Study Guide

Henry VI Part 3 Act 4, Scene 6

By William Shakespeare

Act 4, Scene 6

Read the full text of Henry VI Part 3 Act 4 Scene 6 with a side-by-side translation HERE.

  • George, Warwick and crew gather at the Tower with Henry. They free him, and Henry thanks the lieutenant there for a pleasant stay—under the circumstances. Yeah, he's that kind of guy.
  • Then Henry thanks Warwick for setting him free.
  • Now that the thank yous have been passed around, Henry makes an announcement: he doesn't want to be famous anymore, and he'd like Warwick to take over.
  • There's only one problem: Warwick says he wants George to rule instead. And George wants Warwick to govern.
  • So Henry makes Warwick and Clarence both protectors of England. They will rule until Prince Edward can take over as king. Everyone's happy. (Except for Edward and his supporters, but we'll get to that later.)
  • All Warwick and George have to do is reunite Henry with Margaret and Prince Edward so that he can be happy and live in private. George promises.
  • Then Henry notices Somerset and his nephew, Henry, Earl of Richmond. We guess that Henry's really impressed with the boy, because what happens next is a little weird. He puts his hands on young Henry's head and prophesizes that the kid will reign one day. Henry says he is "England's hope."
  • Seeing as this kid is neither Henry's son nor Edward's son, it's all a bit strange, but Henry is overcome with the need to do this. (Hint, hint: read the end of Richard III to find out if this comes true.)
  • This little episode is interrupted when a messenger comes in with the news that Edward has escaped and fled to Burgundy. Uh-oh.
  • As everyone leaves to deal with this news, Oxford and Somerset lag behind. Somerset thinks there will be more war because of this, so he sends young Henry—the boy Henry thinks will be king—off to Brittany for safe keeping until the wars are over.