"R.A." on title page (Robert Armin often accepted)
THE VALIANT WELSHMAN, or
CARADOC, THE GREAT
a synoptic, alphabetical character list
The British ambassador informs Octavian that King Gederus desires assistance in the war against the invading Romans.
A Welsh poet reawakened by Fortune in the opening sequence. The Bardh rises from his tomb and acts as the play's Chorus.
Bluso is the son of the Witch and assists her in conjuring up the Serpent. When Caradoc defeats the Serpent, he kills the Witch and makes Bluso promise to use his magic only for virtuous purposes. Bluso is redeemed when he helps Gald to rescue Voada by making him invisible.
Cadallan is the Earl of March, and father of Caradoc. Cadallan supports Octavian in his battle against Monmouth, where he is wounded to the death.
Caradoc, son of Cadallan is the eponymous valiant Welshman. After Caradoc defeats the usurper Monmouth, King Octavian of Wales gives him his daughter, Guinever, and makes him heir to the Welsh throne, in preference to his own son, Codigun. Caradoc leads a Welsh army to joins the British war against the Romans. When the British King Gederus is made suspicious by the malicious letters of Gloucester, the Welsh army is sent away, but Caradoc dons a disguise and fights anyway. Caradoc beats the Romans single-handedly, and fights Claudius Caesar, who is so impressed that he gives him a golden lion that will make him recognized in Rome. Back home, Caradoc learns that Codigun has usurped the Welsh kingdom. He beats him in single combat, and is crowned King of Wales. Caradoc then defeats a Serpent and kills the Witch that conjured it. The Roman Ostorius attacks Wales and kidnaps Guinever. When Caradoc fails to save her, he goes to Venusius, Duke of York for help, but Cartamanda betrays him into the hands of the Romans. Caradoc and his family are taken to Rome. Ordered to kneel before Claudius Caesar, Caradoc refuses, and when Claudius Caesar recognizes the golden lion, he frees him and his family and allows them to return home.
Wife of Venusius. When Caradoc comes to Venusius to ask for aid, Cartamanda betrays him to Ostorius, the Roman general.
A Roman tribune who is involved in the second attempt to invade Britain.
Emperor of Rome, who fights in the battle against the British. Caradoc beats him, but does not kill him. In gratitude, Caesar offers him a golden lion, so that he can find him in Rome. Later, when Caradoc is a captive in Rome, Caesar recognizes the lion and frees him.
Along with the other Neighbours, the Clown bears away the body of Gloucester, which they have found. He jokes with Morgan because they can both speak Welsh dialect, and engages in a comic discussion with his Neighbours about Gloucester's death.
Codigun is a base-born son of Octavian, King of Wales. He is angered when Octavian spurns him by making Caradoc his heir. When Caradoc is away fighting the Romans, Codigun allies with Gloucester and Cornwall. They poison Octavian, and imprison Guinever and Voada. Codigun is then crowned King of Wales, and leads an army against Caradoc. He agrees to a single combat with Caradoc, and is defeated. Spurning Caradoc's offer of half the kingdom, he joins with the Romans and encourages them to fight Caradoc. Gald kills him in the final battle.
Constantine is one of the sons of Cadallan. In the final battle against Rome, Constantine leads the troops in Caradoc's absence, and captures the Roman eagle from the Standard-Bearer. He then fights Marcus Gallicus, and both are killed.
The Duke of Cornwall is brother of the defeated usurper, Monmouth. He joins with Codigun to unseat Caradoc. After Codigun's defeat in single combat, Cornwall vows allegiance to Caradoc, but he is lying, and betrays Voada to be captured by Marcus Gallicus. Morgan kills him in the final battle.
The Clown refers to Neighbour 2 as 'Crabtree' once (see 'Neighbours').
Non-speaking role. The wife of Claudius Caesar, who appears alongside him in the final scene. Meant to represent Messalina? Agrippina the younger?
The Fairy Queen appears in a masque organized by Morgan, and the foolish Morion falls in love with her. The Juggler arranges for her to appear to Morion (this time, she is presumably played by an accomplice of the Juggler). She leads Morion into a ditch where he falls in.
In the opening sequence, Fortune calls forth the Harpers to awake the Bardh, whom she requests to sing about Caradoc.
Prince Gald is the brother of Gederus, King of Britain. He fights alongside Gederus against the Romans. When Caradoc reveals that he is the mysterious soldier who has won the battle, Gald swears allegiance to him, and accompanies him back to Wales. Caradoc gives his sister Voada to Gald as a bride. When Marcus Gallicus abducts Voada, Gald disguises as a shepherd and asks Bluso the magician to help him rescue her. He and Bluso travel invisibly to Voada's chamber, where they save Voada from being raped by Gallicus. In the final battle, Constantine makes Gald a general, and he kills the evil Codigun.
Gederus is King of Britain. He asks for assistance from Octavian, King of Wales, in the war against the Romans. He welcomes Caradoc and the Welsh soldiers, but slanderous letters sent by Gloucester make him suspicious, so he shifts the Welshmen to a hill during the battle. In the fighting, Claudius's forces overwhelm Gederus, but Caradoc wins the battle.
