King John

by: William Shakespeare

Act II, Scenes i-ii

In agreeing to the marriage of Louis and Blanche, each army leaves with a different result than they had intended. Philip planned to help his ally Arthur get to the throne of England; instead his son marries a relative of John, creating different ties of allegiance. But Philip only wants allegiance with England and does not care about his broken ties to Arthur. John wanted to defeat Arthur and affirm his ties to the throne; instead he strengthens his position by marrying his relative to Louis, but in the process gives away some of the very lands he intended to rule. Both leave with richer ties of allegiance between the two countries, but poorer in other ways. Philip has shown himself to be fickle and untrustworthy in allegiances, and John has given away some of his territories in his desire to keep Arthur out of the rest of them.

The Bastard is startled by all the reversed intentions. Learning fast the ways of the nobles, he sees that greed plays a huge role in John and Philip's decisions. Denouncing the nobles for their opportunistic behavior while he is still poor, he admits that he fully intends to mimic them and gain riches. He too will be out only for himself, seeing such behavior in the models presented before him by Philip and John.


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