Throughout these 8 history plays, the characters have good, strong English names. How are we supposed to keep them straight?
My approximate count (since I'm certain to be missing at least a few) is:
- 7 Henrys
- 6 Edwards (technically Edward III and the Black Prince of Wales are only mentioned)
- 4 Richards
- 4 Edmunds
- 2 Humphreys
- 1 George
- 8 Johns
- 3 Thomases
- By the time I got to William, I gave up.
I finally feel after having performed in 5 of these 8 plays in the past, seen films and theatrical productions, read them multiple times like I can begin to keep many of these names straight with titles. How do I make this easier on an audience member who perhaps has never seen 1 Henry IV? Or an actor who is familiar with Richard III but not 2 Henry VI? Maybe I should invest in a wall poster on the genealogy of England's Royal Houses.