The Tempest

Gonzalo Character Analysis

Read our modern English translation.
Alonso's advisor. Gonzalo was charged with carrying out the kidnapping of Prospero and Miranda. A kind soul, he pitied the pair and arranged for them to have provisions for survival in exile. Gonzalo makes the best of every situation, while others seem to tire of his unfailingly positive attitude. Though he is an object of Antonio and Sebastian's ridicule, he always maintains his dignity.

Gonzalo Quotes in The Tempest

The The Tempest quotes below are all either spoken by Gonzalo or refer to Gonzalo. 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:
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Simon & Schuster edition of The Tempest published in 2004.
Act 2, scene 1 Quotes
I'th'commonwealth I would by contraries
Execute all things. For no kind of traffic
Would I admit; no name of magistrate;
Letters should not be known; riches, poverty,
And use of service, none; contract, succession,
Bourn, bound of land, tilth, vineyard, none;
No use of metal, corn, or wine, or oil;
No occupation, all men idle, all;
And women, too, but innocent and pure;
No sovereignty—
...
All things in common nature should produce
Without sweat or endeavour. Treason, felony,
Sword, pike, knife, gun, or need of any engine
Would I not have; but nature should bring forth
Of it own kind, all foison, all abundance
To feed my innocent people.
Related Characters: Gonzalo (speaker)
Page Number: 2.1.163-180
Explanation and Analysis:

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Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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Act 5, scene 1 Quotes
...O rejoice
Beyond a common joy, and set it down
With gold on lasting pillars: in one voyage
Did Claribel her husband find at Tunis,
And Ferdinand her brother found a wife
Where he himself was lost; Prospero, his dukedom
In a poor isle, and all of us ourselves,
When no man was his own.
Related Characters: Gonzalo (speaker), Prospero, Miranda, Ferdinand
Related Symbols: The Tempest
Page Number: 5.1.247-254
Explanation and Analysis:

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Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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Gonzalo Character Timeline in The Tempest

The timeline below shows where the character Gonzalo appears in The Tempest. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 1, scene 1
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Power Theme Icon
Gonzalo, a counselor to the king, jokes that he's no longer afraid of drowning, because it... (full context)
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Power Theme Icon
...Antonio and Sebastian run to be with King Alonso as the ship goes down, while Gonzalo prays for land, any land, to save him from drowning. (full context)
Act 1, scene 2
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Magic, Illusion, and Prospero as Playwright Theme Icon
...sea, cast them into a rickety boat. The pair survived only through the generosity of Gonzalo, an advisor to Alonso, who provided them with necessities like fresh water, clothing, blankets, and... (full context)
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Power Theme Icon
Magic, Illusion, and Prospero as Playwright Theme Icon
Miranda says that she would like to meet Gonzalo someday. She then asks Prospero why he created the storm. Prospero replies that circumstances have... (full context)
Act 2, scene 1
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Magic, Illusion, and Prospero as Playwright Theme Icon
...shores. Alonso is despondent because he can't find Ferdinand, whom he believes to be dead. Gonzalo tries to comfort him by saying that they should be thankful that they survived, but... (full context)
Power Theme Icon
Colonization Theme Icon
Gonzalo continues talking and explains how he would govern such an island if he were king.... (full context)
Power Theme Icon
Magic, Illusion, and Prospero as Playwright Theme Icon
...and Antonio draw their swords. Just then, Ariel enters again, and sings a soft warning. Gonzalo and Alonso awaken. Caught with their swords out, the two conspirators claim somewhat unconvincingly that... (full context)
Act 3, scene 3
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Alonso, Gonzalo, Antonio, and Sebastian enter. They are exhausted after having wandered the island in search of... (full context)
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Magic, Illusion, and Prospero as Playwright Theme Icon
Colonization Theme Icon
...sight of the spirits and banquet, but are unsure whether it is safe to eat. Gonzalo convinces them it will be safe by observing that explorers are always uncovering amazing things,... (full context)
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Power Theme Icon
...will fight this new enemy, and also run off, but in pursuit of the spirits. Gonzalo fears what all three will do in their frenzied states of mind, and he orders... (full context)
Act 5, scene 1
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Power Theme Icon
...and frightened they are, and adds that the man Prospero calls "the good old lord, Gonzalo," has tears streaming down his face. Ariel says that if Prospero "beheld them, your affections... (full context)
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Power Theme Icon
Magic, Illusion, and Prospero as Playwright Theme Icon
Ariel leads the courtiers onto the stage, still spellbound by Prospero's charm. Prospero addresses them—praising Gonzalo for his goodness and loyalty and scolding Alonso, Sebastian, and Antonio for their cruelty, treachery,... (full context)
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Power Theme Icon
...seeing Prospero, immediately begs Prospero's pardon and relinquishes his claim to Milan. Prospero then embraces Gonzalo, whom he calls "noble friend...whose honor cannot be measured or confined" (5.1.120–122). (full context)
Loss and Restoration Theme Icon
Power Theme Icon
Gonzalo observes that this voyage has served to unite people with each other and with their... (full context)