Who’s Who in Henry V


Who’s Who in Henry V

By Natalie Pertz, Resident Teaching Artist

King Henry V: A young king. As the play begins, he has experienced a dramatic transformation from stubborn adolescent to an ideal king. He embodies leadership and patriotism.

Archbishop of Canterbury and Bishop of Ely: Clergymen, who encourage Henry to go to war against France, as they believe him to be the rightful heir to the French crown. 

The Duke of Exeter and Earl of Westmoreland: Close advisors to Henry. They are also encouraging of the war and Henry’s position as French king.  Acting as ambassador, Exeter declares war on France for Henry.

The Duke of Gloucester: Henry’s brother.

Sir Thomas Erpingham and the Earls of Salisbury and Warwick: English nobles.

The Duke of York and Earl of Suffolk: Englishmen that die during the Battle of Agincourt.

Earl of Cambridge, Lord Scroop, and Sir Thomas Grey: Traitors that plot to kill Henry. After this discovery, Henry calls for their execution.

Falstaff: A character with a history and close friendship with a young Henry in antecedent plays.

The Boy: A luggage boy to Falstaff, who also serves as a page to Pistol, Nym, and Bardolph during the war.

Nell Quickly: A tavern hostess, who is the wife of Pistol.

Pistol: A frequent tavern patron and the husband of Nell Quickly; Has a temper and aggressive tendencies. He joins King Henry’s army with Nym and Bardolph.

Bardolph: A tavern patron, who is often teased for his red nose.  He is hung for thievery in the war on France.

Nym: Another tavern patron who, along with Bardolph and Pistol, is symbolic of those who don’t want to fight in Henry’s war for various reasons (i.e., cowardice, bad habits).

Charles VI: The King of France, who leads the opposition against Henry to maintain the throne.

Princess Katherine: Daughter of Charles VI, whom Henry woos.

The Dauphin: The next-in-line to the French throne, his ego drives him to provoke and taunt Henry throughout the play. 

Montjoy: A French messenger, who is responsible for the correspondence between Henry and Charles VI throughout the war.   

The Constable of France: Commander in Chief of the French Army.

The Duke of Burgundy: Initiates the meeting between the Kings of England and France following the Battle of Agincourt.

The Governor of Harfleur:The ruler of Harfleur, a town that the English successfully lay siege to during the war.

Gower, Fluellen, Macmorris: Captains from England, Wales, and Ireland.

Williams, Bates, and Court: English soldiers that debate with a disguised Henry over their misgivings and the justification for the war.

Costume design and renderings by Beth Goldenberg.