Edward II

by

Christopher Marlowe

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Mortimer Senior is the uncle of Mortimer Junior and a powerful member of the English nobility. Although he shares his nephew's frustration with Gaveston's influence, Mortimer Senior is somewhat more inclined to give Edward the benefit of the doubt; as he explains it, many powerful men have had "minions," and the king may become wiser as he grows older. Mortimer Senior therefore willingly complies with the king's order to lead an army against the Scots, but is captured and held for ransom in the ensuing battle. Edward's apparent disinterest in paying the ransom him after having sent him into battle in the first place exacerbates the nobility's discontent.

Mortimer Senior Quotes in Edward II

The Edward II quotes below are all either spoken by Mortimer Senior or refer to Mortimer Senior. 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:
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Methuen Drama edition of Edward II published in 2014.
Act 1, Scene 1 Quotes

Come uncle, let us leave the brainsick King,
And henceforth parley with our naked swords.

Related Characters: Mortimer Junior (speaker), Edward II, Piers Gaveston, Mortimer Senior
Page Number: 1.1.124–125
Explanation and Analysis:
Act 1, Scene 4 Quotes

Edward: Lay hands on that traitor Mortimer!

Mortimer Senior: Lay hands on that traitor Gaveston!

[The NOBLES draw swords]

Kent: Is this the duty that you owe your King?

Warwick: We know our duties; let him know his peers.

Related Characters: Edward II (speaker), Edmund, Earl of Kent (speaker), Mortimer Senior (speaker), Guy, Earl of Warwick (speaker), Piers Gaveston, Mortimer Junior
Page Number: 1.4.20–23
Explanation and Analysis:
Act 5, Scene 2 Quotes

As thou intendest to rise by Mortimer,
Who now makes Fortune's wheel turn as he please,
Seek all the means thou canst to make him droop,
And neither give him kind word nor good look.

Related Characters: Mortimer Senior (speaker), Edward II, Gourney 
Page Number: 5.2.51–54
Explanation and Analysis:
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Edward II PDF

Mortimer Senior Character Timeline in Edward II

The timeline below shows where the character Mortimer Senior appears in Edward II. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 1, Scene 1
Language and Violence Theme Icon
...is again interrupted, this time by the arrival of Edward and several nobles: Lancaster, Warwick, Mortimer Senior , Mortimer Junior, and Kent. Edward is attempting to persuade the nobility to allow Gaveston's... (full context)
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
Fear of the Other and Internal Discord Theme Icon
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Language and Violence Theme Icon
...one of his own, saying that the nobles will “henceforth parley with [their] naked swords.” Mortimer Senior , Lancaster, and Warwick agree that they can each raise armies in their respective lands,... (full context)
Act 1, Scene 2
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
Fear of the Other and Internal Discord Theme Icon
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Language and Violence Theme Icon
Some time after The Bishop of Coventry's arrest, Warwick and Lancaster meet with Mortimer Senior and Mortimer Junior to discuss the situation.  Warwick confirms that Coventry is in prison and... (full context)
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
Fear of the Other and Internal Discord Theme Icon
...husband Edward has lost all interest in her, instead “dot[ing] upon the love of Gaveston.” Mortimer Senior remarks that it is “strange that [Edward] is thus bewitched.” (full context)
Act 1, Scene 3
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
Gaveston and Kent enter, deep in conversation. Gaveston explains that Warwick, Mortimer Senior , Mortimer Junior, and Lancaster (who “hath more earldoms than an ass can bear”) are... (full context)
Act 1, Scene 4
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Language and Violence Theme Icon
...hand.” This prompts Edward to call for Mortimer Junior's arrest on charges of treason—a charge Mortimer Senior immediately throws back at Gaveston. The nobles draw their swords and manage to seize Gaveston,... (full context)
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
Fear of the Other and Internal Discord Theme Icon
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Language and Violence Theme Icon
Enraged, Edward threatens to kill the nobles if they leave with Gaveston. Mortimer Senior says that it is unfair to threaten them as if they were “traitors,” and Gaveston... (full context)
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
...see to Gaveston. Pembroke speculates that the common people will profit from Gaveston's banishment, and Mortimer Senior says that that is beside the point: Gaveston should be exiled regardless. Satisfied, the Archbishop... (full context)
Language and Violence Theme Icon
Lancaster, Warwick, Pembroke, Mortimer Senior , and Mortimer Junior enter and witness Isabella's distress. The nobles speculate that Edward must... (full context)
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
Language and Violence Theme Icon
...the other nobles for assurance that they will not change their minds about Gaveston's exile. Mortimer Senior says he will not go against his nephew's wishes, and the rest of the nobles... (full context)
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Language and Violence Theme Icon
...exile him and call him back, will treat them more deferentially in the future. When Mortimer Senior questions what will happen if Gaveston does not reform, Mortimer replies that in that case... (full context)
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
...carry the sword of state on official occasions, Mortimer Junior will be Lord Marshal, and Mortimer Senior will lead the army that is ready to do battle with the Scots. Isabella watches... (full context)
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
...have restated their obedience to his wishes. Isabella, Pembroke, Warwick, and Lancaster also exit, leaving Mortimer Senior and Mortimer Junior alone. (full context)
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
Fear of the Other and Internal Discord Theme Icon
Mortimer Senior reminds Mortimer Junior that he will soon be leaving for Scotland, and urges his nephew... (full context)
Act 2, Scene 2
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Language and Violence Theme Icon
...plans, a messenger arrives with a letter from Scotland, informing Mortimer Junior that his uncle, Mortimer Senior , is being held for ransom. Mortimer feels that Edward should pay this money, since... (full context)
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
...Edward and Kent, who emerge from the King's chambers. Mortimer explains what has happened to Mortimer Senior before Edward has a chance to leave, but Edward refuses to pay the ransom, even... (full context)