Edward II

by

Christopher Marlowe

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The Earl of Leicester Character Analysis

Leicester is an English noble who first appears in the play after Edward's defeat, arresting Baldock and Spencer Junior and also conveying the deposed king Edward to Kenilworth. He is nevertheless generally kind and sympathetic to Edward. Because of this kindness, Mortimer Junior dismisses Leicester from his position as the King's jailer.
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The Earl of Leicester Character Timeline in Edward II

The timeline below shows where the character The Earl of Leicester appears in Edward II. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 4, Scene 6
Fear of the Other and Internal Discord Theme Icon
Suddenly, Spencer Junior urges Edward to look up: Rhys ap Howell and the Earl of Leicester have discovered them, thanks to the help of a Mower who had seen them and... (full context)
Fortune and Tragedy Theme Icon
Leicester, in an aside, speaks pityingly of Edward and quotes a Latin proverb about the precariousness... (full context)
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Fortune and Tragedy Theme Icon
...his fate and questions why the stars have "lour[ed] unkindly on a king" before inviting Leicester to kill him rather than imprison Spencer Junior and Baldock. Edward then begins to say... (full context)
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Fortune and Tragedy Theme Icon
...that “that shall be shall be” and bids farewell to Spencer Junior and Baldock before Leicester escorts him from the room. (full context)
Act 5, Scene 1
Sex, Lineage, and the Natural Order Theme Icon
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Fortune and Tragedy Theme Icon
Edward has now arrived at Kenilworth, which Leicester urges him to imagine is his court. Edward, however, says that while he appreciates the... (full context)
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Fortune and Tragedy Theme Icon
Leicester presses Edward for a response, and Edward takes off his crown, remarking that while it... (full context)
Fear of the Other and Internal Discord Theme Icon
Monarchy, Legitimacy, and Loyalty Theme Icon
Language and Violence Theme Icon
...but that he will not comply. Trussel and the Bishop of Winchester leave. However, when Leicester warns Edward that his course of action could result in Prince Edward losing his rights... (full context)
Language and Violence Theme Icon
...protests that he has merely come to serve Edward: the letter he has brought dismisses Leicester and appoints Berkeley as Edward's guard. Edward tears up the letter, which was written by... (full context)