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List of characters in The Letter for the King

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This is a list of characters appearing in the Dutch fantasy novel The Letter for the King by Tonke Dragt, its sequel The Secrets of the Wild Wood, the related short stories in Het gevaarlijke venster en andere verhalen (The Dangerous Window and Other Stories), and the 2008 film and the 2020 Netflix series based on them.

Main characters[edit]

Tiuri
The only son of Tiuri the Valiant, a famed knight in King Dagonaut's realm. He is described as having black hair, and at the beginning of The Letter for the King he is 16 years old (15 in some desciptions[1]). Despite his privileged background, he is noble and honest, and his greatest wish is to become a knight worthy of his title. At the end of The Letter, he earns his knight title and the honor to bear the title "Tiuri of the White Shield" in recognition of his services to King Unauwen.
In the film The Letter for the King, he is portrayed by Yannick van de Velde, and by Amir Wilson in the 2020 Netflix series. In the latter, as a major departure from the original books, he and his mother are depicted as genocide refugees from Evielan.[2]
Piak
A young, 14-year-old orphaned boy from a mountain village who was taken in by Menaures as his helper and apprentice. He and Tiuri become best friends, and at the end of The Letter for the King he joins him as his squire.
In the 2008 film, Piak is portrayed by Quinten Schram. In the 2020 Nextflix series, he (played by Nathanael Saleh) has a brother named Jissipo, a character created exclusively for the series.[2]

Unauwen's Realm[edit]

King Unauwen
The eldery but kind and wise king of the Realm to the West.
Prince Iridian
The elder of Unauwen's twin sons and the crown prince of the West Realm. Mentioned in The Letter for the King, he appears in person in The Secrets of the Wild Wood.
Edwinem of Foresterra
A famous knight and one of King Unauwen's trusted ten paladins, famous for his prowess in battle, for which he earned the monicker "The Invincible". Also known as The Black Knight with the White Shield (white is the heraldic color of Unauwen's realm). He is found dying at the beginning of The Letter for the King after having been ambushed by Evielan's forces, and entrusts his quest to expose Evielan's schemes to Tiuri before he expires.
Ewein
A younger knight from Unauwen's realm, a friend of Ristridin and one of the Grey Knights.
Ardian
One of Unauwen's paladins, and the Lord of Customs at the Rainbow River bridge. He befriends Tiuri and Piak in The Letter for the King and reappears in The Secrets of the Wild Wood.
Tirillo
Unauwen's eloquent court jester, and as one of his trusted paladins also privileged in wearing one of the special rings of office as Edwinem did.
Vokia
Edwinem's eldery squire. He makes a brief appearance in the beginning of The Letter for the King, where he sets Tiuri on his fateful quest. He is later reported having died of shock and grief upon hearing of hs lord's death.

Dagonaut's Realm[edit]

King Dagonaut
The ruler of the Realm of the East. While younger and somewhat stricter than Unauwen, he is also wise and benevolent. Dragt chose his name as an analogy to the expression "day and night" ("Dag en Nacht" in Dutch).[3]
Ristridin of the South
A middle-aged wandering knight of considerable fame in Unauwen's realm. While he does poseess a fiefdom, he leaves its administration to his brother Arturin.
In the 2008 film, Ristridin is played by Victor Reinier.
Bendoe
A stern and somewhat stubborn knight, and a member of Ristridin's Grey Knights. While he is slow to trust someone, he proves to be a true and reliable companion once he is won over.
In the 2008 film, Bendoe is played by Daan Schuurmans.
Sigirdiwarth Rafox
The lord of Castle Mistrinaut. Originally a wanderer from a realm to the north, he came into Dagonaut's realm and slew the former tyrannical lord of Mistrinaut, for which he was granted the castle and its lands as a fiefdom. He is described as large and red-haired, but friendly and level-headed, and a fiercely loyal retainer of Dagonaut. He has a son, who is named after him, and a younger daughter named Lavinia.
In the 2008 film, Rafox is portrayed by Uwe Ochsenknecht. In the Netfix series, where he is portrayed by Andy Serkis, he is reimagined as a mayor instead of a castle lord.
Lavinia Rafox
The daughter of Lord Rafox who meets and falls in love with Tiuri in The Letter for the King and makes an extended guest appearance in The Secrets of the Wild Wood.
In the Nexflix series, quite contrary to the original books, Lavinia (played by Ruby Ashbourne Serkis) plays an extended role as Tiuri's travelling companion in Piak's place.[4]
Marius
A childish but friendly, and wise in his own way, forest dweller who lives with his mother and brothers in a hovel in Dagonaut's forest. He encounters and befriends Tiuri in The Letter for the King, and plays a pivotal role in triggering the events described in The Secrets of the Wild Wood.
Arwaut
Bendoe's nephew, and a member of the Grey Knights. He is murdered by the Red Riders of Evielan between The Letter for the King and The Secrets of the Wild Wood.
Ilmar
Ristridin's first squire, who is about Tiuri's age. He is murdered by the Red Riders of Evielan between The Letter for the King and The Secrets of the Wild Wood.
Quibo the Redhead
A young man hailing from a village at the edge of the Wild Wood, where he was the town drunk. Having been long an admirer of Ristridin, he is pressed into becoming his squire in The Secrets of the Wild Wood, and remains in his services at the end of the story.
Lady Isadoro
The daughter of Sir Fitil of Islan, a small castle at the edge of the Wild Wood. Described as very charming and beautiful, but fickle. While privy to the secret presence of Evillan in the forest, she grow frustrated of her father's allegiance with the Lord of Evielan and the enforced secrecy. After her father's death, she matures and assumes rulership of his castle.
Fitil
Isadoroa's father and the master of Castle Islan. He turns traitor to Dagonaut when he allies himself with the Lord of Evielan and keeps his presence in the Wild Wood secret, but later on switches sides when this secret is about to become exposed. He later falls in battle against Evielan's forces when they try to conquer Castle Islan.
The Brown Monks
A fraternity of monks living at the edge of the woods where Marius dwells, and who help Tiuri on his quest in The Letter for the King and Piak in his call for aid in The Secrets of the Wild Wood.
Tiuri the Valiant
Tiuri's father and renowned knight in the Realm of the East.
In the Netflix series, Tiuri the Valiant (played by David Wenham) is depicted merely as Tiuri's stepfather who disgraces himself when he uses a trick to get his son approved for squirehood.[5]

