The Ladies of Richard III

One of the aspects that stood out to me while reading Richard III was the female characters, especially Margaret. For the most part, the female characters were rather strong minded while being surrounded by so many powerful men. One of the first women that we’re introduced to in the play is Lady Anne who is mourning over her recently murdered husband. When Richard interrupted her grieving she lashed out at him viciously. She constantly verbally assaulted him with every chance that she could get. However, it is disappointing that she actually ended up falling for Richard’s advances after claiming that he murdered her husband, and repeatedly damn him for his sins that he has committed. I personally was rather disappointed that she fell for his tricks when at first she appeared as being so minded and filled with hatred towards him. It seemed somewhat out of character for her to make such a drastic change in attitude. The female character that stood out to me the most was Margaret. Margaret received so much backlash from almost all of the characters in the play. She was considered as being really crazy because of all the curses she would put on people, but she seemed as though she was one of the few sane ones in the play. She actually saw right through Richard and many other characters deceit and betrayal. Instead of considering her a crazy old hag that was spouting complete nonsense, she was the wisest character in the play because pretty much everything she said was the truth. The Duchess of York, Richard’s mother, was another female character that displayed strong-minded attitude. At the end of the play, she ended up cursing her own son and wishing death on him in one way or the other. This is absolutely stunning that a mother can see how wicked her child had become, and how she then wished for his life to be extinguished. I feel as though the female characters in this play were some of the most interesting characters amongst the play especially during a time period where females would normally be downplayed.


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