Portrayes And Mistress Shore In Shakespeare's Richard III

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Mistress Shore is one of the most important characters in Shakespeare 's play Richard III, even though she doesn’t show up at all in the play. Without Mistress Shore, much of the play up unto this point would not develop the way it is with her, in fact without her as a plot device, there would be no Richard III because she is what allows for the jailing and death of Hastings, as well as the incrimination of the queen later on in the play and even the development of Richard as a character he is. Shore is a prime example of a character having a major presence and influence on a story, promoting both primary themes, and as a plot device moving the story forward. Mistress shore is one of the most instrumental of all to Shakespeare with his development …show more content…
Without the mention of Shore in Richard’s conversation with Clarence before he goes up to the tower (as quoted above), part of Shakespeare 's evil image of Richard is lost. A charge of witchcraft in this time period carried a sentence of death, and not only for the which but all known associates. Richard plays to his advantage, knowing that Hastings and Mistress Shore are lovers, and Hastings both cares about her and will defend her. These feelings that Hastings possesses creates for Hastings a giant blind spot. Richard, knowing both of these things, lays a trap accusing Mistress Shore of witchcraft for which there is no Defence. “That do conspire my death with devilish plots Of damnèd witchcraft, and that have prevailed Upon my body with their hellish charms?.........Look how I am bewitched! Behold mine arm Is like a blasted sapling withered up; And this is Edward’s wife, that monstrous witch, Consorted with that harlot, strumpet Shore, That by their witchcraft thus have markèd me.”(lines 1972-1985) at hearing these these damning accusations Hastings rushed to defend his lover, and was promptly beheaded. Richard used a man’s lover to have him murdered in cold blood, simply because he was bored, “I, in this weak piping time of peace, Have no delight to pass away the time” (lines 24-25). …show more content…
Mistress Shore has at least three lovers discussed in Richard III. Shore is married, so she has a husband, in this play we are told of her sexual relations with Hastings and the King, and in other Shakespearean plays the readers are regaled of tails of even more lovers, She is the practically the definition of a harlot. But, is that a bad thing, when men sleep around they are rarely chided, in fact they are depicted as a smart, and strong man’s man. Mistress Shore is smart and strong, and even cunning. A woman in the time period Shore lived in had very little, and what they did have, was usually owed to their male counter part. However, in Shore’s case she realizes that what she still has is her sexualllity and she employs it effectively, and at great lengths in order to improve her and her family 's situation, and position in society, This is quite the opposite of how most women are thought of during the time period, weak, lacking intelligence, etc. Through Shore women are empowered in the play, which makes a major underlying theme as well as add to her presence, and bearing on the story. This was no accident either, Shakespeare 's royal patron was a woman (queen Elizabeth), and as such it serves him will to add

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