probably the same as THE COLONEL
The Colonel licensed 22 July
a synoptic, alphabetical character list
Ariotto is a volunteer soldier under General Castracagnio in the Duke of Tuscany's army. Ariotto and Lizaro frequently mistake Soranzo for a fellow volunteer and often corner him in tedious, humorously inappropriate conversations. Ariotto and Lizaro are first extorted out of their pay by Captain Piracco, then by the captain's ensign Mervole. The two men are particularly humiliated on those occasions when they are accosted in public. They ask Mervole to sign a sheet of paper promising that he will not reveal their relationship in public, nor will he label the men cowards. Ariotto and Lizaro win their freedom by appearing to fight enthusiastically against one another as the doubles in Soranzo's duel with the Mervole. After that display, Mervole respects the pair. Ariotto, Lizaro, Mervole and settle their accounts peacefully and join forces to gain up on Piracco. They rob him of everything he owns, including his shirt. At the end of the play, they report his abuse of power to General Castracagnio.
Bagola is a sutler's wife. She and her husband camp with the Tuscan army and make a living by selling provisions to the soldiers. She is amazed and confused by the rampant extortion amongst the Tuscan troops. For example, when Mervole rolls up a large tab, he tells Bagola to charge Ariotto's account and add a hefty tip for herself.
Bertolina is Governor Foscari's daughter and the object of Sorzano's desire. Most importantly, Bertolina is Florello's true love. Bertolina has unending faith in the men of her life, Foscari and Florello. She believes or has been raised to believe wholeheartedly in the code of martial honor. Bertolina often expresses a firm belief in Providence: in her opinion, the war-dead are doomed from birth. Consequently, she does not wish for her father to show fear in the face of a Tuscan attack. Nor does Bertolina want Florello to act dishonorably, even though Florello's honorable service will most likely lead to her own death. In fact, when Florello abandons his general on the eve of a Tuscan offensive, Bertolina rebukes his rashness and brands him a coward. She announces that she could never love such a dishonorable traitor and most certainly could not bear his children. As a result, she breaks from their secret betrothal. When Foscari hears of Bertolina's decision, he almost kills her. While she rides out her father's displeasure, Bertolina meets Soranzo, who professes an undying love for her; Florello finds the pair and considers killing them. When Florello decides to let Bertolina and Soranzo go, Bertolina confesses that she has always and would always love Florello alone. Soranzo backs off of his suit and Bertolina is reunited with her true love. Their betrothal is blessed both by Castracagnio and Foscari.
Castracagnio is a general in the Duke of Tuscany's army. At the beginning of the play, his forces are besieging Pisa. He meets with Governor Foscari and demands that Pisa allow the Tuscan troops into the city. Castracagnio also wants Pisa to pay the tribute he believes they owe to the Duke of Tuscany. After Pisa refuses these two demands, Castracagnio demands additionally that Foscari surrender himself as a prisoner. Pisa's defiance causes Castracagnio to order a battery, or forced entry, into the city. At the last minute, Castracagnio postpones the attack at the recommendation of Florello, Castracagnio's most trusted officer and counsel. When Castracagnio receives orders to sack Pisa, he decides to wait until he can find Florello, who has vanished. When the general receives word of his officer's betrayal, Castracagnio is furious beyond words. Amazingly, the general is impressed with Florello's motivation for revolts and pardons the young officer. After Florello leads the Tuscans to victory, Castracagnio blesses Florello's betrothal to Bertolina and promises to intervene with the Duke of Tuscany on behalf of Foscari.
The colonel is an officer in Pisa's military and is the personal friend of Foscari, governor of Pisa. He is by disposition calmer than Foscari. He frequently tries to comfort the governor. For instance, the colonel tries to temper Foscari's fury after Bertolina imperils Pisa by refusing Florello's suit.
