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Shakespeare’s basic playwriting skills are depicted in Richard II. Richard II and his predecessors are more complex as displayed in Henry IV. The character development of Richard II follows a personal view of the King in which his mannerisms on the throne, despite his ability to rule, led him to become a tragic hero. Consumed with pride and ego, Richard is a self-acclaimed ruler who fails to follow the right order to ascension in power. His ability to rule is depicted through the decisions he makes; in some of the cases, he is forced to listen to the advices and make judgment. However, no matter how Richard sees himself as a charismatic ruler, his irony and indecisiveness lures his audience from his side to the side of his cousin. Richard II ascends to power in a rather dramatic way beating his way through the odds and the right procedures, he manages to waste state property and plots to acquire unjustly more property that does not belong to him or his monarchy. He is also unable to account himself responsible for crimes committed, instead, he often sees himself as the victim.

Pride and ego are the character traits of people with a great admiration and interest in their wellbeing. They do not care about the welfare of the others, and they would engage in any type of business or unlawful activities to gain the fame and wealth they crave for. Richard II is the King of England with the ego and greed to not only control his subjects but also take control of state property in order to make himself and the palace much wealthier. The play starts with a historical tone. The King’s cousin Bolingbroke and Mowbray are arguing over some earlier disputes they have had in the past. This case takes two perspectives and displays two aspects and characters of Richard. The historical tone of the play shows clearly that Richard does not know how to manage wealth or state property and has led the kingdom to a financial and economic turmoil.

However, regarding the stimulus plan of overtaxing the rich people and promising them a share in government taxes that he strategically implements shows that he runs the kingdom in disparity. His decision to banish Bolingbroke alongside Mowbray is not only a punishment for their inability to resolve their issues, but also a plot to acquire Bolingbroke’s inheritance from his dying uncle. The above literature depicts Richard as ruthless and highly incompetent in leadership matter; it also shows his greed that overshadows his judgment and course of action.

Indecisiveness is a character trait that labels people as either highly vulnerable to making the wrong decisions or being highly unreliable. Richard plots the murder of his uncle as one point of his kingly career, and as another pint, he is presiding over a case where his uncle’s son (nephew) accuses Mowbray of plotting to assassinate his father. With the intention to kill his uncle and to acquire Bolingbroke’s inheritance, his incompetent decision making skills are depicted. In one instance, he is urging Bolingbroke and Mowbray to reconcile and make peace with each other; in another case, he stops their conflict resolution duel and banishes both. As a matter of plotting and making skillful decisions, what would have happened if Bolingbroke and Mowbray had resolved their issues peacefully? The characteristic decision-making deviations of Richard display him as an incompetent ruler. This is ascertained by John of Gaunt’s comments, “… his rash fierce blaze of riot cannot last/ for violent fires soon burn out themselves” (Richard II, 2.1.33-34)

Richard’s personality suffers from a disorder that is associated with his leadership traits. The lack of self-recognition at some point depicts him as humorous and cunning. After coming back to England from Ireland, Richard does not expect to be pardoned by Bolingbroke, but he is not ready to admit his crimes on bad leadership, plotting of murder, and unethically assuming ownership of Bolingbroke’s inheritance. After he was outshined in the battle for brains, Richard is arrested and taken to Pomfret where his wife, Queen Isabel, comes to visit him. In trying to prove to his wife that he was the victim, he asks her to return to France and tell his story as a fireplace story and make her audience weep. He says, “But see, or rather do not see, my fair rose wither.” as a way of comforting his wife; this is used as a way of proving his misfortune and shortage of options (Richard II, 5.1.7-8). This statement shows that Richard did not accept that he had wronged the people of England and Bolingbroke in particular. The author depicts , Richard’s personality of egocentric, greed, and lack of respect for the throne by his failing to accept his crimes or being sorry for the state he put England in.

As mentioned earlier, Richard is portrayed as a character with personality disorder of some type. Through his lack of pity for the condition of John of Gaunt and the rejoicing of his expected death, Richard is seen pitying himself and regretting his actions as he is detained at Pomfret prison. The personality disorder can be attributed to unstable state of mind that leads to unjust ruling on cases, his lack of remorse for the sickly and aged, his plotting to kill, unjust method of ascending to power, and taking ownership of his nephew’s inheritance. Having an outstanding talent in the writing and recitation of poetry, his ironical traits of fostering or encouraging peaceful reconciliation between Bolingbroke and Mowbray and the actual banishment of both can be interpreted as playwright humor (he simply characterized Bolingbroke and Mowbray).

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