Henry IV Part 1 and the "Harsh Wages of Usurpation"

Chendo Vazzana H.R.273
English 4 psp Per 5
Ms. Munns

Shakesphereıs Henry IV Part 1 took place in medieval England, a time where chaos ruled and where monarchies rose and fell in a instant. Whenever a new monarchy took over; there were always prices to pay and Henry IV is no exception to this. Henry IV Part 1 is a study in the ³ harsh wages of usurpation².
King henry is the epitome of the ³harsh wages of usurpation². When he took the throne from Richard the Second he had to get help from several men Hotspur, Nothumberland, and Worcester. ³ The prisoners which he in this adventure hath suprised to his own use he keeps, and sends me word I shall have none but Mordrake, earl of fife² (1.1.95-97). Henry feels angry that Hotspur does not give him more than one prisoner. He feels that he is owed more than one prisoner because he is king. ³ This Douglas? No. I know this face full well. A gallant knight he was , his name was Blunt; Semblably furnished like the king himself² (5.3.22-24). For his crown the king had to pay the price of his personal safety. When he went to war he had people dress up like him because the enemy would always be looking to kill him.
Hotspur , King Henryıs nemesis during the battle, also felt the ³harsh wages of usurpatation². ³ But I will lift the downtrod Mortimer as high in the air as this unthankful king, as this ingrate and cankered Bollingbrooke² (1.3.141-143). Hotspur wanted to replace King henry with mortimer because he felt betrayed. The reason he felt betrayed is because that he asked King Henry to ransom mortimer , Hotspurıs brother-in-law, and the king refused also the king threatened hotspur with violence if he did not give up the prisoners. Hotspur felt that the favor was owed to him because he

helped Henry win the crown. ³ Knows at what time to promise, when to pay, my father and my uncle and my self did give him that same royalty he wares² ( 4.3.60-62). Hotspur tells blunt that the king had never given him what he felt was owed to him for helping the King.
The Prince of Whales also felt the ³harsh wages of usurpation² even though he was not directly involved with the dethroning of Richard the Second. ³ I shall here after my thrice gracious lord, be more my self² (3.2.94-95). This proves that the prince lived under the the wages of usurpation because when Henry was crowned king the Prince had to give up his independence. Henry yells at him for not being like a prince while Hal is just trying to be himself and try to see the rest of the world. Then the prince says the the way he was acting was not himself and he will try to act in more of the kings image.
In the gaining of power there are always prices to pay even if you are not directly involved with the plot. But what if there were no such prices to pay, would the outcome have been any different?