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Lastly I am going to compare the language of characters in Act 2, Scene 1 with the language used by Henry in Act 1, Scene 2 (lines 159 to 297). In Act 2, Scene 1 Nym and Pistol are fighting. They have an abusive argument because Pistol has married the hostess and Nym is jealous. In Act 1, Scene 2 Henry receives some tennis balls from the French king. He is angry but doesn’t show it. He keeps cool by almost making a joke out of the situation. He tells everyone that he is going to France with his army to fight the French.

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The language in Act 2, Scene 1 is easier to understand then the language in Act 1, Scene 2. This tells the reader that the characters in Acts 2, Scene 1 are low life characters. It is possible to tell that they are low life because they use vulgar language quite a bit and educated people don’t use that kind of language. ‘Pistol’s cock is up, and flashing fire will follow’ and ‘ I would prick your guts,’ are examples of vulgar language, whereas Henry uses more sophisticated language. He uses a lot of poetic devices in his speech. He uses a metaphor, alliteration and a simile.

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The metaphor that Henry uses tells the reader that Henry is going to France to fight, ‘play a set shall strike his father’s crown into the hazard. Tell him he hath made a match with such a wrangler That all the courts of France will be disturb’d With chaces,’ in that metaphor Henry says that he is going to play a set, in tennis with the balls he receives, but what he actually means is that he is going to go to France and have a war with the French. Henry uses alliteration, ‘god’s grace’ and ‘shall strike’ the alliteration that he uses helps speed up the speech because it is long but important.

A simile that Henry uses is, ‘plodded like a man for working-days. ‘ Henry’s language makes the reader view him as a leader by using more sophisticated language like poetic devices. Nym repeats the phrase, ‘that’s the humour of it. ‘ By saying this phrase I think that Nym is trying to make himself look intimidating and strong by saying that, but when you look at it from the reader’s point of view you will see that it looks completely silly. I found that in both Acts there are scenes of conflict of some sort.

In Act 2 Scene 1 there is a conflict between Nym and Pistol but on the other hand in Act 1 Scene 2 there is a conflict between the king of England and the king of France. The conflict between England and France is meant to be taken seriously however, the conflict between Nym and Pistol is not meant to be taken seriously. I think that Shakespeare put this scene because everything up to the scene had been serious, so the audience had to laugh other wise it would have been boring and who better than the low life characters fighting over a hostess to laugh at.

I think that Shakespeare is effective in using language to convey his ideas about characters because from looking at these two very early scenes we can tell who is royalty and who are low life characters and their personalities (whether they get jealous or release their anger). All in all I think that this play is very well written, because from it the reader can find out who the low life characters are. Another reason why it is well written is because it has a few comedy scenes, which gives the reader a break otherwise the play would linger on and would seem to be boring.

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Kylie Garcia

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