[[folder: Multiple Character Tropes]]

* {{Badass}}: Several knights warrant this one, doing things such as fighting in single combat for hours at a time.
* BadassFamily
* BloodKnight: Knights were expected, as a matter of honor, to go adventuring on a regular basis, and are generally more than happy to do so. The ones who make an attempt at settling down (as Ywaine did) get badgered back into it pretty quickly.
* DefeatMeansFriendship: Not always, but pretty frequently.
* DependingOnTheWriter: Who appears,who has major and minor roles, who is related to whom, how characters act... and pretty much everything else.
* OddNameOut: King Arthur's nephews are Gawain, Gaheris, Gareth, Agravaine, and Mordred. Guess which ones are evil.
* OneSteveLimit: Averted. There are several women named Elaine, and there are several different women who occassionally share the title "Lady of the Lake". There are also three Iseults - Tristram's lover (Iseult "the Fair"), her mother, and another princess who Tristram marries (Iseult "of the White Hands"). There are also two Ectors, Arthur's foster-father Ector and Lancelot's half-brother Ector de Maris, and two men named Bors, King Bors and his son Bors of the Round Table.
* [[SirNotAppearingInThisTrailer Sir Not Appearing In This Book]]: Merlin's liege, Master Blaise is mentioned once in passing but never appears nor does anything to affect the plot.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Variant spellings of names abound. Some distinct characters may have even resulted from people interpreting spelling variations as different people (ex. Gaheriet and Guerrehet = Gaheris and Gareth; Morgause and Morgan). A manuscript of a work may even have different spellings for a name, which can then differ with other manuscripts of that same work (ex. Guinevere).


[[folder: King Arthur's Court]]

!!King Arthur

* AbsurdlySharpBlade: King Arthur's sword, {{Excalibur}}.
* AllLovingHero: His eventual return during Britain's greatest need.
* AuthorityEqualsAsskicking
* {{Badass}}: And how!
* BigGood
* BrotherSisterIncest: His tryst with his half-sister Morgause produces Mordred, who eventually betrays him.
* TheCaptain
* ChangelingFantasy
* CharacterizationMarchesOn: Although he was always a warrior hero, early traditions depict him as less of a [[BigGood clean-cut good guy]] than later interpretations, being quite lustful, jealous, prideful and greedy. He quarrels with churchmen, tries to steal King Mark's pigs but is tricked by Tristan, kills a rival over a woman, and fathers several sons, none of whom is linked to his wife Guinevere.
** The early Arthurian legends completely lack that whole [[MoralEventHorizon 'drowning all the Mayday babies]] to kill your [[BrotherSisterIncest incestuously]] conceived [[YourCheatingHeart bastard son']] element, and while the Welsh do give him illegitimate sons, so do the French, and at least in the case of Arthur the Little, [[ChildByRape sons by force.]] He's also more of a warrior in the old myths, doing his own grunt work half the time, and instead of being king because of birth he's king because [[AsskickingEqualsAuthority he's the only man who can stall the Saxon invasion.]]
* CharacterTitle
* TheChosenOne
* CompositeCharacter: One theory is that the tales of King Arthur are based on the exploits of several different leaders over many years rather than the life of a single individual.
* CoolSword: Excalibur
* DependingOnTheWriter: Arthur is pretty much the gauge by which you can read the Author's opinion on proper kingship. Thus, in the Welsh legends he does his own AsskickingEqualsAuthority and leads from the front and challenges the church on occasion, while to Mallory and the French he's your typical wellmannered and cuckolded King who leads from behind and isn't actually that great of a fighter. Modern writers have made him badass, cowardly, conflicted, compassionate, and tyrannical. And usually they do that while telling the exact same plot!
* {{Excalibur}}
* TheGoodKing
* GrayEyes: according to Sir Thomas Malory's ''Literature/LeMorteDarthur''.
* HappilyAdopted: Arthur actually had quite a happy life with Sir Ector and was extremely upset to learn that he wasn't actually his son.
* TheHero: TropeCodifier.
* HistoricalHeroUpgrade[=/=]HistoricalBadassUpgrade: Historians have debated for generations whether Arthur was truly historical at all. But if we accept that the "original Arthur" was a British leader who temporarily stopped the Anglo-Saxon invasion of Britain, he has been [[MemeticBadass greatly transformed and magnified]] into the [[TheGoodKing Arthur]] [[TheChosenOne of legend]].
** The original Arthur may not have even been a king himself, since he is called ''dux bellorum'' or "leader of battles", who fought "''together'' with the kings of the Britons" in twelve great battles against the Anglo-Saxons. He is also called "Arthur the Soldier" in early material. In later works he is called the High King of all Britain and even Emperor, and he even conquers Rome.
* KingInTheMountain
* MemeticBadass: Before Galahad, before Lancelot, before Gawain, Arthur was this to the mythos that now bears his name. The Arthurian Welsh Triads in particular tend to either have Arthur (referred to as [[TheMagnificent the Red Ravager]]) as the third (and thus most powerful example) of each triad, or the fourth, generally establishing that whatever the other three guys were known for, Arthur was it UpToEleven.
** In fact, literally the earliest possible mention of Arthur accepted by most experts can be paraphrased as "This one guy is a Billy MacBadass to end all other badasses, ''but he was not Arthur."''
* MutualKill: With Mordred.
* NiceJobBreakingItHerod: Arthur decides to round up all of the babies born on May Day and send them out on a rickety boat because Merlin prophesied that a child born on this day would destroy him. One baby (Mordred) survived.
* OutOfFocus: In the literature, his knights like Lancelot get more and more of the spotlight and he is almost if not actually DemotedToExtra until the story covers his downfall.
* PreAssKickingOneLiner: Spouts off several in the "Lucius" section of ''Literature/LeMorteDarthur''.
* SelectiveObliviousness: May have had this in regard to Lancelot and Guinevere's affair.
* ToBeLawfulOrGood: Modern writers tend to make him quite conflicted over his decision to burn Guinevere at the stake in order to show that the queen isn't above the law, with some even depicting him as secretly hoping Lancelot will save her. Originally, this was very much ''not'' the case.