Florello is an officer under General Castracagnio in the Duke of Tuscany's army. He is the general's most trusted counsel. Most importantly, Florello is Bertolina's true love. When the general orders an attack on Pisa at the beginning of the play, Florello convinces Castracagnio to postpone the forced entry in respect of the many antiquities and historical sites within the city. Florello also argues that the general will show mercy upon his own soldiers by delaying what might be an unnecessary battle. Florello hopes that Pisa will surrender. His real motivation is a concern for the safety of his true love, Bertolina. As soon as Florello hears that Pisa has been condemned by the Duke of Tuscany, he plots to betray his own army and turn coat to fight for Pisa, more specifically, for Bertolina. He does not confide his aim to Soranzo, but has the young man help him make his way into the enemy city. Soranzo leads a disguised Florello to the front line. A perdue, or sentinel, from Pisa is hiding nearby. Florello confronts the sentinel and surrenders to him. Florello tells Foscari of the impending attack and promises to help in return for Bertolina's hand in marriage. Florello is stunned when Bertolina brands him a coward and rejects his suit. In a fury, Florello returns to the Tuscan force and surrenders to Castracagnio. He begs for death as just punishment for throwing his honor away for a woman. Surprisingly, Florello is pardoned. He leads an overwhelming offensive against Pisa and quickly subdues the city. Florello almost goes entirely insane when he mistakenly concludes Bertolina has given herself to Soranzo. Just as he is about to leave them to one another, Bertolina tells Florello she has always loved him alone. Soranzo is impressed with the two lovers' devotion and withdraws his suit for Bertolina's affection. Impressed with the young man's devotion to his love, Castracagnio and Foscari bless Florello's betrothal to Bertolina.
Foscari is the Governor of Pisa. In the beginning of the play, his city is besieged by a Tuscan army under the command of General Castracagnio. Foscari informs Castracagnio that Pisa has lost its patience with Tuscan oppression; as a result, Pisa has declared independence. Foscari refuses to allow Tuscan troops within his city. He also refuses to pay tribute to Tuscany. By refusing these demands, Castracagnio informs Foscari that the governor will be taken prisoner once the Tuscans enter the city. When Foscari's meeting with the general is over, Foscari confides to his colonel and daughter that he is afraid of the future. Foscari is thrilled when Florello abandons his Tuscan comrades and offers his services to Pisa in exchange for Bertolina's hand in marriage. The governor is eager to make the trade; unfortunately, Bertolina rejects Florello as a coward. By doing so, Bertolina severely angers her father. He needs to stay away from her to keep himself from killing her. Fortunately for Foscari, Florello and Bertolina reunite and Castracagnio promises to intervene on Foscari's behalf with the Duke of Tuscany.
Lizaro is a volunteer soldier under General Castracagnio in the Duke of Tuscany's army. Lizaro and Ariotto frequently mistake Soranzo for a fellow volunteer and often corner him in tedious, humorously inappropriate conversations. Lizaro and Ariotto are extorted out of their pay first by Captain Piracco, then by the captain's ensign Mervole. The two men are particularly humiliated on those occasions when they are accosted in public. They ask Mervole to sign a sheet of paper promising that he will not reveal their relationship in public, nor will he label the men cowards. Lizaro and Ariotto win their freedom by appearing to fight enthusiastically against one another as the doubles in Soranzo's duel with the Mervole. After that display, Mervole respects the pair. Lizaro, Ariotto, Mervole and settle their accounts peacefully and join forces to gain up on Piracco. They rob him of everything he has, including his shirt. At the end of the play, they report his abuse of power to General Castracagnio.
