A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court Characters

Mark Twain

Characters Discussed

(Great Characters in Literature)

Hank Morgan

Hank Morgan, called the Connecticut Yankee, an ingenious man who is struck on the head during a quarrel in a New England arms factory in the year 1879. He awakes in England, in June, 528, and is taken prisoner. About to be burned at the stake on the twenty-first of June, he remembers that there was a solar eclipse on that day. By prophesying the eclipse, he saves his life and discredits Merlin. Later, he is named “The Boss” and decides to raise the status of the common people through a variety of programs and innovations to be implemented over the next several years. His innovations include schools, a telephone system, soap, and gunpowder. He points out to King Arthur the grave injustices of the feudal system while accompanying him on a tour of his realm. He marries Alisande. When their little daughter becomes ill, he takes her to France to recuperate. While he is away, the church orders that all of his improvements in England be destroyed. When he returns, he destroys some of his equipment so that it cannot be used, and he undertakes an apocalyptic war with the knights. Merlin casts a spell on him that will cause him to sleep for thirteen hundred years.


Clarence, a foppish page who becomes Morgan’s chief assistant in his efforts to modernize the land and improve the lot of the common people.

King Arthur

King Arthur, a kind and courageous ruler who does not realize the inequities that exist in the social structure of his kingdom. He is killed in a battle with Sir Launcelot over Queen Guenever. His death is the signal for the church to move against and destroy the social progress brought about by Morgan’s democratic innovations.

Sir Kay

Sir Kay, the seneschal who first captures Morgan.

Sir Sagramour la Desirous

Sir Sagramour la Desirous, who challenges Morgan to a joust and is aided by Merlin, until Morgan kills him.


Merlin, the court sorcerer whose magic power cannot match Morgan’s nineteenth century knowledge. After Morgan supplants him, Merlin plots his revenge.


Alisande, also called Sandy, a damsel whom Morgan helps and whom he finally marries.


Hello-Central, their daughter, whose convalescence in France gives the church a chance to unite feudal power and destroy Morgan’s power.