Shakespeare on Hope

“True hope is swift, and flies with swallow’s wings:
Kings it makes gods, and meaner creatures kings.”
(KRIII act 5. sc. 2)

Tips for Use. Hope, (that often today goes under the corporate-marketing definition of positive attitude) is endemic. Include the quote inside or at the end of a presentation – especially the presentation deals with a new project, revitalizing an apparently stale situation, revamping a product, beginning of an advertising campaign etc.  Or apply the lines as an encouraging remark in any morale-boosting speech. Possibly usable even in a job interview as an answer to questions of the type, “What do you think will happen?”, to emphasize your general positive attitude.

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In the play. Richmond, or rather the Earl of Richmond – later King Henry VII –  props up his troops’ morale at his camp in Tamworth, prior to battling the forces of Richard III at Bosworth Field. Richard III is one of the plays where history and literature intersect. The battle of Bosworth Field represents the official end of the War of the Roses that affected (or plagued) England for well over 100 years opposing the House of Lancaster (White Rose) to the House of York (Red Rose).  Henry VII’s claim to the throne was through his mother, who was the granddaughter of John of Gaunt. John of Gaunt appears in the play Richard II and is famous lines glorifying England, “…this precious stone set in the silver sea…”.
Henry VII was the first of the Tudor Kings and grandfather of Elizabeth I. Shakespeare lived during her reign. And though the War of the Roses was well past, he had to thread carefully in dealing with the issue. As Elizabeth was a bit more Lancastrian than Yorkist, we could say that Shakespeare seems to lean just a tad more towards Lancaster than York.

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