King John | Critical Essay by John Sibly

This literature criticism consists of approximately 9 pages of analysis & critique of King John.
This section contains 2,671 words
(approx. 9 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by John Sibly

Critical Essay by John Sibly

SOURCE: Sibly, John. “The Anomalous Case of King John.ELH 33, no. 4 (December 1966): 415-21.

In the following essay, Sibly describes King John as a strongly anti-papal drama depicting themes of usurpation and political legitimacy that were especially relevant in the Elizabethan era.

Most writers on the subject of King John have been puzzled by the emphasis Shakespeare lays on the fact that the eponymous monarch was an usurper. In what must for many years remain the standard study of the History plays, for instance, Mr. Reese1 speaks of ‘Shakespeare's curious insistence that John was a usurper. …’ E. A. J. Honigmann in his Preface to the New Arden King John2 says ‘John's “usurpation” is Shakespeare's fiction, for his “right” is not seriously questioned in the chronicles...

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This section contains 2,671 words
(approx. 9 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by John Sibly
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