Henry IV Part 1 Characters
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As comfortable in the Boarshead Tavern as he is in the court or on the battlefield, Prince Hal is as fun-loving and mischievous as he is noble and authoritative. Though King Henry and Hotspur initially… (read full character analysis)
Falstaff is Prince Hal’s best friend and a merrily obese clown who loves drinking and eating and shamelessly avoids work, war, and responsible adulthood. Unafraid to lie about being more noble than he really… (read full character analysis)
As the son of Northumberland and nephew to Worcester, Hotspur is a rebel and a Percy. He is a hotheaded, bloodthirsty warrior who can’t control his speech or restrain his own rages. Hotspur furiously… (read full character analysis)
King Henry IV
The ruler of England and father to Prince Hal and Prince John, King Henry is a considerate and peace-loving monarch who works very hard to spare his subjects bloodshed by doing everything he can to negotiate peace with the rebels before the Battle of Shrewsbury.
A rebel and a Percy. Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland is brother to Worcester and father to Hotspur. Along with Worcester, he helped King Henry depose Richard II in the past and feels he has been subsequently under-rewarded by King Henry.
Earl of Worcester
A rebel and a Percy, Thomas Percy, the Earl of Worcester is brother to Northumberland and uncle to Hotspur. He strategizes and sets the treason plot in motion. He also tries to prevent his hotheaded nephew from acting too impetuously.
Earl of Douglas
A rebel and a Scotsman. Though he fights with Hotspur at the play’s start, they are soon united in their treason plot against King Henry. Like Hotspur, Douglas is an eager, bloodthirsty warrior.
A rebel and Welshman who believes in celestial signs and is father to Lady Mortimer and father-in-law to Mortimer. Though he is on the side of the rebels, he doesn’t manage to get his forces together in time for the Battle of Shrewsbury.
An English nobleman, the Earl of March. Hotspur tries to convince King Henry to ransom Mortimer when he is captured by Glendower at play’s start, but the king believes that Mortimer is traitorous. Mortimer’s later friendliness with the rebels proves the king was right.
Earl of Westmoreland
A loyal nobleman and advisor to King Henry who the king pairs with Prince John in battle.
Lady Kate Percy
Hotspur’s neglected wife. Lady Percy and Hotspur are constantly bickering in each other’s presence.
Mortimer’s devoted wife and Glendower’s daughter. Unable to speak English, Lady Mortimer can only speak to her husband in Welsh, which he can’t understand.
A friend of Prince Hal’s whom Falstaff loathes. Poins plots the practical joke he and the prince play on Falstaff.
A friend ofFalstaff and regular at Boarshead Tavern who helps rob the travelers.
A friend ofFalstaff who helps rob the travelers.
A friend of Falstaff who helps coordinate their robbery of the travelers.
Prince John of Lancaster
King Henry’s young son who surprises everyone by being a brave warrior at the Battle of Shrewsbury.
The Archbishop of York, he is a rebel and friend of the Percy family who worries from a distance about their treason plot. He supports the rebels not with military might but with strategic advice and letters to potential allies.
Sir Richard Vernon
A rebel and close friend of Worcester who goes along with Worcester’s plan to misrepresent King Henry’s peace offering to the rebels.
A rebel and friend of Richard Scroop’s who delivers his letters.
The hostess who runs Boarshead Tavern.
Two carriers at the inn who suspect Gadshill of shady business.
The chamberlain at the inn who helps Gadshill plot his theft.
The sheriff comes to Boarshead Tavern in search of Falstaff and the stolen loot.
A dim-witted tavern-boy at Boarshead Tavern.
The host of Boarshead Tavern.