* TheChooserOfTheOne
* CompositeCharacter: Originally based on the wandering mystic Myrddin Wyllt, he became merged with Romano-British warlord Ambrosius Aurelianus by Geoffrey of Monmouth. Remnants of this remain today with some modern fiction referring to him as "Merlin Ambrosius."
* CoolOldGuy: In some incarnations.
* DependingOnTheWriter: Merlin's characterization changes from writer to writer. Some writers depict him as a villain, an antihero or a hero.
* DirtyOldMan: DependingOnTheWriter, this was his behavior toward Nimue.
* DivineParentage: In some depictions, it's suggested that Merlin is half deity. There have been some legends that suggest Merlin's father was a [[TheFairFolk fairy]], {{Satan}} or no one.
* EccentricMentor
* HalfHumanHybrid: In most versions he is the son of a nun who was raped by a demon. This explains why he has magical powers but can only use them for good.
* HermitGuru
* HistoricalHeroUpgrade: From manipulative jerk and TricksterArchetype to wise and caring advisor.
* IHaveManyNames: Way too many to count.
* LastOfHisKind: Merlin is revealed to be the last shape-changers in his childhood, before Arthur's birth.
* TheManBehindTheMan: Merlin was responsible for King Arthur's rise in glory as well as many events that occurred in Arthurian legend.
* TheMentor
* MerlinAndNimue: TropeNamer
* MerlinSickness: The TropeNamer. Merlyn from T.H. White's ''Literature/TheOnceAndFutureKing'' is afflicted with this.
* TheObiWan
* OmniscientMoralityLicense: Merlin gives Uther the appearance of Gorlois so he can father Arthur upon Igraine, then has Arthur snatched away at birth and given to Ector, arranging the "sword in the stone" test as well, presumably so that events would happen as he prophesied. Not revealing Arthur's true parentage led to many rebellions during the early years of his reign, as well as the conception of Mordred and the May Day massacre.
* OracularUrchin
* ParentalSubstitute: To King Arthur.
* RobeAndWizardHat: Probably the TropeCodifier
* SealedGoodInACan: After Nimue seals him away in the cave. ''Literature/ThatHideousStrength'' by C.S. Lewis features his un-sealing as a plot point.
* {{Seer}}
* SemiDivine: Merlin is often portrayed as the child of a demon and mortal, although in the original myths he was depicted as something of a fey spirit, so half-fairy was more likely.
* TheSmartGuy: TropeCodifier.
* TheTrickster
* TricksterMentor
* WaifProphet: In his first chronological appearance in the story.
* WizardBeard: In most depictions.
* WizardClassic: TropeCodifier.
* YouAreTooLate: For all his power, Merlin has a tendency to arrive just a skosh too late to be useful.
* YouCantFightFate: He's perfectly aware of what his relationship with Nimue will lead to, because he knows the future.

* ActionGirl: Some portrayals of her.
* TheChick: TropeCodifier.
* {{Chickification}}: Perhaps the UrExample. While in most Arthurian stories from the 13th century onwards she's not action-oriented at all, in the oldest Welsh tales she was a badass warrior and magic-user. Only very recently have we seen a swing of the pendulum back in favor of more ActionGirl-esque portrayals.
* DamselInDistress
* [[EvilTwin Evil Identical Half-Sister]]: On the same night Leodegrance fathered Guinevere, he also begat another girl on the wife of his seneschal. This "False Guinevere" was born on the same day, looked exactly like her half-sister and even had the same name (Leodegrance had strong genes, but it looks like he wasn't very imaginative). She managed to trick Arthur into thinking the was the real deal, and tried to have Guinevere mutilated and banished (with Lancelot's help, she escaped). "False Guinevere" kept the charade up for ''years'' until the Pope himself stepped in and demanded Arthur take the real Guinevere back. He refused, and the Pope interdicted Britain for twenty-one months. After ten, "False Guinevere" had a stroke, lost every sense but sight and hearing, then began to rot alive, until she finally confessed and perished.
* GodSaveUsFromTheQueen <---> TheHighQueen: She varies between these in several iterations or even she is a hybrid of both.
* GrayEyes: According to ''Sir Gawaine And The Green Knight''.
* LoveTriangle: At the center of the most famous one of all time.
* SmartPeoplePlayChess: Apparently one of the most skilled players in the court.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Guenevere, Guenever, etc. The Welsh form is Gwenhwyfar. (A modern equivalent is Jennifer.)
** In just one manuscript of Geoffrey of Monmouth's ''[[HistoriaRegumBritanniae History of the Kings of Britain]]'', Guinevere's name is spelled differently every time she's mentioned (Ganhumara, Ganhumera, Guenhumara, Guenhuuara). Other manuscripts have more variations.
* {{Tsundere}}
* TwoGuysAndAGirl: With Arthur and Lancelot, as one of the oldest examples of this trope.
* WorldsMostBeautifulWoman
* YourCheatingHeart[=/=]FatalFlaw: Her affair with Lancelot is usually kind of a "bad move" for the round table's morale.
** In earlier versions of the legend, she has an affair with Mordred.

