Henry V The play is set in England in the early fifteenth century. The political situation in England is tense: King Henry IV has died, and his son, the young King Henry V, has just assumed the throne. Several bitter civil wars have left the people of England restless and dissatisfied.
TL;DR: Henry becomes king, kills a bunch of his old friends, and conquers the French. Henry V Summary. After an insult from the French Dauphin, King Henry V of England invades France to claim the throne he believes should be his. Henry stops an assassination plot, gives powerful speeches, and wins battles against the odds.
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Henry V is a play by William Shakespeare that was first performed in 1599. Summary Read a Plot Overview of the entire play or a scene by scene Summary and Analysis.
A Summary and Analysis of William Shakespeare’s Henry V Henry V is one of Shakespeare’s most popular and widely studied history plays; indeed, along with Richard III, it is perhaps the best-known. But critics are divided over how we should view Henry V the play – and Henry V the character.
Plot Summary. Henry, now seen to be a wise and serious king, is assured by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Bishop of Ely that he has a right to the French throne. His decision to take the French crown is reinforced when ambassadors from the Dauphin bring him a contemptuous present, in the form of tennis balls.
Here is a short Henry V summary: Henry V’s father Bolingbroke (Henry IV) was never able to rule comfortably because he had usurped Richard II. On his succession King Henry V is determined to prove his right to rule, including over France. An ambassador arrives from the French Dauphin with a provocative gift of tennis balls.
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Henry is an extraordinary figure who possesses a degree of intelligence and charisma only briefly glimpsed in Shakespeare’s two Henry IV plays. There Henry V appears as a pleasure-seeking teenage prince who wrestles with his role as an heir to the throne.
Henry V is the last in a sequence of four plays (the others being Richard II, Henry IV, Part 1, and Henry IV, Part 2) known collectively as the “second tetralogy,” treating major events in English history of the late 14th and early 15th centuries.
Several towns, part of the English territory once won by Henry V, have been lost, the Dauphin Charles has been crowned king, while the English hero Talbot has been taken prisoner. Hearing the news, the noblemen rise to action, each taking on a different task to help reorganize the kingdom and prepare the newly crowned king--the former king's son, Henry VI--for his emergency duties in France.
Play Summary As indicated at the close of Henry IV, Part II, King Henry V is planning on entering into a war with France over some disputed lands and titles. He has instructed the Archbishop to be sure that his claims are valid.