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Richard III

William Shakespeare

Character Analysis George, Duke of Clarence

The third son of the Duke of York is Richard's first victim. He is the unhappy, "false, fleeting, perjured Clarence," who learns only just before his violent death that it is his own brother Richard who has plotted against him. His account of his terrifying dream (I. iv) is one of the most memorable parts of the drama. Clarence invites sympathy, not only because we know that he is opposed by an evil monster but because he acknowledges his guilt, expresses greatest concern for his wife and children, and dies courageously.