by William Shakespeare
This is a much chillier, soberer world than the first part of Henry IV, lacking in both its good humor and its generosity.Falstaff is not nearly so funny apart from Hal, Prince John is a much icier foil than the mercurial Hotspur, and Hal himself—whom we wish to like—makes himself disagreeable by stealing his dying father's crown and snubbing the fat knight we love.
Yet Shakespeare, by subtle degrees, leads us to the point where we come to admire Hal and believe in his moral transformation.Images of gestation and generation abound in this very masculine play, demonstrating how many unlooked-for things may grow within the womb of time, how even the most dissolute of princes may mature into a great warrior king.
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