William Shakespeare's King Henry VI, part III in the complete original text.
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Third Part of King Henry the Sixth

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King Henry VI, Part III Play

King Henry VI, Part Three, begins in the aftermath of the Battle of St Albans. The York faction has won, King Henry VI (House of Lancaster) and Queen Margaret having gone into hiding. Now the Duke of York has fulfilled his dream, becoming King of England. King Henry however, has arranged a parley (discussion) with the Duke of York and a deal is made... Henry VI will be given back the crown if and only if the crown is given to the House of York upon King Henry's death. The deal agreed, Henry becomes King again.

However, Queen Margaret is infuriated; this deal will rob her son Edward, the Prince of Wales of ever ruling England. At Sandal Castle, son Richard III convinces York that he can break his oath not to hurt Henry since a magistrate did not witness it. Queen Margaret divorces King Henry and having raised an army, intends to defeat the Yorkists. Henry wishes the revolt the best of luck since it is in his interests. The Duke of York wants to kill Henry but Margaret's army numbers 20,000 against their 5000. Margaret's army defeats the Yorkists at Sandal Castle (the Battle of Wakefield), Margaret stabbing and beheading the Duke of York and killing Rutland, his youngest son. Unfortunately, the Yorkists succeed in driving King Henry into hiding in Scotland, Queen Margaret retreating to France. Clifford is wounded, Edward IV and Warwick watching this before beheading him.

With King Henry VI gone, Edward, York's first-born, becomes the new King of England. Henry VI however, secretly returns to England only to be put in the Tower of London by Edward. Meanwhile, Margaret attempts to convince the King of France to help Henry. Warwick then tries to arrange for Edward to marry Bona, the French King's sister in law. This switches the French's support not to Henry as Margaret had hoped but instead to Edward. Unfortunately, Edward decides to marry Lady Grey. Warwick, intensely irritated by this, decides to join Margaret's forces instead. Neither Edward's brothers George (Duke of Clarence) and Richard III, nor Montague approve of the marriage.

In England, the York's are squabbling amongst themselves. Richard III wants to be King. George, less than pleased, joins Margaret's faction, now blostered by both the French and Warwick. Before battle can be joined however, Edward is captured by Warwick, allowing Henry to reclaim his throne. Lady Grey escapes with Edward's unborn child. Unfortunately for Henry, Edward is rescued by brother Richard III. Richard III now plans on facing Warwick with an army he has been gathering, George choosing to return to the York fold and support his brothers again. At the Battle of Barnet, Edward defeats Warwick, personally killing him. Henry's armies desert him. The French attempt to counter-attack but Margaret and her son, Edward, the Prince of Wales are both captured at Tewksbury. York's sons kill the Prince of Wales, Henry's son, but Margaret is shown mercy. Richard III, foreseeing mercy for Henry, visits him in the Tower of London where he kills Henry after Henry foresees a bloody future for Richard. Richard III even confirms Henry's prophecy after killing him. Henry's nephew Henry VII has been hidden. Edward becomes King Edward IV, Richard III scheeming to take the crown from brother Edward's grasp...


Dramatis Personæ

Act I
Scene I, Scene II, Scene III, Scene IV

Act II
Scene I,
Scene II, Scene III, Scene IV, Scene V, Scene VI

Scene I, Scene II, Scene III

Act IV
Scene I, Scene II, Scene III, Scene IV, Scene V, Scene VI, Scene VII, Scene VIII

Act V
Scene I, Scene II, Scene III, Scene IV, Scene V, Scene VI, Scene VII

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