The play opens at the English court of King John. Chatillion, an emissary from King Philip of France, declares that Philip claims the English crown and all its territories in the name of Arthur, King John's nephew. John vows that he will sail to France immediately to wage war against Philip. Robert Faulconbridge and Philip the Bastard enter, and present competing claims to the late Sir Robert's Faulconbridge's land and fortune. Robert argues that his father was overseas on a mission and the late King Richard was staying at the Faulconbridge estate when Philip was...
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