Richard II

Significant Passages:

Gaunt's lament: Act II, Scene 1, 31-68; 
Act III, Scene 2, 36-63; 
Act III, Scene 2, 143-177 Richard's lament

Art III, Scene III, 143-169 (cf. Philippians 2:5-11) (“What must the king do now?”)
Act IV, Scene 1, 114--148, Carlisle's Lament 

Act IV, Scene 1, 200-221 (“Aye-No, No-Aye, for I must nothing be”)

Act V, Scene 5, 1-40 (“I have been studying how I may compare . . .”)

Act V, Scene 6, 38-51 (“They love not poison that do poison need.”)



Politics and the Soul


The Tragic Nature of Civil Government


Opening scene (accusations)

Guant's lament:

Duke of York begs Richard not to seize Bolinbroke's lands:

Deposition scene:!

Richard's "soul searching at end of play:

Additional Reading:

Declaration of Independence

Assasination of Ngo Dinh Diem



Richard II (Derek Jacobi 1978) (imdb)

Film: "The Fog of War"

Shakespeare wrote two tetralogies, the first consisting of the three Henry VI plays andRichard III, and the second consisting of Richard II, the two Henry IV plays, and Henry V. The tetralogies are named first and second, not because of the order in which they occurred, but the order in which they were written. That is, chronologically, the second tetralogy occurred before the second, but S’peare wrote them in reverse order.

first tetralogy:

Henry VI, 1, 2 and 3

Richard III

second tetralogy:

Richard II

Henry IV, 1 and 2

Henry V



© Hank Edmondson 2012