[[folder: Knights of the Round Table]]

* AccidentalPornomancer: Aside from his affair with Guinevere, he was raped twice. Once by Lady Elaine and again by Brisen, Lady Elane's servant.
* TheAce: Usually the best warrior in the story, with his affair with Guinevere preventing him from being the "perfect" knight. Includes MasterSwordsman, Master Lancer, Master Horseman, etc...
** Leads into MarySue territory in some sagas.
* AesopAmnesia: After the Grail Quest, he forgets everything he learned about purity and all that and starts sleeping with Guinevere again.
* TheAtoner: Most of his quest for the Holy Grail is him atoning for his sins.
* TheBerserker: Something Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail definitely got right is that Lancelot tended to leave high body counts behind him, often of relatively innocent people.
* BloodKnight
* DisproportionateRetribution: More than once, Lancelot, while he was out wandering, would wander into other knights' pavilions and make himself at home. When confronted by the understandably upset owners, well, [[ForegoneConclusion he's Lancelot and they're generally nameless.]]
* ExecutiveMeddling: Lancelot's first appearnace is notable for being unfinished by Chretian De Troyes. Some think this is because his patron, one of Eleanor of Aquitaine's daughters, may have ordered him to add the infamous affair with Guinevere. In other words, it's possible the entire crux of a huge portion of the Arthurian Romances was the result of a lady wanting to turn an adventure story into the medieval equivalent of a Harlequin Romance novel.
* FatalFlaw: His illicit affair with Guinevere proves to be the undoing of the Round Table itself.
* GoodIsNotNice
* HotBlooded
* {{Hunk}}: Usually depicted this way, except in ''Literature/TheOnceAndFutureKing'' where he is called "The Ill-Made Knight" because he is ugly.
* TheLancer: TropeCodifier.
* SailorEarth: It's generally agreed that he wasn't introduced into the myths until the twelfth century, with Creator/ChretienDeTroyes's ''Lancelot, Knight of the Cart''.
** Though older scholarship has linked him to the Welsh Arthurian figure of Llwch Llenlleawg ("Llwch of the Striking Hand"), because their names kind of look alike, and more pertinently "llwch" is the Welsh word for "lake" while Lancelot's full name is Lancelot du Lac or Lancelot of the Lake. The drawback is that Lancelot and Llenleawg have little in common, so treating him as a CanonForeigner is the most favored theory nowadays.
* SixthRanger: He doesn't show up at the Round Table until long after it's assembled.
* [[SpellMyNameWithAnS Spell My Name With A U]]: Sometimes spelled "Launcelot".

* TheAce: Unless someone else is.
* TheBigGuy: TropeCodifier.
* BraveScot: Usually associated with Lothian and/or the Orkney islands, both part of Scotland.
* ChickMagnet: In both Mallory's take and in Gawain and the Green Knight, he is glomped on by a female paramour with him doing nothing to attract their attention. With the lady of the Green Knight, he refutes her advances, because it wouldn't be honorable.
* ChivalrousPervert: He's definitely willing to reciprocate other advances though. And he's even willing to honor deals with less beautiful women like Ragnell, which ends up getting her being smoking hot and him being a proto-feminist.
* ClearMyName: One of his adventures in ''Parzival'' has him doing this.
* FamilyHonor: Gawain's main motivation, at least in ''Literature/LeMorteDarthur''.
* HenpeckedHusband: he plays this role to Lady Orgeleuse in ''Parzival''.
* HeterosexualLifePartners: With Percival (who, in some stories, is his cousin). They swear eternal friendship after Gawain sees Percival [[CurbStompBattle soundly beat Kay]].
* IndyPloy: One episode in Creator/ChretienDeTroyes's ''Perceval'' and Wolfram von Eschenbach's ''Parzival'' has him holding off an angry horde of townspeople while using a chess board as a shield.
** Of course, the chess pieces are described as being ten times as large as normal ones, and are also used as impromptu missile weapons at one point, so (assuming a board of equivalent size) that's actually not too impractical.
* TheLancer: Earlier stories suggest he was originally Arthur's second in command and one of the successful heroes of the Grail quest. Adds a new light to his rivalry with Lancelot, doesn't it?
* ThePowerOfTheSun: Some versions of the legends have him gain strength as the sun rises in the sky and lose it when it sets, whether as a function of his magic sword or of his being an Orkney.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Alternatively spelled Gawaine, Gawan, Gauvain, Gavan, etc.
** AwesomeMcCoolName: His Welsh counterpart's name Gwalchmai is usually interpreted as "Hawk of May".
* [[YouKilledMyFather You Killed My Brothers]]: The cause of his feud with Lancelot that brings down the Round Table.

* {{Jerkass}}: Nasty like Mordred but much more apparently so. Exposes Guinevere and Lancelot's affair.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Aggravain, Agrafrayn, Agravan, Agravano, Agreuein, Egrefayn, Engrevain(s), Gefferen, Geffreyn, Griffayn.
* TokenEvilTeammate: Had a reputation for malice and enviousness even before teaming up with Mordred. Still a respected member of the Table, who did the odd good deed or two.

