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Illustrate the character of Queen Isabella in Marlowe's Edward II.

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fsha786 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted September 16, 2013 at 4:37 PM via web

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Illustrate the character of Queen Isabella in Marlowe's Edward II.

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wordprof | College Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted September 16, 2013 at 6:25 PM (Answer #1)

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Isabella’s character is a model example of Marlowe’s skill in turning historical fact, as recorded in the Chromicles, into dramatic characterization.  In the first acts, he shows her loyalty to Edward, despite losing his affection in competition with Gaveston, and her desire to forgive – “For now my lord the King regards me not,/ But dotes upon the love of Gaveston..”  In the military/political struggles of the last acts, her attention shifts to her son’s accession to the throne, the complicated struggles with France’s support, the designs of Mortimer and Kent, and similar public matters.  At the play’s final scenes reveal her nobility, we see her passion for righteousness, and her desire to keep her son in power, even after he sends her to the Tower “ Then come, sweet death, and rid me of this grief.”  She is, in many respects, the noblest character in the play.


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