The Poem of the Cid: Dual Language Edition Characters

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The Poem of the Cid: Dual Language Edition Summary & Study Guide Description

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Rodrigo Diaz de Vivar / El Cid Campeador

Rodrigo Diaz de Vivar is the hero and main character of The Poem of the Cid. He is referred to as Rodrigo Diaz as well as the Cid and the Campeador in different places in the poem. He is the husband of Doña Jimena, and the father of Doña Sol and Doña Elvira.

The Cid is required to leave his hometown and is banished to the part of Spain inhabited by the Moors. Since a section of the beginning of the poem is missing, it is unclear why the Cid is banished. There are hints in the poem that indicate the banishment was both unfair and unjustified. Although supporting or helping the Cid is forbidden by the king, a small band of followers travel with him. Together these forces begin to defeat the Moors that have settled in Spain and reclaim these portions of Spain for Christianity. As the Cid gains lands and wealth, he gradually regains the king's trust. In the end of the second cantar of the poem King Alfonso's sons ask for the Cid's daughters' hands in marriage. Once they are married, the couples move to Valencia to live with the Cid. The Cid is proud of his sons-in-law even though some of his men ridicule the sons for being cowards. When his sons-in-law mistreat his daughters and then leave them for dead, the Cid sends a message to King Alfonso asking for retribution. Although the Cid and his daughters receive repayment of the items and wealth given to the King's sons, they also gain retribution when the princes of Navarre and Aragon propose marriage to the Cid's daughters. These marriages result in the Cid being the ancestor for future generations of the kings of Spain.

The Infantes of Carrión

The Infantes of Carrión are King Alphonso's sons. Their names are Diego and Fernando González. They first decide to ask for the hands of the Cid's daughters in marriage because they believe these unions will improve their political standing. As the Cid's men in Valencia begin to realize how cowardly the King's sons actually are, they begin to make fun of them. This ridicule makes Diego and Fernando angry and they devise a plot to beat up and then desert the Cid's daughters as their way of getting revenge for the ridicule they have received. It is only during the judicial meetings that the two sons are distinguished between. It is in these meetings that it is learned that Diego is the son who ran into the yard and hid behind the wine press on the day when the lion is loose. Fernando is the son who hides behind the couch. Fernando is also the one who runs away from the Moor in battle, but then brags to others that he is the one who killed the Moor when it is actually Pedro Mudo who does so.

Minaya Álvar Fáñez

Minaya is the Cid's right hand man. Minaya is also one of the Cid's most valuable fighting men and one of his most devoted followers. Minaya helps the Cid prepare his battle plans and often takes the more dangerous positions in these battles. When the Cid sends gifts to King Alfonso, it is Minaya whom he sends with the gifts to ensure that the king receives them. During the wedding ceremonies between King Alfonso's sons and the Cid's daughters, Minaya is appointed as sponsor for the Cid's daughters. In this role, Minaya basically stands in for the Cid, who has given his daughters to King Alfonso to be married as the king desires.

King Alfonso

King Alfonso is the king who unfairly banishes the Cid from his home territory. As the Cid conquers Moorish territory and shares with King Alfonso the booty he has earned, the king slowly regains respect for the Cid and eventually lifts his banishment. Although the Cid does not approve the relationships, King Alfonso allows his sons to marry the Cid's daughters. When his sons abuse the Cid's daughters and leave them for dead, however, the king does insist that his sons pay for their misdeeds.

Martín Antolínez

Martín Antolínez is the man who supplies the Cid and his men with food despite the King's orders not to do so. The Cid allows Antolínez to trade two chests filled with sand, which he says should be portrayed as two chests of gold, for six hundred marks. Antolínez also gets thirty marks as a bonus for arranging this business deal. During the combats set up against King Alfonso's sons, Antolinez is slated to fight against Diego. Antolinez is the victor in this combat.

Muño Gustioz

Gustioz is the man whom the Cid sends to King Alfonso to inform the king how badly he and his daughters have been hurt by the actions of the King's sons. Gustioz is also the one who overhears the sons-in-law telling each other how badly they want to stay away from battle. Gustioz asks the Cid to allow the sons not to have to take part in the battle.

Don Jerome

Don Jerome is a cleric from France interested in the Cid's mission. He himself hopes to come to terms with the Moors. Don Jerome is given a bishopric in Valencia by the Cid. During a battle with the Moors from Morocco, Don Jerome leads the fighting. He surprises the other men with his good fighting techniques. Don Jerome is the priest who marries the Cid's daughters and the king's sons.

Abengalbón

Abengalbón is the Moorish governor of the city of Molina. He meets Minaya on the way to Valencia with the Cid's wife and daughters. Abengalbón entertains the group while they are in his town and even arranges to have the knights' horses reshod at no cost. Also the Moor whom the sons of King Alfonso plan to kill

Count García Ordóñez

García Ordóñez is the Cid's mortal enemy and one of King Alfonso's followers. García Ordóñez tries to stir up trouble between the King and the Cid. He also gives advice to the King's sons on the day of their combat against the Cid's knights. At one point when the Cid has sent the King a gift of horses, García Ordóñez makes a negative comment about the Cid and the King replies that the Cid serves the King better than García Ordóñez does.

The Cid's Daughters

Doña Elvira and Doña Sol are the Cid's two daughters. These two young girls are loved deeply by their father. These daughters are married to the sons of King Alfonso. The King's sons attempt to get revenge on some who have made fun of them by abusing the Cid's daughters and leaving them for dead. These two ladies are later married to the princes of Aragon and Navarre.

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