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As the Evil Chancellor is plotting to control the kingdom by usurping power, the Good Chancellor serves his kingdom or nation with utmost fervour. He follows the King's orders to the letter if the king is noble, and he tries to mitigate the suffering of his people if the king's intentions are of the bad kind. Rarely would he be seen actively opposing the King's actions, since as a Lawful Good person, he must not let ideas like rebellion or jealousy get in the way of running the kingdom in the king's name. This often does not sit well with some rebels, who sees him as a moderate who must lose his head for being a supposed Yes-Man to the king they want on a pike.

When meeting the heroes, he, not the king, is usually the true person who has information about the situation at hand. The king may know of the secrets, but the Chancellor knows the best answer for them.

In terms of the ranks of Authority Tropes, the tropes that are equal are The Caligula, Evil Chancellor, Standard Royal Court and Deadly Decadent Court. The next step down is The Brigadier. The next steps up are The Evil Prince, Prince Charming, Prince Charmless, Warrior Prince, The White Prince, The Wise Prince, and all Princess Tropes.

Examples of The Good Chancellor include:



  • General Afir in Mom and Dad Save The World. He is notable in that, while his evil boss (along with everyone else on the planet) is an idiot, he's reasonably competent and isn't all that interested in destroying the Earth.
  • The Grand Vizier in The Golden Voyage of Sinbad has taken over the running of the city since the death of the old caliph and wears a golden mask to hide a face hideously scarred by fire. He is also, however, brave, noble and wise, and a true companion to Sinbad throughout the adventure.


  • In The Lord of the Rings, the Stewards of Gondor have as their proudest boast that they never made themselves kings, and ruled the city strictly in the name of the King until an heir to the throne returned. Even Denethor, as crazy as he was, never tried to claim the throne.
    • It is implied that Denethor was The Good Chancellor until brought down by his Fatal Flaw. Not perfect but he did care for his people.
    • The Rivan Warders, always named Brand, are a deliberate homage to this in David Eddings's Belgariad.
  • In the original Arabian Nights stories, Jafar, vizier to the Caliph Harun al-Rashid, is portrayed as one of these.
  • In Interesting Times, Twoflower ends up as the Prime Minister of the Agatean Empire, replacing an evil chancellor, despite not knowing what to do. Discworld runs on narrativium (the implication is that someone who did know about it would become evil), but luckily Twoflower is Wrong Genre Savvy: he thinks he's in a heroic fantasy, not a Crapsack World satire.
    • He does end up betraying his monarch, but he has a very good reason for that: if he doesn't, there is a very large risk that the world will end.
  • The Enchanted Forest Chronicles: Willin the elf. He's perhaps overly fond of tradition and ceremonies--he insists on referring to the king as "Your Majesty" even in private, and his greatest pleasure is organizing elaborate formal occasions--but he's fiercely loyal and keeps the castle administration running smoothly.
  • In L. Frank Baum's Oz books, the Scarecrow takes up this position for Ozma.
    • Kaliko was this to the Nome King for some time until Ruggedo was dethroned and Kaliko Offered the Crown in his place. He was portrayed as much more competent than his boss and consistently had the best interests of his kingdom at hear, although aside from one Pet the Dog moment towards Betsy, he was pretty neutral towards the heroes.
  • In Robert E. Howard's King Kull stories, Kull's vizier Tu fits this trope, helping the mighty but savage warrior navigate the dangerous complexities of royal tradition and Valusia's Deadly Decadent Court.
  • The various Hands of the King in A Song of Ice and Fire all seem to be this. Jon Arryn and Ned Stark work very hard to support the rule of King Robert, while Tyrion and Tywin did the same for Joffrey. The only possible exception is the aforementioned Tywin, who helped depose the mad King Aerys, but only after he'd been sacked.
  • Paul Kidd's Talking Animal novel The Fangs of Kaath, has the Grand Vizier of the Kingdom of Osra who is seemingly the only good hearted member of the court outside Prince Raschid. In fact, given that the Shah is callously indifferent to his own son, the Vizier is effectively much more a father to the naive prince than his biological one. Even Raschid's love, the cynical Sandhri, is the first to defend the Vizier when Raschid suspects him of jailing her without cause. When the villains magically drive him to his death, Raschid learns he is singled out for an inheritance, but his only request is the honor of carrying his beloved friend's ashes to his tomb at the funeral.
  • Just about every First Counselor or person of equivalent rank is this in the Safehold series. Largely because the rulers of Safehold's kingdoms are typically smart enough to get good people into the position and both ruler and chancellor are concerned for their kingdom's well being.

Live Action Television

  • Babylon 5 had Chancellor Malaki, a dedicated servant to Centauri Emperor Turhan. Lord Refa and the other warmongering nobles assassinated Malaki in the wake of Emperor Turhan's death because they wanted to put their own puppet on the throne, and they knew that there was no way Malaki would allow a psychotic megalomaniac like Cartagia (the puppet in question) to reach the throne. In the end, of course, they would have been better off keeping Malaki and killing Cartagia...
  • In I, Claudius (and in history), there is Narcissus and Claudius' other freemen. They might or might not count as evil (they were ruthlessly protective of their man, after all), but they were loyal to Claudius.
  • In Tin Man Ambrose is all over this trope and has the exact same position in the Ozian court as his Scarecrow counterpart. When the Mooks march into the Queen's garden, he literally stands between them and his Queen, ready to die for her. Of course, is isn't killed, but he is given a alchemical lobotomy and tossed into the wild, taking the name "Glitch." His loyalty and service to the Queen is one of the very few things he will never forget.
  • Police Commissioner Frank Reagan in Blue Bloods is a very good example of this. He is sternly incorruptible and has an air of gravitas that reminds one of an idealized Roman Magistrate.
  • Borusa was this for one story (despite not legally being chancellor because there was no one around to actually appoint him). He did such a good job of it that by the time we next see him, he's President, but shortly after that he fits another trope entirely.