* {{Bishonen}}
* [[LukeIAmYourFather Gawain, I Am Your Brother]]
* SailorEarth: Possibly as late as 1470, as there's speculation that he was Malory's original creation.

* DisproportionateRetribution: Seems to be his stock in trade. Killed a knight for saying Lancelot was better than Gawaine, beheaded his mother Morgause for the horrible crime of sleeping with the son of the guy who killed his father and later teamed up with his brothers to brutally murder said son. It goes both ways, though. He once arranged for a peasant to be given a fine horse after accidentally getting his donkey killed. Also see "MoralDissonance" below.
* DistinctiveAppearances: Apparently his right arm was noticeably longer than his left.
* {{Hypocrite}}: Rebuked Gawaine after he accidentally beheaded a lady who'd leapt in front of his stroke to protect her husband. Later quite deliberately beheaded ''his own mother'' for an even worse reason.
* MoralDissonance: Once came upon four pavilions. After helping himself to the food in one of them, he (chastely) bedded down in the fourth with a sleeping lady, not noticing her husband on the other side. Upon waking to see the furious husband yanking his wife out of bed by the hair, he lopped the guy's head off. Not ''too'' horrible so far, right? Well, then he demanded she love no one else but him and forced her to travel with him, killing three of her brothers and severely wounding the fourth when they tried to rescue her. Eventually she managed to get away from him by joining a convent.
* SelfMadeOrphan: Kills Morgause.

* TheAce: Was called "The Best Knight in the World."
* {{Bishounen}}: He is the youngest of the knights, and the most feminine looking, as he was raised by his mother and never knew of men.
* BerserkButton: Do not ever, ever be stupid enough to hit an unarmed person (no matter their station) in front of him. He WILL beat you into the ground. Kay learned this the hard way.
* ChasteHero: In later versions.
* CelibateHero: In some versions, and in most versions of the Grail Quest his hardest test is resisting a beautiful enchantress.
* CoolSword / BlessedWithSuck: In one set of stories gets a sword that can cut through anything and will never break... except in the toughest battle of his life.
* DavidVersusGoliath: Pretty much literally in some versions. When he first comes to Camelot, he's just a young guy armed with some javelins and no armor to speak of and takes down a huge and powerful knight that the knights of Camelot were afraid to fight.
* {{Determinator}}: In all versions is this.
* GoodIsDumb
* HeterosexualLifePartners: In some stories with Gawain, who is his cousin. In one legend he even chooses to share a curse Gawain brought upon himself; his willingness to sacrifice saves Gawain's life by splitting the curse in half and they each only get badly wounded.
* IdiotHero: In most stories, he's this in his younger days. Sometimes he grows out of it and into MessianicArchetype, sometimes he doesn't.
* KidAppealCharacter
* MasterSwordsman: In some stories he's the best swordsman among the knights.
* NoSocialSkills: After the death of his father, Percival's mother takes him to the Welsh forests where she raises him ignorant to the ways of men until the age of 15.
* PowerTrio: With Galahad and Bors.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Alternatively spelled Perceval, Percivale, Parzival, or Parsifal.
* TookALevelInBadass: Took several between his first visit to Camelot and his unhorsing of Kay.
* WideEyedIdealist: Usually.

* TheAce: [[UpToEleven Even better than his dad]] Lancelot.
* AscendToAHigherPlaneOfExistence
* ChasteHero
* ChildByRape: Lancelot was tricked into sleeping with his mother via magical disguise.
* CurbStompBattle: His specialty is handing out these.
* HeroicBastard: Even more heroic than his father Lancelot.
* IncorruptiblePurePureness
* NamesTheSame: "Galahad" was Lancelot's birth name.
* PowerTrio: With Percival and Bors
* TheChosenOne: For the Grail quest.

* OvershadowedByAwesome: Percival and Galahad are the most-remembered Grail Knights. Bors, if he's remembered at all, is [[Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail that guy who the Killer Rabbit got to first]].
* PowerTrio: With Percival and Galahad
* TheSmartGuy
* UndeadAuthor: He serves to avert this problem. After the Grail quest is complete, Galahad ascended to heaven and Percival went off to be a monk. Bors was the only one to return to Arthur's court to tell the tale.

* TheBigGuy: Known as "Kay the tall" and "the long man" in the Welsh legends, where he also has the power to [[SizeShifting grow to giant size.]]
* BloodBrothers: With Arthur. They were raised as brothers before Arthur found out his true heritage.
* BoisterousBruiser: Kay is almost always some sort of braggart; a good exception being John Boorman's Excalibur, where he is a loyal and stalwart adopted brother to Arthur.
* ButtMonkey: In later versions where he merely exists to get beaten up.
* CoolSword[=/=]MasterSwordsman: In the Welsh tales, no one can heal wounds dealt by Kay's sword, either because the sword is magic or the patient is too dead.
* DemotedToExtra: His role in later stories is severely reduced.
* HotBlooded
* MagicKnight: In his earliest incarnation from the Welsh tales.
* NeverLiveItDown: InUniverse. When Percival first showed up to Camelot, a woman who had previously sworn never to laugh unless she saw the man who would be the best knight in the world. When Percival arrives, she laughs. Kay is so insulted that he slaps her. Throughout the rest of the story, Percival's defeated foes keep coming back to Camelot to tell of how Percival was still trying to avenge her honor (basically to rub in how much of a douche Kay was).
* TheNicknamer: An example being Sir Gareth, who he dubs 'Beaumains' after the former refuses to reveal his name.
* PlayingWithFire: In the Welsh tales Kay can generate so much body heat that he can keep dry in rain.
* SnarkKnight: More in the early stories.
* SuperNotDrowningSkills: Kay can hold his breath underwater for 9 days and nights in the Welsh material.
* TheWorfEffect: He seems to have a habit of getting the crap beat out of him to show how much better the new knight du jour is, although some theorise that this is a case of BadassDecay, and that his original role was to be the one who tested new knights' combat skills (which would imply a high degree of skill on his part, since he'd need to not kill or maim his opponent while avoiding the same fate at their hands).

