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Home :: Archive :: 1998 :: November ::
Re: Henry V's Answer to Williams
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 9.1165  Wednesday, 18 November 1998.

[1]     From:   Richard Bovard <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 17 Nov 1998 10:30:39 -0600
        Subj:   Re: SHK 9.1156  Re: Henry V's Answer to Williams

[2]     From:   Clifford Stetner <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 18 Nov 1998 02:07:06 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 9.1156  Re: Henry V's Answer to Williams


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Richard Bovard <
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Date:           Tuesday, 17 Nov 1998 10:30:39 -0600
Subject: 9.1156  Re: Henry V's Answer to Williams
Comment:        Re: SHK 9.1156  Re: Henry V's Answer to Williams

If absolution and contrition are possible, then, perhaps Williams is
asking about the pain and suffering of those who die?  His emphasis on
all those severed limbs, those body parts, is consistent with the
metaphor of mangling that runs through the play.  And who has mangled
Peace in France?

Richard Bovard
North Dakota State University

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Clifford Stetner <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Wednesday, 18 Nov 1998 02:07:06 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 9.1156  Re: Henry V's Answer to Williams
Comment:        Re: SHK 9.1156  Re: Henry V's Answer to Williams

But while the England of Henry V was a Catholic country that was more or
less secure in its religious beliefs, that acknowledged a belief in
purgatory and was confident of ultimate salvation, the England of
Shakespeare was being led by its sovereign into new religious forms.  If
the schism with the church be a cause not good, then, like Henry V, the
Tudor sovereigns might have a great many souls to answer for come
judgment day.

> I don't know the historical facts about Henry's campaign, but surely
> most such expeditions included members of the clergy, and most of the
> soldiers took the opportunity on the night before the battle to make a
> final confession. This would have been the equivalent of the death-bed
> repentance available to others. In Catholic tradition, a sincere act of
> contrition, even without a priest's absolution, is sufficient to "clear
> the record" before death.
>
> Chris Gordon
 

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