Henry IV, part one

Key Historical Characters

King Henry IV
Also known as Bolingbroke, Henry is a grandson of King Edward III. His family was exiled by Richard II. Henry deposed Richard and later killed him in order to become King. Henry was not next in line for the throne, but had enough military and political support to seize the throne. Henry's rise to power was depicted by Shakespeare in his play Richard II.

Prince Hal
King Henry’s eldest son. He became Prince of Wales when his father took the crown. Prefers drinking, gambling and whoring with his friends to life at court. His real name is Henry, but he is often called Harry, Hal, Monmouth (the town where he was born) and "you rogue"!

Leader of the Percy family and father to Hotspur. A powerful nobleman.

The same age as Hal but famed throughout the kingdom for his skill and ferocity on the battlefield. Married to Lady Percy and brother-in-law to Mortimer. His real name is Henry, but he is also sometimes called Harry, in addition to his earned nickname of Hotspur.

Brother to Northumberland, uncle to Hotspur. A powerful and influential nobleman.

Owen Glendower
Leader of the Welsh insurrection and reputed to have magical powers.

A member of the royal family named by Richard II to be successor to the crown. Since Richard’s death, Mortimer really ought to be king. He’s recently been defeated by the Welsh army, married his enemy Glendower’s daughter, and allied himself with Glendower and other rebels. He is also known by his title, the Earl of March.

Lady Percy
Hotspur’s wife and Mortimer’s sister. She is also known as Kate. Historically her name was Elizabeth, but Shakespeare opted to rename her.

Lady Mortimer
Glendower’s daughter and Mortimer’s wife. Speaks only Welsh. Sings well.

John of Lancaster
Prince Hal’s younger brother.

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