Prince Hal and Hotspur are the main characters in Henry IV part I by William Shakespeare

Prince Hal and Hotspur are the main characters in Henry IV part I by William Shakespeare, they are two men from rivals families. Hal and Hotspur are total opposites in some ways but they are both eager and determined to succeed but only one can triumph.
All Through the play, we see Hal is entertaining, energetic and also gains thrill in teasing his old friend about his overindulgence. Hal changes from the beginning of the play by being a dishonor into a noble leader. At first Hal could care less about his responsibilities, instead, he would rather spend time with the common men like Falstaff in Poins. “The thieves have bound the true men. Now could thou and I rob the thieves and go merrily to London, it would be an argument for a week, laughter for a month and a good jest forever”. This shows how he enjoyed pranking his friends and his reckless and base behavior. It shows he’s not ready to be a king, but Hal realizes what he did was wrong when he says, “I have sounded the very base string of humility”. Hal was very smart and knows what he’s doing.
In addition at the beginning of the play Henry IV makes a contrast between Hal and Hotspur by “riot and dishonour”, he also goes about saying he wishes they had been exchanged at birth, feeling the difference between them. When Hal and the King finally meet, the King compares Hal with Hotspur, who he claims has more right to rule the country than Hal because of his many “high deeds”. After this meeting, Hal promises to change and reform.
Hotspur is a brave and loyal warrior also has a hot temper. But he is one of the weaknesses of King Henry IV as he compared his son to Hotspur. For example, Hotspur says that “We’ll fight him (Hal) tonight”. This trait is not desirable in a king. In contrast, in Act five scene one, Hal offers to fight Hotspur in single combat. This shows that throughout the play Hotspur has grown throughout the play. Indifference to Hal at the start of the play, he is very much more rational. Also, King Henry admires Hotspur for his courage on the battlefield, where he’s taken several important prisoners captive. Although that Hotspur tests the king’s power by refusing to give up his prisoners, King Henry gives him the honor for that. Hotspur has some very good characteristics but he is not a good leader. The play also shows that you will get punished if you rebel. The characteristics that you must have to be a good leader are being dishonorable, using language to great understanding, being ambitious but not bragging about it. These are the qualities that Hal has, even though Hotspur is the better person morally he doesn’t have characteristics to be a good leader.

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