a t I have power t o c r u c i f y thee, and have power a l s o to l o o s e thee." Jesus answered, "Thou c o u l d have no power a t a l l a g a i n s t me, except i t were g i v e n thee from above." Whereby C h r i s t taught us p l a i n e l y , t h a t even the wicked r u l e r s have t h e i r power and a u t h o r i t i e from God, and t h e r f o r e i t i s not l a w f u l 1 f o r t h e i r s u b j e c t s to w i t h s t a n d them, a l t h o u g h they abuse t h e i r p o w e r . = e And the author goes even f u r t h e r t o a s s e r t t h a t a s u b j e c t ' s f e a l t y to h i s k i n g i s of g r e a t e r importance than h i s C h r i s t i a n F a i t h ! when he sa y s , i n "An H o m i l i e A g a i n s t D i s o b e d i e n c e and W i l f u l l R e b e l l i o n " , t h a t r e b e l s by breach of t h e i r f a i t h g i v e n , and the oath made t o t h e i r Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 32 P r i n c e , bee g u i l t y o-f most damnable p e r j u r i e ... the worst and most damnable o-f a l l f a l s e w i t n e s s e b e a r i n g t h a t may be p o s s i b l e . = 1 P These two h o m i l i e s r e v e a l a s h i f t i n the v a l u e s supposedly propagated by the Church, as the emphasis s h i f t e d from u n i v e r s a l v a l u e s to b a s i c a l l y n a t i o n a l i s t i c ones. The use of the s c r i p t u r e s t o c o n s o l i d a t e the a u t h o r i t y of the s t a t e i n v o l v e d not o n l y r e i n t e r p e t a t i o n s of the s c r i p t u r e s but a l s o of h i s t o r y i t s e l f to a c c o r d with Tudor p o l i t i c s . In h i s d i s c u s s i o n of the importance of the h o m i l i e s as s o u r c e m a t e r i a l n e c e s s a r y to an u n d e r s t a n d i n g of Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s , A l f r e d Hart says t h a t These two h o m i l i e s put i n t o the form of sermons a s e r i e s of si.mp_.le l e s s o n s on the fundamental p r i n c i p l e s of Tudor p o l i c i e s , i n which were expounded the l o g i c a l and t h e o l o g i c a l bases of the c o n s t i t u t i o n of the Tudor Church and S t a t e . 3 5 0 B e a r i n g t h i s i n mind, we may be j u s t i f i e d i n our s k e p t i c i s m i n re g a r d to the Tudor view of the h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s . The p r o s c r i p t i v e t e a c h i n g of the Church may be seen as a r h e t o r i c t h a t i s d i r e c t e d down t o the s u b j e c t s of the r u l e r , whereas the p r e s c r i p t i v e a d v i c e of M a c h i a v e l l i may be regarded as d i r e c t e d up, t o the r u l e r , or would-be r u l e r . The h o m i l i e s emphasize the primacy of the s o c i a l o r d e r by t r y i n g t o l e g i s l a t e away the problem of d i v i s i o n and c o n f l i c t i n i t s s u b j e c t s ; M a c h i a v e l l i emphasizes the primacy of d i v i s i o n i n o r d e r t o prompt the "good" r u l e r t o a c t i n such a way as to a t t a i n and c o n s o l i d a t e power. Thus, i n Shakespeare's England a s h i f t from g e n u i n e l y C h r i s t i a n motives f o r a c t i o n was b e i n g e f f e c t e d i n both Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 33 the i n s t i t u t i o n a l thought o-f both the p o l i t i c s o-f the Church and the S t a t e . The language of r e l i g i o n was g r a d u a l l y b e i n g s e c u l a r i z e d — h e n c e the d o c t r i n e of the D i v i n e R i g h t of the monarch, w h i l e the language of the p o l i t i c i a n became i n v e s t e d w i t h s p i r i t u a l s i g n i f i c a n c e . Shakespeare c o u l d s u b t l y s a t i r i z e t h i s s h i f t by h a v ing the A r c h b i s h o p of C a n t e r b u r y p r a i s e the o r d e r of the s t a t e i n King Henry 1/ and the a r c h - M a c h i a v e l , U l y s s e s , p r a i s e the d i v i n e o r d e r of the u n i v e r s e i n Trailus and Cress ids. As the r h e t o r i c of M a c h i a v e l l i w i t h i t s " d i v i s i v e motives" f o r a c t i o n seem to dominate, I quote from h i s famous book on p o l i t i c a l a c t i o n , The Prince: Many have dreamed up r e p u b l i k s and p r i n c i p a l i -t i e s which have never i n t r u t h been known to e x i s t ; the g u l f between how one s h o u l d l i v e and how one does l i v e i s so wide t h a t a man who n e g l e c t s what i s a c t u a l l y done f o r what shou l d be done l e a r n s the way t o s e l f -d e s t r u c t i o n r a t h e r than t o s e l f -p r e s e r v a t i o n . 3 1 One might almost say t h a t M a c h i a v e l l i a r t i c u l a t e s the p r i n c i p l e s upon which the modern s e a r c h f o r the s e l f i s based. He looks at h i s t o r y and s e es c o r r o b o r a t i v e e v i d e n c e to s u p p o r t h i s f i c t i o n w i t h r e g a r d t o man i n an h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s , but h i s view i s merely one i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of h i s t o r y . As Burke says, Our minds, as l i n g u i s t i c p r o d u c t s , a r e composed of c o n c e p t s ( v e r b a l l y moulded) which s e l e c t c e r t a i n r e l a t i o n s h i p s as m e a n i n g f u l . These r e l a t i o n s h i p s are not .rea.l_i t.ie s, they ar e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s of r e a l i t y — h e n c e d i f f e r e n t frameworks of i n t e r p r e t a t i o n w i l l lead t o d i f f e r e n t c o n c l u s i o n s as to what r e a l i t y i s . 3 2 Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 34 Because Mach ia v e 1 1 i ' s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o-f r e a l i t y i s based upon a d i v i s i v e view of man, h i s view of what he c a l l s the "bond of l o v e " i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y weak: The bond of love i s one which men, wretched c r e a t u r e s t h a t they a r e break when i t i s t o t h e i r advantage t o do so; but f e a r i s s t r e n g t h e n e d by a dread of punishment which i s always e f f e c t i v e . 3 3 Thus, as f a r as M a c h i a v e l l i i s concerned, human a c t i o n i s c o m p l e t e l y e x p l a i n e d i n terms of f e a r and punishment; the words " f e a r " and " l o v e " , which a r e equated i n the s p i r i t u a l realm, a r e s i m i l a r l y equated i n the p o l i t i c a l r e l a t i o n s h i p between the s u b j e c t and h i s r u l e r . Thus, the motives f o r a c t i o n a r e e x p l i c a b l e out of hope f o r reward on the one hand and f e a r of punishment on the o t h e r . These are not the motives f o r t r u l y e t h i c a l a c t i o n , as they a r e " s e l f - i n t e r e s t e d " a c t i o n s . In h i s Language as Symbolic Action, Burke argues t h a t t r u l y e t h i c a l a c t i o n cannot in f a c t be taught because the attempt to "educate" through t e a c h i n g C h r i s t i a n v i r t u e s i s i t s e l f p a r a d o x i c a l . The " c o h e s i v e m o t i v e s " f o r a c t i o n t h a t l i e at the h e a r t of a t r u l y e t h i c a l view of the world a r e u l t i m a t e l y s i l e n t : a view t h a t encompasses d i v i s i o n and t r a n s c e n d s d i v i s i o n . Burke quotes Emmanuel Kant at l e n g t h t o r e v e a l the n a t u r e of t h i s paradox: Love God above every_th.i_ng_,_ and thy. nejj3h.bg.ur as thy_sel.f ... as a command i t r e q u i r e s r e s p e c t f o r a law which commands love and does not leave i t to our a r b i t r a r y c h o i c e t o make t h i s our p r i n c i p l e . Love to God, however, c o n s i d e r e d as an i n c l i n a t i o n ... i s i m p o s s i b l e , f o r He i s not an o b j e c t of the senses ... .To love God means ... to l i k e t o do h i s H i s commandments; to l o v e one's neighbour means to Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 35 l i k e t o p r a c t i c e a l l d u t i e s towards him. But the command t h a t makes t h i s a r u l e cannot command us to have t h i s d i s p o s i t i o n i n a c t i o n s con-formed t o duty, but o n l y t o endeavour a f t e r i t . For t o command to l i k e t o do a t h i n g i s in i t s e l f c o n t r a d i c t o r y . Because i f we a l r e a d y know of o u r s e l v e s what we a r e bound t o do, and i f f u r t h e r we a r e c o n s c i o u s of l i k i n g to do i t , a command would be q u i t e n e e d l e s s ; and i f we do i t not w i l l i n g l y , but o n l y out of r e s p e c t f o r a law, a command t h a t makes t h i s r e s p e c t the motive of our maxim would d i r e c t l y c o u n t e r a c t the d i s p o s i t i o n commanded.3'* M a c h i a v e l 1 i ' s o r d e r i s based upon f e a r , whereas the s o c i a l o r d e r t h a t the Church would endeavour t o teach i s one of " c o o p e r a t i v e i n t e r a c t i o n " based upon l o v e . T h i s i d e a was a r t i c u l a t e d by S i r John Cheke i n The True Subject and the Rebel, f o r as he says l o v e i s the u n i f y i n g motive amongst pe o p l e . Love i s not the knot o n l y of the Commonwealth, whereby d i v e r s e p a r t s be p e r f e c t l y j o i n e d t o g e t h e r i n one p o l i t i c body, but a l s o the s t r e n g t h and might of the same, g a t h e r i n g t o g e t h e r i n t o one s m a l l room with o r d e r , which, s c a t t e r e d , would e l s e breed c o n f u s i o n and d e b a t e . 3 0 The power of l o v e t o s t r e n g t h e n and u n i f y the commonwealth as a whole i s at the h e a r t of S i r Thomas Mare's Utopia and Shakespeare's The Tempest. D i v i s i o n i s fundamental, but love t r a n s c e n d s d i v i s i o n . However, d e s p i t e the n a i v e t y of t h i s v i s i o n , which sounds ve r y much l i k e the f a c i l e i d e a l i s m of Gonzalo who would r u l e h i s kingdom by " c o n t r a r i e s " , Burke r e v e a l s i n h i s book Dramatism and Development how the absence of j u s t such a n a i v e v i s i o n l e a d s to the n e c e s s i t y of tragedy as a c a t h a r t i c . As he says, When working out a " c y c l e of terms i m p l i c i t i n the i d e a of o r d e r " , I became more and more co n v i n c e d of the tremendous p r e s s u r e s toward a Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 36 s a c r i f i c i a l motive which the nature o-f human c o n g r e g a t i o n b u i l d s up. Hence the c o n s t a n t i n c e n t i v e to v i c t i m i z e . , the d i a l e c t i c of which adds up t o a d e s i g n t h a t c o u l d be c a l l e d " c o n g r e g a t i o n by s e g r e g a t i o n . " 3 * The t h e a t r e thus p r o v i d e s a s o c i e t y t h a t l a c k s u n i t y with the s a c r i f i c i a l v i c t i m s t h a t a r e n e c e s s a r y w i t h i n i t s e s t a b l i s h e d o r d e r . But the g r e a t d i f f e r e n c e between the t h e a t r e and the world i t s e l f i s the o b v i o u s f a c t t h a t the v i c t i m i z a t i o n i s mere make-be 1i eve. Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 37 THE TRAGIC PERSPECTIVE F o r c e s h o u l d be r i g h t ; or r a t h e r , r i g h t and w r o n g -Between whose e n d l e s s j a r j u s t i c e r e s i d e s — Should l o s e t h e i r names, and so s h o u l d j u s t i c e too. Troilus and Cressida I . i i i . 1 1 6 - 1 8 . Although I do not presume to d e f i n e "tragedy" as a l i t e r a r y form, I would l i k e to d e f i n e what I s h a l l r e f e r t o as the " t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e " . In the l i g h t of Kenneth Burke's w r i t i n g s , I would argue t h a t the t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e i s p a r t i c u l a r l y a p p r o p r i a t e f o r the study of the H i s t o r y P l a y s ; f o r , as he s a y s , drama u l t i m a t e l y a p p e a l s to the audience and i t s a t t i t u d e s : I developed a t h e o r y of l i t e r a r y form designed to d i s c u s s the work of a r t i n _ i t s e _ l f , as a s e t of i n t e r n a ] , r e l a t i o n s h i p s to be a n a l y z e d and a p p r e c i a t e d i n t h e i r own r i g h t . But i n the c o u r s e of c o n s i d e r i n g how such p r i n c i p l e s of form and s t y l e became " i n d i v i d u a t e d " i n terms of the d e t a i l s proper t o each p a r t i c u l a r case, t h i s l i n e of thought ended with the r e c o g n i t i o n t h a t the a r t i s t u l t i m a t e l y a p p e a l s to an a u d i e n c e ' s a t t i t u d e s , which a r e u l t i m a t e l y grounded i n n a t u r a l s u s c e p t i b i l i t i e s q u i t e o u t s i d e t h e i r r o l e i n any one s p e c i f i c a r t i s t i c t r a d i t i o n . 1 Aware of the i n a d e q u a c i e s of an a e s t h e t i c approach t o the drama, one must take i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n the p o s s i b i l i t y of a s o r t of communion at work between a r t i s t and a u d i e nce. S.C. Rowan, i n h i s Ph.D T h e s i s e n t i t l e d A Dancing of Attitudes, a r t i c u l a t e s t h i s when he s a y s t h a t A e s t h e t i c t h e o r i e s t h a t s u s p e c t d i d a c t i c i s m , i d e o l o g y , or paraphrase of any k i n d as n e c e s s a r i l y p a r t i s a n d i s t o r t i o n s of e x p e r i e n c e Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 38 •focus a t t e n t i o n on the s t r u c t u r e of a work i t s e l f as a " r e c o n c i l i a t i o n of o p p o s i t e s " ( C o l e r i d g e ) or a b a l a n c i n g of t e n s i o n s ( R i c h a r d ' s ) and not on the a r t i s t or the audience as communicating a n y t h i n g through the s t r u c t u r e . 3 2 The g u l f between the p e r c e i v e r and the t h i n g p e r c e i v e d i s b r i d g e d by e x p e r i e n c e , and the problem f o r the o b j e c t i v e c r i t i c i s t h a t e x p e r i e n c e i s f i l t e r e d through h i g h l y s u b j e c t i v e " t e r m i n i s t i c s c r e e n s " : the language of terms t h a t we use to e x p r e s s our e x p e r i e n c e of what we p e r c e i v e , but t h a t f a i l s t o encompass t h a t which i s observed. An o b j e c t i v e p e r s p e c t i v e seems t o recede a g a i n . U l t i m a t e l y , we a r e s e p a r a t e d from even our own e x p e r i e n c e through the ve r y a r t i c u l a t i o n of the e x p e r i e n c e . The v a l u e of t h i s approach t o drama i s t h a t we can be g i n t o see the s o r t of c o n f l i c t s t h a t perhaps cannot be r e s o l v e d but at l e a s t can be r e c o g n i z e d . And perhaps the o b j e c t i v e of the drama i s t o c r e a t e t h i s d i v i s i o n i n the c o l l e c t i v e a u d i e nce i n order t h a t i t may b e g i n t o see i t s e l f . The d i v i s i o n i s a r e f l e c t i o n of the d i v i s i o n i n h e r e n t i n man, who remains the c r e a t o r of the " b a t t l e f i e l d " and i s always s u b j e c t t o i t s ravages. The t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e c o n f r o n t s the audience wi t h t h i s momentary r e a l i z a t i o n t h a t r e g a r d l e s s of our p a r t i c u l a r views of the world, we see "the s u r v i v a l of a l l a t t i t u d e s , h o n e s t l y r e c o g n i z i n g the t r u t h of each p e r s p e c t i v e . " 3 T h i s i s an e s s e n t i a l l y "emotive" response, but f o r the p l a y w r i g h t who t a k e s d e l i g h t i n f a c t i o n i t i s merely the r e s u l t of a " p a r l i a m e n t of a t t i t u d e s " t h a t i s a f a c t of l i f e . And i t i s on the n e u t r a l and Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 39 a b s t r a c t s t a g e t h a t Shakespeare p r e s e n t s the audience with a glimpse of the t o r t u r e d s o u l o-f the deposed R i c h a r d at one moment and the s c a r r e d -face o-f England a t the B a t t l e o-f Bosworth at another. The t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e i s e s s e n t i a l l y the a t t a i n m e n t o-f an u n d e r s t a n d i n g t h a t i n v o l v e s the c o l l a p s e o-f one's " u n d e r s t a n d i n g " o-f the world. Rowan argues t h a t t h i s momentous p e r s p e c t i v e i s a c h i e v e d i n something so a p p a r e n t l y i n s i g n i f i c a n t as the pun: The pun shows i n l i t t l e what Shakespeare i s doing throughout a p l a y : combining " p e r s p e c t i v e s by i n c o n g r u i t y " , a r g u i n g o p p o s i t e s , and i n c l u d i n g a " p a r l i a m e n t " of a t t i t u d e s on the s u b j e c t he i s c o n t e m p l a t i n g . A pun ... i s the commonest and s m a l l e s t p r a c t i c a l m a n i f e s t a t i o n of the f r a g i l i t y of d e f i n i t i o n s . S i n c e a word i s a d e f i n e r - -e x i s t s to f i x q u a s i - p h y s i c a l l i m i t s to an i d e a - - t h e e x p e r i e n c e of p e r c e i v i n g a pun i s a r e a l , though a d m i t t e d l y p e t t y , e x p e r i e n c e of c o l l a p s i n g l i m i t s . 4 Not o n l y does tr a g e d y i n v o l v e a breakdown of the p o l i t i c a l o r d e r , i t a l s o i s i m p l i c i t l y i n v o l v e d w i t h the breakdown of• l a n g u a g e i t s e l f . And as we l i v e by " l i n g u i s t i c c o n c e p t s " t h a t a r e v e r b a l l y moulded, such a breakdown of language i t s e l f throws a l l o t h e r p a r t i a l p e r s p e c t i v e s beneath the r e l a t i v e i m p a r t i a l i t y of the t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e t h a t i s i n c l u s i v e as opposed t o e x c l u s i v e . As long as the s a c r i f i c i a l impulse i n man needs t o p r o j e c t i n t e r n a l c o n f l i c t s out i n t o the world, s a c r i f i c i a l v i c t i m s w i l l be n e c e s s a r y ; u n t i l t h i s need f o r s a c r i f i c e can be i n t e r n a l i z e d so t h a t we can d i e i n o r d e r to be reborn each day, then the e x t e r n a l m a n i f e s t a t i o n s of v i c t i m i z a t i o n w i l l be enacted i n r e a l i t y as opposed to on the s t a g e . In o t h e r words, the s t a g e Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 40 w i l l c o n t i n u e to re-Flect the r e a l i t y . Through the v i c a r i o u s i d e n t i f i c a t i o n with an a t t i t u d e and i t s subsequent death, our a t t i t u d e s are wrought to c r i s i s , and we bear w i t n e s s to our own subsequent death. As we a r e d e n i e d the t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e t h a t i s r e l e v a n t to our own l i v e s , because i t i s e s s e n t i a l l y a r e t r o s p e c t i v e wisdom, we a r e l e f t t o r e c o n s i d e r the p r i n c i p l e s upon which we base our views of the world. The i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the world i s i t s e l f an a c t , and as i t a f f e c t s subsequent a c t i o n , i t must be an e t h i c a l a c t . I would argue t h a t t r a g e d y c o n f r o n t s the audience with the t e r r i f y i n g p o s s i b i l i t y of t r u l y e t h i c a l a c t i o n . Burke s t a t e s t h i s much when he says, A c t i o n i s f u n d a m e n t a l l y e t h i c a l , s i n c e i t i n v o l v e s p r e f e r e n c e s . P o e t r y i s e t h i c a l . O c c u p a t i o n and p r e o c c u p a t i o n a r e e t h i c a l . The e t h i c a l shapes our s e l e c t i o n of means. I t shapes our s t r u c t u r e s of o r i e n t a t i o n , w h i l e these i n t u r n shape the p e r c e p t i o n s of the i n d i v i d u a l s born w i t h i n the o r i e n t a t i o n . Hence i t r a d i c a l l y a f f e c t s our c o o p e r a t i v e p r o c e s s e s . The e t h i c a l i s thus l i n k e d with the c ommunicative. 3 The t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e , t h e r e f o r e , with i t s emphasis on the m u l t i p l i c i t y of meanings t h a t encompasses any event, encourages the audience to adopt a a t t i t u d e t h a t i s e s s e n t i a l l y " s u p e r i o r " to those a t t i t u d e s l i t e r a l l y p r e s e n t e d on the s t a g e . In t h i s sense Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s may be regarded as r h e t o r i c a l . And Rowan argues t h a t Burke's r h e t o r i c has such an o b j e c t i v e i n mind when he says, C e n t r a l t o Burke's r h e t o r i c i s h i s d e f i n i t i o n of man as a symbol-using animal and h i s d e f i n i t i o n of r h e t o r i c as p e r s u a s i o n to change Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 41 through " i d e n t i f i c a t i o n " with a symbol of o r d e r . " R h e t o r i c " , he says, " i s r o o t e d i n an e s s e n t i a l f u n c t i o n of language i t s e l f , a f u n c t i o n t h a t i s wh o l l y r e a l i s t i c , and i s c o n t i n u a l l y born anew; the use of language as a sy m b o l i c means of i n d u c i n g c o o p e r a t i o n i n be i n g s t h a t by nature respond to symbols."'