The Faerie Queene

The Faerie Queene

by

Edmund Spenser

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Una Character Analysis

Una is a fair maiden who loves and eventually marries the Redcross Knight. Her parents are king and queen of a kingdom located where the Biblical Garden of Eden was located, and their castle has been taken over by an evil dragon. Although Archimago tricks the Redcross Knight into believing Una was sleeping with someone else, one of Una’s defining qualities is that she is always faithful to the Redcross Knight and always trusts in him, even when she is kidnapped or in trouble. She embodies the role of a virtuous woman in the poem.

Una Quotes in The Faerie Queene

The The Faerie Queene quotes below are all either spoken by Una or refer to Una. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
).
Book I: Canto IV Quotes

Young knight, what ever that does armes professe,
And through long labours huntest after fame,
Beware of fraud, beware of ficklenesse,
In choice, and change of thy deare loved Dame

Related Characters: Narrator (speaker), Redcross Knight, Duessa, Una
Page Number: 79
Explanation and Analysis:
Book I: Canto IX Quotes

Come, come away, fraile, feeble, fleshly wight,
Ne let vaine words bewitch thy manly hart,
Ne divelish thoughts dismay thy constant spright.

Related Characters: Una (speaker), Redcross Knight, Despair
Page Number: 159
Explanation and Analysis:
Book I: Canto XII Quotes

Now strike your sailes ye jolly Mariners,
For we come unto a quiet rode,
Where we must land some of our passengers,
And light this wearie vessel of her lode.

Related Characters: Narrator (speaker), Redcross Knight, Una
Page Number: 202
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire The Faerie Queene LitChart as a printable PDF.
The Faerie Queene PDF