The Earl of Gloucester is a deceitful lord who helps Codigun to usurp the throne of King Octavian. He sends letters to King Gederus warning him not to trust Caradoc and Morgan. After the defeat of Codigun by Caradoc, Gloucester asks the Witch to help defeat Caradoc, and the Witch obligingly conjures up a Serpent. But Gloucester is then driven mad by visions he sees in the Witch's cave, and dies. The Clown and his Neighbours find his body and bury him.
Guinever is daughter of King Octavian. She is given to Caradoc in marriage. When Caradoc leaves to fight the Romans, Codigun and his allies kill Octavian and imprison Guinever. She is rescued when Caradoc defeats Codigun. She is crowned Queen of Wales alongside him. Then, Cornwall betrays Guinever and her daughter to the Romans. They are taken to Rome with Caradoc, but are freed when Claudius Caesar recognizes Caradoc.
Four Harpers are called forth by Fortune to reawaken the Bardh. The Harpers also appear during the masque of the Fairy Queen, in which they dance and one of them sings a Welsh song.
Daughter of Guinever and Caradoc. She and her mother are captured by Ostorius and taken to Rome. They are freed when Claudius Caesar recognizes Caradoc.
Announces the arrival of Cadallan before the first battle.
The Juggler gulls Morion by dressing as a conjurer and introducing him to 'The Fairy Queen'. Morion is ordered to strip off his finery and walk to the Fairy Queen on hands and knees. While Morion is led away to fall into a ditch, the Juggler steals his clothes.
Accompanies the Juggler during his gulling of Morion and presumably takes the role of the Fairy Queen, although the text is unclear about this.
A Roman tribune who is involved in the second Roman attempt at invading Britain. When Caradoc is captured, Manlius Valens takes him to Rome.
Son of Ostorius Scapula. Marcus Gallicus assists his father in the Romans' second attempt at invading Britain. He acts as legate from Rome to Caradoc, and falls in love with Voada. With the aid of Cornwall's treachery, he abducts Voada, but Gald and Bluso rescue her from him. Gallicus fights Constantine in the final battle, and both are killed.
A son of Cadallan who fights in all the battles with his brother Caradoc, and is taken to Rome with him.
A rebel lord who attempts to usurp Octavian's throne. In battle, Caradoc kills him.
Morgan is Earl of Anglesey and speaks with a comedic Welsh accent. He is a loyal supporter of Octavian and Caradoc and fights alongside them in all the battles. He puts on the masque of the Fairy Queen for Caradoc and Guinever's wedding banquet. In the final battle, he kills Cornwall.
MORION, SIR THOMAS
Also referred to as 'Pheander' by the Juggler and in the dramatis personae, Sir Thomas Morion is the foolish son of Morgan. He falls in love with the Fairy Queen when she appears in a masque. His man, Ratsbane, introduces him to a Juggler who claims he can summon the Fairy Queen. He is made to strip off his finery and walk on hands and knees to the Fairy Queen. He follows her and falls into a ditch. Realizing he's been made a fool, Morion has to admit to his father that the Fairy Queen has stolen his clothes. He informs Caradoc and his army about Codigun's usurpation of Octavian.
Referred to as 'Rustics' in the stage directions. They bear away the body of Gloucester, which they have found, and engage in a comic discussion with the Clown about Gloucester's death.
Octavian is the elderly King of North Wales. He fights a battle against the usurping lord Monmouth. After the battle he slights his base-born son Codigun by making Caradoc heir to the throne. When Caradoc goes to aid Gederus against the Romans, Codigun and his allies poison Octavian.
Gives Caradoc a magic herb with which to repel the Serpent.
Ostorius Scapula is a Roman lieutenant who leads the second attempt to invade Britain. He promises to restore Codigun to his throne and attacks the kingdom of Wales. He defeats Caradoc in battle, and abducts Guinever and Helena. Then he captures Caradoc with the aid of Cartamanda and sends him to Rome.
The Juggler calls Morion by this name, and he is listed as 'Pheander' in the dramatis personae.
Morion's servant Ratsbane introduces him to the Juggler, who claims to be able to conjure the Fairy Queen. Ratsbane follows Morion as he crawls toward the Fairy Queen and rescues him from the ditch into which he falls.
See under 'Neighbours'; they are referred to as 'Rustics' in the stage directions.
The terrifying Serpent appears onstage, and was presumably performed by puppetry or an actor (or two) in a costume. It is conjured by the Witch to ravage the countryside in the hope that Caradoc will want to fight it. Caradoc uses a magic herb obtained from an Old Man to repel it.
Complains to Caradoc about the Serpent that is ravaging the countryside and leads him to it.
Bearer of the Roman eagle. Fights Constantine and loses.
Venusius is Duke of York. He is a friend of Rome, but when Caradoc begs him for help he regrets aiding Rome. He leaves to prepare his forces and arrives in Wales not knowing that his wife Cartamanda has betrayed Caradoc.
Voada is daughter of Cadallan and brother of Caradoc. When Codigun usurps the Welsh throne, Voada is imprisoned, but Caradoc sets her free when he defeats Codigun. Caradoc gives her to Gald as a bride. She is later abducted by Marcus Gallicus but rescued by Gald and Bluso.
The powerful Witch is asked by Gloucester to help him defeat Caradoc. The Witch conjures up a fearful Serpent in the hope that Caradoc will try to fight it. Caradoc defeats the Serpent, drags the Witch out of her cave and burns her on her own fire.