Paper on Richard Ii

This essay has a total of 639 words and 4 pages.

Richard Ii

When Bolingbroke accuses Mowbray of murdering the Duke of Gloucester, Richard knows that
there is a chance of Mowbray telling about Richard's involvement in the crime. Gaunt also
understands Richard's position but he also knows that there is no stopping Richard,
because "... correction lieth in those hands / which made the fault that we cannot
correct" (I, ii, 4-5). Richard is seen as God's representative on Earth and only Richard
can punish himself, so it is a matter only God can resolve.

"God's is the quarrel - for God's substitute,
His deputy anointed in His sight,
Hath caus'd his death..."

Although Gaunt seems satisfied with this fact in Act I, scene ii, later, from his deathbed
he seems more dissatisfied with this and reminds Richard that "... violent fires soon burn
out themselves" (II, i, 34) and tells him that "His rash fierce blaze of riot cannot
last"(II, i, 33)

Lady Gloucester, however, thinks that Richard can be stopped and thinks that he must be
stopped by Gaunt. She thinks that if Richard is not stopped, he will continue to kill, and
Gaunt could be next. " ... To safeguard thine own life / The best way is to venge my
Gloucester's death." (I, ii, 35-36)

Richard could have allowed Bolingbroke and Mowbray to fight to the death, but if he had
allowed this and if Bolingbroke had won, Richard's full part in the murder could be
exposed. On the other hand, if Mowbray had won, Richard would be in debt to him even more
so than he already was. The only other option was to exile both Bolingbroke and Mowbray,
stopping both from exposing Richard's part in the murder.

Richard chooses at first to allow them to fight to the death "... Your lives will answer
it, / At Coventry upon St. Lambert's Day" (I, i, 198-199). He allows the fight at first to
go ahead, but shortly before the first blow is struck, Richard calls a halt to the fight
and exiles them both, claiming "... Our kingdom's earth should not be soil'd / With that
dear blood that it hath fostered" (I, iii, 125-126). Bolingbroke is exiled for 10 years,
which Richard consequently lowers to 6, and Mowbray is exiled for life.

The way that Richard first forbids Bolingbroke and Mowbray to fight to the death, saying,
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