|Also Known As:|| Queen Morgause of Essetir|
Sister (by Morgana)
|Family:|| Morgana (Half-Sister) |
Vivienne (Mother, disappeared)
Gorlois (Step-Father) †
|Affiliation:|| Morgana Pendragon |
Cenred (betrays and takes his throne) †
Knights of Camelot
Morgause was the eldest daughter of Vivienne - who was also the mother of Morgana, thus making Morgause and Morgana maternal half-sisters. She was a skilled warrior, a powerful sorceress and a High Priestess of the Old Religion.
Morgause was the half-sister of Morgana Pendragon; it is currently unknown if she had any other siblings, however this is more on the unlikely side. Morgause was born into one of the noble houses of Camelot, the house of Gorlois. Her mother was Vivienne, the wife of Gorlois. It is implied that Morgana's mother Vivienne is also Morgause's mother and they both inherited their magical powers from her. For some unknown reason, Gaius was asked to smuggle the infant Morgause out of Camelot and give her to the High Priestesses of the Old Religion. Gaius did so, and swore an oath to never reveal his actions to anyone while Uther was led to believe that Morgause had died, also due to an unknown reason. Morgause studied magic for many years, eventually becoming a very powerful sorceress, acting to take her revenge on King Uther Pendragon.
First Visit to CamelotEditMany years after her birth, Morgause returned to Camelot, now a grown woman. Dressed as a knight, she killed five guards to get into the castle, where she revealed herself to the court and challenged Arthur Pendragon to a duel. Despite the fact that he did not wish to fight Morgause, Arthur agreed. The next day, Morgause defeated Arthur in their duel, but left him alive so that he would accept her next challenge. She also introduced herself to her half-sister, Morgana, though she kept their relationship a secret. She also gave her a bracelet with magical healing powers to relieve her of her nightmares, saying it belonged to her mother, thus implying that it was also Morgana's mother. Gaius found the bracelet and informed Uther that only Morgana's half-sister would be able to wear such a bracelet besides herself, revealing Morgause's true fate and admitting to Uther that he made a oath which he was only breaking now because he feared Morgause's intentions.
As she was leaving Camelot, Morgause told Arthur that she knew something about his mother, giving Arthur incentive to come see her. Despite the fact that his father tried to prevent him from leaving, Arthur went to meet her, accompanied by Merlin. When they reached her, Morgause told Arthur to place his head on a chopping block so she could kill him. He did so, and Morgause told him the whole thing had been a test of his character. As his reward, Morgause used her magic to summon either Ygraine's spirit or the illusion of Ygraine, who told Arthur the secret of his birth; he had been conceived by magic because Uther had wanted an heir and as a result she had died. Enraged at his father for his presumed selfishness and without knowing all the details, Arthur returned to Camelot and attempted to kill Uther. But just as he was about to deal the fatal blow, Merlin burst into the hall and convinced him that Morgause had tricked him. Morgause was upset that her plans had failed while her deceit further cemented Arthur's mistrust of magic.
PersonalityEditMorgause was highly intelligent, astute, powerful, arrogant, vengeful, and Machiavellian. Her manipulative and carefully scheming ways were shown by her use of Arthur's curiosity about his mother to try to turn him against Uther. She also used Morgana's hatred of Uther and her vulnerability to persuade her to join her evil plots. Morgause was so consumed with hatred and rage as a result of the persecution of sorcerers by Uther that she would stop at almost nothing to destroy him completely. Morgause was largely callous and cold towards others, viewing most of them as tools to be used to gain power and disposed of when they served no further use. She was contemptuous of almost all others and, though she evidently cared about Morgana, she was more dominant in their relationship, although this changed a little during Morgana's first reign as Queen when they treated each other more like equals.
Despite her ruthless nature, Morgause did have a softer side. When she found out Morgana was dying, she abandoned her attempt on Uther's life in order to save her half-sister. She later attempted to kill Merlin for poisoning Morgana and also acted as a confidante to her sister. Morgana appeared to be the only other person for whom Morgause had any real affection. Though she was well acquainted with King Cenred, who was clearly attracted to her, Morgause treated him as a puppet and kept him interested with her looks and charm. She had no real affection for him, though, and her treacherous nature was exemplified when she had him killed. Morgause was very confident in her own abilities, passing straight into Camelot and killing five guards on the way before challenging Arthur to a duel. She also seemed confident that she could defeat him, which she did. Morgause also arrogantly informed Merlin that she wouldn't see him again as she prepared to kill him and was caught off guard by the arrival of Gaius which resulted in her defeat.
AbilitiesEditMorgause was an extremely powerful sorceress, and after the death of Nimueh, she replaced her as Camelot's most dangerous enemy. She was able to summon an apparition of Arthur's mother, and later reawaken the Knights of Medhir as well as put the whole of Camelot into a deep sleep; the only beings immune to this spell were Kilgharrah and Morgana, but the latter was only immune because she was the source o the magic. Morgause also demonstrated the ability to magically transport herself and Morgana by forming a whirlwind around them, and was able to conjure a massive column of fire that would have killed Arthur if Merlin had not stopped her. She easily overpowered Merlin when he attempted to spill blood out of the Cup of Life, slamming him against the wall with a non-verbal spell, and it was only because of the intervention of Gaius that Merlin managed to defeat her. However it should be noted that Morgause merely caught Merlin off-guard rather than defeating him in direct conflict, making it unclear how the two would compare if they had to fight each other directly using their magic.
When Morgause captured Merlin, she used a powerful enchantment on his chains to the point that he was unable to break free by using his magic. Morgause was also capable of telepathy as she used it to contact Morgana on one occasion. It is possible that her magic extends to a form of mind reading, as she was quick to guess at Merlin's hidden reasons for sacrificing everything for Arthur. However, she may instead be skilled at interpreting body language, particularly since she was forever ignorant of his magic. It is possible that Morgause also had the gift of a seer, since she possessed the magical bracelet before giving it to Morgana, her half sister.
In addition to being extremely powerful in magic, Morgause was also an exceptionally skilled swords woman, being able to kill five Camelot guards with ease, and was the only known person besides Lancelot, Helios, and possibly Morgana who has managed to defeat Arthur in combat. Arthur claimed this was because of his chivalry since he disarmed her at one point in the duel but then allowed her to pick up her sword. This was the only time Morgause displayed her skill with a sword and just like Morgana she relied mainly on magic to fight her enemies later in her life.