Richard III

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A Lancaster and nephew to King Henry VI, Richmond is a kind, steady ruler whose gentle leadership stands in sharp contrast to Richard's. Richmond raises an army against Richard and defeats him, taking the throne of England and marrying King Edward's daughter to unite the houses of York and Lancaster.

Richmond, King Henry VII Quotes in Richard III

The Richard III quotes below are all either spoken by Richmond, King Henry VII or refer to Richmond, King Henry VII. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
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). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Simon & Schuster edition of Richard III published in 1996.
Act 5, Scene 2 Quotes

The wretched, bloody, and usurping boar,
That spoil'd your summer fields and fruitful vines,
Swills your warm blood like wash, and makes his trough
In your embowelled bosoms—this foul swine
Is now even in the centre of this isle

Related Characters: Richmond, King Henry VII (speaker), Richard, Duke of Gloucester, King Richard III
Related Symbols: The Boar
Page Number: 5.2.7-12
Explanation and Analysis:

We have learned that Elizabeth lied to Richard and has in fact promised her daughter's hand in marriage to Richmond. Before being executed, Buckingham has cried out that he wishes he had repented during Edward's reign, and that Margaret's curses have come true. In this scene, we see Richmond with his troops, indicating that battle is eminent and Richard's hold on his throne is growing weaker and weaker.

In the quote, Richmond addresses his troops, whom he says have been "bruised" by Richard's "tyranny." He informs them that he has good news, information provided Lord Stanley. It is this information that Richmond delivers in the excerpted lines. He calls Richard a "wretched, bloody, and usurping boar," indicating that he is evil, violent, and that his claim to the throne is illegitimate. The boar has "spoil'd" the "summer fields and fruitful vines" of the people, and he "swills" their "warm blood like wash." His reign is terrible and is hurting the people, enraging them. In Richmond's language the boar (which should be noble, as the sign of Richard's herald) is transformed into a disgusting beast that feeds on the disembowelled "trough" of his victims. Richard is then characterized as a "foul swine." All of these insults and characterizations are to the service of Richmond's simple announcement: Richard is nearby ("at the centre of this isle").

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Act 5, Scene 3 Quotes

The sun will not be seen to-day;
The sky doth frown and lour upon our army.
I would these dewy tears were from the ground.
Not shine to-day! Why, what is that to me
More than to Richmond? For the selfsame heaven
That frowns on me looks sadly upon him.

Related Characters: Richard, Duke of Gloucester, King Richard III (speaker), Richmond, King Henry VII
Related Symbols: The Clock
Page Number: 5.3.299-304
Explanation and Analysis:

At Richard's camp, everyone is preparing for battle; Richard notices the black sky, a bad omen, and wonders why the sun "disdains to time." As always, Richard is obsessed with the time, and now is out of sync with the clock, the sun, and nature. Richard determines that "the sun will not be seen to-day," and comments that "the sky doth frown and lour upon our army." The dew on the ground also disturbs Richard.

However, Richard here uses language to deceive himself. He knows the lack of sunshine to be a bad omen, but hopes this omen is for Richmond instead of himself. He asks why it should be for him any more than Richmond, since the same heavens frown on both of them. This clever interpretation of the sky and the bad omen it carries may be enough to momentarily maintain appearances and Richard's confidence, but ultimately, it proves futile, as Richard and his camp will be defeated by Richmond's forces.

Act 5, Scene 5 Quotes

And then, as we have ta'en the sacrament,
We will unite the white rose and the red:
Smile heaven upon this fair conjunction,
That long have frown'd upon their enmity!
What traitor hears me, and says not amen?
England hath long been mad, and scarr'd herself

Related Characters: Richmond, King Henry VII (speaker)
Page Number: 5.5
Explanation and Analysis:

The chaotic battle has been fought and lost; the crazed Richard has fulfilled his prophetic nightmare and uttered the famous line, "A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse!" Richmond has killed Richard, and entered with the crown. In his final speech, he pardons all of the traitorous soldiers who fought for Richard. We see Richmond is a very different kind of ruler than Richard, truly seeking to bring peace and prosperity to England.

Richmond says that he will "unite the white rose and the red," meaning that, by marrying Queen Elizabeth's daughter (whom Richard planned to marry), he will unite the houses of Lancaster and York. He cries out for heaven to smile upon this union, and for England to cease being "mad, and scarr'd." Richmond goes on to proclaim that England will know peace, saying that he will end the injustices and the countless years of civil war that have plagued the country.

And so begins the Tudor dynasty, which provided the lineage of Elizabeth I, the Queen of England who ruled when Richard III was first written and performed. Thus, as in many of Shakespeare's "histories," the story at least partly ends up glorifying and justifying the current monarch.

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Richmond, King Henry VII Character Timeline in Richard III

The timeline below shows where the character Richmond, King Henry VII appears in Richard III. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 4, Scene 2
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Stanley enters and reports that Dorset has run off to the Earl of Richmond (a Lancaster). Richard tells Catesby to spread a rumor that Anne is deathly ill and... (full context)
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...dismisses the matter before he can speak and focuses on the news about Dorset and Richmond. Buckingham asks to claim the earl of Hereford and valuables that Richard promised him as... (full context)
Act 4, Scene 3
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...marriage, killed King Edward's sons, and that Anne has died. Now he aims to beat Richmond to marrying King Edward's daughter. (full context)
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Ratcliffe enters and reports that the Bishop of Ely has fled to Richmond and that Buckingham, who also fled, is gathering Welsh forces to fight Richard. Richard pooh-poohs... (full context)
Act 4, Scene 4
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Ratcliffe and Catesby enter and report that a navy thought to be lead by Richmond is approaching from the west where he is welcomed by Richard's half-hearted soldiers (they don't... (full context)
Act 4, Scene 5
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In a room of Lord Stanley's house, Stanley asks Sir Christopher Urswick to tell Richmond that, though he wholeheartedly supports Richmond, he cannot yet send aid because Richard has his... (full context)
Act 5, Scene 2
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On a plain near Tamworth, Richmond marches with the Earl of Oxford, Sir James Blunt, Sir Walter Herbert, and his troops.... (full context)
Act 5, Scene 3
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Meanwhile on the other side of the field, Richmond, Sir William Brandon, Oxford, and others pitch their tents. Richmond announces he will distribute power... (full context)
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Back at Richmond's tent, Stanley is warmly welcomed and assures Richmond that he will do all he can... (full context)
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...York, Anne, and Buckingham rise in succession. Each ghost speaks to Richard and then to Richmond. Each calls on Richard to remember him and to think on the ghosts with shame... (full context)
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...ready for battle. Richard declares that "shadows" (ghosts) have scared him more than thousands of Richmond's soldiers could. Richard and Ratcliffe exit. (full context)
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At the other camp, Richmond wakes and reports to his lords the "fairest-boding dreams" in which the souls of all... (full context)
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...consoles himself by thinking that "the selfsame heaven that frowns on me looks sadly upon [Richmond]." (full context)
Act 5, Scene 4
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...horse has been killed but that Richard fights madly on by foot, determined to kill Richmond. Richard enters shouting, "my kingdom for a horse!" Catesby tries to assist Richard, who seethes... (full context)
Act 5, Scene 5
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At another part of the field, Richard and Richmond enter, fighting each other, Richmond then kills Richard, and Richmond exits as Richard's body is... (full context)