* And the r h e t o r i c a l f u n c t i o n of the drama may be regarded as an attempt t o induce c o o p e r a t i o n through the o b j e c t i v e study of human na t u r e . And the h i s t o r i a n , as Walsh says , i s concerned with " g e n e r a l judgments about human na t u r e t t h a t l have an important p a r t to p l a y i n h i s t o r i c a l i n t e r p r e t a t i o n and e x p l a n a t i o n . " 7 " I m p l i c i t i n a l l i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s and e x p l a n a t i o n s a r e c o r r e s p o n d i n g e t h i c a l frameworks, and at the r o o t s of the e t h i c a l t h e r e i s tra g e d y . Tragedy i s a complex k i n d of t r i a l by j u r y i n which the author s y m b o l i c a l l y c h a r g e s h i m s e l f or h i s c h a r a c t e r s with t r a n s g r e s s i o n s not n e c e s s a r i l y c o n s i d e r e d t r a n s g r e s s i o n s i n law, and metes out condemnation and penance by t e s t s f a r deeper than any t h a t c o u l d be c o d i f i e d by law." Tragedy l i t e r a l l y goes beyond the l e t t e r of the law t o examine the p r i n c i p l e s upon which a c t i o n i s based, and t h i s i s p o s s i b l e because the audience r e c o g n i z e s the a t t i t u d e s t h a t a r e s y m b o l i c a l l y p r e s e n t e d on the s t a g e . In the p r o c e s s the ground i s l i t e r a l l y taken from beneath our f e e t . The t r a g i c p e r s p e c t i v e encompasses two d i a m e t r i c a l l y apposed views of man i n the world: he i s e i t h e r a p o l i t i c a l animal t h a t i s doomed to c y c l i c a l r e p e t i t i o n s of h i s t o r y ; or he i s c a p a b l e of becoming p o l i t i c a l l y humane and c o n s e q u e n t l y a b l e t o shape the Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 42 e v o l u t i o n a r y p r o c e s s t h a t i s h i s t o r y . But as Burke says , "the p r i n c i p l e o-f v i c t i m a g e p l a y s so e s s e n t i a l a r o l e , we Cmust3 ask o u r s e l v e s whether human s o c i e t i e s c o u l d p o s s i b l y cohere without symbolic v i c t i m s which the i n d i v i d u a l members of the group share i n common."5" Perhaps by i n t e r n a l i z i n g the c o n f l i c t s , the members of a s o c i e t y may m a i n t a i n a s o c i a l h i e r a r c h y t h a t does not r e q u i r e v i c t i m i z a t i o n f o r i t s c o h e s i o n . The s t a g e p r o v i d e s the medium through which the audience may v i c a r i o u s l y f i n d e x t e r n a l s c a p e g o a t s t o i d e n t i f y with and s a c r i f i c e . The s e l f - r e f l e x i v e d e v i s e t h a t i s so s e l f - c o n s c i o u s l y used i n Hamlet to r e f l e c t the m u l t i p l e frameworks t h a t can be brought t o bear on i n t e r p r e t i n g r e a l i t y i s brought to the au d i e n c e ' s a t t e n t i o n throughout the p l a y . The r h e t o r i c a l purpose of the p 1 a y - w i t h i n - t h e - p l a y i s t o "c a t c h the c o n s c i e n c e of the k i n g " , and as each i s a r u l e r of some s o r t , and each i s u l t i m a t e l y monarch over h i s thoughts, perhaps the r h e t o r i c a l purpose of the H i s t o r y P l a y s i s l i k e w i s e to c a t c h the c o n s c i e n c e of the o b s e r v e r . So, the H i s t o r y P l a y s may be regarded as " m i r r o r s f o r m a g i s t r a t e s " i n g e n e r a l as opposed to " m i r r o r s of E l i z a b e t h a n p o l i c y " i n p a r t i c u l a r . 1 0 Although Campbell m a i n t a i n s a fundamental s p l i t between tragedy and h i s t o r y , s a y i n g t h a t Tragedy d e a l s with an e t h i c a l world; h i s t o r y with a p o l i t i c a l world. In tragedy God avenges p r i v a t e s i n s - - i n h i s t o r y the Ki n g of k i n g s avenges p u b l i c s i n s , those of k i n g and subj e c t a l i k e . 1 1 Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s narrow t h i s gap t o d e a l with the p o l i t i c a l world w i t h i n an e t h i c a l framework; the r e s u l t i s t h a t Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 43 h i s t o r y and t r a g e d y become one: t r a g i c a l - h i s t o r i c a l , or perhaps h i s t o r i c a ' l - t r a g i c a l . Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 44 King R i c h a r d I I ' s Loss o-f the Crown of England The times are always out o-f j o i n t : and the weak men, s t r o n g men, good men, and bad men who t r y to r e - a r t i c u l a t e them are a.1.1 f u mblers, or so compromised t h a t t h e i r v e r y s k i l l i s v a i n . A.P. R o s s i t e r P r i n c e H a l , a c u t e l y aware o-f the f a c t t h a t p e o p l e a r e prone to misjudge " a c t i o n " , s t a t e s the t e r r i f y i n g p h i l o s o p h y t h a t a man i s not o n l y d e s t i n e d to be judged i n the l i g h t of h i s l i f e as a whole but a l s o t h a t h i s own misjudgments are beyond h i s 'own comprehension, when he says, "Let the end t r y the man." 1 Such a view seems to preempt a l l d i s c u s s i o n . But, i r o n i c a l l y , i t i s the r e a l i z a t i o n of the depth of our misjudgments t h a t i s encouraged by the s k i l l f u l d r a m a t i s t who p e r m i t s us t o i n d u l g e i n our " p r e j u d i c e s " i n order to r e v e a l them. T h i s p a t t e r n of e d u c a t i o n i s p a r t i c u l a r l y dominant i n the second t e t r a l o g y , and i s p o w e r f u l l y d r a m a t i z e d when Ki n g Henry IV denounces h i s son f o r i n t e n t i o n s t h a t he t h i n k s w i l l l e a d t o even more d r e a d f u l a c t s than the a c t of t a k i n g the crown; as he " f o r e s e e s " the imminent d i s s o l u t i o n of h i s kingdom, the audience sees the h o r r i b l e t r u t h of the s i t u a t i o n . The c o m p l e x i t y of the s i t u a t i o n , i n which Hal must s t r u g g l e with h i s r e l i g i o u s f a i t h , h i s f u t u r e f e a l t y to the kingdom and the p e o p l e of England, and h i s l o v e f o r h i s f a t h e r , c o n f r o n t s the audience with an i n t e n s e l y emotional drama i n which we sympathize with both of the c h a r a c t e r s ; and at the v e r y h e a r t Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 45 of the drama, j u s t as at the v e r y h e a r t o-f Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s , l i e s the Crown o-f England. I t i s t h a t s i l e n t and yet most el o q u e n t symbol o-f a u t h o r i t y t h a t Hal u p b r a i d s by s a y i n g , ... thou b e s t o-f g o l d a r t worst of g o l d . Other, l e s s f i n e i n c a r a t , i s more p r e c i o u s , P r e s e r v i n g l i f e i n med'cine p o t a b l e ; But thou, most f i n e , most honour'd, most renown'd Hast eat thy b e a r e r u p . = T h i s i s a theme t h a t runs through the e n t i r e e p i c sweep of the H i s t o r y P l a y s : the Crown consumes i t s b e a r e r s . The a u t h o r i t y t h a t i s bestowed upon i t s b e a r e r i s a burden too g r e a t f o r a s i n g l e man to assume and m a i n t a i n because h i s judgments, words, and deeds determine the f a t e of h i s kingdom, h i s s u b j e c t s , and h i s l i f e . The r e s p o n s i b i l i t y t h a t a k i n g i n h e r i t s i s enormous, and h i s thoughts and judgments must remain as i n s u b s t a n t i a l as the d i s c o r d a n t sounds on Rumor's p i p e : Blown by s u r m i s e s , j e a l o u s i e s , c o n j e c t u r e s , And of so easy and so p l a i n a stop That the b l u n t monster with uncovered heads, The s t i 1 1 - d i s c o r d a n t wav'ring m u l t i t u d e , Can p l a y upon i t . 3 The k i n g who i s s e t above the m u l t i t u d e i s s u b j e c t to the same misjudgments t h a t the audience sees a t p l a y i n the drama; however, the consequences of those misjudgments a r e much d i f f e r e n t as the k i n g ' s head i s u n e a s i l y "covered" with a crown, w h i l e the heads of h i s s u b j e c t s remain "uncovered" and y e t s u b j e c t t o the w i l l of t h e i r k i n g . The k i n g i s as s u b j e c t to the crown t h a t he wears as the p e o p l e a r e t o h i s w i l l . Because so much symbolic meaning i s i n v e s t e d i n the Crown of Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 46 England, the l o s s o-f what the "worn crown" means i s d e v a s t a t i n g . Thus, I have e n t i t l e d t h i s c h a p t e r "King R i c h a r d I I ' s L o s s of the Crown of England". Such an h i s t o r i c a l f a c t i s of concern to the c h r o n i c l e r , but whether the crown was i n f a c t l o s t , g i v e n , or taken i s the ambiguous s t u f f of drama t h a t the p l a y w r i g h t -h i s t o r i a n i s concerned w i t h . The worlds of h i s t o r y and drama a r e p u b l i c , and the o b s e r v e r of the r e c o r d e d speeches and a c t i o n s t h a t make up these worlds must always be confounded i n h i s s e a r c h f o r i n t e n t i o n s . The ob s e r v e r , l i k e the d i s t r a c t e d Hamlet, i s caught between the o b s e r v a b l e r e a l i t y , the s t a g e p r e s e n t a t i o n (the au d i e n c e ' s macrocosm), and the imagined r e a l i t y which i s c o n j u r e d up in the i m a g i n a t i o n of each i n d i v i d u a l (the microcosm). As Harry L e v i n says, When Hamlet c u d g e l s h i s b r a i n s by p u t t i n g h i s hands t o h i s head and s p e a k i n g of " t h i s d i s t r a c t e d g lobe", he i s p o s i t i n g a r e l a t i o n s h i p between the microcosm of man's i n t e l l i g e n c e and the macrocosm, the o u t e r world ( I . v . 9 7 ) . He may l i k e w i s e have been s u g g e s t i n g ... how t h a t d i s p r o p o r t i o n a t e r e l a t i o n s h i p might f i n d a c o n n e c t i n g l i n k through the t h e a t r i c a l medium, and through a p a r t i c u l a r t h e a t r e known as the Globe." The audience, aware of the f a c t t h a t the world of the drama i s a r t i f i c i a l , i s c o n f r o n t e d with a drama t h a t p u r p o r t s t o be h i s t o r i c a l . The r e s u l t i s t h a t a r t i f i c e i s tran s f o r m e d i n t o r e a l i t y : h i s t o r y i s r e c r e a t e d w i t h "A Kingdom f o r a s t a g e , p r i n c e s t o a c t And monarchs t o behold the s w e l l i n g s c e n e ! " 3 At the b e g i n n i n g of Richard II, K i n g R i c h a r d i s seen as a Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 47 se 1 f -cause i ous p u b l i c a c t o r ; by the time we see him i n Pom-fret C a s t l e , R i c h a r d has become a p r i v a t e man whose thoughts a r e s e l f -c o n s c i o u s l y p o r t r a y e d by a p u b l i c a c t o r . F i n a l l y , he comes to the l o n e l y and " s e l f - c o n s c i o u s " p e r s p e c t i v e t h a t i s a s s o c i a t e d with the t r a g i c hero's r e a l i z a t i o n : he a t t a i n s an u n d e r s t a n d i n g t h a t i s p u r e l y r e t r o s p e c t i v e . The i m p l i c a t i o n of t h i s i s t h a t each " a c t o r " i s ul_t i.mate_l_y_ the judge of h i s a c t i o n s : i n a word, " c o n s c i e n c e " . The audience, however, tends t o succumb to the hybris i m p l i c i t i n j u d g i n g the a c t i o n of another. We must ask the q u e s t i o n whether or not Shakespeare i s d e l i c a t e l y j u d g i n g the p r a c t i c e of having a kingdom governed by a monarch. The k i n g h i m s e l f becomes the s a c r i f i c i a l v i c t i m , who i s l i t e r a l l y consumed by the kingdom he governs, f o r the sake of h i s c o u n t r y . "He", or r a t h e r the r o l e t h a t i s bestowed upon him, becomes the cause of c o n f l i c t and the l o s s of h i s l i f e "redeems" the c o n f l i c t , temporar i 1 y . The man who becomes a k i n g must l o s e h i s i d e n t i t y i n order to f u l f i l l the demanding r o l e of the k i n g . He must i n f a c t d i e as he c a s t s away the f l e s h , h i s g r o s s and i m p e r f e c t body, t o f i l l the robes of s t a t e . Thus, K i n g Henry V must c a s t away the f a t F a l s t a f f t o assume h i s new found a u t h o r i t y on h i s c o r o n a t i o n day. The supreme i r o n y i s t h a t the audience i n v a r i a b l y p i t i e s the ve r y human and - f a l l i b l e o l d man, w h i l e o b j e c t i n g t o the c a l l o u s treatment he r e c e i v e s from the young k i n g . The k i n g i s not a man; he i s the p a r t he p l a y s — t h e k i n g . The man who cannot p l a y t h i s p a r t e f f e c t i v e l y i s thus the s u b j e c t of t r a g e d y . The H i s t o r y P l a y s may i n a ve r y s u b t l e way be c r i t i c i z i n g the Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 48 inhumanity i m p l i c i t i n the i d e a o-f k i n g s h i p i t s e l - f . T r i a l K i ng R i c h a r d I I , as he appears i n the s o u r c e s and i n Shakespeare's Richard II, i s regarded as a man who - f a i l s t o d i s t i n g u i s h between "ceremonial a c t i o n " and " a c t i o n " , and the consequences a r e d e v a s t a t i n g . As the symbolic head o-f the E n g l i s h l e g i s l a t u r e , he i s asked t o j udge a c o n f l i c t between two of h i s n o b l e s who both swear on oath t h a t they a r e f a i t h f u l t o t h e i r k i n g and s i m u l t a n e o u s l y accuse each o t h e r of t r e a c h e r y . Thus, at the v e r y b e g i n n i n g of the whole e p i c drama t h a t spanned the y e a r s from 1399 t o 1485 as p r e s e n t e d by Raphael H o l i n s h e d and Edward H a l l i n t h e i r c h r o n i c l e s and s u b s e q u e n t l y r e - p r e s e n t e d by Shakespeare i n h i s H i s t o r y P l a y s from Richard II t o Richard III, the problem of "judgment" i s foremast. The r o l e of the k i n g i s determined by ceremony, and when the p e r s o n a l i t y of the man beneath the robes becomes the dominant determinant of a c t i o n , then the p e r f e c t i n t e g r i t y of h i s r o l e i s j e o p a r d i z e d and with i t , h i s kingdom. Thus, the p o e t i c c h a r a c t e r of K i n g R i c h a r d II i s seen t o be deposed by the " c h a r a c t e r l e s s " B o l i n g b r o k e and the M a c h i a v e l l i a n K i n g R i c h a r d I I I i s seen t o be deposed by the " c h a r a c t e r l e s s " Richmond. Leonard Dean s u g g e s t s t h a t we tend t o f e e l the presence of " c h a r a c t e r " o n l y when p e r s o n a l i t y exceeds drama t i c r o l e and t h a t B o l i n g b r o k e seems c h a r a c t e r l e s s i n comparison t o R i c h a r d because he i s p e r f e c t l y f u n c t i o n a l , i s o n l y what he has to do i n the p l a y and n o t h i n g more. 1 The problem i s t h a t the k i n g , b e i n g an " i n c a r n a t e symbol" whose Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 4? e v e r y a c t i o n i s a "symbolic a c t i o n " , i s d e s t i n e d t o - f a i l to be p e r f e c t as a k i n g ; t o be p e r f e c t he would have to f a i l as a man in the p u b l i c ' s r e g a r d . In the opening exchange between K i n g R i c h a r d and John of Gaunt, not o n l y a r e we i n t r o d u c e d t o the s u b j e c t s t h a t seek a r b i t r a t i o n from t h e i r k i n g but a l s o t o the d r a m a t i c s u b j e c t of the p l a y . B o l i n g b r o k e and Mowbray, a c c u s i n g each o t h e r of t r e a c h e r y w h i l e each m a i n t a i n i n g h i s u n f a i l i n g l o y a l t y t o h i s monarch by e x p o s i n g the heinous crime of h i s a d v e r s a r y , stand f o r a c o n f l i c t t h a t i s of paramount concern to any r u l e r : the p o s s i b i l i t y t h a t a man's word i s not i n f a c t h i s bond. These are the s u b j e c t s t h a t t h r e a t e n o r d e r ; i t i s the d i s p a r i t y between what i s s a i d and what i s done i n t h i s opening scene t h a t r e v e a l s the weakness of the k i n g , or r a t h e r the " c h a r a c t e r " of the k i n g , and foreshadows the consequent d i s o r d e r i n the s t a t e and the subsequent mental d i s o r d e r t h a t R i c h a r d e x p e r i e n c e s at Pomfret C a s t l e when he comes t o r e a l i z e the g r a v i t y of h i s s i t u a t i o n : i n r e t r o s p e c t , he understands what i t i s t o be a k i n g and, s i m u l t a n e o u s l y , a deposed k i n g . B e f o r e I approach the c h a r a c t e r of King R i c h a r d , a d i s c u s s i o n of the c h a r a c t e r of o l d John of Gaunt as p o r t r a y e d by Shakespeare i s of consequence. The h i g h l y c o n t e n t i o u s nobleman of the s o u r c e s i s s i g n i f i c a n t l y absent i n Shakespeare's gaunt o l d man. H o l i n s h e d reminds us t h a t King R i c h a r d aggravated many of the n o b l e s , e s p e c i a l l y h i s u n c l e s , by h i s i r r e s p o n s i b l e b e h a v i o u r : Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 50 t i n 13973 K i n g R i c h a r d , r e c e i v i n g sums o-f money -for the which the s t r o n g town o-f B r e s t was engaged to him,, by e v i l c o u n s e l (as many thought) d e l i v e r e d i t unto the Duke of B r i t t a n y , by reason whereof no s m a l l spark o-f d i s p l e a s u r e arose b e t w i x t the k i n g and the Duke o-f G l o u c e s t e r . 5 2 T h i s r e f e r s t o the p r e t e x t t h a t R o s s i t e r argues i s e s s e n t i a l f o r a comprehensive u n d e r s t a n d i n g of the opening of the p l a y and i s d r a m a t i c a l l y p r e s e n t e d i n Woodstock. Such an argument i s r e d u c t i v e because the opening scene of Richard II i s , I m a i n t a i n , s p e c i f i c a l l y d e s i g n e d to p r e v e n t the audience from "knowing" the t r u e n a t u r e of the c o n f l i c t between B o l i n g b r o k e and Mowbray. The f a c t t h a t t h e r e i s a c o n f l i c t and t h a t R i c h a r d doesn't d e a l w i t h i t e f f e c t i v e l y i s the p o i n t of the scene. Shakespeare's King R i c h a r d a c t u a l l y encourages c o n f l i c t . H a l l a l s o d e s c r i b e s how K i n g R i c h a r d ' s c h a r a c t e r was such t h a t he f o s t e r e d c o n f l i c t : Kyng R i c h a r d e ... l i t l e or nothyng regarded the counsai11 of h i s u n c l e s , nor of o t h e r grave and sadde persones, but d i d a l l thyng a t h i s p l e a s u r e , s e t t y n g h i s w i l l and a p p e t i t e i n s t e d e of lawe and r e a s o n . 3 John of Gaunt, b e i n g one of K i n g R i c h a r d ' s u n c l e s , d i d not approve of h i s conduct and was not i n f a c t as r e t i c e n t as the o l d man t h a t Shakespeare p r e s e n t s . Shakespeare's Gaunt r e p r e s e n t s an o l d o rder t h a t i s seen to be outmoded. He i s the p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n o-f a s e t of v a l u e s t h a t informs an e t h i c a l code of conduct i n which a s u b j e c t ' s word i s h i s band of a l l e g i a n c e . K i n g R i c h a r d ' s f o r m a l opening speech draws our a t t e n t i o n to t h i s tenuous bond between monarch and s u b j e c t . I t i s tenuous Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 51 because as we see i n the -following scene a s u b j e c t ' s word i s e a s i l y broken, i-f not s e r i o u s l y compromised, by what he does; t h i s i s c l e a r l y demonstrated i n the q u a r r e l between B o l i n g b r o k e and Mowbray i n which two sworn s u b j e c t s p u r p o r t t o be f a i t h - f u l t o t h e i r k i n g w h i l e each s i m u l t a n e o u s l y swears t h a t the o t h e r i s a t r a i t o r . The opening exchange, i n which o r d e r i s based upon n o t h i n g more s u b s t a n t i a l than a v e r b a l c o n t r a c t , i s a r e - f l e c t i o n of the f r a g i l i t y of a k i n g ' s power. The whole s o c i a l f a b r i c i s flawed when words ar e misused. Thus, Shakespeare opens the p l a y by having King R i c h a r d a d d r e s s one of h i s noblemen i n the fo11owi ng way: Richard'. Old John of Gaunt, time-honored L a n c a s t e r , Hast thou a c c o r d i n g to thy oath and band Brought h i t h e r Henry H e r e f o r d , thy b o l d son, Here to make good the b o i s t r a u s l a t e a p p e a l , Which then our l e i s u r e would not l e t us hear, A g a i n s t the Duke of N o r f o l k , Thomas Mowbray? Gaunt % I have, my l i e g e . " A man's t i t l e and h i s word ar e i n e x t r i c a b l e . The c e r e m o n i a l use of language, c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the c h i v a l r i c code, i s however t h r e a t e n e d i n the e n s u i n g scene. And the q u a r r e l between the two a d v e r s a r i e s must not be r e s o l v e d by words, but by a c t i o n . Robert O r n s t e i n emphasizes t h i s importance i m p l i c i t i n the use of language: Words ar e of immense consequence i n a f e u d a l world, where so much depends on o a t h s , t i t 1 e s , and names, and where f o r the sake of a name, men w i l l take arms a g a i n s t a k i n g , as R i c h a r d l e a r n s when he t r i e s to e r a s e the name of L a n c a s t e r . 3 The i n t e g r i t y of the k i n g ' s word, and a s u b j e c t ' s oath i s in e f f e c t n o t h i n g more than h i s k i n g ' s word, i s t h r e a t e n e d by both Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 52 B o l i n g b r o k e and Mowbray; King R i c h a r d , unaware o-f the g r a v i t y o-f the s i t u a t i o n , does not r e a l i z e the -fact t h a t the q u a r r e l must be d e c i d e d i n the l i s t s : t r i a l by combat i s the o n l y s o l u t i o n when language "breaks down".