* BashBrothers: Often paired with Kay in the oldest Welsh material.
* BattleButler: Arthur's cup-bearer in later versions. Sometimes has a brother, Lucan, who is Arthur's designated butler.
* CompositeCharacter / {{Expy}}: In several modern Arthurian retellings favoring the older traditions as opposed to Malory et al, Lancelot does not appear. Instead, Bedivere is often made Guinevere's lover. It helps that many of Lancelot's usual traits apply to Bedivere also. This was first done in Creator/RosemarySutcliff's ''Literature/SwordAtSunset'' (1963) and a number of other works have followed suit.
* DemotedToExtra: Just like Kay, his role was much reduced as the mythos grew and developed.
* HandicappedBadass: In the oldest Welsh material, he is one-handed. He was also a LightningBruiser with a four pronged spear.
* {{Hunk}}: In Welsh material, said to be one of the most handsome men in Britain.
* NumberTwo: Together with Kay, until supplanted by Lancelot.
* PowerTrio: With Arthur and Kay in early versions.
* SoleSurvivor: May be best known today as the one knight of the Round Table who survives Arthur's last battle, and who throws Excalibur back into a lake.

* AntagonisticOffspring: To Arthur, in the versions where he's his son and not just his nephew. One of the alternate names for the trope is ArthurAndMordred.
* {{Badass}}
* BastardBastard
* ChildByRape: Medieval versions of the tale have Morgause using magic to get Arthur to sleep with her. Some modern versions have Arthur raping her.
* EvilUncle: Inverted. In the early versions of the story, Arthur is his uncle and he's the Evil Nephew.
* FallenHero: Both in the literal and meta sense. He's usually depicted as at least competent and loyal to Arthur until he finds out who his father is. However, the original legends take this even further, implying he's Arthur's peer and ally, biologically his nephew and legally his foster son. The original reason for their inevitable confrontation is supposedly tied into a spat between Gwenhwyfar and her sister Gwenhwyfach.
* FaceHeelTurn: Actually seemed quite promising during the first two years of his knighthood, earning praise from Lancelot himself.
* FakeKing: Yes and no. Arthur leaves him in charge of the kingdom when he goes to fight Lancelot in France, and he does officially have himself declared king, but he isn't the rightful ruler.
* GenocideBackfire: Survived the May Day massacre.
* {{Hero Killer}}
* HeroicBSOD: Being told that you're the bastard son of the king and his half-sister, prophesied to destroy the kingdom and do more harm in your lifetime than all your ancestors did good kind of does that to you. He came out of it...uh, pretty badly, actually.
* IHaveYouNowMyPretty: With Guinevere.
* MutualKill: He and Arthur.
* ShootTheMessenger: Murdered the prophetic priest who revealed the truth about his life to him. Lancelot was pissed...[[ItsAllAboutMe because the priest was going to reveal]] ''[[ItsAllAboutMe his]]'' [[ItsAllAboutMe future next.]]
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Modred, Medraut, Medrawd, Medrod, etc. The form "Mordred" was probably irresistible to writers because it's similar to Latin ''mors'' or French ''mort'', meaning [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast Death]].
* TragicVillain: Particularly in modern interpretations. Still, it's not as if he ''asked'' Morgause and Arthur to sleep together.
* VillainWithGoodPublicity: When he takes over Britain, he's popular with the people for bringing peace while Arthur's reign was more or less constant battles.

* GreenEyedMonster: Most of the reason he alternates between seeing Tristram as a brother-in-arms and wanting to gut him is because they are both in love with La Beale Isoud. [[SpellMyNameWithAnS Er, Isolde? Yseult? Whatever.]]
* HumansAreWhite: Not the only ex-Saracen knight (his brothers Segwarides and Safir joined, too), but certainly the most prominent by far.
* KickTheDog: On the receiving end of one. After she convinces Tristram to spare his life following on of their clashes, Isolde makes Palomides deliver a message to Guinevere stating that there were but four true lovers within the land: Guinevere and Lancelot and Tristram and Isolde. ''Ouch.''
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: Son of the Saracen king Esclabor.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Palamedes.
* TheQuest: Took over Pellinore's hunt of the Questing Beast.
* {{Tsundere}}: A friendly version toward Tristram.

