Study Guide

Stanley in Richard III

By William Shakespeare


Lord Stanley, Earl of Derby, is Richmond's stepdad. Because of Stanley's relationship to Richmond (who eventually takes Richard's throne and becomes King Henry VII), King Richard tries to keep a close eye on him. But that doesn't stop Lord Stanley from secretly helping out his stepson. In the middle of the play, Lord Stanley has a dream about a boar knocking his helmet off his head, which seems to symbolize Stanley's fear that Richard will kill him (3.2.5). Check out "Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory" for more on this.