The Lady of the Green Kirtle

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Bio Info

Titles: The Lady of the Green Kirtle, the Queen of the Deep Realms, the Queen of the Underland

Age: Unknown

Species: One of the Northern witches

Home: Underland

Physical Description: In her serpent form, she is great, shining, and green as poison; in her human form, she is a very beautiful woman, tall and graceful, and always dressed in green

Tools: A mandolin and magical green powder

First Appearance: The Silver Chair, Ch. 4 (1953)


Appearances

~ The Silver Chair ~ (1953)

One spring morning Prince Rilian and his mother the Queen (the daughter of Ramandu) go out to the woods for a picnic. After awhile, the Queen grows tired and lies down to rest. While she is sleeping, a great green serpent comes out of the undergrowth and bites her on the hand, killing her with its poison. Rilian rides back to the forest again and again to avenge his mother, but never finds the worm. One day while he is searching, he encounters the most beautiful woman he has ever seen. She is dressed all in green and does not speak to him. Drinian, Caspian's trusted councillor and friend, rides out one day with Rilian to see the green Lady. She beckons to Rilian but disappears when she sees Drinian. The next day, the Prince does not return to the castle; the green Lady has captured him. She is not seen in Narnia again, but every knight who goes looking for Rilian disappears. It is assumed that she captures and destroys them. When Jill, Eustace, and Puddleglum meet the Lady of the Green Kirtle on the road, she tells them of the comforts of Harfang, home of the Gentle Giants, in an attempt to distract them from their mission. She tells the children to say to the Giants that "She of the Green Kirtle salutes them by you, and has sent them two fair Southern children for the Autumn Feast." As it is the custom of the Gentle Giants to eat humans at their Autumn Feast, it is clear that the green Lady is trying to have them killed. When she discovers that Puddleglum and the children have freed Rilian from his enchantment, the green Lady attempts to enchant all of them. She throws magic powder into the fire and plays her mandolin while speaking gently, trying to convince them that the sun, Narnia, and even Aslan do not exist and that they have only made these things up. When Puddleglum stamps on the fire, the Witch's enchantment is broken. This enrages her and she transforms into her serpent form to kill them all. Rilian, Puddleglum, and Eustace succeed in slaying her.


About the Lady of the Green Kirtle

The green Lady possesses all the characteristics of the serpent whose form she takes. She is beautiful but deadly, fair but deceptive, sweet but poisonous. Her main tactic is enchantment, and she plays on the weaknesses of her victims. With Rilian, she uses her form of a beautiful woman to deceive him. With Eustace and Jill, she uses charm and wit to tempt them into danger. Though they are both Northern witches, the Lady of the Green Kirtle is far more subtle and cunning than the White Witch of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Even her plans of total physical domination over Narnia include the deception of using Rilian as a figurehead. The Silver Chair is a fitting symbol of the green Lady’s enchantments; it gives way easily beneath Rilian's sword just as her enchantments break under Puddleglum's honest words.


Quotes

  • "Good day, t-r-r-avellers. Some of you are young pilgrams to walk this rough waste." (SC, Ch. 6)
  • "I have no memory of that meeting. But we often meet our friends in strange places when we dream. And unless all dreamed alike, you must not ask them to remember it." (SC, Ch. 12)
  • "You have seen lamps, and so you imagined a bigger and better lamp and called it the sun. You've seen cats, and now you want a bigger and better cat, and it's to be called a lion." (SC, Ch. 12)
  • "There is no Narnia, no Overworld, no sky, no sun, no Aslan. And now, to bed all. And let us begin a wiser life tomorrow. But first, to bed; to sleep; deep sleep, soft pillows, sleep without foolish dreams." (SC, Ch. 12)
  • "What are you doing? Dare to touch my fire again, mud-filth, and I'll turn the blood to fire inside your veins." (SC, Ch. 12)


Portrayals

  • Joanna Myers: Focus on the Family Radio Theater, 1999 – 2002


  • Barbara Kellerman: BBC TV series, 1988 – 1990







  • Frances Tomelty: BBC Radio Tales of Narnia
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