Is Henry V a Flawed Hero?
Can Henry be perfect? Is it humanly possible to be perfect? Some
characters in the play say that Henry perfect for example the Bishop
of Canterbury says, "Hear him but reason in his divinity". This means
you should listen to him and discuss his godliness. Others in the
play, like the Dauphin, say that he is flawed he says Henry had a
"vain and giddy youth". In this essay I am going to explore the
meaning of flawed and how flawed Henry is according to the other
characters in this play. The meaning of flawed is to have flaws; flaws
are faults, imperfections or blemishes.
Henry V, the eldest son of Henry IV and Mary Bohun, was born in 1387.
He married Catherine, daughter of the French King Charles VI, in June
1420. His only child, the future Henry VI, was born in 1421. In his
early years he was a man who liked to drink and used to spend a lot of
time in the local pub and when he found out he could be king he
changed his attitude. The French all have different opinions of Henry.
The French king sees Henry as a real threat and says, "He is as water
to the sucking of a gulf". In modern terms this metaphor means that he
is an underrated force and will be ruthless in battle. Where as the
Dauphin, the king's son says that Henry is immature and that he had a
"vain giddy shallow humorous youth" which could just be a reflection
on the Dauphins own childhood as his could have been like. By saying
that Henry is immature it gives me the impression that Dauphin is
frightened of Henry. Dauphin says this as a way of making himself fell
better and easier about the oncoming situation of war. There is only
one more French person who has a strong opinion of Henry this is the
French Constable. He is the most realistic about Henry as he has a
very high rating of the English king and says that Henry is "dignified
and that Dauphin should not underestimate the power of him and his
The church also has a lot to say for Henry's character they believe
Henry is a true...