Edward II


Christopher Marlowe

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Edward II: Act 3, Scene 1 Summary & Analysis

As the scene opens, James and Gaveston realize that Warwick has betrayed Pembroke and is pursuing them. Gaveston desperately urges Pembroke's men to hurry so that he can see Edward, but it is too late; Warwick arrives and demands that they hand Gaveston over, claiming that his duty to his country takes precedent over his loyalty to Pembroke. He then leaves with Gaveston, and James and Pembroke's men go to report what has happened to their master.
As the nobles have done throughout the play, Warwick once again justifies his actions with an appeal to patriotic duty. In this case, however, the actions seem highly questionable, since Pembroke has given his word that he will escort Gaveston to the king and back. Warwick is therefore both betraying his ally and calling Pembroke's own honor into question. All in all, the scene demonstrates the play's wariness toward the idea of civic (as opposed to personal) loyalty.
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