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King Henry VI - Son of Henry V, he succeeded to the throne
when he was nine months old. He belongs to the House of
Lancaster, also known as the "red roses." The King is portrayed as
a pious, gentle, and a virtuous man. He does not have a peaceful
reign. To his courtiers, he seems a holy man, and to his wife, he
seems better suited to observe papal rights than administer his
Edward - Son of Richard Plantagenet, Earl of March, and
afterwards King Edward IV - portrayed as an ambitious, self-
centered, lustful man with a weakness for women. His ambition
and passion for wealth and power makes him a tyrant.
Richard - Eleventh son of Richard, Duke of York, and recently
made Duke of Gloucester. He murdered Henry VI and contrived to
have himself proclaimed king. His nickname 'crouchback' was
possibly derived from a real but minor deformity. Many say that
his left shoulder was higher than his right. He is portrayed as a
deceitful, self-centered, selfish and dishonest man in the play.
Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York - Descended through his
mother from the Mortimer line which derived from Lionel, Duke
of Clarence, third son of Edward III. His father, who had
descended from Edmund of Langley, fifth son of Edward III and
first Duke of York had been executed for conspiring against Henry
V and was restored to his title. York's ambition for the throne
kindled the flame of revolt and civil wars in the country known as
the "War of the Roses."
Earl of Warwick - Richard Neville, known as the 'Kingmaker,' is
son of the Earl of Salisbury and supported York. He has ambitions
to be part of the royal family.
Lord Clifford - son of Lord Clifford, a supporter of Henry VI and
Margaret. He is a foe of the Duke of York and is determined to
avenge his father's death.
George - another son of the Duke of York and afterwards the Duke
of Clarence. His wavering attitude makes him the enemy of
Warwick. His uncertain and inconstant character is displayed in the
Queen Margaret - Daughter of Reignier, she married Henry VI by
proxy at Nancy in 1445. She courted unpopularity because of her
ambitious nature and determination. She is portrayed as a more
capable and able ruler than her husband, the king. Her maternal
concern for her son is very strong and she leads an army to regain
their lost title and her son's birthright. She is portrayed as an iron
lady and tiger-woman.
Edward, Prince of Wales - son of King Henry IV and supposed
heir to the throne. He is young but more of a leader than his father.
He is killed by Richard.
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