* The onus thus p l a c e d on the k i n g ' s word i s o-f supreme import, as r e v e a l e d i n the p r o v e r b , "The k i n g ' s word i s more than another man's oath.'"" The drama stems -from the -fact t h a t King R i c h a r d does not determine t h a t the c o n t e s t a n t s s h o u l d r e s o l v e the c o n f l i c t by r e s o r t i n g t o armed combat. Unable to a r b i t r a t e the q u a r r e l h i m s e l f , he must have r e c o u r s e to a d i v i n e l y s a n c t i o n e d , a l b e i t somewhat crude i n i t s e f f e c t , form of rough j u s t i c e . Thus, a f t e r much e q u i v o c a t i o n , King R i c h a r d r e f e r s the case of " B o l i n g b r o k e v e r s u s Mowbray" t o t r i a l by combat i n the l i s t s at Coventry: There s h a l l your swords and l a n c e s a r b i t r a t e The s w e l l i n g d i f f e r e n c e of your hate: S i n c e we cannot atone you, we s h a l l see J u s t i c e d e s i g n the v i c t o r ' s c h i v a l r y . Richard II I.i.200-3. Having passed t h i s judgment, he has committed h i m s e l f t o s i l e n c e ; to i n t e r r u p t the c o u r s e of events i s t o c o n t r a d i c t not o n l y h i m s e l f but a l s o a " d i v i n e l y s a n c t i o n e d " form of J u s t i c e . 9 Although Shakespeare compresses the t h r e e s t a g e development of the c o n f l i c t between B o l i n g b r o k e and Mowbray i n t o two scenes, the drama i s s t r i k i n g l y f a i t h f u l to the h i s t o r i c a l d e t a i l s as p r e s e n t e d i n H o l i n s h e d , H a l l , and F r o i s s a r t . The f i r s t s t a g e took p l a c e at the end of the p a r l i a m e n t a r y s e s s i o n a t Shrewsbury; Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 53 the second, at Windsor C a s t l e ; and the t h i r d , a t Coventry i n the l i s t s . The h i s t o r i c a l q u a r r e l i s g i v e n prime s i g n i f i c a n c e by Shakespeare i n h i s H i s t o r y P l a y , as i t i s by the c h r o n i c l e r s , by e q u a t i n g the d r a m a t i c r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n with the r e c o r d e d h i s t o r i c a l drama and p l a c i n g i t at the b e g i n n i n g o-f Richard II. In Shakespeare's English Kings, P e t e r S a c c i o r e c o r d s the s t a g e s of the drama i n r e l a t i o n t o the h i s t o r i c a l f a c t s . B o l i n g b r o k e charged N o r f o l k with t r e a s o n b e f o r e p a r l i a m e n t i n January 1398. P a r l i a m e n t then near the end of i t s s e s s i o n , s e t up a committee of l o r d s and k n i g h t s t o d e a l with the charge. The second meeting ... , i n A p r i l , p r o v i d e d Shakespeare wi t h the opening scene of Richard II.* The f i r s t meeting was not, as H o l i n s h e d c l e a r l y r e v e a l s , a s i t u a t i o n charged with drama because the q u a r r e l was not p e r m i t t e d to develop any f u r t h e r . A committee was formed--as we a l l know, a committee i s , on the one hand a b a r r i e r designed to prevent f u r t h e r c o n f l i c t w h i l e acknowledging t h a t a c o n f l i c t does in f a c t need " a c t i n g upon", and on the o t h e r an attempt to r e s o l v e the c o n f l i c t e i t h e r by time or a c t i o n . H o l i n s h e d d e s c r i b e s the f i r s t a c c u s a t i o n t h a t l e d to the f o r m a t i o n of such a committee as f o l l o w s : i n t h i s p a r l i a m e n t holder) a t Shrewsbury [January, 13983, Henry Duke of H e r e f o r d accused Thomas Mowbray Duke of N o r f o l k of c e r t a i n words which he s h o u l d u t t e r i n t a l k had b e t w i x t them, as they rode t o g e t h e r l a t e l y b e f o r e b e t w i x t London and B r e n t f o r d , sounding h i g h l y to the King's d i s h o n o r . And f o r f u r t h e r proof t h e r e o f , he p r e s e n t e d a s u p p l i c a t i o n to the K i n g wherein he appealed the Duke of N o r f o l k i n f i e l d of b a t t l e f o r a Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 54 enemy unto the realm. T h i s s u p p l i c a t i o n was read be-fore the Dukes, i n the presence o-f the K i n g . 1 0 I t was not u n t i l the subsequent p r o c e e d i n g s t h a t the drama began to emerge. And HDlinshed draws our a t t e n t i o n t o the t h e a t r i c a l i t y o-f them with a sense o-f f o r b o d i n g as he r e f e r s t o the s t a g e as a " s c a f f o l d " : 1 1 S i x weeks a f t e r [ t h e p a r l i a m e n t at Shrewsbury!, the King Ccame3 unto Windsor t o heare and t o take some or d e r b e t w i x t the two dukes, which had thus appealed each o t h e r . There was a g r e a t s c a f f o l d e r e c t e d w i t h i n the C a s t e l l of Windsor f o r the K i n g t o s i t w i t h the l o r d s and p r e l a t e s of h i s r e a l m e . 1 2 The opening scene of Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y equates the h i s t o r i c a l f a c t s with h i s t h e a t r i c a l f i c t i o n as the s t a g e of the "great s c a f f o l d " at Windsor i s equated with the s t a g e of the "great Globe i t s e l f " . The s t a g e i s s e t ; the s e t i s both h i s t o r i c a l l y a f a c t and i m a g i n a t i v e l y a f i c t i o n - - i n s h o r t we a r e £2D.i.J22Hted with and encompassed by. h i s t o r y as we observe and p a r t i c i p a t e i n i t . The c h a r a c t e r s who e n t e r , B o l i n g b r o k e and Mowbray, ar e c o n s t r a i n e d by the f o r m a l i t y of the p r o c e e d i n g s which p r e v e n t s any u n b r i d l e d e x p r e s s i o n of p a s s i o n ^ They accuse and defend each o t h e r with g r e a t v e r b a l d e x t e r i t y and c o n t r o l ; the k i n g , due to the nature of t h e i r c o n f l i c t , i s unable to a r b i t r a t e the matter. The h i s t o r i c a l K ing R i c h a r d and Shakespeare's f i c t i o n a l c o u n t e r p a r t , however, attempt t o r e c o n c i l e the two c o n t e s t a n t s . But of c o u r s e no r e c o n c i l i a t i o n i s p o s s i b l e because i f they were to have agreed t o agree then they both would have i n e f f e c t broken t h e i r word to t h e i r k i n g : t o r e c a n t one's word i s to Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 55 b e t r a y o n e s e l f ; t o r e c a n t one's word b e f o r e one's k i n g i s t o , at the same time, openly b e t r a y one's a l l e g i a n c e . Whether King R i c h a r d was a c t u a l l y aware o-f the g r a v i t y of the s i t u a t i o n may not be known, but h i s a c t i o n r e v e a l s a f a t a l i g n o r a n c e i n r e g a r d to the s i t u a t i o n t h a t he had to d e a l w i t h . Hence, Ure s t a t e s t h a t h i s " c h i e f a c t as p r i n c e i s ... one which makes p l a i n h i s u n f i t n e s s to h o l d the s c e p t r e which i n h e r i t a n c e has bestowed upon h i m . " 1 3 H o l i n s h e d and H a l l a r e more or l e s s i n agreement i n t h e i r d e s c r i p t i o n s of the s i t u a t i o n . H o l i n s h e d says t h a t King R i c h a r d t r i e d t o persuade the two t o come t o some s o r t of agreement: the k i n g commanded the Dukes of Aumerle and S u r r e y ... t o go unto the two Dukes, a p p e l a n t and defendant, r e q u i r i n g them on h i s b e h a l f to grow t o some agreement; and, f o r h i s p a r t , he would be ready t o pardon a l l t h a t had been s a i d or done amiss b e t w i x t them t o u c h i n g any harm or d i s h o n o r to him or h i s realmC!3 -But they answered both a s s u r e d l y t h a t i t was not p o s s i b l e t o have any peace or agreement made be t w i x t them. 1" [ E x c l a m a t i o n mine.} T h i s attempt t o r e c o n c i l e the two f a i l s , and H o l i n s h e d goes on t o d e s c r i b e K i n g R i c h a r d ' s second attempt: The k i n g ... caused them once again t o be asked i f they would agree and make peace t o g e t h e r , but they both f l a t l y answered t h a t they would not; and, w i t h a l , the Duke of H e r e f o r d c a s t down h i s gage and the Duke of N o r f o l k took i t up. 1 3 Because the k i n g c o n t i n u e s t o speak, the drama becomes more apparent. Not o n l y i s King R i c h a r d p l a c i n g h i s t r u s t i n two men who both swear t h a t the o t h e r i s a t r a i t o r by o f f e r i n g them a r e c o n c i l i a t i o n , but he i s a l s o p e r m i t t i n g them, i n p u b l i c , to Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 56 d i s o b e y t h e i r l i e g e to whom they have sworn - f e a l t y . I t seems t o have taken King R i c h a r d some time t o r e a l i z e t h a t the c o n f l i c t t h a t he was t r y i n g to a r b i t r a t e was i n -fact an i r r e c o n c i l a b l e one. H o l i n s h e d s u b s e q u e n t l y d e s c r i b e s K i n g R i c h a r d ' s d e c i s i o n : The k i n g , p e r c e i v i n g t h i s demeanour b e t w i x t them, swore by S a i n t John B a p t i s t t h a t he would never seek to make peace b e t w i x t them ag a i n . 1 A T h i s oath i s s i g n i f i c a n t i n the p a t t e r n of "broken words" t h a t emerges i n both the h i s t o r i c a l s o u r c e s and Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y . K i n g R i c h a r d breaks t h i s oath. H a l l d e s c r i b e s the s i t u a t i o n i n a s l i g h t l y d i f f e r e n t way--the k i n g i s immediately d e c i s i v e . The kyng demaunded of them i f t h e i would agre betwene t h e m s e l f e s , whiche t h e i bath d e n i e d and threw doune t h e i r gages, by my t r u t h quoth the kyng, i f you of y o u r s e l f e s w i l l not agre I w i l l not study how t o agre you: and then he g r a n t e d them the b a t t a i l l and a s s i g n e d the p l a c e t o be at the c i t e e of Coventree i n the moneth of August next e n s u y i n g , where he caused a sumptuous t h e a t r e and l i s t e s r o y a l g o r g e o u s l y to be p r e p a r e d . 1 5 " However, H a l l i n t e r p r e t s Mowbray's a c t i o n as w e l l . And h i s s p e c u l a t i o n i s based upon s u r m i s e s t h a t surround the "murder" of the Duke of G l o u c e s t e r . T h i s i s the h i s t o r i c a l p r e t e x t t h a t R o s s i t e r m a i n t a i n s i s n e c e s s a r y t o an u n d e r s t a n d i n g of the q u a r r e l and K i n g R i c h a r d ' s e q u i v o c a t i o n i n d e a l i n g with i t . That of c o u r s e assumes t h a t Shakespeare's i n t e n t i o n was t o h e l p h i s audience to understand the s i t u a t i o n i n such a p e d e s t r i a n way. 1 0 Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 57 Shakespeare's King R i c h a r d seems t o be as i n e p t as the K i n g R i c h a r d d e s c r i b e d i n the c h r o n i c l e s . He a g rees t o see and hear B o l i n g b r o k e and Mowbray i n h i s p r e s e n c e : c a l l them to our presence; -face t o -face, And f r o w n i n g brow t o brow, o u r s e l v e s w i l l , hear The a c c u s e r and the accused f r e e l y speak. Richard II I.i.15-17. Each one of the c o n t e s t a n t s i s both "accuser and accused"; i t i s t h e r e f o r e an i r r e c o n c i l a b l e s i t u a t i o n compounded by the f a c t t h a t "High-stomach*d are they both and f u l l of i r e , In rage, deaf as the sea, h a s t y as f i r e " ( I . i . 1 8 - 1 9 ) . Due to the e x t r e m e l y f o r m a l nature of the d i s c o u r s e , the audience t h a t i s not p r e j u d i c e d by i t s know 1 edge D f Woodstock i s l e f t unsure as to who i s g u i l t y and who i s innocent of a crime t h a t i s not d e f i n e d with any degree of c e r t a i n t y . I f , however, we see the scene as a t r i a l with King R i c h a r d as the judge, then any e v i d e n c e t h a t i s f o r t h c o m i n g i s l i k e l y to be s p u r i o u s because the two c o n t e s t a n t s are both a c c u s i n g each o t h e r of b e t r a y a l . The s u b j e c t of t h e i r d i s c o u r s e i s b e t r a y a l and the s u b j e c t s themselves are s i m u l t a n e o u s l y " t r a i t o r s " . T h i s s i t u a t i o n pre-empts a l l d i s c u s s i o n ; King R i c h a r d ' s d e c i s i o n to hear them i s n o t h i n g l e s s than l u d i c r o u s . What meaning can a man's language have i n t h i s s i t u a t i o n ? The r e s u l t i s t h a t each of the c o n t e s t a n t s , i n o r d e r to a s s e r t the i n t e g r i t y of h i s word, must r e s o r t t o "symbolic a c t i o n " when they throw down t h e i r g a u n t l e t s . K i n g R i c h a r d , with words t h a t i r o n i c a l l y s e t the "Grand Mechanism" i n motion, s a y s : Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 58 T h i s we p r e s c r i b e , though no p h y s i c i a n ; i Deep m a l i c e makes too deep i n c i s i o n . F o r g e t , -forgive, c o n c l u d e and be agreed: Our d o c t o r s say t h i s i s no month to b l e e d . ... l e t t h i s end where i t begun; Richard II I.i.154-59. The attempt t o r e c o n c i l e such adamantine -forces p r o v e s to be d e s t r u c t i v e . The v e r y i d e a of "obedience" t h a t i s f r e e l y g i v e n i s t h r e a t e n e d ; t h i s , Shakespeare's o l d Gaunt i s f u l l y aware Df when he says t o h i s son: Gaunt: Throw down, my son, the Duke Df N o r f o l k ' s gauge. Richard: And, N o r f o l k , throw down h i s . Gaunt: When, Harry, when? Obedience b i d s I s h o u l d not b i d a g a i n . Richard: N o r f o l k , throw down we b i d , t h e r e i s no boot. Richard II I.i.161-64. F i l i a l d i s o b e d i e n c e and f e a l t y t o one's k i n g a r e c l e a r l y j u x t a p o s e d i n t h i s exchange. I t i s o n l y a f t e r t r y i n g t o make h i s s u b j e c t s openly break t h e i r words b e f o r e t h e i r k i n g t h a t K i n g R i c h a r d f i n a l l y adopts the r o l e t h a t he s h o u l d have assumed at the b e g i n n i n g o f the c o n f l i c t , and thus the p a t t e r n of s e l f -r e a l i z a t i o n t h a t comes too i.ate i s e f f e c t e d i n the f i r s t scene of the p l a y and which extends throughout the H i s t o r y P l a y s . He says to h i s s u b j e c t s something t h a t as a k i n g he s h o u l d never have r e c o u r s e to say: "We were not born to sue, but t o command" ( I . i . 1 9 6 ) . A k i n g ' s word i s not merely h o r t a t o r y , i t i s the law. In t h i s sense, the k i n g i s the supreme head of the l e g i s l a t u r e , but, as Henry V r e a l i z e s on the eve of A g i n c o u r t , w i l l i n g c obedience may not be commanded of a s u b j e c t by a k i n g . In f a c t , i t may not be commanded of any human b e i n g by a n o t h e r . Having a b j u r e d h i s r o l e as judge, King R i c h a r d p l a c e s judgment i n the hands of God. God, b e i n g the u l t i m a t e r e f e r e n c e Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 59 -For a l l e t h i c a l a c t i o n , sees the i n t e n t i o n t h a t informs a l l a c t i o n . H i s p e r s p e c t i v e i s u l t i m a t e l y supreme and u l t i m a t e l y r e t r o s p e c t i v e , and of c o u r s e i s i n c o m p r e h e n s i b l e t o man. By a c c e p t i n g the f a c t t h a t he i s unable t o judge the c o n f l i c t between the two c o n t e s t a n t s , King R i c h a r d does not o v e r s t e p h i s a u t h o r i t y as a man and as a k i n g . Bound by h i s word, the u t t e r a n c e of which i s i t s e l f an a c t i o n , he must le a v e the combatants to f i g h t t o the death. By i n t e r r u p t i n g the " t r i a l by combat", K i n g R i c h a r d assumes an a u t h o r i t y t h a t he i s f r e e to adopt, the consequences of which he i s f r e e to e x p e r i e n c e . But by throwing, down the warder, he i n f a c t subj_ects h i m s e l f to the consequences of b r e a k i n g h i s word. I The h i s t o r i c a l K ing R i c h a r d broke h i s oath t h a t "he would never seek to make peace b e t w i x t them ag a i n , " 1 ' " and Shakespeare's K i n g R i c h a r d breaks h i s vow of i m p a r t i a l i t y - - a redundant vow f o r a judge to make—which he makes when s p e a k i n g t o Mowbray i n the f i r s t scene of the p l a y : Mowbray, i m p a r t i a l a r e our eyes and e a r s . Were he my b r o t h e r , nay, my kingdom's h e i r , As he i s but my f a t h e r ' s b r o t h e r ' s son, Now by my s c e p t r e ' s awe I make t h i s vow, Such neighbour nearness t o our s a c r e d b l o o d Should n o t h i n g p r i v i l e g e him nor p a r t i a l i z e The u n s t o o p i n g f i r m n e s s of my u p r i g h t s o u l . He i s our s u b j e c t , Mowbray; so a r t thou: F r e e speech and f e a r l e s s I t o thee a l l o w . Richard II I.i.115-23. T h i s vow i s p l a i n l y broken when Ki n g R i c h a r d announces h i s d i s p a r a t e s e n t e n c e s on the two dukes. H i s t o r y and drama agree: Mowbray was, and i s , banished f o r Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 60 l i - f e ; B o l i n g b r o k e was banished -for ten y e a r s , which was l a t e r reduced by -four as the k i n g , at Eltham, took h i s l e a v e o-f him, whereas t h i s i n c r e m e n t a l d e c r e a s e i s e-f-fected i n one scene i n Richard II. The drama a l s o n e c e s s a r i l y reduces the time between Ki n g R i c h a r d ' s a c t o-f throwing down the warder and the announcement o-f the s e n t e n c e s : At Coventry, R i c h a r d stopped the p r o c e e d i n g s immediately be-fore b a t t l e was j o i n e d , c o n f e r r e d w i t h the p a r l i a m e n t a r y committee f o r two hours, and i s s u e d s e n t e n c e s of banishment: ten y e a r s f o r B o l i n g b r o k e , l i f e f o r N o r f o l k . 2 0 T h i s time l a g i s s i g n i f i c a n t l y reduced i n Richard II. King R i c h a r d , at the b e g i n n i n g of the p l a y , i s a k i n g i n word and deed; at the end of the p l a y he i s k i n g over h i s thoughts a l o n e , and c o n f r o n t e d w i t h the impotence of h i s p o s i t i o n as a deposed k i n g , he s u f f e r s . R i c h a r d ' s f i n a l s o l i l o q u y may be regarded as a lament f o r a language t h a t has been rendered u s e l e s s — t h e language of a man who was a k i n g . The man who c o u l d command, through word and deed, i s reduced to a man whose c o n t r o l over h i s own thoughts i s as weak i n j a i l as he was as the King of England. Having misused the language t h a t he i n h e r i t s as a k i n g , he becomes i t s v i c t i m as he r e t r o s p e c t i v e l y understands h i s " a c t i o n " . The impotence of language, the language of the f a l l e n world, i s of c e n t r a l t hematic concern i n Richard II. Mowbray, upon h e a r i n g the k i n g ' s sentence on h i s l i f e , laments how h i s own language i s suddenly rendered u s e l e s s . And with h i s language Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 61 rendered u s e l e s s , h i s l i - f e i s l i t e r a l l y out of tune. Mowbray's lament on the l o s s o-f h i s " n a t i v e tongue's use" -foreshadows R i c h a r d ' s lament at the end of the p l a y when he too f e e l s h i s l i f e to be out of tune: My language I have l e a r n t these f o r t y y e a r s , My n a t i v e E n g l i s h , now I must f o r e g o , And now my tongue's use i s t o me no more Than an u n s t r i n g e d v i o l or a harp, Or l i k e a c u n n i n g instrument cased up, Or b e i n g open, put i n t o h i s hands That knows no touch t o tune the harmony. Richard II I. i i i . 1 5 9 - 6 5 . Mowbray's language i s rendered u s e l e s s by K i n g R i c h a r d ' s sentence--"Such i s the b r e a t h of K i n g s " < I . i i i . 