Una Character Timeline in The Faerie Queene

The timeline below shows where the character Una appears in The Faerie Queene. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Book I: Canto I
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
A lovely lady (Una) mounted on a white donkey rides alongside the Redcross Knight. She is very innocent and... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
The Redcross Knight, the lovely lady (Una), and the dwarf arrive at a cave deep in the woods. The lady cautions about... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...of lust, while the other takes the shape of the lovely lady (whose name is Una) and seems to lay beside him. (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
At first, the Redcross Knight is enchanted by Una’s beauty, but when she offers him a kiss, suddenly he realizes that something is wrong.... (full context)
Book I: Canto II
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...young squire, then puts the squire in bed next to the sprite that looks like Una. Archimago then wakes the Redcross Knight and tells him to go witness the shameful things... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
The Redcross Knight sees the two sprites disguised as Una and the squire, entwined together in bed, and he nearly slays them but is restrained... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Una wakes up and weeps to see that the Redcross Knight and the dwarf are gone.... (full context)
Book I: Canto III
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
The narrator laments that fair Una is in trouble. Nevertheless, she remains faithful as she wanders in search of the Redcross... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
The Lion puts aside its pride and anger and kisses Una’s feet. Una is moved to tears by new affection for the Lion. Una tells the... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
The Lion keeps watch over Una as she sleeps and walks by her side as she travels across the land. After... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
The day ends, and Una lies down to sleep under the Lion’s watch, still at the blind mother’s house. All... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
The next morning, Una wakes up, still longing to see the Redcross Knight. Just then Abessa and Corceca notice... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Una gets away from Abessa and Corceca. Suddenly she finds a knight whom she believes to... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Archimago (disguised as the Redcross Knight) tells Una that he left her to go on an adventure but that he vows now to... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Suddenly, Una and Archimago (disguised as the Redcross Knight) are approached by a fierce, sweaty rider with... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...Knight (who is actually Archimago in disguise) for what he did to his brother Sansfoy. Una pleads for Sansloy not to kill the knight, saying that he is the truest knight... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...Sansloy, however, is skilled with weapons and manages to pierce the Lion through the heart. Una is frightened because she now has no one to protect her. She becomes Sansloy’s captive. (full context)
Book I: Canto VI
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
After defeating Archimago (who had been disguised as the Redcross Knight), Sansloy takes Una with him. He tries to court her with his words, but she remains not tempted.... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...group of fauns and satyrs (half-goat, half-man wood gods of ancient Greece and Rome) hear Una shouting. They go toward the source of the sound and find Una in a distressed... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...is still passionate and enjoys pleasure. He has never seen a mortal as fair as Una. He and the other wood gods begin to worship Una, turning her into a sort... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...known for his strength, which allows him to overcome even the most savage wild beasts. Una develops affection toward Satyrane and worries about how he tempts death so often. Nevertheless, Una’s... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Sir Satyrane carries Una out of the woods with him, onto a plain. There they see a weary pilgrim... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Una feels a chill go through her veins. The pilgrim tells a story about how he... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
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The Role of Women Theme Icon
Satyrane and Una head towards the fountain where they find a pagan. Satyrane tells the pagan to rise... (full context)
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Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Satyrane and Sansloy continue raining down blows on each other. Suddenly, Sansloy notices Una and tries to go after her to catch her. But Satyrane keeps Sansloy occupied with... (full context)
Book I: Canto VII
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...off to relay the news of what happened. He travels far and happens to meet Una as she’s fleeing from the pagans with Satyrane. (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Una is distressed to hear the dwarf’s news about the Redcross Knight and she faints three... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Though the dwarf doesn’t know if the Redcross Knight is still alive, Una remains faithful in her love and wants to find him. As she rides to search... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Prince Arthur is immune to evil magic and enchantments. When he approaches Una, he can tell that she is carrying a secret sorrow with her, so he asks... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
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Una describes more about her situation to Prince Arthur, including how she is the daughter of... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
From then on, Una loved the Redcross Knight, but she was separated from him due to the tricks of... (full context)
Book I: Canto VIII
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
The dwarf, Una, and Prince Arthur ride until they reach Orgoglio the giant’s castle. They blow a horn... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...see the fall of Orgoglio. The squire captures her and brings her to Prince Arthur. Una thanks them for all that they’ve done for her and asks that they keep searching... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
After searching around the castle, Prince Arthur and Una at last find a slow-moving old man who has the keys to every door in... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...finds the Redcross Knight, who has lost all his muscles and is now very weak. Una runs to see him and cries tears of joy. She curses Fortune for being so... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...Arthur asks what they should do about Duessa, the source of all their recent misfortune. Una suggests that instead of killing her, they should steal her robes and leave her naked.... (full context)
Book I: Canto IX
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...Eventually, it is time for Arthur to take his leave of the Redcross Knight and Una. Una asks where Arthur comes from, but Arthur replies that he was taken away at... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...would bring the light of truth. Arthur says that he has a secret wound, and Una asks what wound could trouble a gentle knight like him. Arthur explains that his wound... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
British Identity and Nationalism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
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...go try to find her. He regrets that he may be seeking in vain, but Una reassures him that the Queene of Faeries must be honored to have a knight as... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
As Una and the Redcross Knight travel, they run into an armed knight who is galloping towards... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
...some of the Redcross Knight’s specific sins, such as the way he was false with Una and instead chose to serve the evil Duessa. Despair says it’s God’s law that sinners... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Just as the Redcross Knight is about to strike himself with his dagger, however, Una comes in and grabs it, throwing it down. She asks if he is really still... (full context)
Book I: Canto X
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Una sees that the Redcross Knight is feeble after his long imprisonment in the dungeon, and... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...has also seen many distinguished guests like Humility, Zeal, and Reverence. When Dame Cœlia sees Una, she embraces her and declares that she must be an innocent, virtuous person. Dame Cœlia... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Una tells Dame Cœlia that she and the Redcross Knight have come to see Dame Cœlia... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
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...many labors, and so he should rest. Once the knight’s body has begun to heal, Una suggests that the knight should go to the schoolhouse where Fidelia teaches, where the Redcross... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
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Una pities the Redcross Knight when she sees the anguish he’s in, but seeing his cleaner... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
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The Role of Women Theme Icon
Una and the Redcross Knight wish Charissa and her children well, and she is happy to... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
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...Redcross Knight thanks Contemplation for all that he has done for him. He returns to Una and is happy to see her. They then go back to see Dame Cœlia and... (full context)
Book I: Canto XI
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Una thinks of her parents, the King and Queen, who are still in their castle, captive... (full context)
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Protestantism Theme Icon
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The Role of Women Theme Icon
Una watches everything from a distance in dismay. At last, however, the next morning she sees... (full context)
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Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
Night falls, and the dragon leaves the Redcross Knight alone for the moment. Una is again worried about her champion, but his wounds are being healed, and by the... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
The dragon falls and dies, letting out clouds of smoke. The Redcross Knight and Una both tremble at how big the dragon looks as it falls. Una warns not to... (full context)
Book I: Canto XII
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
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The Role of Women Theme Icon
The narrator says that he can see a safe journey’s end for Una and the Redcross Knight. At the castle, a watchman calls out that the dragon is... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
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The Role of Women Theme Icon
Children play, and maidens make music in celebration. As Una watches them, she seems like the goddess Diana in the forest with her nymphs. A... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
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...fine gifts of gold and ivory upon the Redcross Knight, then after embracing his daughter, Una, they all go into the palace. The inside is richly decorated and there is a... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
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...once the knight’s six remaining years of service are up, he’ll come back to marry Una. The king calls Una in, and she appears as bright as a morning star and... (full context)
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Protestantism Theme Icon
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But just as Una arrives, a messenger rushes into the hall. He has a message for the King, telling... (full context)
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
Protestantism Theme Icon
Deception and Lies Theme Icon
Love and Friendship Theme Icon
The Role of Women Theme Icon
...Redcross Knight explains how the witch Duessa used her magic to trick him into betraying Una. Una steps forward to say that she already knows about Duessa and that she also... (full context)
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Protestantism Theme Icon
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The King is moved by Una’s words, and he angrily has the messenger locked up in the dungeon. They decide that... (full context)
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The day of the wedding between the Redcross Knight and Una is joyful for everyone. Still, despite his joy, the knight remembers his promise to return... (full context)
Book II: Canto I
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With the Redcross Knight returned to faerie land and Una living happily in Eden waiting for him, Archimago begins plotting his next move. But Redcross... (full context)
Book II: Canto II
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
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...knight named Sir Huddibras, and the younger sister is with Sansloy (the Saracen who kidnapped Una in Book I). Both knights are brash, and so they typically battle each other to... (full context)
Book III: Canto I
Virtue, Allegory, and Symbolism Theme Icon
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...It turns out that the knight is the Redcross Knight (and so his lady is Una). Britomart believes the six knights are in the wrong for trying to separate a knight... (full context)