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Use Of Language And Imagery In Act One Scene Two Of Shakespeare's Henry V

831 words - 3 pages

Use of Language and Imagery in act One Scene Two of Shakespeare's Henry V

The French ambassadors are shown into Henry's court. They were sent
from the Dauphin, son of the French King. The Dauphin's message is an
insulting rejection of Henry's claim to the French dukedoms and refers
to his reputation as a trivial pleasure-seeker. The message is
accompanied by a mocking gift of tennis balls, suggesting that he
should go and play games. Dramatically this is a tense moment. The
Dauphin has under estimated Henry. The childhood imagery of Henry has
departed and now arose a new King. Henry is a reformed character. He
admits that he did not value his position and responsibility when he
was in his childhood. Henry did not behave like a King.

He describes his youth days and his future adulthood days, that he
will be like the 'sun' and dazzle the French at the war. The sun was
like a God in those days and Henry have set the image and positioned
himself as the superior being. Furthermore Henry articulates that his
life so far has merely been preparation of taking his place on the
French throne. Henry mentions that he has been sleeping all these
years and now he is awake to avenge the Dauphin. King Henry then comes
back to the theme of the tennis in his reply to the Dauphin and warns
that a more deadly game will follow. There is much confident in
Henry's speech.

He is contrasting the image of the tennis game to the game of war as
he says 'we will in France, by God's Grace, play a set.' There is a
tone change, when he states God, but there is also reference to
Henry's religious side. God permits Henry's anger. When Henry says
'play a set', he declares that they will play a game of war. There is
a pun when Henry says 'courts.' 'That all the courts of France will be
disturbed.' The word court is used in two different terms in Henry's
speech. Firstly the term court could mean tennis courts and secondly
it could mean the courts of France, where the...

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