Books Should Be Free
Loyal Books
Free Public Domain Audiobooks & eBook Downloads
Search by: Title, Author or Keyword

A King, and No King   By: (1584-1616)

Book cover

A King, and No King by Francis Beaumont is a play that takes readers on a journey of love, power, and identity. Set in ancient Macedon, the story follows the lives of two brothers, Arbaces and Bessus, who find themselves entangled in a complex web of relationships and loyalty.

One of the most intriguing aspects of this play is how it explores the theme of duality. The contrasting characters of Arbaces and Bessus personify this concept, with Arbaces representing a refined and noble king while Bessus embodies a wild and free-spirited adventurer. This contrast is further emphasized by their romantic interests. Arbaces falls in love with Panthea, the daughter of the king of Iberia, while Bessus falls in love with Spaconia, Panthea's servant. Their relationships add an additional layer of complexity to the story, blurring the lines between love, loyalty, and duty.

Beaumont's skillful writing brings the characters to life, allowing readers to truly immerse themselves in the story. The dialogue is sharp, witty, and filled with moments of tension and emotion. The play also incorporates elements of comedy, providing a refreshing balance to the more serious themes.

One of the standout features of A King, and No King is the exploration of gender roles and societal expectations. Both Panthea and Spaconia are strong and independent women who challenge the traditional roles assigned to them. Their actions throughout the play challenge the notion of women as passive objects and highlight their agency in shaping their own destinies.

While the play is filled with twists and turns, it sometimes feels slightly convoluted. The complexity of the plot, combined with a large cast of characters, may be overwhelming to some readers. Additionally, the resolution of certain storylines feels rushed and could benefit from further development.

Overall, A King, and No King is a thought-provoking play that delves into themes of identity, love, and power. Francis Beaumont's writing is engaging, capturing the essence of complex characters and their relationships. While the plot might be intricate, the play ultimately offers a rewarding experience for readers willing to navigate its twists and turns.

First Page:


By Francis Beaumont and John Fletcher

Persons Represented in the Play.

Arbaces, King of Iberia.

Tigranes, King of Armenia.

Gobrias, Lord Protector, and Father of Arbaces.

Bacurius, another Lord .

Mardonius.) Bessus, ) Two Captains

Ligo[n]es, Father of Spaconia.

Two Gentlemen .

Three Men and a Woman .

Philip, a servant, and two Citizens Wives .

A Messenger .

A Servant to Bacurius.

Two Sword men .

A Boy .

Arane, ) The [Queen Mother .

Panthea,) Her Daughter .

Spaconia,) A Lady Daughter of Ligones

Mandane,) A waiting woman, and other attendants .

Actus primus. Scena prima .

Enter Mardonius and Bessus, Two Captains .

Mar .

Bessus , the King has made a fair hand on't, he has ended the Wars at a blow, would my sword had a close basket hilt to hold Wine, and the blade would make knives, for we shall have nothing but eating and drinking.

Bes .

We that are Commanders shall do well enough.

Mar .

Faith Bessus , such Commanders as thou may; I had as lieve set thee Perdue for a pudding i'th' dark, as Alexander the Great.

Bes .

I love these jests exceedingly... Continue reading book >>

eBook Downloads
ePUB eBook
• iBooks for iPhone and iPad
• Nook
• Sony Reader
Kindle eBook
• Mobi file format for Kindle
Read eBook
• Load eBook in browser
Text File eBook
• Computers
• Windows
• Mac

Review this book

Popular Genres
More Genres
Paid Books