Mervole is Captain Piracco's ensign under General Castracagnio in the Duke of Tuscany's army. He is known as a duelist. He is a bullying extortionist who demands protection money from a number of his fellow soldiers, including Ariotto, Lizaro and even his commanding officer Piracco. He is a task-oriented bully who really does not take pleasure in tormenting his victims. He simply wants their money and food and weapons and clothing. Mervole agrees at first to sign a sheet of paper promising to Ariotto and Lizaro never to reveal their subservience to him. On the sheet he would also promise to never call the men cowards for obeying him. He puts off the signing after the men require the signature before they pay him. After subjugating Piracco by aggravating the abscess on his leg, Mervole begins to think he might indenture his entire company. When Piracco learns that Lizaro has given all his money to Mervole, the captain demands payment from the ensign. The ensign refuses to pay. Instead, he demands Piracco's money, cuffs and sword. Mervole overreaches by challenging Soranzo to a duel. In their fight, Soranzo wounds Mervole's hand, rendering him a functional southpaw. After seeing Ariotto and Lizaro appear to fight valiantly against one another as the duel's doubles, Mervole gives up his hold on the men and professes his respect for them. At the end of the play, Mervole, Ariotto and Lizaro report his abuse of power to General Castracagnio.
A number of perdues appear on stage throughout the play. A perdue is a sentinel placed in an extremely dangerous forward position. Perdues are associated with extremely high casualty rates. When Florello decides to switch sides and fight for Pisa, he surrenders to a frightened and confused perdue. Before Florello had come onto the scene, the perdue had been writing his will in anticipation of immanent death.
Piracco is a captain under General Castracagnio in the Duke of Tuscany's army. At the beginning of the play, he is an aggressive soldier who loves combat. He is also something of a bully who extorts money from his own men, Ariotto and Lizaro. He refers to the men as his "exchequer" or cash-box. Piracco limps due to a putrid abscess in his leg, the after effect of a battle wound. Piracco shows his bloodthirsty disposition when he fumes at Castracagnio's postponement of the battery on Pisa. When Piracco challenges Mervole's extortion of Ariotto and Lizaro, the captain and his ensign fight. Mervole irritates Piracco's abscess and Piracco is left surrendering his money, cuffs and sword to Mervole. After that incident, Piracco completely loses his courage and begins to fear battle. After Mervole is injured in a duel and mistakes Ariotto and Lizaro for valiant fighters, Piracco is ganged up upon by the three new partners in crime. Piracco is forced to surrender the shirt off his back to Mervole. At the end of the play, Piracco is accused of abuse of power before General Castracagnio. He accepts the justness of the charge and seems remorseful.
Ranola is Bertolina's lady-in-waiting. She does not share Bertolina's extraordinary bravado in the face of a Tuscan invasion; in fact, Ranola plans on hiding in a closet during the battle. Ranola joins Foscari in blaming Bertolina's perverse sense of honor for Pisa's destruction.
Ronaldo is a Tuscan gentleman who serves Castracagnio. He brings a letter to the general from the Duke. The letter orders the immediate sacking of Pisa by the Tuscans.
There is a sergeant from Tuscany on the front line in the scene when a disguised Florello surrenders to the town perdue.
There are a number of soldiers on stage in the play. One soldier of Pisa calls on Foscari to confer with the senate.
Soranzo is a young officer under General Castracagnio in the Duke of Tuscany's army. More specifically, he is assigned to the Lieutenant General's regiment. Florello is Soranzo's role model. At the beginning of the play, Soranzo is eager for Castracagnio to press some mysterious suit with Foscari. It is later revealed that Soranzo has fallen in love at the sight of Bertolina and wants Castracagnio to propose marriage on behalf of the young officer. Soranzo is unaware that Bertolina and Florello are in love with one another. While moving about the Tuscan camp, Soranzo is challenged to a duel by Mervole, who plans on defeating and subjugating Soranzo. Instead, Soranzo easily defeats Mervole in the fight and wounds the bullying ensign's right hand beyond use. Soranzo unwittingly assists in Florello's abandonment of the army when he leads a disguised Florello to the front line. During the attack on Pisa, Soranzo finds Bertolina and tries to help her escape Florello's wrath. Soranzo confesses to the young woman that he loves her. When Florello finds Soranzo and Bertolina together, he first considers killing them. Because of his love for them both, however, he decides to let them go off together due to the mistaken belief that Bertolina loves Soranzo. Unfortunately for Soranzo, Bertolina does not love him. When Soranzo sees how much Bertolina and Florello love one another, he withdraws his suit.