* {{Expy}}: His story's pretty much a straight ripoff of the earlier ''Literature/{{Bisclavret}}'' by Marie de France.
* WolfMan: Yes, seriously! He automatically changes into a wolf for a few days every month [[OurWerewolvesAreDifferent and if he can't change back into his clothes after that, he stays that way indefinitely.]]
* YourCheatingHeart: Not his, but his wife's. She hid his clothes so she could run off with her lover. Wolf-Marrok tore off her nose, and King Arthur tortured a confession out of her. She then got exiled with the lover and [[LamarckWasRight had a bunch of noseless kids.]]

* AdaptationalBadass: [[Film/KingArthur And how!]] Also counts as AscendedExtra.
* CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass: For all his flaws, he did manage to track down and kill the guy who kidnapped his wife, so there may be ''something'' there.
* JokeCharacter: King Arthur's jester, knighted as a gag. Participates in a lot of pranks based around his lack of competence.
* LovableCoward
* MilesGloriosus: Tried for this, constantly boasting and doing things like battering his shield so it looked like he'd been in a nasty fight, but no one was fooled.

* CelibateHero: "God defend Me. For the joy of love is too brief; and the sorrow thereof, and what cometh thereof, dureth overlong"
* DeadpanSnarker
* NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished: Saves Mordred and Agravaine from Breuse Sans Pitie, then gets murdered by them during the Grail Quest.
* TheSmartGuy: Possessed a great deal of common sense, and is one of the few knights who can identify other knights by their faces as well as their coats of arms. Given the sheer number of duels caused by mistaken identities in these stories, this makes him pretty useful to have around.

* AndroclesLion: Probably what he's best known for.
* BloodKnight: Settled down for a bit after marrying Laudine, but Gawain showed up and tempted him back into adventure. Laudine agreed to let him go WalkingTheEarth, but only if he would return to her after one year. She eventually had to send someone to hunt Ywain down and tell him [[GetOut not to bother coming back.]]
* DisproportionateRetribution: Esclados the Red, guardian of a supernatural storm-causing fountain, (non-fatally) fought Ywain's cousin Calogrenant after he came upon said fountain and caused a dangerous tempest. Ywain, upon hearing of this, ''hunts him down, kills him, and marries his widow''.
* DrivenToMadness: By his breakup with Laudine.
* RingOfPower: Laudine gives him one to protect him when he goes off adventuring, and takes it back when he breaks his promise.
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: Son of King Uriens and (sometimes) Morgan Le Fay.
* SecondLove: For Esclados' widow Laudine. [[AndNowYouMustMarryMe Eventually.]]
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Yvain, Ewaine. Based on the Welsh form Owain.
* [[YouKilledMyFather You Beat Up My Cousin]]: To Esclados.

A son of King Pellinore and one of the brothers of the hero Percival.
* BigBrotherMentor: Serves as this for Percival in some tales.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Agglovale, Agloval, Agravale, Engloval(e).
* WifeBasherBasher: One work of Arthurian lore mentions that Aglovale fought and humbled a misogynistic knight for abusing his lover.

!!Alexander the Orphan
Appears in Palamedes, Prose Tristan, Prophecies of Merlin, and Le Morte D'arthur.
* CelibateHero: He rejected Morgan Le Fay's advances. Later subverted when he married Alice the Fair Pilgrim.
* KilledOffForReal: The details vary as to whether he was killed by a minor knight or an assassin hired by King Mark, but regardless he didn't live to either go on the Grail quest nor the end of Arthur's reign.
* {{Revenge}}: Against [[EvilUncle Mark]] for killing Prince Bodwyne, his father and Mark's younger brother.
* TragicKeepsake: The Blood soaked shirt his father wore when he was killed.

Originally from [[Literature/TristanAndIseult a separate story]], later authors incorporated him into the Arthurian Mythos. His defining trait is [[StarCrossedLovers his tragic romance with Iseult]].
* DeathByDespair: He dies of poison, but the false belief that Iseult has abandoned him is what makes him succumb to the poison before help arrives.
* GuileHero: Often uses guile and trickery to keep his affair secret.
* ICallItVera: His bow is named Fail-Not.
* ReplacementGoldfish: Since he can't be together with Iseult, [[OneSteveLimit he marries another woman who is also named Iseult.]] [[DownerEnding This manages to go even worse than you'd expect.]]
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Also often known as Tristram.
* StarCrossedLovers: His lover is married to his uncle and king, and he can only [[DoubleEntendre "meet"]] her in secret until they both die.
* TogetherInDeath: Tristan and his lover are buried side by side, and a honeysuckle springs from Iseult's grave and twirls around a hazel tree that grows from Tristan's grave. [[DependingOnTheWriter Or maybe it's a briar that twirls around a rose.]] [[DownerEnding Or maybe they're just plain dead.]]

