The story is about the adventures of Rudolf Rassendyll, an Englishman, who bore a resemblance to King Rudolf of Ruritania. After meeting the King who was imprisoned by his evil brother, Black Michael the Duke, he found himself impersonating the King in a plot to save the King and his throne. He also fell in love with Princess Flavia, the King's cousin and betrothed. The princess was also in love with Rudolf but she had to sacrifice their love by marrying the King for the sake of the country.

Friendship and loyalty
a. Rassendyll’s loyalthy to the King even though he barely knows the King. Refused Duke Michael’s bribery Colonel Sapt and Fritz are willing to die for their king. Josef dies protecting the unconscious king.

b. c.

Love and sacrifice
Love and sacrifice is an important theme in this novel. Princess Flavia and Rassendyll love each other very much. However, they sacrifice that love for the sake of King and the country. There is also the love that the loyal subjects, Colonel Sapt Fritz, have for their King. Despite the King's weaknesses, the men are even willing to die to save the King and his throne bec they love their King and country more than their lives. It is obvious that the characters in this novel are willing to give up a lot for the sake of what they believe is right.

Love and honour
Princess Flavia and Rassendyll sacrifice their love and personal happiness for the sake of Ruritania and its people.

Rassendyll, Sapt and Fritz are willing to sacrifice themselves to save the King and protect Ruritania from the treacherous Duke Michael.

Greed, treachery
Rupert of Hentzau wants money and power. He also wants Antoinette de Mauban, who is in love with Duke Michael. In order to get what he wants, he is willing to betray the Duke.

Sibling rivalry
Duke Michael’s greed for power and the urge to marry Princess Flavia makes him willing to kill his own brother.

Crime and punishment
The characters that conspired with Duke Michael in overthrowing the King were all perished. The Duke rallied his men to kidnap the King so that he could take over the throne. In the end, he was killed by his own man, Rupert of Henzau, during an argument over Antoinette de Mauban. Rupert had to flee the country. Finally, all the perpetrators were punished for their evil deed.

a. b. Rassendyll, Sapt and Fritz risk their lives in order to safe the King. Josef gives his life to save the King.

Good versus evil
Rassendyll, Sapt and Fritz represent the good while Duke Michael and Rupert of Hantzau represent the evil. Finally, the good triumphs over the evil.

Rassendyll visits Ruritania and meets the King.

The King is drugged and kidnapped. Rassendyll is persuaded to take his place at the coronation.


Rassendyll, Sapt and Fritz go to Zenda quietly to Zenda to rescue the King. They fight the Duke and his Famous Six. The Duke is killed by Rupert of Hentzau, one of his Famous Six.

The King is saved. Princess Flavia discovers the truth about the King and Rassendyll.

Rassendyll and Princess Flavia make an understanding that their duty must come before their own personal feelings. Rassendyll leaves Ruritania but returns every year to meet Fritz and sends a rose silently to Princess Flavia through Fritz.

1. Rudolf Rassendyll
Rich and has status: tells his sister-in-law that he has plenty of money and good social status. • Widely travelled and knowledgeable: being to many places. • Well-educated: graduated from a university and could speak French and German • Brave and courageous: willing to risk his life for the King • Honourable: sacrificing his love for Princess Flavia for the future of Ruritania. • Faithful: remains unmarried and was constant in his love for Princess Flavia by sending her a rose every year. • Intelligent: draws a successful plan to save the King. • Persistent and confident: relentlessly tries to save the King despite numerous drawbacks. • Good swordsman and fighter: able to defeat Duke Michael’s men.

2. King Rudolf
Irresponsible: does not take his duty seriously. Often away from the country. • Friendly and hospitable: able to make friend with Rudolf quickly • Carefree: has a sense of humour. • Weak: gives up easily and prefers to surrender to his brother than to fight him.

A drunkard: drinks wine and is often drunk especially on the night of his coronation.