2 1 4 ) - - a n d R i c h a r d h i m s e l f , banished to the s o l i t a r y confinement of Pomfret C a s t l e i s f i n a l l y k i l l e d as the consequence of King Henry IV's s i g h e d s e n t e n c e . He must s u f f e r i n the knowledge t h a t he has i i t e r a i i y . bestowed h i s power onto another man. Why B o l i n g b r o k e and Mowbray accused each o t h e r of t r e a s o n , and why K i n g R i c h a r d i n t e r r u p t e d the i n e v i t a b l e combat between the two remains a mystery. Shakespeare's r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n of the drama, w h i l e b e i n g t r u e to the h i s t o r i c a l e v i d e n c e , r e c r e a t e s the mystery; an attempt t o r e c o n c i l e the d i f f e r e n c e s i s i n e f f e c t an attempt t o reduce the drama i m p l i c i t i n the s i t u a t i o n . The audience may seek to f i n d answers, but the e v i d e n c e t h a t Shakespeare p r o v i d e s i s not s u b s t a n t i a l enough t o make any v a l i d i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s of the m u l t i p l e motives i n v o l v e d : King R i c h a r d was i m p l i c a t e d i n the murder of the Duke of G l o u c e s t e r , who was B o l i n g b r o k e ' s u n c l e ; B o l i n g b r o k e had spoken a g a i n s t the k i n g ' s c h a r a c t e r and a c t i o n s ; and Mowbray was thought t o be r e s p o n s i b l e Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 62 e i t h e r d i r e c t l y or i n d i r e c t l y f o r the "murder" of the Duke o-f G l o u c e s t e r , who was p r o b a b l y murdered w h i l e under Mowbray's charge. Thus, judge, a p p e l l a n t , and defendant were a l l i n some way compromised. G l o u c e s t e r was almost c e r t a i n l y murdered, but by whom remains u n c e r t a i n . As S a c c i o s a y s : Whether he was murdered at R i c h a r d ' s o r d e r , and i-f so whether N o r f o l k was the agent, and i f so whether N o r f o l k obeyed the command w i l l i n g l y or complied w i t h i t o n l y a f t e r c o n s c i e n c e - s t r i k e n d e l a y , a r e q u e s t i o n s t h a t have never been s a t i s f a c t o r i l y s e t t l e d . = 1 Shakespeare p r o v i d e s the audience with no answers; he s i m p l y r e c r e a t e s the mystery. S a c c i o r e g a r d s the f a c t t h a t King R i c h a r d "allowed the a f f a i r to drag on f o r nine months o n l y to a b o r t the duel at the l a s t moment l o o k s l i k e a fondness f o r t h e a t r i c a l g e s t u r e on h i s p a r t . T h e emphasis g i v e n to the t h e a t r i c a l i t y of the p r o c e e d i n g s i n both the c h r o n i c l e s and i n Richard II r e i n f o r c e s t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the c h a r a c t e r of King R i c h a r d , and a l s o s u p p o r t s the c o n t e n t i o n t h a t " c h a r a c t e r " becomes apparent when one's " a c t " i s incommensurate wit h one's " r o l e " . And j u s t as an a c t o r cannot " a c t " the k i n g - - f o r those around him must a c t i n such a way as t o make him the k i n g — s o too, a t h e a t r i c a l k i n g - - a k i n g with c h a r a c t e i must be a bad a c t o r i n h i s a s s i g n e d r o l e . In f a c t , anyone who i s a s s i g n e d a r o l e t h a t demands p e r f e c t i o n must be a bad a c t o r , and the r o l e of k i n g demands a p e r f e c t i o n t h a t i s u n a t t a i n a b l e by man—and o n l y s y m b o l i c a l l y a t t a i n a b l e by the Son of God, the King of k i n g s , who, because h i s Kingdom i s of another world, must d i e as a man i n proof of the paradoxes Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 63 i m p l i c i t i n the r o l e o-f him who would wear an " e a r t h l y crown." P a s s i o n T h i s r e a l i z a t i o n t h a t the r o l e t h a t has been bestowed upon him i s not o n l y one of g r e a t r e s p o n s i b i l i t y but a l s o one t h a t he i s i n e f f e c t f u l l y r e s p o n s i b l e f o r must be pr e p a r e d f o r . The g r e a t n e s s t h a t i s t h r u s t upon him i s h i s , r e g a r d l e s s of h i s p e r s o n a l weakness, and he i s f u l l y r e s p o n s i b l e f o r h i s a c t i o n s . By e q u a t i n g the k i n g ' s r o l e with t h a t of the Ki n g of k i n g s , the Tudor h i s t o r i a n s t h e r e b y a r t i c u l a t e d t h e i r attempt t o e s t a b l i s h a p o l i t i c a l o r d e r t h a t was i n e f f e c t d i v i n e l y s a n c t i o n e d ; but i m p l i c i t i n Shakespeare's view of k i n g s h i p i s the i d e a t h a t i f man i s to s a n c t i o n p o l i t i c a l power by drawing upon the p r i n c i p l e s of C h r i s t i a n i t y t o c o n s o l i d a t e t h a t power, then the monarch h i m s e l f must be regarded as a s a c r i f i c i a l v i c t i m t o t h a t o r d e r . I t i s h a r d l y s u r p r i s i n g t h a t the r e i g n i n g monarch, Queen E l i z a b e t h , s h o u l d see i n the m i r r o r of Shakespeare's Richard II a f r i g h t e n i n g r e f l e c t i o n of h e r s e l f . Although L.B. Campbell reads her much quoted l i n e (and I use the t h e a t r i c a l term d e l i b e r a t e l y ) , "I am R i c h a r d I I , know ye not t h a t ? " with r e g a r d to contemporary ev e n t s , I read i t with r e g a r d t o the r o l e t h a t she had to assume; and I t h i n k i t a l s o r e v e a l s the acut e s e l f -c o n s c i o u s n e s s of the woman who knew the r o l e she p l a y e d , and knew the consequences of not p l a y i n g i t e f f e c t i v e l y . 1 The t r i a l over which K i n g R i c h a r d p r e s i d e s at the b e g i n n i n g Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 64 of the p l a y d e v e l o p s i n t o a t r a g i c t r i a l o-f R i c h a r d h i m s e l f , which c u l m i n a t e s i n h i s s e l f - c r i t i c i s m i n p r i s o n a t Pomfret C a s t l e , when he r e t r o s p e c t i v e l y views h i s d e p o s i t i o n . The wisdom he a c h i e v e s i s through s u f f e r i n g , and as K i n g R i c h a r d becomes R i c h a r d of Bordeaux the p a s s i o n he undergoes i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of a p a s s i v e C h r i s t - l i k e f i g u r e . The h e l p l e s s n e s s of K i n g R i c h a r d i s foreshadowed by the scene with Old John of Gaunt, who on h i s deathbed a r t i c u l a t e s the p a r a d o x i c a l s i t u a t i o n i n which K i n g R i c h a r d f i n d s h i m s e l f as K i n g of England. In the f i r s t scene, Gaunt st a n d s f o r o r d e r and obedience, r e g a r d l e s s of f a m i l i a l t i e s , and even i n the scene with the Duchess of G l o u c e s t e r , who argues t h a t the " b u t c h e r s " of the Duke of G l o u c e s t e r s h o u l d be punished and t h a t "to s a f e g u a r d t h i s ! own l i f e , The b est way i s to venge ... G l o u c e s t e r ' s death" < I . i i . 3 5 - 3 6 ) , he m a i n t a i n s h i s s t a n c e and p a t i e n c e , s a y i n g t h a t God's i s the q u a r r e l — f o r God's s u b s t i t u t e , H i s deputy a n o i n t e d i n H i s s i g h t , Hath caus'd [ G l o u c e s t e r ' s ] death; the which i f w r o n g f u l l y , Let heaven revenge, f o r I may never l i f t An angry arm a g a i n s t H i s m i n i s t e r . Richard II I . i i . 3 6 - 4 1 . Here, Gaunt i s e x p r e s s i n g an i d e a t h a t i s c l e a r l y a r t i c u l a t e d i n the h o m i l i e s . He who r e b e l s a g a i n s t h i s s o v e r e i g n r e b e l s a g a i n s t h i s God. The e q u a t i o n i s q u i t e c l e a r l y a t r a n s v a l u a t i o n of r e l i g i o u s p r i n c i p l e s i n s upport of e a r t h l y power. Let no man t h i n k e t h a t hee can escape unpunished, t h a t committeth t r e a s o n , c o n s p i r a c y , or r e b e l l i o n a g a i n s t h i s s o v e r e i g n Lord the King, though hee commit the same never so s e c r e t l y , e i t h e r i n thought, word, or deede, never so p r i v i l y , i n h i s p r i v i e chamber Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 65 by himsel-fe, or openly communicating, and c o n s u l t i n g with o t h e r s . For t r e a s o n w i l l not bee h i d , t r e a s o n w i l l out at l e n g t h . 3 H i s p a t i e n c e , however, cannot p r e v e n t h i s k i n g ' s - f o l l y . And even a d v i c e , t o a headstrong r u l e r , may seem l i k e c r i t i c i s m and, by i m p l i c a t i o n , r e b e l l i o n . C o n t r a d i c t i o n o-f a k i n g may be viewed as r e b e l l i o n w i t h i n a h i g h l y ceremonious system of government, but c o n t r a d i c t i o n i s e s s e n t i a l t o communication; and a k i n g ' s power i s u l t i m a t e l y dependent upon h i s c o u n s e l l o r s f o r t h e i r honest a d v i c e and h i s s u b j e c t s f o r t h e i r honest obedience. Gaunt does t r y t o a d v i s e h i s k i n g , but h i s words a r e m i s i n t e r p r e t e d by Ki n g R i c h a r d . I t i s the prophet Gaunt, or the "gaunt prophet", who equates England's " r o y a l k i n g s " with "the King of k i n g s " when he e u l o g i z e s on h i s n a t i v e l a n d : T h i s b l e s s e d p l o t , t h i s e a r t h , t h i s r e a l m , t h i s England, T h i s nurse, t h i s teeming womb of r o y a l k i n g s , F e a r ' d by t h e i r breed, and famous by t h e i r b i r t h , Renowned f o r t h e i r deeds as f a r from home, For C h r i s t i a n s e r v i c e and t r u e c h i v a l r y , As i_s the sep.ul.chre i_r_ stubborn Jewry. Of. the wor_l_dJ_5 ransomj. bl_es.sed Mar__^.s son; Richard II I I . i . 5 0 - 5 6 . The k i n g s of England are as renowned f o r t h e i r deeds as i s C h r i s t f o r h i s . Thus, when Gaunt says t o King R i c h a r d t h a t he i s the one who i s r e a l l y s i c k , we a r e v i s u a l l y a l e r t e d t o p a r a d o x i c a l s i t u a t i o n s t h a t a r e p r e s e n t e d i n v i s u a l metaphors on the s t a g e . He warns King R i c h a r d t h a t h i s kingdom i s h i s "death-bed", and t h a t he i s merely the L a n d l o r d of England. Although King R i c h a r d i s p h y s i c a l l y h e a l t h y and Gaunt i s p h y s i c a l l y l e a n , Gaunt, l y i n g on h i s death-bed, i s i n f a c t the v i s u a l metaphor f o r Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 66 King R i c h a r d ' s u n h e a l t h y p o s i t i o n as the k i n g o-f England. As he s a y s : Thy death-bed i s no l e s s e r than thy land, Wherein thou l i e s t i n r e p u t a t i o n s i c k , And thou, too c a r e l e s s p_ati_ent as though a r t , Commit'st thy a n o i n t e d body to the c u r e O-f those p h y s i c i a n s t h a t - f i r s t wounded thee: A thousand f l a t t e r e r s s i t w i t h i n thy crown, Whose compass i s no b i g g e r than thy head, And y e t , incaged i n so s m a l l a verge, The waste i s no l e s s e r than thy l a n d . fiicfiard II I I . i . 9 5 - 1 0 3 . Much commentary has been made with r e g a r d to the punning i n t h i s scene, but the paradoxes i m p l i c i t i n t h i s punning r e v e a l a r e a l l y t e r r i f y i n g view of h i s t o r y : a view i n which each speaker, each a c t o r , l i v e s i n a " s t a t e of t o t a l and t e r r i b l e u n c e r t a i n t y . " 3 K i n g R i c h a r d , t h i n k i n g he i s immune t o danger, mocks an aged noble who attempts to l i t e r a l l y g i v e h i s l a s t words of a d v i c e -words from which he cannot hope to g a i n any p e r s o n a l p r o f i t — b u t h i s k i n g i s deaf t o h i s words and b l i n d to h i s s u f f e r i n g . And by so doing he f a i l s t o see what he w i l l i n time become; f o r h i s f a t e i s t h a t he too w i l l become as h e l p l e s s and impotent b e f o r e h i s k i n g as h i s aged c o u n s e l l o r i s b e f o r e h i m s e l f . T h i s i s the p a t t e r n of the H i s t o r y P l a y s : words c a r e l e s s l y misused lead t o wounds t h a t c a n ' t be h e a l e d . Hence K i n g R i c h a r d i s the r e a l " p a t i e n t " , and he i s i n f a c t c a l l e d upon to be h i s own p h y s i c i a n ; l i k e the p h y s i c i a n , a l t h o u g h c a p a b l e of s a v i n g o t h e r s , when c a l l e d upon t o c u r e h i m s e l f , i s u l t i m a t e l y h e l p l e s s . He may save o t h e r s , but cannot save h i m s e l f . K i n g R i c h a r d ' s l i f e i s thereby equated with the l i f e of C h r i s t ; h i s land i s equated with "the s e p u l c h r e i n stubborn Jewry"; and h i s s u b j e c t s w i t h a l l the p e o p l e of h i s land, people t h a t w i l l become i t s "waste" i n the Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 67 wars to ensue, and people t h a t a r e o-f cou r s e C h r i s t i a n s i n a C h r i s t i a n l a n d ! : Shakespeare's Gaunt, so v e r y di-f-ferent from the h i s t o r i c a l •figure, i s not o n l y a p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n of a system of v a l u e s t h a t i s a s s o c i a t e d with a p a r a d i s a l England, " T h i s o t h e r Eden", but i s a l s o , f i g u r a t i v e l y s p e a k i n g , the symbol of "a d y i n g breed". He i s , as he l i e s on h i s bed, a p i c t u r e of a s i c k l y England. Robert Law s t a t e s as much when he says t h a t John of Gaunt s y m b o l i z e s i n a l a r g e way the ; l o v e of England which he so e l o q u e n t l y i p o r t r a y s ... Candl i s not the Gaunt of H o l i n s h e d and o t h e r c h r o n i c l e r s , but more near p i c t u r e s drawn of h i s b r o t h e r , the Duke of G l o u c e s t e r . However t h a t be, Gaunt i s Eng l a n d . " And the immediate c o n f i s c a t i o n of h i s lands p r e f i g u r e s the impending l o s s of h i s King R i c h a r d ' s l a n d . The i d e a l i s m t h a t the Duke of L a n c a s t e r s t a n d s f o r i s l o s t when he d i e s , and with h i s l i f e i s l o s t h i s t i t l e , house, and l a n d s . The world i n which a man's name and t i t l e a re i n s e p a r a b l e from h i s land s and i n h e r i t a n c e , the world i n which a man's word i s h i s bond, and the world i n which a man's i n t e g r i t y i s r e f l e c t e d by the very language t h a t i_s h i s h e r i t a g e are a l l l o s t with the death of Old Gaunt. Are we t o b e l i e v e any such world e x i s t e d , or c o u l d e x i s t ? Shakespeare's view of the p a s t i s perhaps d e l i b e r a t e l y n a i v e to encourage the audience to i d e n t i f y with a world t h a t i s i d e a l , a world v e r y d i f f e r e n t from the world without the w a l l s of the Globe T h e a t r e , t o pr e p a r e f o r the tragedy of Ki n g R i c h a r d . I f Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 63 o n l y the world without the w a l l s were i d e a l , then K i n g R i c h a r d ' s m i s t a k e s might be -forgiven i n t h i s world, our mi s t a k e s might be f o r g i v e n i n t h i s world, and the Golden Age would i n r e a l i t y r e t u r n a g a i n . But the r e a l i t y i s what Jan K o t t c a l l s t he "Grand Mechanism" of h i s t o r y i n which "every s u c c e s s i v e c h a p t e r , every s u c c e s s i v e a c t i s merely a r e p e t i t i o n : " The f l a t t e r i n g index of a d i r e f u l pageant; One heav'd a-high, to be h u r l ' d down below. 3 These words a r e spoken by Margaret, t h e supreme advocate of an i n s i d i o u s d e s i r e f o r r e t r i b u t i o n , of what A.P. R o s s i t e r c a l l s " r e t r i b u t i v e r e a c t i o n " , a p a t t e r n t h a t seems t o dominate the H i s t o r y P l a y s of Shakespeare and the Grand Mechanism t h a t i s h i s t o r y . * K o t t argues t h a t Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s amount to a t e r r i f y i n g r e f l e c t i o n of man's absurd quest f o r power on the one hand and on the other the h e l p l e s s n e s s of those upon whom the va s t s t a i r c a s e of h i s t o r y and i t s crowning t h r o n e r e s t . K o t t says t h a t i n Shakespeare's h i s t o r i e s " t h e r e are o n l y k i n g s , every one of whom i s e x e c u t i o n e r , and a v i c t i m , i n t u r n . There a r e a l s o l i v i n g , f r i g h t e n e d p eople. They can o n l y gaze upon the grand s t a i r c a s e of h i s t o r y ... Perhaps the g r e a t n e s s of Shakespeare's r e a l i s m c o n s i s t s i n h i s awareness of the e x t e n t t o which people are i n v o l v e d i n h i s t o r y . " ^ Having determined the s e n t e n c e s upon B o l i n g b r o k e and Mowbray, and ha v i n g c o n f i s c a t e d the Duke of L a n c a s t e r ' s l a n d s - -and i n u s i n g the t i t l e , the "Duke of L a n c a s t e r " , we run i n t o the problem of who i n f a c t i s the Duke of L a n c a s t e r ' s h e i r i n both word and deed, or r a t h e r , " t i t l e and deed"--the language t h a t i s Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 69 p r e s e r v e d i n t a c t by ceremony, a t l e a s t s y m b o l i c a l l y , i s •f r a c t u r e d . T h i s i s the world as we know i t , where words ar e broken, where a c t i o n s are d e c e p t i v e , and where t h a t which i s apparent does not r e f l e c t t h a t which i s not. We a r e i n the world t h a t P i r a n d e l l o would c a l m l y say i s " r e a l i t y " . T h i s i s the world t h a t King R i c h a r d comes to terms wi_th as he g r a d u a l l y r e a l i z e s the i m p l i c a t i o n s o-f the p r o v e r b i a l wisdom t h a t Hamlet - f i n a l l y a c c e p t s . That t h e r e i s harmony i n the -fragmentary d i s c o r d t h a t appears to be the s t u f f of l i f e . Words become d i v o r c e d from a c t i o n s , t i t l e s become d i v o r c e d from t h e i r r i g h t f u l owners, and k i n g s l o s e t h e i r crowns t o u s u r p e r s . A l l i s mere c o n t r a d i c t i o n . And as R o s s i t e r s a y s , the " c u r s e of u s u r p a t i o n i s t h a t i t c o n f u s e s R i g h t , endangers a l l O r d e r . " 0 T h i s i s the s o r t of world t h a t the o p p o r t u n i s t can l i t e r a l l y cash i n on and where men l i k e U l y s s e s can p r o f i t from the v e r y f a c t t h a t "Degree b e i n g v i z a r d e d , The u n w o r t h i e s t shows as f a i r l y i n the mask.'"' By t h r o w i n g down the warder and i n t e r r u p t i n g the t r i a l by combat, King R i c h a r d a c t e d . The consequences of t h a t a c t i o n l e a d him to respond i n a p a s s i v e r o l e . J u s t as he p r o v e s unable to - r e c o n c i l e the c o n f l i c t s of h i s s u b j e c t s i n the o r i g i n a l t r i a l , he a l s o p roves unable t o c o n t r a d i c t h i s banished s u b j e c t , Henry B o l i n g b r o k e , when he r e t u r n s to c l a i m h i s l a n d s . Again, an i r r e c o n c i l a b l e c o n f l i c t ensues: K i n g R i c h a r d c l a i m s t h a t the l a n d s a r e h i s by r i g h t as he i s the K i n g of England, B o l i n g b r o k e c l a i m s t h a t they are h i s by b i r t h r i g h t . One i r r e c o n c i l a b l e c o n f l i c t l e a d s t o another, and because each adamantly m a i n t a i n s the a b s o l u t i s m of h i s c l a i m no s o l u t i o n i s p o s s i b l e . R e g a r d l e s s Fact F ict ion and Faction Page 70 of Bol i ngbroke's supposed i n t e n t upon r e t u r n i n g t o England, h i s v e r y presence i s a c o n t r a d i c t i o n o-f h i s K i n g . Thus, upon h i s r e t u r n to Wales a f t e r the I r i s h wars, King R i c h a r d s t a n d s c o n t r a d i c t e d not by a s u b j e c t but by a banished s u b j e c t ! Both are r i g h t , and y e t both cannot be r i g h t i n f a c t . One must dominate; one must s u f f e r the e n s u i n g s u b j e c t i o n . K i n g R i c h a r d , almost from the moment of h i s r e t u r n , chooses t o p l a y the s u b j e c t to B o l i n g b r o k e ' s a u t h o r i t y . T h i s emphasis upon K i n g R i c h a r d ' s p a s s i v i t y i n response t o B o l i n g b r o k e ' s presence i s a l l u d e d t o i n the c h r o n i c l e s , but i s made e x p l i c i t i n Shakespeare's Richard II. King R i c h a r d must s u f f e r b e f o r e he i s deposed and f i n a l l y k i l l e d . The d r a m a t i c i r o n y i n K i n g R i c h a r d ' s response to Mowbray's lament over h i s banishment and the l o s s of h i s n a t i v e tongue i s much l i k e t h a t which i s found i n Richard III , where the c h a r a c t e r s a r e l i t e r a l l y s t r u c k dawn as they speak. He says to h i s b a n i s h e d s u b j e c t two l i n e s the f u l l meaning of which he has yet t o e x p e r i e n c e : I t b o ots thee not to be compassionate; A f t e r our sentence p l a i n i n g comes too l a t e . Richard II I . i i i . 1 7 4 - 5 . Having spoken, having a c t e d , the complaint comes too i.ate. The t r a g i c c r y of the h e l p l e s s v i c t i m , of the e x e c u t i o n e r who i s i n f a c t the p r i s o n e r of h i s p r o f e s s i o n , of the r u l e r who i s i n f a c t s u b j e c t to h i s s u b j e c t s , of C h r i s t upon the c r o s s - - s u b j e c t to the w i l l of man and y e t the K i n g of k i n g s , a w a i t s . The t r a g i c r e a l i z a t i o n t h a t comes with r e t r o s p e c t i v e wisdom, a wisdom born of impotence, i s foreshadowed i n t h i s l i t t l e c o u p l e t . The Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 71 p r o v e r b , "A word spoken i s an arrow l e t - f l y , " 1 0 r i n g s t r u e , but i n tragedy, he who p u l l s the b o w s t r i n g i s i n -fact the v e r y t a r g e t he aims a t . When Shakespeare has King R i c h a r d a d d r e s s h i s kingdom's s o i 1 , s a y i n g T h i s e a r t h s h a l l have a f e e l i n g , and t h e s e s t o n e s Prove armed s o l d i e r s 'ere her n a t i v e k i n g S h a l l f a l t e r under f o u l r e b e l l i o n ' s arms. Richard II I I I . i i . 24-26. we hear a f r i g h t e n i n g p r o g n o s t i c a t i o n of not o n l y the f a t e of K i n g R i c h a r d b e f o r e he f i n a l l y f a l t e r s beneath the pole-axe of K i n g Henry's henchman, but a l s o of the f a t e of England h e r s e l f . The c i v i l d i s s e n s i o n t h a t t e a r s the c o u n t r y a p a r t i n the Wars of the Roses may be seen as an e x t e n s i o n of the " b a t t l e w i t h i n " t h a t King R i c h a r d undergoes as he i s reduced to h i s former t i t l e of R i c h a r d of Bordeaux. C o n f i d e n t t h a t h i s power as the King of England i s immutable, King R i c h a r d u n r e a l i s t i c a l l y m a i n t a i n s h i s p a s s i v i t y i n the f a c e of B o l i n g b r a k e ' s t h r e a t . As he s a y s , Not a l l the water i n the rough rude s e a Can wash the balm o f f from an a n o i n t e d k i n g ; The b r e a t h of w o r l d l y men cannot depose The deputy e l e c t e d by the Lord; Richard II I I I . i i.54-56. The r e a l i t y i s t h a t he too i s but a man. "What mould be Kings made of , but c a r a y n c l a y ? " 1 1 And the role of k i n g i s supposed to be p l a y e d by a man, and can t h e r e f o r e be assumed by another. The m e t a p h y s i c a l r h e t o r i c of the K i n g ' s D i v i n e R i g h t i s o n l y e f f e c t i v e when the k i n g has the power and the w i l l t o m a i n t a i n h i s pos i t i on. Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 72 King R i c h a r d , however, on h e a r i n g of Bo 1ingbroke*s p r e s e n c e in the kingdom, b e g i n s to t h i n k i n terms of an impotent r h e t o r i c t h a t i s d e s i g n e d to exhort obedience i n a k i n g ' s s u b j e c t s . 1 2 H i s r e c o u r s e t o e x p r e s s i n g h i s p e r s o n a l grie-F l e a d s t o what amounts to a p a s s i v e r e a c t i o n to the t h r e a t o-F B o l i n g b r o k e . But a k i n g i s not p e r m i t t e d the l u x u r y o-f p a s s i v i t y . I r o n i c a l l y , K i n g R i c h a r d seems t o r e a l i z e the immense r e s p o n s i b i l i t y t h a t r e s t s upon h i s s h o u l d e r s , even seems t o e x p r e s s h i s acknowledgement of the c o n c e i t s t h a t k i n g s h i p somehow i n f u s e s i n t o a mere man, but he does not a c t the r o l e of k i n g . He would p r e f e r to s i t upon the ground And t e l l sad s t o r i e s of the death of k i n g s : ... f o r w i t h i n the h o l l o w crown That rounds the m o r t a l temples of a k i n g Keeps Death h i s c o u r t , and t h e r e the a n t i c s i t s , S c o f f i n g h i s s t a t e and g r i n n i n g at h i s pomp, A l l o w i n g him a b r e a t h , a l i t t l e scene, To monarchize, be f e a r ' d , and k i l l w ith l o o k s ; I n f u s i n g him with s e l f and v a i n c o n c e i t , As i f t h i s f l e s h which w a l l s about our l i f e Were b r a s s impregnable; Richard II I I I . i i . 1 5 5 - 1 6 8 . And i t i s immediately f o l l o w i n g t h i s acknowledgement of h i s m o r t a l i t y t h a t he a r t i c u l a t e s the c e n t r a l paradox t h a t i s the dilemma i m p l i c i t i n the r o l e of k i n g s h i p . He says t o h i s subj e c t s : Cover your heads, and mock not f l e s h and blood With solemn r e v e r e n c e ; throw away r e s p e c t , T r a d i t i o n , form, and ceremonious duty; For you have but mistook me a l l t h i s w h i l e . I l i v e with bread l i k e you, f e e l want, T a s t e g r i e f , need f r i e n d s - - s u b j e c t e d thus, How can you say t o me, I am a k i n g ? Richard II I I I . i i . 1 7 1 - 7 7 . He i s c o n t i n u a l l y prompted by h i s s u b j e c t s to remember the r o l e t h a t he i s a s s i g n e d , and l i k e a f o r g e t f u l a c t o r who i s prompted on the s t a g e i s too p r e o c c u p i e d with h i s own i n a d e q u a c i e s to a c t Fact F i c t ion and Faction Paje 73 h i s p a r t . Aumerle says to him, "Corn-fort, my l i e g e , remember who you a r e " , t o which he r e p l i e s , "I had -forgot m y s e l f , am I not k i n g ? " < I I I . i i . 8 2 - 8 3 ) . The Bishop o-f C a r l i s l e c l e a r l y a r t i c u l a t e s the a b s o l u t e r e a l i t y of K i n g R i c h a r d ' s p o s i t i o n as the k i n g : My l o r d , wise men ne'er s i t and w a i l t h e i r woes, But p r e s e n t l y p r e v e n t the ways t o w a i l . To f e a r the f o e , s i n c e f e a r o p p r e s s e t h s t r e n g t h , G i v e s i n your weakness s t r e n g t h unto your f o e , And so your f o l l i e s f i g h t a g a i n s t y o u r s e l f . Fear and be s l a i n — n o worse can come t o f i g h t ; And f i g h t and d i e i s death d e s t r o y i n g death, Where f e a r i n g d y i n g pays death s e r v i l e b r e a t h . Richard II I I I . i i . 1 7 8 - 8 5 . The i r r e c o n c i l a b l e s i t u a t i o n t h a t K i n g R i c h a r d was c a l l e d upon to a d j u d i c a t e i s now re p e a t e d with h i m s e l f as one of the c o n t e s t a n t s , and he proves l e s s committed to h i s r o l e than h i s s u b j e c t s . The r o l e t h a t he must enact i s , however, a s a c r i f i c i a l one; t h i s i s the r e a l i z a t i o n t h a t he must come t o b e f o r e he i s a f i t t r a g i c hero. And t h a t i s what he comes t o terms wi t h when he i s a l o n e i n p r i s o n at Pomfret C a s t l e . S t r i p p e d of a l l the empty ceremony t h a t goes with k i n g s h i p , he i s l e f t t o e x p r e s s i n words what comes from the h e a r t , words t h a t even then cannot l i t e r a l l y e x p r e s s the f e e l i n g t h a t i s the " i n n e r r e a l i t y " , and i n the most a r t i f i c i a l d e v i c e t h a t the t h e a t r e can p r o v i d e , the s o l i l o q u y . It i s i n p r i s o n t h a t R i c h a r d ' s h e l p l e s s n e s s i s most complete, and where h i s p a s s i o n i s most a r t i c u l a t e ; i r o n i c a l l y , i t i s most a r t i c u l a t e because he r e v e a l s the inadequacy of language to r e v e a l t h a t which i s w i t h i n the h e a r t . I t i s when he Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 74 has i n t e r n a l i z e d the c o n f l i c t s t h a t prove so d e s t r u c t i v e i n the world o u t s i d e h i s l i t t l e p r i s o n , l i k e the world o u t s i d e the the l i t t l e t h e a t r e i n which the a c t o r speaks, t h a t the world w i t h i n t a k e s on a r e a l i t y o-f i t s own i n which a l l t h i n g s a r e i n c o n f l i c t , and y e t i n which a l l t h i n g s are harmoniously i n tune. My b r a i n I ' l l prove the female to my s o u l , My s o u l the f a t h e r , and these two beget A g e n e r a t i o n of s t i 1 1 - b r e e d i n g thoughts, And t h e s e same thoughts people t h i s l i t t l e world, In humours l i k e the p e o p l e of t h i s world; For no thought i s c o n t e n t e d . The b e t t e r s o r t , As thoughts of t h i n g s d i v i n e , are i n t e r m i x ' d With s c r u p l e s , and do s e t the word i t s e l f A g a i n s t the word. Richard II V.v.6-14. The deposed k i n g ' s b r a i n becomes the b a t t l e g r o u n d f o r w a r r i n g f a c t i o n s t h a t he i s u l t i m a t e l y p o w erless to c o n t r o l . H i s a r t i c u l a t e d thoughts are s e t i n o p p o s i t i o n to each o t h e r l i k e c h a r a c t e r s i n a p l a y , and the audience t h a t s i t s by and watches are s i m u l t a n e o u s l y i m p l i c a t e d i n the l i t t l e drama as each one i n t e r p r e t s the a c t i o n a c c o r d i n g t o h i s p r e d i s p o s i t i o n . Thus, observed and o b s e r v e r are i m p l i c a t e d i n the drama t h a t the audience "bears w i t n e s s " t o . Thoughts t e n d i n g to a m b i t i o n , they do p l o t U n l i k e l y wonders: how these v a i n weak n a i l s May t e a r a Passage thorough the f l i n t y r i b s Of t h i s hard world, my ragged p r i s o n w a l l s ; And f o r they cannot, d i e i n t h e i r own p r i d e . Richard II V.v.18-22. Those who would l i k e to see the i m p o s s i b l e a r e c o n f r o n t e d with the impotence of t h e i r dreams i n the f a c e of r e a l i t y . Whereas, those who would be c o n t e n t t o merely observe the drama from a s a f e d i s t a n c e s i t i n the s t o c k s f l a t t e r i n g themselves t h a t i t i s a l l "the way of the world". Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 75 Thoughts t e n d i n g to c o n t e n t - f l a t t e r themselves That they a r e not the - f i r s t o-f -fortune's s l a v e s , Nor s h a l l not be the l a s t - - l i k e s i l l y beggars Who, s i t t i n g i n the s t o c k s , r e f u g e t h e i r shame, That many have and o t h e r s must s i t t h e r e ; And i n t h i s thought they -find a k i n d o-f ease, B e a r i n g t h e i r own mis-fortunes on the back Of such as have b e f o r e i n d u r ' d the l i k e . Richard II V.v.23-30. The c h o i c e i s t e r r i f y i n g . We e i t h e r look at the world and say, "Well, t h a t ' s j u s t the way i t i s " , or we hope f o r the i m p a s s i b l e o n l y to d i e unrewarded. The audience, l i k e the deposed k i n g , i s i.i.tera_l_ly. t o r n a p a r t . The i d e a l i s m t h a t Gaunt s t a n d s f o r i s dead, and the world i s out of tune, and yet somewhere i n the h e a r t of man t h e r e i s hope t h a t a l l w i l l be w e l l . However, R i c h a r d r e s o l v e s the c o n f l i c t momentarily when he says to the a u d i e n c e — r e g a r d l e s s of what he t h i n k s h i m s e l f to be and r e g a r d l e s s of what the h i s t o r i c a l f i g u r e thought h i m s e l f to b e — t h a t whate'er I be, Nor I, nor any man t h a t but man i s , With n o t h i n g s h a l l be p l e a s ' d , t i l l he be eas'd With b e i n g n o t h i n g . IThe music plays. 3 Music do I hear? Richard II V.v.38-41. The music t h a t s y m b o l i c a l l y r e p r e s e n t s the i n n e r harmony t h a t R i c h a r d has a t t a i n e d momentarily p l a y s . And as he checks the m u s i c i a n f o r not keeping time, he r e a l i z e s "how sour sweet music i s When time i s broke and no p r o p o r t i o n kept!" <V.v.42-43). But where do we draw the l i n e between p r o p o r t i o n and ceremony? Perhaps the word " d i s c r e t i o n " b r i d g e s the g u l f t h a t s e p a r a t e s the s o r t of c o n s i d e r e d a c t i o n t h a t K i n g R i c h a r d f a i l s t o e f f e c t and the s o r t of ceremony t h a t i s mere f a c a d e . Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 76 R i c h a r d hears haw "sour sweet music" i s , whereas the audience hears the "sweet sour music" o-f h i s s a c r i f i c e , r e a l i z i n g t h a t the i m p o s s i b l e i s i m p o s s i b l e because p o l i t i c s i s p o l i t i c s and p e o p l e a r e not as humane i n the p o l i t i c a l sphere as we would l i k e , and t h a t t h e r e are those who must be e i t h e r p l a c e d i n the s t o c k s or s a c r i f i c e d i n more s u b t l e ways. Thus, R i c h a r d ' s mind becomes a b a t t l e f i e l d of thoughts and h i s h e a r t undergoes the p a s s i o n of h i s s u f f e r i n g , w h i l e he h i m s e l f i s the one who must be s a c r i f i c e d f o r the sake of a new o r d e r . Again, t h i s p a t t e r n i s p a r t i c u l a r l y dominant in Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s as a whole. Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 77 DEPOSITION The a c t u a l d e p o s i t i o n o-f Ki n g R i c h a r d i s p o r t r a y e d by Shakespeare with v a r y i n g degrees o-f a c c u r a c y w i t h r e g a r d to the h i s t o r i c a l e v i d e n c e . Shakespeare's K i n g R i c h a r d v e r b a l l y g i v e s away h i s crown be-fore he a c t u a l l y g i v e s away the crown t o B o l i n g b r o k e . The Ki n g R i c h a r d of the c h r o n i c l e s i s seen to a c t in a way t h a t makes us s u s p e c t t h a t the c h a r a c t e r t h a t Shakespeare p r e s e n t s i s , d e s p i t e the l i b e r t y t h a t the p l a y w r i g h t -h i s t o r i a n t a k e s i n d i s t o r t i n g the f a c t s , a t r u t h f u l r e -p r e s e n t a t i o n of the h i s t o r i c a l f i g u r e . Shakespeare i s perhaps e x p l o r i n g the p o s s i b l e n a t u r e of a man who c o u l d v o l u n t a r i l y g i v e away h i s crown and end h i s l i f e i n a p r i s o n c e l l . F r o i s s a r t i n c l u d e s some d e t a i l s about the l i f e of B o l i n g b r o k e w h i l e i n e x i l e t h a t Shakespeare l e a v e s out D r at l e a s t a b b r e v i a t e s so as to p r e v e n t the audience from s y m p a t h i z i n g too s t r o n g l y w i t h B o l i n g b r o k e . The intended m a r r i a g e between Mary of B e r r y and Henry B o l i n g b r o k e i s r e p o r t e d by F r o i s s a r t as b e i n g i n d i r e c t l y p r e v e n t e d by Ki n g R i c h a r d : The moment King R i c h a r d heard t h a t a t r e a t y of mar r i a g e was go i n g on between the E a r l of Derby and the Lady Mary of B e r r y , he became much d i s p l e a s e d t h e r e a t , and r e s o l v e d to send the E a r l of S a l i s b u r y to P a r i s , to e n t r e a t the King t o be aware of a l l o w i n g such an a l l i a n c e to be formed, as the E a r l of Derby was a t r a i t o r to h i s s o v e r e i g n . 1 The f a c t t h a t Shakespeare l e f t t h i s out of Richard II, assuming h i s knowledge of F r o i s s a r t , may be i n d i c a t i v e of an attempt on Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 78 Shakespeare's b e h a l f to p r e v e n t the audience from immediately assuming, as K i n g R i c h a r d himsel-f does, t h a t the h i s t o r i c a l B o l i n g b r o k e i n t e n d e d , and t h a t the - f i c t i o n a l B o l i n g b r o k e i n t e n d s , to usurp K i n g R i c h a r d -from the v e r y s t a r t . The drama i s o n l y e f f e c t i v e i f the c h a r a c t e r s i n v o l v e d undergo a c o n t i n u a l p r o c e s s of e v o l u t i o n as they come to r e a l i z e the g r a v i t y of t h e i r a c t i o n s . To t h i s end Shakespeare m a n i p u l a t e s the s o u r c e m a t e r i a l s t o p r e v e n t the o v e r - s i m p l i f i c a t i o n t h a t makes of man a master of the h i s t o r i c a l e v e n t s t h a t he does i n f a c t s e t i n motion and f i n a l l y f a l l s v i c t i m t o . Many commentators on Richard II see the c h a r a c t e r of B o l i n g b r o k e as a m a n i p u l a t o r i n the same v e i n as the d i a b o l i c a l Duke of G l o u c e s t e r t h a t weaves and p l o t s h i s way t o the crown, but I t h i n k t h a t such judgment a f t e r the f a c t i s r e d u c t i v e of the drama. C o l e r i d g e m a i n t a i n s t h a t "Henry B o l i n g b r o k e ... appears as a man of d a u n t l e s s courage, and of a m b i t i o n equal t o t h a t of R i c h a r d I I I . " = He a l s o says t h a t B o l i n g b r o k e "comes home under the p r e t e n c e of c l a i m i n g h i s dukedom, and he p r o f e s s e s t h a t to be h i s o b j e c t almost t o the l a s t ; but, a t the l a s t , he avows h i s purpose to i t s f u l l e x t e n t , of which he was u n c o n s c i o u s i n the e a r i i e r s t a g e s . " 3 P e t e r Ure, i n h i s " I n t r o d u c t i o n " to the Arden E d i t i o n of Richard II s t a t e s t h a t he has "turned the s t a t e i t s e l f i n t o a t h e a t r e ; he has a s s i g n e d h i s p a r t to Northumberland, and, i n the d e p o s i t i o n scene, he has s e t down a p a r t f o r R i c h a r d , too, t o p l a y , s i n c e , i n r e s i g n i n g h i s crown b e f o r e the assembled p a r l i a m e n t and p l a c i n g i t i n the u s u r p e r ' s hands, he p a s s i v e l y does what i s expected of him.'"* And Robert Law goes so f a r as t o Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 79 say t h a t he i s " u t t e r l y i n s i n c e r e i n speech and behav i o u r on h i s r e t u r n -from banishment, a s s e r t i n g t h a t he has done so o n l y to p r o c u r e h i s r i g h t - f u l i n h e r i t a n c e . 0 0 I s t r e s s these r e d u c t i v e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s o-f Bo 1 i ngbroke* s a c t i o n because they lead to one-eyed views o-f the drama. And drama, by d e - f i n i t i o n , i s "two-eyed . " F r o i s s a r t a l s o r e c o r d s how the c i t i z e n s o-f England h e l d many c o u n c i l s w h i l e K i n g R i c h a r d was i n I r e l a n d and d e c i d e d t o "request the Ar c h b i s h o p o-f Cant e r b u r y t o go over t o France and communicate wit h the e a r l . ' " * The c i t i z e n s of London, a c c o r d i n g to F r o i s s a r t , "would c a l l him by no o t h e r t i t l e than R i c h a r d of Bordeaux [and t h a t ! the E a r l o-f Derby was a l r e a d y t r e a t e d as k i n g , and he engaged to undertake the government on c o n d i t i o n t h a t the crown was s e t t l e d on him and h i s h e i r s -for ever." 7" The d i s c o n t e n t o-f the peo p l e i s a l l u d e d t o , but not g i v e n prominence by Shakespeare because t h a t would make B o l i n g b r o k e ' s a c t i o n seem j u s t i f i a b l e i n the eyes of the audience. And as my c o n t e n t i o n i s t h a t the audience i s asked t o c o n s i d e r the problem of k i n g s h i p i t s e l f i n the l i g h t of the s p e c i f i c a l l y human problems t h a t a r e i m p l i e d i n the ve r y nature of a system t h a t i n v e s t s so much power i n one man, I argue t h a t Shakespeare's i n t e n t i o n i s t o m a n i p u l a t e the s o u r c e s i n o r d e r to c a r e f u l l y weigh the f o r c e s of B o l i n g b r o k e and R i c h a r d , and I r e f e r t o them without t h e i r t i t l e s t o emphasize t h e i r h u m a n i t y - - 1 i t e r a l l y i n the b a l a n c e . To i n f e r t h a t Bo 1ingbroke*s i n t e n t was at f i r s t t o take the crown and t h a t the people of England supported h i s r e b e l l i o n would be a g r o s s Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 80 i n j u s t i c e t o a l l concerned. C o n c e r n i n g the a c t u a l d e p o s i t i o n o-f K i n g R i c h a r d by B o l i n g b r o k e , or the v o l u n t a r y r e s i g n a t i o n of K i n g R i c h a r d ' s o f f i c e upon h i s s u b j e c t B o l i n g b r o k e , Shakespeare's f i c t i o n i s f a i t h f u l t o the f a c t s i n s o f a r as the d e p o s i t i o n t a k e s p l a c e in s t a g e s w i t h K i n g R i c h a r d t a l k i n g away h i s power as he s u b j e c t s h i m s e l f to h i s s u b j e c t , B o l i n g b r o k e , and then a c t u a l l y g i v i n g away h i s power p u b l i c l y . The h i s t o r i c a l K ing R i c h a r d d i d much the same. B e f o r e K i n g R i c h a r d r e t u r n e d from the I r i s h wars, B o l i n g b r o k e landed on the e a s t c o a s t of England, a t R a v e n s p u r . 0 The s t a g e of England was d i v i d e d between K i n g R i c h a r d , to the west, and h i s r e b e l l i o u s s u b j e c t B o l i n g b r o k e i n the e a s t . T h i s i s t r a n s l a t e d by Shakespeare i n t o the s e t t i n g sun of K i n g R i c h a r d and the r i s i n g B o l i n g b r o k e , and i s r e f l e c t e d i n the b e a u t i f u l speech t h a t i s iiteral_l_y_ K ing R i c h a r d ' s d o w n f a l l . T h i s d e l i c a t e sense of b a l a n c e , a b a l a n c e t h a t i s d i s r u p t e d by the c a r e l e s s use of language, i s m a i n t a i n e d by Shakespeare i n the d e l i c a t e b a l a n c e t h a t p e r s i s t s between thes e two c e n t r a l c h a r a c t e r s throughout the p l a y . And i t i s important to r e c o g n i z e t h a t the s t a g e upon which the drama t a k e s p l a c e i s England h e r s e l f . B o l i n g b r o k e was at Ravenspur, as H o l i n s h e d s a y s , "so j o y f u l l y r e c e i v e d of the l o r d s , k n i g h t s , and gentlemen of those p a r t s t h a t he found means ... t o assemble a g r e a t number of p e o p l e t h a t were w i l l i n g to take h i s p a r t , Cbutl he swore unto Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 81 Cthe E a r l of Northumberland] t h a t he would demand no more but the l a n d s t h a t were t o him descended by i n h e r i t a n c e from h i s f a t h e r and i n r i g h t of h i s wife." 5" T h i s i s not some m a l i c i o u s Machiavel t h a t i s determined to usurp the throne of England, but a man who i s d e f e n d i n g h i s b i r t h r i g h t and h i s f a m i l y ' s l a n d s and i n h e r i t a n c e . T h i s , of c o u r s e , i s an attempt to r e d e f i n e the s i t u a t i o n i n o r d e r t o b a l a n c e the "drama" i n t o two opposing camps, both of which are r i g h t . Both King R i c h a r d and B o l i n g b r o k e were e v e n l y matched upon K i n g R i c h a r d ' s r e t u r n t o h i s k i ngdom. Upon h i s a r r i v a l a t Conway C a s t l e i n North Wales, K i n g R i c h a r d had, however, missed a rendezvous with " f o r t y thousand men ... ready t o march with the k i n g a g a i n s t h i s enemies i f he had been t h e r e h i m s e l f i n p e r s o n . " 1 0 T h i s was a g r e a t d i s a p p o i n t m e n t t o K i n g R i c h a r d , but when he heard how h i s t r u s t i e c o u n s e l l o r s had l o s t t h e i r heads a t B r i s t o w , he became so g r e a t l i e d i s c o m f o r t e d , t h a t s o r r o w f u l l i e lamenting h i s m i s e r a b l e s t a t e , he u t t e r l i e d e s p a i r e d of h i s own s a f e t i e , and c a l l i n g h i s armie t o g e t h e r , which was not s m a l l , l i c e n c e d every man t o d e p a r t to h i s home. 1 1 As King of England, t h i s was a f a t a l e r r o r because by so d o i n g he "acted a p a s s i v e r o l e " when most he needed t o a c t with f o r c e and c o n v i c t i o n . I n s t e a d , he i n e f f e c t gave B o l i n g b r o k e the f o r c e of arms over h i m s e l f by r e d u c i n g h i s own s t r e n g t h . One man's s t r e n g t h e x i s t s c o r r e l a t i v e t o the man he i s p i t t e d a g a i n s t , and i f one p l a y s the weak p a r t then he g i v e s what power might have been h i s t o h i s opponent. He i s t h e r e f o r e s u b j e c t to h i s own Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 82 w i l l , to a c e r t a i n e x t e n t , but the r o l e o-f k i n g s h i p i s a l l the more demanding because t h e r e a r e times when s e l f - s a c r i f i c e a r e n e c e s s a r y