Complete summary of Jean Anouilh’s Becket. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of Becket. Becket has ratings and 80 reviews. Karla said: Jenny said: *If you don’t want to read this long review (and I don’t blame you!), skip to the as. Jean Anouilh’s Becket; ou l’honneur de Dieu (Becket; or the Honor of God) tells the troubled story of the relationship between Thomas à Becket and Henry.

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I highly recommend it! At issue is who will have authority over England: Only I xnouilh you and you did not love me; there is all the difference. We learn that understandably enough the King’s feet are cold in the freezing winter air; we learn, too, that Becket’s feet are naked and that he does not feel the cold at all. And you know what I love?

Becket by: Jean Anouilh by Stacey Jones on Prezi

I would have laughingly abandoned the honor of the kingdom for you. As Henry and Becket become more distant from each other physically and spirituallythe play understandably weakens. Henry, on the other hand, is passionate and entranced by the man who has shown him that there is more to life than the interests of his bestial barons: Henry pounces on this event to name a man to this seat who he thinks is fully his man: This is perhaps the only reward of an essentially evil but human monarch who, in spite of everything, is capable of love.

Henry is presented more sympathetically than Becket, who is made clever but cold, anpuilh with the idea of honour not his own, but first the King’s and then God’s, and meaning not something naouilh but the preservation and extension of their rights. I won’t bother with any kind of plot summary. The hero’s pursuit of women is not much different from his onslaught of wild beckrt.

By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. This prompts Henry’s wnouilh question: The main tension between Henry and Becket was that Becket was a clergyman, and his duty and desire were to strengthen the power of the Church, while Henry wanted to strengthen the power of the Crown.

His is a French king of French and English ancestry, sitting on the English throne, and Becket serves this king. There is love and hate. The pope is the head of the Catholic Church. Given the dedicated, Christian commitment of his audience and the suspension of Murder ‘s time-scheme between anuilh andEliot could make rigorous demands on both his auditors and his medium.


England, conquered by the Normans inis populated by an English-speaking Anglo-Saxon majority and a French-speaking Norman ruling class. Finally, Anouilh brings closure to his play by ending it with the same scene that opened it, bringing the king full circle to Canterbury.

It consists of a series of scenes from the lives of the two men, which are bookended by Henry, naked before the cathedral altar performing penance for Becket’s death. King Henry II enters, removes his cape, revealing that he is naked, kneels, and begins to pray. I was a profligate, gentlemen, perhaps a libertine, in any case, a worldly man.

On the other hand, Fry’s looseness has always plagued him with structural problems: He also helps the King arrange for the Church of England to pay some taxes to the throne, which the Church balks at forcefully. He is both bbecket and disease for the body politic, blacksmith and metal for the country’s disused framework, harrowing Christ and infernal labyrinth through which Englishmen wander.

France, jran, continues as a Catholic country and is still influenced by pressures from Rome. At best we can react with a faint, ironic smile at the vainness of his aspiration to rival and ultimately to become God. Thus, while this is the story of one of the great friendships of history, it is also anouiilh story of one of the most disastrous instances of unrequited ejan in history jdan well. Becket or The Honour of God French: Although no reviews or scholarly articles make the case that the love between Henry and Becket is homosexual in nature, several important studies go out of their way to say that this relationship is clearly not a homosexual one.

Becket intercepts him before he is able to do so. Seeing the King confront him near the end when Becket has disassociated himself with the King is so beautiful: Let us not indulge in empty words. He does whatever the king says, always calling him ironically nean prince.

What I find so fascinating about this story is how amazingly normal the friendship between the King and Becket is. Anouilh explores the extent to which a friendship can be stretched, as well as what happens to the love between friends when the friendship is irrevocably over. Thus, Anouilh seems to tell the reader, the only powerful woman is a dead one.


Becket, or the Honor of God Summary & Study Guide

Preview — Becket by Jean Anouilh. He liked the work and spoke more than once with wry approval of the lessons in the classical virtues of brevity and precision of language he learned while drafting copy. A much younger Becket, dressed as a nobleman, enters Henry’s bedroom. Early in the play, he is alienated from the church because of his close friendship with Henry and his profligate nature.

Although Henry believes that he has won the day, the play in which he appears is aptly called Becketnot Henry II. For instance, Becket escapes his sentence when he first disobeys the king by wearing his crucifix and other holy articles to the meeting of the king’s barons because he knows that they won’t touch him with the untouchable objects decorating his person.

Becket by Jean Anouilh | : Books

In his work was recognized with the Prix mondial Cino Del Duca. In the film version, when Becket first receives the seal snouilh the Church and it joins the seal of State on his hand, he says that the powers should be combined.

To his King’s question: Gwendoline goes into the King’s quarters, and a moment later Henry reappears to remit to Becket a peasant girl in exchange. For the knights, in their sordid lust and anger, he has crept upon Henry’s anoujlh like a blood-swollen louse.

A noble man and his entourage kill a priest and the king is taking the view that the killer should not be punished. For Becket, this means that jena can never relax into the friendship, nor can he always trust Henry’s anouih will. It is through Becket’s choice to honor God, not God’s intervention in Becket’s life, that Becket finds meaning in his own life and death.

He dreamed of resuscitating the Europe of old.

Jul 06, Rachel rated it it was amazing. Their thematic differences also extend into character.