[[folder: Fair Ladies]]

* BrotherSisterIncest: Though neither she nor Arthur were aware of it at the time.
* DecompositeCharacter: Some scholars suggest that she and Morgan Le Fay were the same character until some scribe made a translation error and accidentally split them into two separate characters.
* GrandmaWhatMassiveHotnessYouHave: After five sons and a number of daughters, she still had enough of it goin' on to bed Sir Lamorak, who was at ''least'' twenty years younger than her.
* HistoricalVillainUpgrade: Modern writers tend to make her a scheming villainess, often by making her aware of her relationship with Arthur when she sleeps with him, or by combining her with Morgan Le Fay. Originally, she seems to have been a generous and friendly person. ''[[ReallyGetsAround Very]]'' friendly.
* HoneyTrap: Malory states that Lot sent her over to Arthur's court in this capacity.
* [[OutWithABang Out Shortly After A Bang]]: Her son Gaheris, incensed at seeing her in bed with the son of Pellinore (who killed Lot, the Orkney brothers' father), lopped her head off.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Margawse, Morgawse, Margause, [[OddNameOut Bellicent...]]
** In Geoffrey of Monmouth, Arthur's sister is just called [[AerithAndBob Anna.]] (She does nothing, [[AscendedExtra later writers greatly expanded her role]].) Since Morgan is sometimes spelled Morgana this may have added to the confusion.
** NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast: In the older Welsh material, Arthur's sister is named Gwyar, which means "bloodshed".
* YourCheatingHeart

!!Morgan Le Fay
* ArchEnemy: ''Guinevere's'', actually. After a few unsuccessful attacks on Arthur, Morgan mostly devoted herself to trying to reveal Lancelot and Guinevere's affair.
* CompositeCharacter: Many adaptations fuse her with Morgause.
* EvilMatriarch: Many versions make her this to Mordred.
* [[EvilSorcerer Evil Sorceress]][=/=]WickedWitch: Depending on the version she can lean more towards one or the other stereotype.
* GreenEyedMonster: Apart from the incident in YourCheatingHeart below, part of Morgan's hatred for Guinevere may have stemmed from the fact that she herself wanted to sleep with Lancelot.
* HeelFaceTurn: In time she seems to have mellowed out and gotten along well with Arthur, to the point of letting him visit her castle for a week. Of course she still tried to convince him of Guinevere's unfaithfulness, but [[SelectiveObliviousness he didn't believe her]].
* HotWitch
* LegionOfDoom: At one point King Mark appeals to her to get a bunch of evil sorcerers and known evil knights together in order to ravage Arthur's kingdom.
* MurderIsTheBestSolution: Tried to kill her husband King Uriens, but was stopped by their son Ywain.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Morgan, Morganna, Morgaine, etc.
* YourCheatingHeart: Cheated on Uriens with Guinevere's cousin Guiomar. When Guinevere found out she had Guiomar banished. (Understandably, Morgan was rather peeved when [[{{Hypocrite}} Guinevere started her affair with Lancelot.]]) She then proceeded to take on several lovers without actually getting a divorce.

* HotWitch
* KickTheDog: Fell in love with Sir Pelleas, who himself was [[SelfProclaimedLoveInterest deeply]], [[AllLoveIsUnrequited deeply]], ''[[StalkerWithACrush creepily]]'' in love with the thoroughly uninterested Ettard. Nimue got around this by casting a spell that [[UnrequitedLoveSwitcheroo turned all Pelleas' love for Ettard into hatred, and all Ettard's hatred for Pelleas into love]]. Then she snatched Pelleas up and poor [[ButtMonkey Ettard]] died of despair.
* [[TheRedBaron The Lady of the Lake]]: No, not the one who gave Arthur Excalibur, but she was one of her maidservants and later became Arthur's chief advisor.
* MerlinAndNimue: TropeNamer
* [[StayInTheKitchen Stay In My Lake]]: Rarely let Pelleas out to adventure, and apparently saved his life by keeping him out of the final battle.
* ShipperOnDeck: Was apparently one for Lancelot/Guinevere.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Nyneve, Nimue, Niniane, Vivian. It's suggested the multiple spellings were in part due to later copyists and authors misreading medieval handwriting.
* {{Trickster}}

!!Iseult the Fair
* ArrangedMarriage: With King Mark of Cornwall.
* DeathByDespair: After Tristan's death she also dies because of grief.
* DudeMagnet: There's a ''lot'' of guys who become attracted to her, [[RuleOfDrama mainly so they can have a conflict with Tristan about her.]]
* GuileHero: Just like her lover, she often has to use her wits to keep her adultery secret.
* HealingHands: She is the only one who can heal Tristan when he gets fatally poisoned.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: There are tons of alternate spellings for her; like Isolt, Isolde and Isolda just to name a few.
* StarCrossedLovers: See Tristan's entry
* TogetherInDeath: See Tristan.
* YourCheatingHeart: Cheats on her husband Mark with Tristan.

!!Iseult of the White Hands
* GreenEyedMonster: Becomes jealous of the other Iseult when she learns of Tristan's love for her, leading her to kill Tristan through lying.
* OneSteveLimit: Defied; having the same name as another character is the reason she becomes Tristan's wife, and thus a character in the story, in the first place.
* ReplacementGoldfish: Tristan marries her because she has the same name as his lover.
* TilMurderDoUsPart: She indirectly murders Tristan by claiming that Iseult the Fair isn't coming to heal him, causing him to give in to despair and succumb to his poison just as Iseult arrives to cure him.

[[folder: Pre-Arthurian Era Figures]]

!!Alain the Large
* FisherKing: One of them to be exact.
* FlipFlopofGod: Robert de Boron early on wrote that he was celibate only to contradict himself latter by stating that he fathered several children.

!!Belinus and Brennius
Two brother Kings of Britain said to have led the Celtic sacking of Rome in 390 B.C.

!!Brutus of Troy
He is figure who according to Geoffrey of Monmouth and subsequent authors a Trojan exile who led a band of followers conquered Britain from a race of giants.
* DependingOnTheAuthor: He is said to be either [[ClassicalMythology Aenea's]] grandson or great-grandson.
* DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu: He and his band of Trojan exiles defeated an entire island of Giants to claim what would later be named Britain (after Brutus) for themselves.