d e s p i t e the odds. As a k i n g , h i s duty i s t o f i g h t u n t i l he i s beaten and not, l i k e the "white h a r t , k n e e l i n g , c o l l a r e d and c h a i n e d , " 1 3 g i v e up i n the knowledge t h a t he has been s u b j e c t e d t o a n o t h e r ' s r u l e . B o l i n g b r o k e , however, does not endeavour t o engage i n a f o r c e of arms. L i k e King R i c h a r d , who t r i e d to r e c o n c i l e Mowbray and B o l i n g b r o k e i n t h e i r i r r e c o n c i l a b l e c o n f l i c t , B o l i n g b r o k e attempted t o a v o i d open c o n f l i c t by p u r s u i n g p e a c e f u l means; but t h i s i s a world where a man's word cannot be t r u s t e d . Bo 1ingbroke*s presence b e f o r e h i s k i n g i s a f l a t c o n t r a d i c t i o n of h i s banishment. When f l a t c o n t r a d i c t i o n r a i s e s i t s u g l y , but h i g h l y d r a m a t i c head, then f u r t h e r argument i s preempted. No amount of swearing b e f o r e God or K i n g can r e s o l v e the breakdown of language, and blood must flow, and the t r a g e d y i s t h a t those who s u f f e r a r e those who a r e merely caught up i n the dramas of "great ones" t h a t come and go f i g h t i n g the same b a t t l e s over words t h a t s h i f t t h e i r meanings wit h the "ebb and f l o w " of the t i d e s . Aware of the f a c t t h a t he i s t h r e a t e n i n g K i n g R i c h a r d ' s a u t h o r i t y , B o l i n g b r o k e must a c t through another man, the E a r l of Northumberland, and by so doing p l a c e d h i s t r u s t and t h e r e f o r e h i s f a t e i n h i s hands, j u s t as the a p p e l l a n t s and d e f e n d a n t s i n e i t h e r a t r i a l by j u r y or a t r i a l by combat must have t h e i r seconds to "speak f o r them". But u l t i m a t e l y , i t i s what i s done t h a t i s the c o n c l u s i o n , a l t h o u g h l i k e the t r i a l by combat the c o n c l u s i o n may not be a t r u e r e f l e c t i o n of e i t h e r the t r u t h D f Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 83 the o r i g i n a l c o n f l i c t or the i n t e n t behind the a c t t h a t l e a d to the i r r e c o n c i l a b l e c o n f l i c t i n the f i r s t p l a c e . The t r i a l by combat at l e a s t " s o l v e s " a problem by k i l l i n g one s i d e of the argument! T h i s i s a p a t t e r n t h a t r e c u r s not o n l y i n the H i s t o r y P l a y s but a l s o i n the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s of the e v e n t s p r e s e n t e d , or r e - p r e s e n t e d , t h a t a r e r e f l e c t e d i n the "emotive" c r i t i c i s m s of c r i t i c s of the c h a r a c t e r s , be they h i s t o r i c a l or f i c t i o n a l , t h a t enacted, or enact, t h e i r t r a g i c f a t e s upon the pages of h i s t o r y . King R i c h a r d , having d i s p e r s e d h i s army, took r e f u g e ,in the C a s t l e at Conway. I t was from t h i s c a s t l e t h a t the E a r l of Northumberland persuaded the k i n g t o p l a c e h i s t r u s t i n Bo 1ingbroke*s word t h a t he had r e t u r n e d to England to c l a i m no more than h i s own l a n d s . I t i s o n l y i n r e t r o s p e c t t h a t the i r o n y of h i s avowed i n t e n t i s r e v e a l e d , i n t h a t the lands he came to c l a i m were i n the E a r l of Northumberland: R i c h a r d and S a l i s b u r y were ... l e f t i n the . c a s t l e at Conway with about a hundred men. There Northumberland found them. Swearing upon the sacrament, he promised R i c h a r d t h a t , were R i c h a r d to r e s t o r e the duchy of L a n c a s t e r and s u r r e n d e r c e r t a i n a d v i s o r s f o r t r i a l , B o l i n g b r o k e would a l l o w him to r e t a i n h i s crown and power. Thus l u r e d from Conway, R i c h a r d was ambushed by Northumberland's t r o o p s , and taken f i r s t t o F l i n t . 1 3 C h a r l e s Kean, i n the c o p i o u s notes t o h i s v e r s i o n of Richard II, h u r l s the s o r t of i n v e c t i v e a t the E a r l of Northumberland t h a t i s most o f t e n r e s e r v e d f o r the " M a c h i a v e l l i a n " B o l i n g b r o k e when he d e s c r i b e s h i s a c t i o n : Henry Percy, f i r s t E a r l of Northumberland, ha v i n g by base and a r t f u l p e r s u a s i o n s , and the mockery of a solemn oath f o r the k i n g ' s Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 84 sa-fety, induced R i c h a r d to q u i t Conway C a s t l e , rode on be-fore, under the p r e t e n c e of p r e p a r i n g d i n n e r , f o r the purpose of p l a c i n g h i s men i n ambush i n a pass between a s t e e p rock and the sea, where he s e i z e d the person of the k i n g , i n v i o l a t i o n of h i s sworn vow, and c a r r i e d him a p r i s o n e r to F l i n t C a s t l e . 1 " Bo 1ingbroke' s second, the E a r l of Northumberland, p l a c e s both K i n g R i c h a r d and B o l i n g b r o k e i n an i r r e c o n c i l a b l e c o n f l i c t t h a t i s much l i k e the ve r y f i r s t scene. N e i t h e r "accuser nor accused", or "accuser and accused", can v e r i f y t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e s u s p i c i o n s w i t h a b s o l u t e c e r t a i n t y because both are compromised by what they have s a i d and done. Ki n g R i c h a r d , having c o n f i s c a t e d B o l i n g b r o k e ' s i n h e r i t a n c e , i s u n t r u s t w o r t h y as f a r as the n o b l e s of England a r e concerned; the banished B o l i n g b r o k e , h a v i n g r e t u r n e d t o England, i s u n t r u s t w o r t h y as f a r as Ki n g R i c h a r d i s concerned; and the E a r l of Northumberland, a noble and t h e r e f o r e an i n t e r e s t e d p a r t y , proves h i m s e l f u n t r u s t w o r t h y to both p a r t i e s ! • U n l i k e the opening scene i n which the c o n f l i c t a t l e a s t c o u l d have been r e s o l v e d — a l b e i t u n s a t i s f a c t o r i l y i n terms of t h a t awful a b s o l u t e " J u s t i c e " - - b y t r i a l by combat, the c o n f l i c t between K i n g R i c h a r d and B o l i n g b r o k e can o n l y be s o l v e d by war. And t h a t the audience, i n r e t r o s p e c t , knows o n l y too w e l l . The E a r l of Northumberland c a p t u r e d K i n g R i c h a r d and e s c o r t e d him t o F l i n t C a s t l e , but by so d o i n g he b e t r a y e d the t r u s t t h a t B o l i n g b r o k e p l a c e d i n him, u n l e s s we o v e r s i m p l i f y the drama by assuming t h a t the whole was p l o t t e d b e f o r e h a n d — a n d the i r o n y of c o n s p i r i n g t o overthrow a k i n g i s t h a t the c o n s p i r a t o r s fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 85 must t r u s t each o t h e r w h i l e in the a c t of b e t r a y i n g . The dangers o-f such an a c t i o n a r e c l e a r l y a r t i c u l a t e d i n the s u b - p l o t a g a i n s t K i n g Henry IV, which f a i l e d because of another form of t r e a c h e r y ; and i t i s important t h a t the p l o t t o depose K i n g Henry i s , i n Shakespeare's Richard II, d i s c o v e r e d by a f a t h e r ' s d i s t r u s t of h i s h i s son: the Duke of York s u s p e c t s t h a t h i s son, Aumerle, i s a t r a i t o r to K i n g Henry w h i l e he h i m s e l f i s i n f a c t a t r a i t o r to the deposed "King" R i c h a r d . By p l a c i n g King R i c h a r d i n the r o l e of p r i s o n e r t o B o l i n g b r o k e , the E a r l of Northumberland p l a c e s the two men as c o n t e s t a n t s f o r the crown. T h i s i s the v e r y t e n u o u s l y b a l a n c e d s i t u a t i o n t h a t Shakespeare d r a m a t i z e s i n Richard II. On Tuesday, 19th August 1399, B o l i n g b r o k e and h i s s u p p o r t e r s surrounded F l i n t C a s t l e . And i t was t h e r e t h a t B o l i n g b r o k e d i d the f o i l o w i ng: as the Duke got s i g h t of the King he showed a r e v e r e n d duty as became him i n bowing h i s knee ... land s a i d ! "My s o v e r e i g n l o r d and King, the cause of my coming a t t h i s p r e s e n t , i s (your honor saved) t o have againe r e s t i t u t i o n of my person, my lands and h e r i t a g e , through your f a v o r a b l e l i c e n c e . " The K i n g hereunto answered: "Deere c o u s i n e , I am r e a d i e to a c c o m p l i s h your wi_l_l_, so t h a t ye may enjoy a l l t h a t i s y o u r s , without e x c e p t i o n . " ' " [ E m p h a s i s mine.] By s u b m i t t i n g h i s w i l l to another man's w i l l , K i n g R i c h a r d i n e f f e c t t a l k e d away h i s crown. The k i n g must command and- not e n t r e a t . But by s u b m i t t i n g h i s w i l l t o a s u b j e c t ' s w i l l , he p l a c e d h i m s e l f beneath the " k n e e l i n g s u b j e c t " b e f o r e whom he s t o o d . T h i s v e r b a l s e l f - d e p o s i t i o n of King R i c h a r d ' s i s dramatized by Shakespeare by h a v i n g the E a r l of Northumberland Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 86 mediate f o r B o l i n g b r o k e be-fore the C a s t l e at F l i n t and removing the c a p t u r e of King R i c h a r d by the E a r l and h i s men from the a c t i o n . T h i s p l a c e s a l l the more emphasis on K i n g R i c h a r d and B o l i n g b r o k e and t h e i r mutual d i s t r u s t of each o t h e r . I n s t e a d of l u r i n g King R i c h a r d from the C a s t l e at Conway, the E a r l of Northumberland l u r e s him from the w a l l s of F l i n t where, as H o l i n s h e d d e s c r i b e s the s i t u a t i o n , "The K i n g ... was walking on the brayes of the w a l l s to behold the coming of the Duke." 1* Northumberland i s the one who b r i n g s the k i n g down from t h a t h e i g h t t o the "base c o u r t " below by means of a m u l t i p l e oath which he speaks i n the name of "Harry B o l i n g b r o k e " : by the honorable tomb he swears That s t a n d s upon your r o y a l g r a n d s h i r e ' s bones, And by the r o y a l t i e s of both your b l o o d s -C u r r e n t s t h a t s p r i n g from one most g r a c i o u s head — And by the b u r i e d hand of w a r l i k e Gaunt, And by the worth and honor of h i m s e l f , c o m p r i s i n g a l l t h a t may be sworn or s a i d , H i s coming h i t h e r hath no f u r t h e r scope Than f o r h i s l i n e a l r o y a l t i e s , and t o beg I n f r a n c h i s e m e n t immediate on h i s knees. Richard II 1 1 1 . i i i . 1 0 4 - 1 3 In the f a l l e n world, the world where words may be used and i n t e r p r e t e d as mere g e s t u r e s as opposed to e x p r e s s i o n s of h e a r t -f e l t t r u t h , the must remain unsure as to what B o l i n g b r o k e , who f o r the most p a r t remains s i l e n t , i n t e n d s . He cannot speak f o r h i m s e l f because he i s compromised, however, he may speak through the a c t i o n s of o t h e r s who prove t h e i r w i l l i n g n e s s t o t r u s t h i s w o r d — t h a t i s the r o l e of the second. And i t must be remembered t h a t K i n g R i c h a r d d i s m i s s e d a whole army of seconds. Upon h e a r i n g t h e s e words, Aumerle reminds both K i n g R i c h a r d and the audience of the danger of t r u s t i n g a man's word by w h i s p e r i n g t o Fact f i c t i o n and Faction Page 87 h i s k i n g , " l e t ' s -fight with g e n t l e words, T i l l time lend -friends, and f r i e n d s t h e i r h e l p f u l swords" (111. i i i . 130-31) . It i s at t h i s p o i n t t h a t K i n g R i c h a r d remembers the c r u c i a l misjudgment of t h a t moment when he banished B o l i n g b r o k e and how he can ' t b r i n g h i m s e l f to compromise h i m s e l f by b r e a k i n g h i s word, w h i l e he f o r g e t s the oath t h a t he swore b e f o r e i n t e r r u p t i n g the p r o c e e d i n g s . He laments the need t o compromise: 0 God! O God! t h a t e'er t h i s tongue of mine, That l a i d the sentence of dread banishment On yon proud man, s h o u l d take i t o f f a g a i n With words of s o o t h ! 0, t h a t I were as g r e a t As i s my g r i e f , or l e s s e r than my name! Or t h a t I c o u l d f o r g e t what I have been! Or not remember what I must be now! Richard II I I I . i i i . 1 3 2 - 3 8 . I t i s not t i l l l a t e r t h a t h i s h e i r r e a l i z e s t h a t i t was King R i c h a r d ' s a c t i o n , the a c t of throwing down the warder, t h a t has such d e v a s t a t i n g consequences f o r both h i m s e l f and England, f o r Then, then The k i n g d i d throw h i s warder down, H i s own l i f e hung upon the s t a f f he threw; Then threw he down h i m s e l f . 1 5 * The s y m b o l i c a c t of throwing down the warder i s what determines h i s own f a t e and England's, i t i s "the l i n g ' r i n g a c t " t h a t merely f e e d s c o n t e n t i o n . The throwing down of the warder i s a metaphor f o r not o n l y the s i n g u l a r f a t e of King R i c h a r d but a l s o f o r the l i v e s and deaths of the Kin g s of England t h a t spanned the y e a r s from 1399 t o 1485. But King R i c h a r d does not take command of the s i t u a t i o n t h a t he i s c o n f r o n t e d with i n f r o n t of F l i n t C a s t l e , and he descends from the b a t t l e m e n t s t o s u b j e c t h i m s e l f to Bo 1 i n g b r o k e '5 w i l l . The symbolic a c t of throwing down the warder Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 88 becomes a v i s u a l metaphor on the s t a g e as K i n g R i c h a r d comes down to the base c o u r t . Be-fore the E a r l o-f Northumberland can r e t u r n t o King R i c h a r d to a r t i c u l a t e B o l i n g b r o k e ' s response t o the f a c t t h a t " a l l the number of h i s f a i r demands s h a l l be accomplished without c o n t r a d i c t i o n " < I I I . i i i . 1 2 2 - 2 3 ) , King R i c h a r d proceeds to v e r b a l l y depose h i m s e l f " f o n d l y l i k e a f r a n t i c man", s a y i n g : What must the K i n g do now? Must he submit? The K i n g s h a l l do i t . Must he be deposed? The K i n g s h a l l be c o n t e n t e d . Must he l o s e The name of King? a God^_s name, l e t i t go. Richard II I I I . i i i . 1 4 2 - 4 5 . T h i s v e r b a l s u b m i s s i o n b e f o r e Northumberland has the chance to speak i s d i r e c t l y p a r a l l e l to the h i s t o r i c a l K i n g R i c h a r d ' s v e r b a l s u b j e c t i o n to the w i l l of B o l i n g b r o k e . Thus he s e t s i n motion a t e r r i b l e c h a i n of e v e n t s t h a t , l i k e a p r o j e c t i l e , has a momentum a l l of i t s own. T h i s c h a i n of e v e n t s t h a t e v e n t u a l l y l e a d s to h i s own death i s r e a l i z e d by King R i c h a r d even as he comes down t o the meet B o l i n g b r o k e . He p o e t i c a l l y r e a l i z e s , i n what he s a y s a t l e a s t , t h a t he i s i n the a c t of g i v i n g away e v e r y t h i n g t h a t goes with k i ngsh i p : I ' l l g i v e my j e w e l s f o r a s e t of beads; My gorgeous p a l a c e f o r a hermitage; My gay a p p a r e l f o r an almsman's gown; My f i g u r e d g o b l e t s f o r a d i s h of wood; My s c e p t e r f o r a palmer's w a l k i n g - s t a f f ; My s u b j e c t s f o r a p a i r of c a r v e d s a i n t s ; And my l a r g e kingdom f o r a l i t t l e grave, A l i t t l e , l i t t l e grave, an obscure grave. Richard II I I I . i i i . 1 4 6 - 5 4 . And with a l l the t r a p p i n g s , the o r n a t e t h i n g s t h a t a r e n e c e s s a r y Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 89 •for the s ustenance o-f a k i n g ' s l i - f e , he i s a l s o g i v i n g away h i s own l i f e , but he n e v e r t h e l e s s proceeds to g i v e a l l h i s power to B o l i n g b r o k e , d e s p i t e B o l i n g b r o k e ' s statement t o h i s k i n g , "My g r a c i o u s l o r d , I come but f o r mine own" < I I I . i i i . 1 9 6 ) . And r e g a r d l e s s of B o l i n g b r o k e ' s avowals, h i s a c t i o n s have l e a d to a s i t u a t i o n i n which he too must ac c e p t what h i s k i n g f e e l s he must g i v e to h i s s u b j e c t . When R i c h a r d c o n c l u d e s h i s speech, he e n t r e a t s the E a r l of Northumberland to t e l l him what he must do i n the tone of a s u b j e c t a d d r e s s i n g a "mighty p r i n c e . " He says to him: What says King B o l i n g b r o k e ? W i l l h i s Majesty Give R i c h a r d l e a v e to l i v e t i l l R i c h a r d d i e ? Richard II I I I . i i i . 1 7 2 - 7 3 . But i s B o l i n g b r o k e r e a l l y the embodiment of the M a c h i a v e l l i a n " p r i n c e " ? B e f o r e K i n g R i c h a r d has f i n i s h e d h i s speech, he has a l r e a d y s u b j e c t e d h i m s e l f b e f o r e the " r i s i n g sun" of the House of L a n c a s t e r and B o l i n g b r o k e has become Ki n g B o l i n g b r o k e . I t i s both K i n g R i c h a r d and B o l i n g b r o k e who have e f f e c t e d the r o l e -r e v e r s a l , and i n B o l i n g b r o k e ' s t e a r s the audience sees the man who w i l l l a t e r say to h i s son t h a t he had no i n t e n t of u s u r p i n g the throne and crown of England from K i n g R i c h a r d , who l i t e r a l l y r a i s e s up h i s s u b j e c t b e f o r e the audience: F a i r c o u s i n , you debase your p r i n c e l y knee To make the base e a r t h proud with k i s s i n g i t . Me r a t h e r had my h e a r t might f e e l your l o v e , Than my unpleased eye see your c o u r t e s y . Up, c o u s i n , up, your h e a r t i s up, I know, Thus high at l e a s t , a l t h o u g h your knee be low. Richard II I I I . i i i . 1 8 8 - 9 3 . K i n g R i c h a r d , l i k e so many c r i t i c s of Shakespeare's B o l i n g b r o k e , Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 90 not o n l y t h i n k s t h a t B o l i n g b r o k e i s a m b i t i o u s -for the crown but p u b l i c l y s t a t e s t h a t he knows t h a t he i s . Whether or not B o l i n g b r o k e intended to usurp the crown remains u n c e r t a i n , but seen through the eyes o-f the s e l - f - i n d u l g e n t K i n g R i c h a r d h i s a c t i o n i s c l e a r l y p r e m e d i t a t e d . Derek T r a v e r s i , a p p a r e n t l y s e e i n g Bo 1 i n g b r o k e '5 a c t i o n s i n alignment with K i n g R i c h a r d ' s p e r s p e c t i v e , m a i n t a i n s t h a t " B o l i n g b r o k e ' s crime ... i s not merely p e r s o n a l t r e a c h e r y and murder but the overthrow of an o r d e r d i v i n e l y s a n c t i o n e d i n the name of i n o r d i n a t e a m b i t i o n . " X 3 Meanwhile, the Grand Mechanism of h i s t o r y remains i n d i f f e r e n t as to who i s the r u l e r , because whoever he i s he i n h e r i t s the same problems as the p r e v i o u s r u l e r : the burden of g o v e r n i n g f a c t i o n . Having v e r b a l l y s u b j e c t e d h i m s e l f to B o l i n g b r o k e , K i n g R i c h a r d , and now i t i s h i s t i t l e t h a t p r o v i d e s the ambiguity, was e s c o r t e d t o the Tower of London. I t was t h e r e t h a t he o f f i c i a l l y and v o l u n t a r i l y renounced h i s k i n g s h i p . On 29th September, 1399, K i n g R i c h a r d renounced h i s t i t l e . While he was i n p r i s o n , a p a r l i a m e n t was c a l l e d by the Duke of L a n c a s t e r i n the name of K i n g R i c h a r d i n "which many heinous p o i n t s of misgovernance and i n j u r i o u s d e a l i n g s i n the a d m i n i s t r a t i o n of h i s k i n g l y o f f i c e were l a i d to the charge of h i s noble p r i n c e K i n g R i c h a r d . P a r l i a m e n t , on the whole, deemed him worthy t o be deposed. And on the 30th September, the " b i l l of renouncement", s i g n e d by K i n g R i c h a r d h i m s e l f , was read out i n p a r l i a m e n t . H a l l says t h a t "Kyng R i c h a r d cantoned with [ t h e Duke] and ... the Duke of L a n c a s t e r the nexte d a i e d e c l a r e d a l Kyng Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 91 R i c h a r d e s h o l e mind to the cauncel."=° H o l i n s h e d o n l y says t h a t "he renounced and v o l u n t a r i l y was deposed -from h i s r o y a l crown and k i n g l y d i g n i t y , the Monday b e i n g the n i n e and t w e n t i e t h day of September." 