Shakespeare - Historical Plays

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 10th grade August 2001

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During Shakespeare's career he wrote a number of historical plays along with his other tragedy and comedy plays. The historical plays primarily told the story of kings and the way they came to power and/or lost power. These types of plays were extremely well liked for they not only entertained the public but it also educated them about what happened in their nations past. His historical plays were not completely true though; some of them had a few things thrown in to make the play more entertaining. His three plays which are best known are Henry VI, parts one, two, and three, Richard III, and Henry IV parts one and two. Of those three plays the most influential one was Henry IV parts one and two.

Henry VI was a three part play which in total covered Henry VI's life from when his father died to the time of his own death.

This actual play was not his best however it was the first historical play that Shakespeare had written. After the death of Henrys father the first part of the play deals primarily with the wars in France along with fights involving Joan Of Arc. The second and third parts of the play dealt more primarily with Henry and who he was. He was depicted as a weak and unworthy king this was because he did not appear to be an effective war leader and/or governmental leader because the economy decreased during his rule and land was lost in wars.

Shakespeare's second most important historical play was Richard III, this play more or less started up where the third part of Henry VI left off. This play was not as historical as the others that he made because it had taken true facts and then altered them...