[[folder: Other Kings]]
!!Uther Pendragon
* DeathByOriginStory: Arthur becomes king because of his death, being his son and all, but he is plucked from a life of obscurity with a foster-family and thrust onto the throne at a young age. Details vary though.
* NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast / AwesomeMcCoolname: ''Pendragon'' is a Welsh epithet (sometimes treated as a surname or dynastic name by later authors) which translates to "Chief Dragon" in English, "dragon" probably being a figurative term for warrior. "Uther" itself may come from a Welsh word meaning "awesome" and/or "horrible/terrible" (in the original sense of "fearsome" rather than "bad").

* HoistByHisOwnPetard: Allowed the Saxons, Angles and Jutes to settle in Britain in order to serve as his mercenaries. They turned on him and Uther and Arthur would have to fight them.
* HoneyTrap: Fell in love with the daughter of the Saxon king Hengest and married her. This gave Hengest some claim on the British throne.
* KillItWithFire: One version of his death has him trapped in a burning tower.
* TheUsurper: The king before Uther, who seized the throne after betraying Uther's brother or father (depending on the story)
* WouldHurtAChild: Tried to build a tower that kept tumbling down and was told that only [[HumanSacrifice the blood of a child]] with no human father could secure it. That child was {{Merlin}}, who had other ideas.

!!King Lot of Lothian and/or Orkney
* AdaptationalVillainy: Wasn't a villain in Geoffrey of Monmouth, but is one from the Vulgate Cycle onward.
* DefeatMeansFriendship: After being a StarterVillain. But in some versions Arthur's [[NiceJobBreakingItHerod baby-killing]] drives him to rebel again, leading to his death.
* [[EvilUncle Evil Brother-in-law]]: Husband of Arthur's sister Morgause.
* EvenEvilHasLovedOnes: Father of Sir Gawain and his brothers, who in some versions pursue a BloodFeud with King Pellinore and his family after Pellinore kills him - despite Lot having rebelled against Arthur.
* StarterVillain: The leader of a group of rebel kings in the early years of Arthur's reign.

!!King Pellinore
* BlackKnight: Sometimes fights one. Sometimes is one, as in Howard Pyle's retellings.
* DefeatMeansFriendship: He defeats Arthur after being challenged to joust. The Sword in the Stone breaks during their fight, to be replaced by {{Excalibur}}. Arthur later asks him to join the Round Table.
* TheQuest: Pursues the Questing Beast.
* ReallyGetsAround: Has at least three illegitimate children, with three different women.
* TragicMistake: In his haste to rescue Nimue, he refused to stop and provide aid to a gravely wounded knight and his lady. He didn't learn until after the rescue that the lady -- who killed herself with her dead lover's sword -- was his daughter Eleine.

!!King Mark of Cornwall
* AdaptationalVillainy: Goes from a sympathetic cuckold in the original story to an evil DirtyCoward in ''Prose Tristan'' and later tales, then loops back around in many modern works.
* BadBoss: Occasionally flew into rages where he killed his own men.
* CainAndAbel: Evil!Mark kills his brother.
* IncestIsRelative: Evil!Mark rapes his niece and kills her after she gives birth to his son.
* LittleBitBeastly: Gets cursed with a horse's ears and mane in an early Breton legend, paralleling a legend about King Midas after he lost his touch.
* PetTheDog: Erected a rich tomb over a slain knight and [[DrivenToSuicide his lady]], apparently as a gesture of legitimate kindness.


[[folder: Other Characters]]

Appears in the Post-Vulgate Merlin and Malory's Le Morte D'Arthur

* KilledOffForReal: By Arthur
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Accolon
* UnwittingPawn: Of his lover, Morgan Le Fay, in an attempt to have her half-brother King Arthur killed.
* WorthyOpponent: Arthur considered him this, and Sir Accalon thought the same in turn, when the former apologized for having mortally wounded the latter. Arthur had the Gaulish Knight buried with honors at St. Stephen's Church in Camelot.

!!Adragain the Brown
Appears in the Vulgate Merlin, Vulgate Lancelot, Le Livre d'Artus and Arthour and Merlin.

* RetiredBadass: He became a monk upon retiring from serving as a knight.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Adragein(s), Adragenis, Agrauein(s).
* UndyingLoyalty: He previously served under Uther and later for his son Arthur.
* WhatTheHellHero: His reaction to Arthur failing to help Kings Ban and Bors against Claudas's second invasion of their lands.


* CelticMythology: He is a deity from Welsh Celtic legends who occasionally makes appearance in Welsh Arthurian works.
* OurGodsAreGreater

Arthur's cousin from the Welsh tale of Culhwch and Olwen

!![[BlackKnight The Black Knight]]
* DarkIsEvil
* MeaningfulName: Wears black armor.

!![[SirGawainAndTheGreenKnight The Green Knight]]
* AnAxeToGrind
* BlackKnight: Except green. He isn't really evil though.
* LosingYourHead: But his head still talks.
* MagicKnight
* MeaningfulName: He is completely green, as well as his gear and horse, and he carries a bough of holly in one hand (and an axe in the other). Some scholars think he may have pagan roots as a [[NatureSpirit nature]] [[AnthropomorphicPersonification figure.]]
* {{Trickster}}