3 5 1 S a c c i o s t a t e s t h a t "coerced i n the Tower, R i c h a r d i n f a c t f i n a l l y s e t h i s crown upon the f l o o r and r e s i g n e d i t to God, a s t r i k i n g and c h a r a c t e r i s t i c l a s t g e s t u r e . " z = One might almost say the g e s t u r e of a C h r i s t - l i k e f i g u r e , f o r i n r e s i g n i n g h i s crown he i n f a c t r e s i g n e d h i s l i f e . H a l l d e s c r i b e s the a c t u a l d e p o s i t i o n of K i n g R i c h a r d i n the f o l l o w i n g way: [The Duke] caused a g r e a t assemble t o be a p o i n t e d a t the Towre of London, where Kyng R i c h a r d a p p a r e l e d i n v e s t u r e and robe r o y a l 1 the diadema on h i s head, 8c the s c e p t e r i n h i s hand, [ s a i d ] "I knowledge and c o n f e s s e my s e l f , not worthy longer t o r e i g n e nor t o have any f a r t h e r r u l e . " = 3 Costumed i n a l l the t r a p p i n g s Df k i n g s h i p , K i n g R i c h a r d v o l u n t a r i l y r e s i g n e d from the a u t h o r i t y of the o f f i c e t o which he was born. H i s l a s t a c t as k i n g i s the c u l m i n a t i n g paradox: d r e s s e d as a k i n g , he d i v e s t s h i m s e l f of e v e r y t h i n g t h a t the robes s t a n d f o r w h i l e he i s i n f a c t the r i g h t f u l K i n g of England. Such paradoxes, l i k e the "wise c h i l d r e n " t h a t do not l i v e long i n the world of Richard III , cannot l i v e long i n t h i s world. K i n g R i c h a r d a l s o announced "the f a v o u r ... which he bore t o h i s c o u s i n e of L a n c a s t e r t o have him h i s s u c c e s s o u r . T h e h i s t o r i c a l K ing R i c h a r d deposed h i m s e l f i n word and deed. And on 30th September "the l o r d s s p i r i t u a l and temporal, w i t h the commons of the s a i d p a r l i a m e n t , assembled at Westminster, where Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 92 [ t h e y were shown] the s c h e d u l e or b i l l o-f renouncement s i g n e d w i t h King R i c h a r d ' s own hand." And H o l i n s h e d goes on t o add a v e r y i n t e r e s t i n g d e t a i l : " A f t e r t h i s , i t was then d e c l a r e d [ t h a t ] i t were n e c e s s a r y , i n a v o i d i n g of a l l s u s p i c i o n s and s u r m i s e s of e v i 1 - d i s p o s e d persons, to have i n w r i t i n g and r e g i s t e r e d the m a n i f o l d c r i m e s and d e f a u l t s done by K i n g R i c h a r d , t o the end t h a t they might f i r s t be openly d e c l a r e d t o the p e o p l e , and a f t e r to remain of r e c o r d amongst o t h e r of the K i n g ' s r e c o r d s f o r e v e r . T h e r e w r i t i n g of h i s t o r y by the "winners" i s c l e a r l y admitted as a motive f o r w r i t i n g h i s t o r y . Each age r e w r i t e s i t s own h i s t o r y , or i t s own view of h i s t o r y . Shakespeare b r i n g s K i n g R i c h a r d on to the s t a g e and a c t u a l l y i n t o Westminster H a l l to be deposed p u b l i c l y . And he has h i s hero q u e s t i o n the n e c e s s i t y of t h i s a c t : A l a c k , why am I sent f o r t o a King, B e f o r e I have shook o f f the r e g a l thoughts Wherewith I r e i g n e d ? Richard II IV.i.162-64. - He i s brought b e f o r e the p a r l i a m e n t a r y r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s of England i n o rder to r e l e a s e h i s s u b j e c t s from t h e i r vows of a l l e g i a n c e , "from t h e i r oath of f e a l t y and homage, and a l l o t h e r deeds and p r i v i l e g e s made unto me, and from a l l manner bonds of a l l e g i a n c e , r e g a l i t y , and l o r d s h i p i n which they were or be bounden to [ h i m ] , " 3 * and a l s o to hear the t h i r t y - t h r e e a r t i c l e s t h a t were drawn up t o i n d i c t him of h i s " i n s o l e n t misgovernance.• I t i s here i n Westminster H a l l t h a t K i n g R i c h a r d p u b l i c l y becomes R i c h a r d and b e g i n s t o r e a l i z e the g r a v i t y of h i s a c t i o n s . He b e g i n s to look at h i m s e l f , i n t o "the v e r y book i n d e e d , Where a l l fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 93 t h i s ] s i n s a r e w r i t " ( I V . i . 2 7 3 - 7 4 ) . At the moment o-f h i s own s e l f - d e p o s i t i o n he b e g i n s t o look a t h i m s e l f and i n the r e f l e c t e d image of h i s own f a c e he sees the t e r r i f y i n g f r a g i l i t y of the man who, behind a l l the f a c a d e , i s j u s t a man and y e t i s made a k i n g . He b e g i n s to l e a r n too l a t e . As R i c h a r d v e r b a l l y g i v e s away h i s crown, he a l s o p h y s i c a l l y g i v e s the crown to B o l i n g b r o k e thereby c r e a t i n g the v i s u a l image of two men h o l d i n g the crown of England. T h i s image l e a d s t D R i c h a r d ' s a r t i c u l a t i o n of the metaphor t h a t expands upon the i d e a t h a t one man may appear to be the k i n g w h i l e another, unseen, i s i n f a c t the r u l e r of the l a n d . The crown i s always l i k e a w e l l , whoever happens to be k i n g , and i t i s the p e o p l e t h a t e i t h e r b e n e f i t or s u f f e r . Now i s t h i s golden crown l i k e a deep w e l l That owes two b u c k e t s , f i l l i n g one another, The emptier ever d a n c i n g i n the a i r , The o t h e r down, unseen, and f u l l of water. That bucket down and f u l l of t e a r s am I, D r i n k i n g my g r i e f s , w h i l s t you mount up on h i g h . Richard II IV.i.183-89. R i c h a r d i s both f u l l of t e a r s and g r i e f and a l s o the "emptier bucket" because he i s the one who i s i n e f f e c t g i v i n g h i m s e l f f o r the sake of h i s c o u n t r y . H i s s a c r i f i c e i s n e c e s s a r y t o s u s t a i n o r d e r , and t h e r e f o r e he must be emptied. Having g i v e n away h i s crown, s a y i n g : I g i v e t h i s heavy weight from o f f my head, And t h i s unwieldy s c e p t r e from my hand, The p r i d e of k i n g l y sway from out my h e a r t ; With mine own t e a r s I wash away my balm, With mine own hands I g i v e away my crown, With mine own tongue deny my s a c r e d s t a t e , With mine own b r e a t h r e l e a s e a l l duteous oaths; Richard II IV.i.203-9. Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 94 he i s asked by the E a r l of Northumberland to openly read out and c o n f e s s h i s " g r i e v o u s c r i m e s " . To which he r e p l i e s : Must I do so? and must I r a v e l out My weav'd-up - f o l l i e s ? G e n t l e Northumberland, If thy o f f e n c e s were upon r e c o r d , Would i t not shame thee, i n so f a i r a t r o o p , To read a l e c t u r e on them? If thou would'st, There s h o u l d s t thou f i n d one heinous a r t i c l e , C o n t a i n i n g the d e p o s i n g of a k i n g , And c r a c k i n g the s t r o n g warrant of an oath, Mark'd with a b l o t , damn'd i n the book of heaven. Richard II IV.i.228-36. S t i l l b l i n d t o the r o l e he has been p l a y i n g , he equates h i m s e l f with C h r i s t and h i s p u b l i c t r i a l : a l l of you, t h a t s t a n d and look upon me W h i l s t t h a t my wretchedness doth b a i t m y self, Though some of you, w i t h P i l a t e , wash your hands, Showing an outward p i t y - - y e t you P i l a t e s Have here d e l i v e r ' d me t o my sour c r o s s , And water cannot wash away your s i n . Richard II IV.i.237-42. He i s a man condemned by men f o r f a u l t s t h a t amount t o no more than those of a man p l a y i n g a r o l e t h a t consumes men. L i k e a l l men, he has h i s c r o s s , h i s burden, to bear: the burden of misjudgment both of o t h e r s and by o t h e r s , both of o n e s e l f and by onese1f. Unable t o read h i s own i n d i c t m e n t f o r the t e a r s i n h i s eyes, he proceeds t o read h i s s e 1 f - i n d i c t m e n t i n the m i r r o r t h a t r e f l e c t s the "shadow" of h i s f a c e , which i n t u r n r e f l e c t s the mere shadow of h i s sorrows. L o o k i n g a t h i s r e f l e c t e d image, j u s t as the audience sees the f i c t i o n a l shadow of the h i s t o r i c a l R i c h a r d , he sees t h a t he too i s as compromised as a l l those he has j u s t f i n i s h e d a c c u s i n g of t r e a c h e r y . Viewing the f r a g i l e "image" of a deposed k i n g , he b e g i n s to r e a l i z e the f r a g i l e Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 95 f o u n d a t i o n s upon which a k i n g i s made a k i n g . The man and the o f f i c e a r e i n s e p a r a b l e , and when one i s d i v o r c e d from the o t h e r "chaos i s come a g a i n " . On s e e i n g t h i s r e f l e c t e d i n the g l a s s , he smashes the g l a s s upon the f l o o r - - a n a c t i o n t h a t i s r e m i n i s c e n t of the s y m b o l i c a c t i o n of throwing down the warder. A b r i t t l e g l o r y s h i n e t h i n t h i s f a c e , As b r i t t l e as the g l o r y i s the f a c e , [Dashes the g l a s s a g a i n s t the ground! For t h e r e i t i s , c r a c k e d i n a hundred s h i v e r s Richard II IV.i.286-89. I t i s here t h a t K i n g Henry t e a c h e s R i c h a r d the meaning of h i s a c t i o n , and t h a t the p u b l i c "show" of g r i e f i s merely a shadow of the r e a l i t y t h a t i s i n the human h e a r t , compromised as i t i s by i m p e r f e c t i o n s . And i t i s then t h a t R i c h a r d a r t i c u l a t e s how i m p o s s i b l e i t i s t o r e f l e c t t h a t which must remain " i n s i d e " and "deep w i t h i n " : my g r i e f l i e s a l l w i t h i n , And t h e s e e x t e r n a l manners of lament Are merely shadows t o the unseen g r i e f That s w e l l s with s i l e n c e i n the t o r t u r ' d s o u l . There l i e s the s u b s t a n c e . Richard II IV.i.295-99. T h i s i s the man whose thoughts Shakespeare e x p l o r e s i n the f i n a l a c t of the p l a y b e f o r e he i s murdered i n the Tower. Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 96 DEATH Be-fore R i c h a r d comes t o the s o r t o-f s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n i n which he understands, i n r e t r o s p e c t , h i s r a l e as a human a c t o r and h i s r o l e as a k i n g and the v a s t d i f f e r e n c e between the consequences of the a c t i o n s of the two d i s p a r a t e v o c a t i o n s , he must i n t e r n a l i z e the drama of h i s l i f e by r e l i v i n g h i s own v o l u n t a r y d e p o s i t i o n over and over and again i n h i s mind's eye. J u s t as the p r o g r e s s i o n of King R i c h a r d ' s l i f e was from a k i n g t o a beggar, so too i s the p r o g r e s s i o n of the p1 ay,Richard II, from a p l a y e r - k i n g t o a p l a y e r - b e g g a r ; and as Shakespeare's R i c h a r d wastes away h i s time i n p r i s o n , which i s i n f a c t merely the s t a g e of the Globe i t s e l f , he r e l i v e s i n thought the same " l i n g ' r i n g a c t " , f e e d i n g c o n t e n t i o n w i t h i n h i m s e l f , and f i n a l l y he momentarily comes to terms with the c o n f l i c t w i t h i n as he a c c e p t s r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r h i s a c t i o n s r - r e g a r d l e s s of the inhuman demands t h a t k i n g s h i p l a y s upon a mere man. . And R i c h a r d ' s dilemma i s r e e n a c t e d by K i n g Henry IV two scenes b e f o r e we see R i c h a r d s t r u g g l i n g with h i s thoughts: K i n g Henry i s c o n f r o n t e d with a c o n f l i c t between f a t h e r , mother and son i n which the Duke of York wants t o see h i s son punished f o r c o n s p i r a c y a g a i n s t h i s k i n g ; the Duchess of York wants the k i n g to pardon her son and begs, as her son's "second", the k i n g to do so; and t h e i r son, Aumerle, who c o n s p i r e d a g a i n s t K i n g Henry ends up b e t r a y i n g not o n l y the deposed R i c h a r d but a l s o h i s f e l l o w Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 97 c o n s p i r a t o r s . The web o-f compromise, so t h i c k l y l a i d , a p p a r e n t l y ffiMIii. lead t o t h a t t r i a l by combat t h a t w i l l f i n a l l y l e t b l o o d i n the Wars o-f the Roses i n which " l o y a l t y " between k i n g and s u b j e c t , man and woman, and p a r e n t s and c h i l d r e n becomes as hollow as the crown i t s e l - f . T h i s scene i s a c t u a l l y c a l l e d by Kin g Henry "The Beggar and the K i n g " ( V . i i i . 7 3 ) . K i n g Henry, the r e i g n i n g monarch, i s seen to be the beggar t o h i s s u b j e c t s , whereas the beggar, R i c h a r d , i s seen t o be the k i n g over h i s thoughts; and i n t h i s monarchy w i t h i n where what he d e s i r e s i s what he i s , and where he p l a y s a l l the p a r t s , he a t t a i n s an u n d e r s t a n d i n g t h a t a s o r t o-f " t e r r i b l e harmony" e x i s t s i n the world t h a t man c r e a t e s . : Having a r t i c u l a t e d the c o n f l i c t t h a t i s c o n c e i v e d through the c o n f l i c t between h i s female b r a i n and h i s male s o u l , R i c h a r d comes to see a l l t h i n g s i n terms of o p p o s i t e s , a l l t h i n g s i n ba l a n c e , an u n i v e r s a l f a c t i o n w i t h man at the c e n t r e of i t a l l . R e t r o s p e c t i v e l y r e v i e w i n g the p r o g r e s s of h i s l i f e , R i c h a r d r e a l i z e s t h a t t h e r e i s no escape from the burden of c o n f l i c t : Thus p l a y I i n one person many people, And none c o n t e n t e d . Sometimes am I k i n g , Then t r e a s o n s make me wish myself a beggar, And so I am. Then c r u s h i n g penury Persuades me I was b e t t e r when a k i n g ; Then am I kirig'd a g a i n , and by and by . Think t h a t I am unking'd by B o l i n g b r o k e , And s t r a i g h t am n o t h i n g . But whate'er I be, Nor I, nor any man t h a t but man i s , With n o t h i n g s h a l l be p l e a s ' d , t i l l he be eas'd With b e i n g n o t h i n g . IThe music plays.] Music do I hear? Richard II V.v.31-41. Momentarily, harmony i s r e s t o r e d ; but t o see harmony i n d i s c o r d Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 98 i s as p a r a d o x i c a l as Gaunt's a d v i s e t o h i s banished son t h a t " A l l p l a c e s t h a t the eye o-f heaven v i s i t s Are to a wise man p o r t s and happy havens" ( I . i i i . 275-76) . The "eye o-f heaven", the p e r s p e c t i v e t h a t sees a l l t h i n g s i n c o n f l i c t , seems t o be humanly i m p o s s i b l e , l i k e h o l d i n g f i r e i n one's hand and meanwhile " t h i n k i n g on the f r o s t y Caucasus." But the music p l a y s . And the harmony f o r R i c h a r d does not l a s t long: Ha, ha! keep t ime—how sour sweet music i s When time i s broke and no p r o p o r t i o n kept! So i s i t i n the music of men's l i v e s . And here have I the d a i n t i n e s s of ear To check time broke i n a d i s o r d e r e d s t r i n g ; But f o r the concord of my s t a t e and time, Had not an ear to hear my t r u e time broke: I wasted time, and now doth time waste me. Richard II V.v.42-49. If I were d i r e c t i n g the p l a y , I would have the music p l a y e d b e a u t i f u l l y and i n tune u n t i l the moment R i c h a r d s a y s , " T h i s music mads me. L e t i t sound no more" (V.v.61). The audience would then be c o n f r o n t e d with the i n c o n g r u i t y of the "sour sweet music" t h a t R i c h a r d e x p r e s s e s and i s s i m u l t a n e o u s l y surrounded by. Immediately f o l l o w i n g t h i s e p i s o d e , the groom, one of King R i c h a r d ' s l o y a l s u b j e c t s , e n t e r s . He d e s c r i b e s how B o l i n g b r o k e rode on "roan Barbary" on h i s c o r o n a t i o n day. And R i c h a r d s a y s , u s i n g a b e a u t i f u l l y ambivalent pronoun r e f e r e n c e , That j a d e hath eat bread from my r o y a l hand; T h i s hand hath made him proud with c l a p p i n g him. Richard II V.v.85-86. Horses a r e not f e d with bread. But each k i n g i s s u s t a i n e d by the death of h i s p r e d e c e s s o r . Thus, the body and the b l o o d of R i c h a r d of Burdeaux 1 are n e c e s s a r y f o r King Henry IV to be the Fact F ic t ion and Faction Page 99 K i n g of England and the next s a c r i f i c e v i c t i m f o r England's crown. i The p u r e l y f i c t i o n a l e x p l o r a t i o n of R i c h a r d ' s p r i v a t e thoughts w h i l e i n p r i s o n at Pomfret C a s t l e , p r e s e n t e d by Shakespeare i n the most a r t i f i c i a l medium, the s o l i l o q u y spoken by an " a c t o r " , i s £ramed by the almost c o m p l e t e l y i n d i s p u t a b l e f a c t t h a t R i c h a r d was murdered, at l e a s t as f a r as the c h r o n i c l e r s a r e concerned t h i s was the case, and Shakespeare's r e - p r e s e n t a t i o n of those f a c t s a l s o p r o v i d e s Shakespeare's t h e a t r i c a l fr_ame t h a t surrounds the murder of R i c h a r d at Pomfret C a s t l e . The scene between Exton and an anonymous s e r v a n t adheres v e r y c l o s e l y t o the f a c t s c o n c e r n i n g the way i n which H o l i n s h e d d e s c r i b e s how "King Henry, s i t t i n g on a day a t h i s t a b l e , s o r e s i g h i n g , s a i d : Have I no f a i t h f u l f r i e n d which w i l l d e l i v e r me of him whose l i f e w i l l be my death, and whose death w i l l be my l i f e ? " 5 2 Shakespeare has Exton repeat these words almost e x a c t l y . The s e r v a n t throughout the b r i e f scene does not agree, n e c e s s a r i l y , with Exton's jL.n ternir etatjion of K i n g Henry's meaning; he merely agrees with Exton's r e p e t i t i o n of what K i n g Henry s a i d 1i t e r a l 1 y • There i s a world of d i f f e r e n c e . Exton's misjudgment of King Henry's i n t e n t p r o v i d e s the t h e a t r i c a l frame w i t h i n which we see a r e f l e c t i o n of the g r i e f t h a t R i c h a r d ' s misjudgment of Bo 1ingbroke*s i n t e n t l e a d s t o : the murder of R i c h a r d i s e f f e c t e d by a s u b j e c t ' s w i l l i n a c c o r d with h i s k i n g ' s wish; but the l o s s Fact F ict ion and Faction Page 100 o-f King R i c h a r d ' s crown i s e-f-fected by a k i n g who s u b j e c t s h i s w i l l to a s u b j e c t . And the i r o n y i s t h a t n e i t h e r S i r P i e r s Exton nor King R i c h a r d understand t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e s i t u a t i o n s u n t i l i t i s too l a t e . Fact F ict ion and Faction Page 101 THE BURDEN OF FACTION There i s same s o u l o-F goodness i n t h i n g s e v i l , Would men o b s e r v i n g l y d i s t i l l i t out. Henry V I V . i . 4 - 5 . R o s s i t e r s t a t e s t h a t the "Order-Cade-System a-f Tudor t h e o r y approaches h i s t o r y with a k i n d of argument t h a t P l a t o c a l l e d eristic: t h a t i s , argument aimed a t the e x t i n c t i o n of an o p p o s i t e and "bad" system of b e l i e f s . " 1 And having attempted to r e -examine the c h a r a c t e r of B o l i n g b r o k e with a view t o q u e s t i o n i n g the nature of k i n g s h i p i t s e l f , the next s t a g e of the argument would lead to a r e - e x a m i n a t i o n of the c h a r a c t e r of K i n g R i c h a r d the T h i r d . The Duke of G l o u c e s t e r e s t a b l i s h e s h i m s e l f as an enemy to l o v e from the v e r y f i r s t s o l i l o q u y , and h i s naked avowal of h i s v i l l a i n o u s n a t u r e i n t i m i d a t e s people i n t o a c q u i e s c i n g t o h i s i n o r d i n a t e d e s i r e f o r power, and thus, by s t e p s , as one person a f t e r another g i v e s i n t o h i s w i l l - - i n the knowledge of what they a r e doing, and j u s t i f y i n g t h e i r a c t i o n s i n the name of p o l i t i c a l expediency, or " n e c e s s i t y " — h e a t t a i n s the crown of England. T h i s R i c h a r d i s regarded by most pe o p l e as " e v i l " , but what makes the drama i s t h a t he i s e f f e c t i v e l y helped t o the crown by more pe o p l e than j u s t the Duke of Buckingham. However, i t i s c o m f o r t i n g t o p r o j e c t the e v i l i n the world onto a scapegoat. The Duke of G l o u c e s t e r t h r i v e s on the d i v i s i v e m otives t h a t Fact F ict ion and Faction Page 102 he i s - f u l l y aware o-f, but as K i n g R i c h a r d I I I he - f a i l s t o c o n s o l i d a t e h i s power f o r the v e r y reason t h a t he sows d i v i s i o n , and the subsequent l a c k of s e c u r i t y d r i v e s him t o d i s t r a c t i o n ; K i n g R i c h a r d I I ' s i d e a l i s m l e a d s him t o l i t e r a l l y g i v e away h i s crown, and y e t R i c h a r d i n p r i s o n a t Pomfret C a s t l e he i s g i v e n a b r i e f r e s p i t e from the burden of f a c t i o n when he i s no longer a k i n g and yet momentarily a k i n g over h i s t h o u g h t s . When Robert Gru d i n , i n d i s c u s s i n g Hamlet, s t a t e s t h a t i n the p l a y " a l l the c h a r a c t e r s , i n one f r i g h t e n i n g sense, a r e the same c h a r a c t e r . The k i l l e r , the v i c t i m , and the revenger a r e a l l o u r s e l v e s . D e s p i t e i t s v i o l e n c e and d i s c a r d , Hamlet i s b u i l t on a t e r r i b l e u n i t y . I t s encompassing theme i s the weight of our i n n e r motives, i n t o l e r a b l e yet incommunicable," 1 5 he c o u l d be t a l k i n g about the e n t i r e sweep of the h i s t o r y p l a y s . Each k i n g t a k e s upon h i s head the crown, and with the crown the burden of f a c t i o n i s bestowed upon him a l s o ; the o n l y way of r e l e a s i n g t h a t burden i s through death. U n t i l man can l e a r n t o i n t e r n a l i z e the b a t t l e s t h a t he i s determined t o f i g h t , then man's s o c i e t y w i l l r e q u i r e s y m b o l i c v i c t i m s , p l a y e r - k i n g s , or r e a l v i c t i m s , who a r e a l s o to a c e r t a i n e x t e n t p l a y e r - k i n g s . Fact F i c t ion and Faction Page 103 ENDNOTES I n t r o d u c t i o n 1 W i l l i a m Shakespeare, Henry I/, ed. J.H. Walter (New York: Methuen & Co., 1954), P r o l o g u e , 30-31. = W i l l i a m Shakespeare, 2 Henry I\J, ed. A.R. Humphreys (New York: Methuen 8c Co., 1966), I I I . i.54-56. 