Free Study Guide - Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott|
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FREE PLOT SYNOPSIS / NOTES: IVANHOE BY SIR WALTER SCOTT
This scene is largely narrative and is used to highlight certain important
characters and reinforce the directions the plot is taking. Most evident
is the reinforcement of King Richardís noble qualities. He refuses his
share of the plunder, as well as that offered by Cedric. He has proven
his ability in combat, and easily overcomes Friar Tuck to win the prisoner
Isaac for himself. He then quickly sets Isaac free. He also frees the
prisoner De Bracy, for he judges this knight to be a brave soldier, with
none of the petty qualities of Front-de-Boeuf or de Bois-Guilbert.
Prior Aymer is frightened when he is brought in to the camp, but is mostly disturbed because his beautiful, expensive clothes are ruined. Isaac is relieved to learn Rebecca is alive and listens carefully when the Prior offers, for an appropriate price, to use his friendship with the Knight Templar to free Rebecca. The Black Knight is pleasantly surprised at the decency with which the outlaws behave.
At a banquet hall in the castle of York to which Prince John has invited his nobles, rumors are afoot that Torquilstone Castle has been attacked and captured. Word has it that Front-de-Boeuf and Bois-Guilbert, and perhaps De Bracy too, are dead. John is disturbed but listens to Fitzurse, who reassures him that his unscrupulous reign is invincible.
De Bracy dramatically enters the banquet and announces that Richard
is in England, Bois-Guilbert has fled with the Jewish girl, and Front-de-Bouef
is dead. John is frightened at the news and begins to drink heavily. In
his drunken stupor, he realizes that many of his knights are deserting
him. He quickly appoints De Bracy High Marshal to secure his loyalty.
De Bracy, however, no longer trusts or believes in John. John, in turn,
sets spies on De Bracy.
These chapters reveal the frail strands of Johnís hold on the English throne. When De Bracy enters the banquet with his amazing news about Richard, Front-de-Bouef, and Bois-Guilbert, the fearful Prince John is shown at his worst. Being a man of little honor, low character, and a great affinity for alcohol, he cannot control his own knights. When they realize that Richard is back in England, they quickly begin to desert John. Only Fitzurse remains loyal, but his devotion stems from an effort to save himself
Spying, intrigue and counter-intrigue have always been facts of political
life, even in medieval England. Power seems to be the only force that
commands loyalty, and if one is losing power, he is destined to lose followers
as well. Johnís attempt to grant high power to De Bracy is a pathetic
grasp at the quickly dissipating loyalty he still has. Not trusting De
Bracy, however, John sets his spies upon him.
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. 09 May 2017