Evielan[edit]

The name Evielan is analogous to "evil land".[3]

Prince Viridian
The younger of Unauwen's twin sons, and the self-made Lord of Evielan. Also known as the Knight with the Red Shield, the one who murdered Edwinem in Dagonaut's realm. Unlike his brother, he is torn with jealousy about being denied the crown to his father's realm, and resorts to all sorts of treachery to achieve his goal.
Kraton of Indigo
A knight of Evielan who lost his fiefdom during one of the many skirmishes between Unauwen and Evielan. Despite his frustration and enduring loyalty to his lord, he is an honorable knight. After his ruler's final treachery at the end of The Wild Wood, he becomes Evillan's new ruler.

Other characters[edit]

Ardanwen
A black destrier whose name means "Nightwind" in the old tongue of Unauwen's realm. Originally Edwinem's steed, he is known for his temper when handled by anyone but his recognized master. In The Letter for the King he allows himself to be claimed by Tiuri, and serves him faithfully in The Letter and The Wild Woods.
Menaures
Unauwen's twin brother. Because he loves his brother and wished to prevent a war of succession, he renounced his noble title and retired as a hermit to the mountains separating the Realms of the East and the West. He has acquired fame for his wisdom and kindness, although only few know his true origins. He was Piak's mentor, and at the end of The Wild Wood he takes in Prince Iridian's son to educate him.
Jaro
Formerly one of the Red Riders of Evielan sent to kill Tiuri in The Letter for the King, he finds himself unable to do so after Tiuri ends up saving his life. He cuts his ties with Evielan, but accidentally ends up back in Prince Viridian's service in The Secrets of the Wild Woods, where he helps Tiuri and Marus escape from his ex-lord's clutches. His main characterization in the stories centers on his loyalty to his new friends conflicting with his lingering admiration for his former liege.
In the 2008 film, he is portrayed by Kees Boot.
Tehalon
The Lord of the Wild Wood, a recluse who lives with his people, who are known as Men in Green in local folklore, within the forest. He considers himself no one's vassal, preferring to stay out of the world's affairs and keeping the Wild Wood safe from intrusions. At first he reluctantly allies himself with Viridian, but when the Lord of Evielan burns the wood out of spite when making his move against Unauwen, he and his people side with Dagonaut's forces until the conflict's resolution.
Adelbart
A drifter born in Dagonaut's realm who can't hold onto a steady job. Among his many adventures are a period spent among Tehalon's Men in Green and a stint among a gang of bandits who were later routed by Ristridin. A kind-hearted man, he helps Piak back to civilization and plays an important role as a guide and negotiator with the Men in Green in The Wild Wood.

References[edit]

  1. Gebauer, Larssen (December 7, 1999). "De Brief voor de Koning (book review)". Scholieren (in Dutch). Retrieved October 22, 2020.CS1 maint: Unrecognized language (link)
  2. 2.0 2.1 Burt, Kayti (December 7, 1999). "Is Netflix's Letter For the King Based on a Book?". Den of Geek. Retrieved October 22, 2020.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Van den Heuvel, Caroline (March 20, 2020). "I Want To Live To See The Series on Netflix". Een Vandaag (in Dutch). Retrieved January 19, 2019.CS1 maint: Unrecognized language (link)
  4. Bentley, Jean (March 20, 2020). "Letter For The King Is Based On A Book That Desperately Needed More Female Characters". SRefinery 29. Retrieved October 22, 2020.
  5. Allen, Nick (March 23, 2020). "Netflix's The Letter for the King Written with Medieval Cliches". Roger Ebert.con. Retrieved October 22, 2020.

Literary sources[edit]


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