What Do I Read Next?
William Shakespeare's play Richard II depicts another deposed king who laments his loss of status and power. Written just one year after Marlowe's play, Richard II reveals the influence that Marlowe had on his contemporary; notice especially the similarities between the speeches of the two kings as they surrender the crown.
The Renaissance play Edward III—which may have been written by Shakespeare, by Marlowe, or by both (scholars disagree)—takes the story through the next generation, as young Edward III, known as the Confessor, reigns during the Black Plague.
The 1995 film Braveheart, directed by and starring Mel Gibson, portrays the conflict between England and Scotland just prior to the action of Edward II. In Braveheart, Scottish commoner William Wallace unites Scotland in rebellion against the father of Edward II, Edward I (Longshanks), who demands the ancient right of Prima Nocta, the "right'' to be the first to sleep with a new bride. The film includes realistic (and gory) depictions of Medieval battle.
Niccolo Machiavelli's Il Principe (The Prince, 1505) influenced Marlowe's development of Mortimer's character. It is a work that has been interpreted to suit widely differing values, and it makes fascinating reading.