3W.B. Yeats, " L a p i s L a z u l i " , i n The Co Ilected Poems of W.B. Yeats (London: M a c m i l l a n & Co., 1939). The Role o-f the H i s t o r i a n XE.H. C a r r , What is History? (London: M a c m i l l a n 8e Co., 1961), p.138. =W.H. Walsh, Philosophy of History: An Introduct ion (New York: Harper & Row, 1960), p.16. 3E.H. C a r r , p.20. "*E.H. C a r r , p.86. WW.H. Walsh, p.33. *W.H. Walsh, p.48. ^E.H. C a r r , p.141. °E.H. C a r r , p.89-90. "E.H. C a r r , p.100. 10W.H. Walsh, p.21. 1 1 K e n n e t h Burke, Permanence and Change: An Anatomy of Purpose ( B e r k e l e y : Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1984), pp.220-21. 1=W. Shakespeare, Troilus and Cressida, ed. D. S e l t z e r (New York: The New American L i b r a r y , 1963), I I I . i i i . 1 0 3 - 1 1 . Endnotes Page 104 The Audience and i t s A t t i t u d e s ' A l b e r t Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus, t r a n s . J O'Brien (Harmondsworth: Penguin Bocks, 1984), p.170. =Kenneth Burke, Permanence and Change: An Anatomy of Purpose (London: Univ. o-F C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1984), p.302. 3A.W. S c h l e g e l , quoted i n L i l y Campbell's Shakespeare's Histories: Mirrors of £Iizabethan Policy ( B r i s t o l : J.W. Arrowsmith, 1980), p. 11. "*K. Burke, Attitudes Toward History (New York: The New R e p u b l i c , 1937), p.219. *K. Burke, Attitudes Toward History, p.28. SK. Burke, Attitudes Toward History, p.175. ^B.L. Joseph, Shakespeare's Eden: The Commonwealth of England 1558-1629 (London: Bland-ford P r e s s , 1971), p.245. eK. Burke, Language as Symbolic Action: Essays on Life Literature and Method ( B e r k e l e y : Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1966), pp.39-90. 'W. Shakespeare, 2 Henry 71/, IV.v.212-15. 1 0K. Burke, The Philosophy of Literary Form ( B e r k e l e y : Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1973), p . x i x . X 1K. Burke, The Philosophy of Literary Form, p.109. 1 =R.C. K i m b e r l i n g , Kenneth Burke's Dramat ism, p.84. X 3K. Burke, The Philosophy of Literary Form, p.148. 1"*K. Burke, A Rhetoric of Motives ( B e r k e l e y : Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1969), p.11. l e 5K. Burke, A Rhetoric of Motives, p. 42. 1 < s D a v i d Hare, "A L e c t u r e Given at King's C o l l e g e Cambridge i n 1973" i n Licking Hitler (London: Faber & Faber, 1984), p.66. 15*K. Burke, Permanence and Change, p. 163. i e T h e o d o r e Spencer, Shakespeare and the Nature of Man (New York: M a c m i l l a n k Co., 1942), p.29. ""Montaigne, M i c h e l de, The Essays of Michel de Montaigne, t r a n s . G.B. Ives (New York: The H e r i t a g e P r e s s , 1946), v o l . 2 , p.49. Endnotes Page 105 s o N i c c o l o M a c h i a v e l l i , The Prince, t r a n s . G . B u l l (Harraondsworth: Penguin Eaaks, 1985). = 1K. Burke, A Rhetoric of Motives, p.165. Z Z K . Burke, A Rhetoric of Motives, p.165. ==»W. Shakespeare, Henry I/, IV. i.262-64. -''^Certain Sermons or Homilies: Appointed to be Read in Churches. ( F l o r i d a : S c h o l a r s ' F a c s i m i l i e s fit R e p r i n t s , 1968), p.276. " K . Burke, Attitudes Toward History, p.35. ^'''Certain Sermons or Homi I ies, p r e f a c e . " A l f r e d Hart, Shakespeare and the Homilies (New York: AMS Pr e s s , 1971), p.29. In t h i s book Hart t r a c e s the h i s t o r y of the h o m i l i e s t h a t he argues a r e s i g n i f i c a n t t o an u n d e r s t a n d i n g of both Shakespeare's H i s t o r y P l a y s and the a t t i t u d e s of Shakespeare's audience. He s t a t e s t h a t "Upon the death of King Henry V I I I i n 1547, a boy of n i n e y e a r s became the Supreme Head of the E n g l i s h Church, and the Regency, a c t i n g i n h i s s t e a d , advanced f a r t h e r on the road t o P r o t e s t a n t i s m . They p r o h i b i t e d the p r e a c h i n g of a l l sermons except under s p e c i a l l i c e n s e , and they sent t o every p a r i s h i n the kingdom a book e n t i t l e d Certayne Sermons or HomiIies, Apppynted by the King's Maiestie to be declared, and Redde by all Persones, Uicars, or Curates, every Sundaye in their Churches, where they have Cure." And t h a t f o l l o w i n g t h i s , i n 1573, "The Queen and her C o u n c i l E i n response to the n o r t h e r n r e b e l l i o n of 15693 i n s t r u c t e d the b i s h o p s to pre p a r e a new homily on d i s o b e d i e n c e and w i l f u l l r e b e l l i o n . " "'^Certain Sermons or Homilies, p. 72. ^~Cert a in Sermons or HomiIies, p.293. 3°Alfred Hart, Shakespeare and the HomiIies (New York: AMS P r e s s , 1971), p.29. 3 1 N i c c o l o M a c h i a v e l l i , The Prince, p.91. 3 2 K . Burke, Permanence and Change, p.35. 3 3 N . M a c h i a v e l l i , The Prince, pp. 96-97. 3"K. Burke, Language as Symbolic Action, p.443. 3 ° S i r John Cheke, The True Subject and the Rebel quoted i n B.L. Joseph's Shakespeare's Eden, p.168. 3 < SK. Burke, Dramatism and Development (Mass.: C l a r k Univ. P r e s s , 1972), p.29. Endnotes Page 106 The T r a g i c P e r s p e c t i v e XK. Burke, Permanence and Change, p.302. ^Stephen Rowan, "A Dancing o-f A t t i t u d e s " (Vancouver: Univ B r i t i s h Columbia, 1986), p.11. 3 S . Rowan, "A Dancing o-f A t t i t u d e s " , p. 175. "S. Rowan, "A Dancing o-f A t t i t u d e s " , pp. 171-73. °K. Burke, Permanence and Change, p.250. *S. Rowan, "A Dancing of A t t i t u d e s " , p.163. ''W.H. Walsh, Phi losophy of History, p.21. °K. Burke, Permanence and Change, p.195. "K. Burke, Permanence and Change, p.285. x o L . B . Campbell's approach t o the H i s t o r y P l a y s , i n her bo e n t i t l e d Shakespeare's Histories: Mirrors of Elizabethan Policy i s , I t h i n k , r e d u c t i v e i n t h a t she reduces the p l a y s to a commentary on E l i z a b e t h a n p o l i t i c s i n a very l i m i t e d sense. x X L . B . Campbel1, Shakespeare's Histories: Mirrors of Elizabethan Policy ( B r i s t o l : J.W. Arrowsmith, 1980), p.307. King R i c h a r d ' s Loss of the Crown of England x W i l l i a m Shakespeare, 2 Henry 71/, ed. A.R.Humphreys (London Methuen 8< Co., 1985), I I . i i . 4 6 . =W. Shakespeare, 2 Henry 71/, IV.v. 160-64. 3W. Shakespeare, 2 Henry 71/, I n d u c t i o n , 15-19. "Harry L e v i n , The Question of Hamlet (New York: Oxford Univ. P r e s s , 1959), p.18. °W. Shakespeare, Henry I/, ed. J.H. Walter (London: Methuen 8s Co., 1983), P r o l o g u e , 30-31. Endnotes Page 107 T r i a l 1 Leonard Dean, "From Richard II t o Henry I/, ° i n Twentieth Century Interpretations of R i c h a r d I I , ed. P.M. Cubeta (New J e r s e y : P r e n t i c e - H a l l , 1971), p.64. = Raphael H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Ho Unshed, ed. W.G. Boswel 1-Stone (London: C h a t t o 8c Windus, 1907), p.62. 3 Edward H a l l , The Union of the Two Noble and 11 lustre Famelies of Lancastre and Yorke (New York: AMS P r e s s , 1965), p.3. ** W. Shakespeare, Richard II, ed. P e t e r lire (London: Methuen Ec Co., 1984), I . i . 1 - 7 . [ A l l subsequent r e f e r e n c e s made t D t h i s p l a y are made t o t h i s t e x t , and w i l l be p l a c e d i n p a r e n t h e s e s w i t h i n the body o-f my t e x t . 3 ° Robert O r n s t e i n , A Kingdom for a Stage (Mass: Harvard Univ. P r e s s ) , p.111. **I would argue t h a t , a l t h o u g h the c e r e m o n i a l use o-f language i n the opening scene r e v e a l s an extremely d i s c i p l i n e d use of language, i n f a c t the a u dience i s c o n f r o n t e d with a language t h a t has i n f a c t l o s t i t s meaning, a broken and f r a c t u r e d system of e x p r e s s i o n t h a t i s d i v o r c e d from f e e l i n g and i n t e n t . We a r e c o n f r o n t e d with a hollow t r a d i t i o n a l code of conduct, i n which i t s a d v o c a t e s must remain s t r a i g h t - j a c k e t e d . '"G.L. Apperson, A Diet ionary of English Proverbs and Proverbial Phrases (London: J.M. Dent & Sons, 1929), p.342. "In P e t e r Ure's " I n t r o d u c t i o n " t o the Arden E d i t i o n of Richard II, he s t a t e s t h a t the k i n g has the r i g h t t o i n t e r r u p t the p r o c e e d i n g s . T h i s i s , of c o u r s e t r u e , but the consequences of d o i ng so a r e grave. Ure s t a t e s t h a t "i.f Shakespeare had read F r o i s s a r t , he would have known t h a t o r d e r and p u b l i c s a f e t y made t h i s l a s t a c t a d v i s a b l e , and _if Shakespeare knew a n y t h i n g of the o r d i n a n c e s of t r i a l by combat, he would know t h a t i t s t e r m i n a t i o n at any s t a g e was one of the r o y a l umpire's a l l o w e d a c t s of a u t h o r i t y . " In the l i g h t of a c l o s e r e x a m i n a t i o n of King R i c h a r d ' s " a c t " , i t appears t o have been an i n a u s p i c i o u s a c t f o r K i n g R i c h a r d i n p a r t i c u l a r and k i n g s h i p i n g e n e r a l . " P e t e r S a c c i o , Shakespeare's English Kings (New York: Oxford Univ. P r e s s , 1977), p.25. 1 0 H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Holinshed, p. 67. llA Mirror far Magistrates, ed. L.B. Campbell (Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. P r e s s , 1938), p.94. The i d e a of h i s t o r i c a l f i g u r e s on the " s c a f f o l d " i s a r e c u r r e n t t r o p e i n the Mirror. 1 5 = H o l inshed, Shakespeare's Holinshed, p. 79. Endnotes Page 108 1 3 U r e , ' I n t r o d u c t i o n " , p . l x x i i . " H o l i n s h e d , p . 6 8 . x c , H o l in s h e d , p. 7 0 . x * H o l in s h e d , p. 7 0 . x ^ H a l l , The Union, p.3. 1 8 S a c c i o , Shakespeare's English Kings, p . 2 4 . The e v e n t s t h a t surround the death o-f the Duke a-f G l o u c e s t e r remain u n c e r t a i n. 1 T H o l i n s h e d , p . 7 0 . =°SacciD, p . 2 5 . = 1 S a c c i o , p . 2 4 . a z S a c c i o , p . 2 6 . Pass i on l I n Shakespeare's Histories, Campbell argues t h a t Queen E l i z a b e t h ' s statement t o one o-f her c o u n s e l l o r s , "I am R i c h a r d I I , know ye not t h a t ? " ( P . 1 9 1 ) , r e v e a l s how the p l a y Richard II a l l u d e s t o c e r t a i n p o l i t i c a l d i s c o n t e n t s amongst some o-f her subj e c t s . = I n "An E x h o r t a t i o n C o n c e r n i n g Good Order, and Obedience t o R u l e r s and M a g i s t r a t e s " i n Certaine Sermons. 3A.P. R o s s i t e r , Angel With Horns, ed. G. S t o r e y (London: Longman Group, 1 9 6 1 ) , p . 6 . In h i s essay e n t i t l e d "The U n i t y of Richard III ", he argues t h a t the breakdown of language on the s t a g e i s p e r c e i v e d by an a u d i e nce t h a t i s c o n f r o n t e d with a s t r i k i n g p a t t e r n of " r e t r i b u t i v e j u s t i c e " t h a t s t r i k e s down, as i t were, the speaker as he speaks. T h i s p a t t e r n t h a t i s so o v e r t i n Richard III governs, I would argue, the d r a m a t i c i r o n y t h a t c o n t r i b u t e s to the "ambivalence" I see i n Richard II. "Robert Law, " D e v i a t i o n s from H o l i n s h e d i n Richard II " i n Texas Studies in literature and language, XXIX ( 1 9 5 0 ) , p. 9 6 . °Jan K o t t , Shakespeare our Contemporary, t r a n s . B . T a b o r s k i (London: Methuen & Co., 1 9 6 5 ) , p . 9 . The q u o t a t i o n i s from Richard III I V . i v . 8 5 - 8 6 . aA.P, R o s s i t e r , "The D i a l e c t i c of the H i s t o r i e s " i n Discussions of Shakespeare's Histories: R i c h a r d II to Henry V, ed. R.J. D o r i u s (Boston: D.C. Heath St C o . , 1 9 6 4 ) . R o s s i t e r d i s c u s s e s the "ambivalence" t h a t dominates the H i s t o r y P l a y s . Endnotes Page 109 He de-fines "ambivalence" as t h a t which con-fronts the audience wit h a drama i n which "two opposed value-judgements a r e subsumed, and t h a t both a r e v a l i d . . . T h e whole i s o n l y f u l l y e x p e r i e n c e d when both o p p o s i t e s are h e l d and i n c l u d e d i n a "two-eyed" view; and a l l "one-eyed" s i m p l i f i c a t i o n s a r e not o n l y f a l s i f i c a t i o n s ; they amount t o a d e n i a l of some p a r t of the mystery of t h i n g s " ( p p . 6 - 7 ) . T h i s d i s t i n c t i o n between a "two-eyed" view and a "one-eyed" view of h i s t o r y i s analogous to my d i s t i n c t i o n between the p e r s p e c t i v e s of the c h r o n i c l e r and the p l a y w r i g h t - h i s t o r i a n . " J . K o t t , Shakespeare our Contemporary, p.17. SA.P. R o s s i t e r , "The D i a l e c t i c of the H i s t o r i e s " , p.5. "W. Shakespeare, Troilus and Cressida, I . i i i . 8 3 - 8 4 . xoA Dictionary of English Proverbs, p.710. xtA Mirror for Magistrates, ed. L.B. Campbell (Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. P r e s s , 1938), p.18. 1 S 5A. Hart, i n Shakespeare and the HomiIies, argues t h a t "the a s c r i p t i o n to [ R i c h a r d I I I of a b e l i e f i n the d o c t r i n e of the d i v i n e r i g h t of k i n g s i s h i s t o r i c a l l y f a l s e " (p.68), and t h a t i t was a p o l i t i c a l e x p e d i e n t of the Tudors i n an attempt t o c o n s o l i d a t e p o l i t i c a l power by means of r e l i g i o u s s a n c t i o n s . Depos i t i on M e a n F r o i s s a r t , The Chronicles of England, Prance, Spain Etc..., t r a n s . T. Johnes (London: J.M. Dent & Co., 1 9 0 8 ) , p . 6 0 4 . =S.T. C o l e r i d g e , Coleridge's Shakespearean Criticism, ed. T.M. RaysDr (London: C o n s t a b l e 8c Co. , 1 9 3 0 ) , v o l 2 , p. 1 8 8 . 3S.T. C o l e r i d g e , Criticism, v o l 2 , p . 1 8 9 . [Emphasis mine.] To a s s e r t t h a t B o l i n g b r o k e ' s purpose was i n f a c t an u n c o n s c i o u s one sounds v e r y much l i k e an acknowledgment of man's involvement i n an h i s t o r i c a l p r o c e s s t h a t he does not comprehend even though he i s n e c e s s a r i l y s u b j e c t to the consequences of the a c t i o n s he ta k e s . In o t h e r words, i n r e t r o s p e c t the f u l l n a t u r e of an a c t i o n i s r e v e a l e d , but each p e r p e t r a t o r i s l i k e the " b l i n d Oedipus" c o n f r o n t e d with the " c l e a r - s i g h t e d T i r e s i a s " - - i g n o r a n t of h i s p o s i t i o n on the u n s t a b l e s c a f f o l d . " P e t e r Ure, " I n t r o d u c t i o n " t o Richard II, p . l x x x . "Robert Law, " D e v i a t i o n s from H o l i n s h e d i n Richard II ", p. 9 6 . : **J . F r o i s s a r t , The Chronicles, p. 6 0 8 . Endnotes Page 110 " J . F r o i s s a r t , The Chronicles, p.609. °W. Shakespeare, Richard II , ed. and with notes by C h a r l e s Kean (London: A f a c s i m i l e by Cornmarket P r e s s , 1970), p.41. C h a r l e s Kean's v e r s i o n of Richard II c o n t a i n s many f o o t n o t e s r e g a r d i n g the h i s t o r i c a l e v e n t s , and he d e s c r i b e s how K i n g R i c h a r d went t o I r e l a n d "with a mighty army t o revenge the death of h i s c o u s i n , Roger Mortimer, E a r l of March, and L i e u t e n a n t of I r e l a n d ( s l a i n by O'Brien and the I r i s h of L e i n s t e r ) t o whom he intended the crown of England, i f he f a i l e d of i s s u e . " Much i n f o r m a t i o n i s d e r i v e d from S a n d f o r d ' s Geneological History of the Kings of England, a Chronicle of the Betrayal of Richard, King of England, and C r e t o n ' s Metrical History as w e l l as the major s o u r c e s . "R. H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Chronicles, p.77. 1 0R. H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Ho Unshed, p.30. 1 1R. H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Holinshed, p.106. 1 ! =C. Kean s t a t e s t h a t the " p r i n c i p l e badges and c o g n i z a n c e s of King R i c h a r d the Second were the white h a r t k n e e l i n g , c o l l a r e d and c h a i n e d , o r , the sun i n s p l e n d o u r ; the pod of the plantagenista, or broom; and branches of rosemary (p. 11). 1 3 P . S a c c i o , Shakespeare's English Kings, p.29. 1 - ,C. Kean, notes t o Richard II , p. 58 1 0R. H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Ho Iinshed, p.34. 1 , SR. H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Holinshed, p.83. 1S"W. Shakespeare, 2 King Henry IV.i.120-23. l e D e r e k T r a v e r s i , Shakespeare: from R i c h a r d II to Henry V ( S t a n f o r d : S t a n f o r d Univ. P r e s s , 1964), p.31. X"R. H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Holinshed, p.85. 2 ° E . H a l l , The Union, p.12. = 1 P . H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Holinshed, p.36. = = P . S a c c i o , Shakespeare's English Kings, p32. = 3E. H a l l , The Union, p.12 S*»R. H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Holinshed, p.87. Z SR. H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Ho Iinshed, p.87. =,*R. H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Holinshed, p.86. Endnotes Page 111 Death 1When S i r P i e r s Exton p r e s e n t s the body of R i c h a r d t o K i n g Henry i n the - f i n a l scene o-f the p l a y , t h e body i s r e f e r r e d to as "Thy b u r i e d f e a r ... R i c h a r d of Burdeaux." To which K i n g Henry r e p l i e s i n the p r o p h e t i c words, "thou hast wrought A deed of s l a n d e r with thy f a t a l hand Upon my head and a l l t h i s famous la n d " ( V . v i . 3 1 - 3 6 ) . 3,R. H o l i n s h e d , Shakespeare's Holinshed, p.96. The Burden of F a c t i o n *A.P. R o s s i t e r , Discussions of Shakespeare's Histories, p. 14. 3R. G r u d i n , Mighty Opposites: Shakespeare and Renaissance Contrariety ( B e r k e l e y : Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1979), p.120. Endnotes Page 112 BIBLIOGRAPHY Alexander, P e t e r & P o l l a r d , Al-fred W. Eds. Shakespeare's Henry VI and R i c h a r d I I I . New York: Macmillan, 1929. Amyot, Thomas. "An I n q u i r y C o n c e r n i n g the Death o-f R i c h a r d the Second." In Archeologia. V o l . XX. London: John N i c h o l s 8c Son, 1324. Pp.424-442. Apperson, G.L. A Dictionary of English Proverbs and Proverbial Phrases. London: J.M. Dent 8c Sons, 1929. Benbow, R.Mark. "The P r o v i d e n t i a l Theory o-f H i s t o r i c a l C a u s a t i o n i n H o l i n s h e d ' s C h r o n i c l e s : 1577-1587." In Texas Studies in literature and language, 1 (1959-60), 264-76. Bogard, T r a v i s . "Shakespeare's Second R i c h a r d . " In PNLA, LXX (1955), 192-209. Boswel1-Stone, W.G. Shakespeare's Holinshed: The Chronicle and the Historical Plays. London: C h a t t o 8c Windus, 1907. Bradby, Anne. Ed. Shakespeare Criticism: 1919-35. London: Ox-ford U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1936. Bui lough, G e o f f r e y . Ed. Narrative and Dramatic Sources of Shakespeare. V o l . 3 . London: Routledge 6c Kegan P a u l , 1957. Burke, Kenneth. Attitudes Toward History. New York: The New R e p u b l i c , 1937. Dramat ism and Development. M a s s a c h u s e t t s : C l a r k Univ. P r e s s , 1972. A Grammar of Natives. 1945;rpt. B e r k l e y : Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1968. Language as Symbolic Action: Essays on Life Literature and Method. B e r k l e y : Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1966. " O t h e l l o : An Essay to I l l u s t r a t e a Method." In Hudson Review, 4 (1951), 165-23. Permanence and Change: An Anatomy of Purpose. London: Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1984. . The Philosophy of Literary Form. 1941; r p t . B e r k l e y : Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1973. Bibliography Page 113 A Rhetoric of Motives 1950; r p t . B e r k l e y : Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1969. Campbell, L i l y . B . Shakespeare's Histories: Mirrors of Elizabethan Policy. B r i s t o l : J.W. Arrowsmith, 1980. Camus, A l b e r t . The Myth of Sisyphus. Trans. J . O'Brien. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1984. C a r r , Edward H. What is History? London: Ma c m i l l a n &c Co., 1961. C a r t e r , Thomas. Shakespeare and Holy Scripture. London: Hadder and Staughton, 1905. Certain Sermons or HomiIies: Appointed to be Read in Churches. F a c s i m i l e r e p r o d u c t i o n o-f 1623 e d i t i o n . F l o r i d a : S c h o l a r s ' F a c s i m i l i e s 8c R e p r i n t s , 1968. Chabod, F. Machiavelli and the Renaissance. T r a n s . D. Moore. Mass: Harvard Univ. P r e s s , 1960. Champion, L a r r y . Perspective in Shakespeare's English Histories. Athens: Univ. o-f G e o r g i a P r e s s , 1980. C o l e r i d g e , S.T. Coleridge's Shakespearian Criticism. Ed. T.M. Raysor. 2 v o l s . London: C o n s t a b l e 8c Co., 1930. C r a i g , H a r d i n . "Shakespeare and the Here and Now." In PMLA LXVII (1952), 87-94. Dean, Leonard F. "Richard II'. The S t a t e and the Image of the T h e a t r e . " PMLA LXVII (1952), 211-18. Discussions of Shakespeare's Histories: R i c h a r d II to Henry V. Ed. R.J. D o r i u s . Boston: D.C. Heath 8c Co., 1964. D o r i u s , R.J. Ed. Discussions of Shakespeare's Histories: Prom R i c h a r d II to Henry V. Boston: D.C. Heath 8c Co., 1964. F r o i s s a r t , Jean. The Chronicles of England, Prance, and Spain. Trans. T. Johnes. London: J.M. Dent 8c Co., 1908. The First Part of the Reign of Richard IIj or, Thomas of Woodstock. Ed. A.P. R o s s i t e r . London: Ch a t t o 8c Windus, 1946. Grudin, Robert. Mighty Opposites: Shakespeare and Renaissance Contrariety. B e r k l e y : Univ. o-f C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1979. H a l l , Edward. 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