3. Princess Flavia
Beautiful: Rassendyll and Duke Michael are crazy over her. Honourable and self-sacrificing: put her country and people before herself. That is why she is loved by her people. • Caring: concerns over the safety and welfare of Rassendyll. • Observant: notices that Rassendyll is different from the King. • Determined: goes to the Castle of Tarlenheim to see Rassendyll when he is hurt even though the Marshall forbids her to. • Constant: continues to keep in touch with Rudolf after married.
• •

4. Duke Michael
Cunning: plans to kill the King and blames it on someone else. Greedy for power: wants to be the King by any ways or means. Ruthless/Evil: willing to kill own brother to get what he wants. Influential: able to get the support of the poor and the King’s subjects.
• • • •

5. Colonel Sapt
Dedicated/Loyal: prepares to do everything to save the King even though he is aware of the King’s fault. • Intelligent/Wise: able to give good advice to both Rassendyll and the King. • Shrewd/Sharp-minded: able to speculate on Duke Michael’s plans and takes action to stop him. • Decisive: knows what has to be done and carries them out quickly. When the King is drunk and kidnapped, he quickly asks Rassendyll to impersonate the King. • Perseverance: insists Rassendyll to continue to impersonate the King and does not let sentiment stop him from doing his duty. • Calm/Level-headed: calm on the way to Strelsau for the coronation. He is also not overcome by emotion. He stops Rassendyll by revealing the truth to Princess Flavia even though he knows that they are in love.

6. Colonel Fritz
Brave & Loyal: willing to die for the King and does not betray the King’s secrets. • Dutiful: carries out Rassendyll and Sapt’s orders without question.

Lack of confident/Timid: worries about the plan of Rassendyll impersonating the King causes him to become ill and pale. • Faithful friend: meets Rassendyll every year and acts as a messenger for Rassendyll and Princess Flavia.

7. Rupert of Hentzau
Ruthless, cunning & selfish: willing to kill for money and power. Attack Rassendyll when he pretends to wanting to shake hands with him. • Disloyal/Traitor: offer to kill Duke Michael if Rassendyll can give him power, money and Antoinette de Mauban. In the end, he kills the Duke. • Insincere & cunning: pretend to be loyal to the Duke when he actually hates him. He pretends to shake hands with Rassendyll and then tries to kill him.

8. Antoinette de Mauban
Beautiful and rich widow: Duke Michael’s mistress and desired by Rupert of Hentzau. • Brave: tries to help Rassendyll rescue the King. • Helpful & Truthful: tells Rassendyll she was forced to write letter and that three men will be coming to kill him. • Faithful: loves Duke Michael even though she knows he desires Princess Flavia. After the Duke died, she is heartbroken and prefers to live a lonely life in Paris with memories of the Duke. • Determined: finds a way to stop the Duke from becoming king and hence marrying Princess Flavia.

Location: 1 . 2 . 3 . London Ruritania (a fictional country in Europe) Strelsau (capital of Ruritania)

the Old Town

• •

the New Town the King’s palace

4 .

• • • • •

the inn the hunting lodge forest Zenda Castle Castle of Tarlenheim

Time: 19th century Social Setting: aristocrats and the upper class.

3rd person’s point of view:
The story is told in the 3rd person’s pont of view where the autor is all-knowing. All the events were told from the narrator, Rudolf Rassendyll’s point of view.

a. b. c. …as white as a sheet…(p.15) …like a man in a dream…(p.18) …trembling like a leaf…(p. 18 & 46)

a. b. …the old lady who kept the inn was kindness it self. (p.6) Then we are brothers of the sword. (p.11)


I am the Devil’s own master. (p.70)

a. …a sea of faces round me … (p.18) …shower of roses …(p.21)


a. The wind carried the sound clearly to our ears. (p.28)

• • • • • • •

Honour comes before love Sacrifice and duty Patriotism/loyalty Friendship Have courage in the face of adversity Be selfless for the betterment of others Justice must be upheld


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