Religion And Mythology

  • Joseph, from the book of Genesis in The Bible.
  • Chinese myth has a few, but two stand out: Zhuge Liang (courtesy name Kong Ming) from the semi-historical Romance of the Three Kingdoms and Jiang Ziya from the similarly semi-mythological Fengshen Yanyi, aka "Creation of the Deities".

Tabletop Games

  • Archduke Norris in Traveller.
  • In one sample campaign in GURPS Arabian Nights, there is an NPC whom everyone thinks is an Evil Chancellor but is really a Good Chancellor.
    • There's also a description of how to make a good vizier in the character creation section, but with a caveat that the Evil Grand Vizier is an expected trope of the genre...
  • In the past of Warhammer 40,000, Malcador the Sigillite. The Emperor's right-hand man and regent when away from Terra, he is the greatest politician, administrator, and (non-Physical God) human psyker of all time, as the Emperor is the greatest everything else.

Video Games

  • In Fallout 3, Scribe Rothchild can be seen as the Good Chancellor to the Lyon's Pride. He is the one who knows about the nitty gritty details of fighting the Enclave.
    • Senior Council Member McClure served in most regards as this to First Citizen Lynette of Vault City in Fallout 2. He is one of the most prominent politicians of Vault City, behind only the First Citizen herself. He is also much less bigoted, and more willing to listen to reason. It is publically known that he butts heads with her repeatedly, though.
  • Magistrate Lasselle in Star Ocean Till the End of Time. He's generally a jerk, but only has the kingdom's best interests in mind.
  • There are two in Chrono Trigger, but they're both kidnapped and replaced with an evil doppelganger.
  • Apus Major in Dragon Quest IX. Although Zenus and Celestria are the two technical leaders of the Celestrians, they have long since disappeared. Apus Major leads the Celestrians in their stead, but fortunately he is extremely loyal to the gods and a generally fair-minded ruler.
  • Although he's part of a board of directors instead of a royal court, Reeve Tuesti of Final Fantasy VII fits this role to a T. He struggles for a while between following orders and doing what's best for the people of his city and the world at large, and eventually chooses to be on the side of the good guys.
  • Ocato in The Elder Scrolls, but particularly in Oblivion, where he actually plays a role bigger than being mentioned or just showing up in a short cutscene with no lines. The fact that the (good) Emperor spends the entire game dead in Uriel's case or not actually taken the throne and later becoming an avatar in Martin's probably helps.
  • While he's technically the seneschal of Vigil's Keep, Varel functions as this trope in the Awakening expansion for Dragon Age: Origins. Prior to the start of the story, Varel was imprisoned by Arl Rendon Howe for attempting to counteract the worst of his lord's atrocities. When the Grey Wardens are awarded the arling of Amaranthine, he is re-appointed as seneschal and is a helpful ally.
  • The Chancellor of Figaro, in Final Fantasy VI, seems to be this in the few appearences he makes.
  • Sabato from Shining the Holy Ark was the most trusted royal adviser before Evil Chancellor Rilix turned up. While still loyal to the king, who is making increasingly odd decisions, he helps/manipulates the main characters to save the kingdom.

Real Life

  • Imhotep (believed to have lived between 2660 and 2600 BC), Chancellor to King Djoser of the Egyptian Third Dynasty, and was the first engineer, architect, and physician known to history by name. He was such a respected figure in Ancient Egypt he was deified and considered a god after his death, something usually reserved only to the Pharaohs.
  • During the Cultural Revolution in China, Zhou Enlai, the Premier of the PRC and widely considered to be Mao's Number Two, used his authority to save artists, intellectuals, and ancient treasures from the blood-thirsty Red Guards.
  • Henry VIII's Lord Chancellor Thomas More might, or might not, be an example. He was canonized as a saint by the Catholic Church for his refusal to ratify his king's breach with Catholicism, but he is regarded by some non-Catholics as a monster for his persecution of heretics when his king was still a Catholic.
  • Maio of Bari, the 'amiratus amiratorum' ('emir of emirs' or 'admiral of admirals') and Chancellor of Sicily in the 1150s, was either a Good Chancellor or an Evil Chancellor, depending on who you listen to. According to the mysterious chronicler known only as Hugo Falcandus, Maio made public speeches to the effect that if Sicily's king, William I, ordered anything barbarous or cruel, Maio would countermand the orders - making him a Good Chancellor. Amusingly, Falcandus uses these supposed speeches to illustrate that Maio was actually an Evil Chancellor, grasping after the king's power.
  • The "Duke of Zhou" is practically a mythic figure out of Chinese history. He lived during the Early Zhou Dynasty and acted as steward to the imperial throne, stepping down after the emperor came of age despite his renown at court and the accepted fact that he could have usurped the throne with literally no difficulty and established his own dynasty. Confucius and nearly every Chinese historian and philosopher since have sung his praises for this expounding upon him as the perfect statesman.
  • Konrad Adenauer, the Badass Grandpa chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany from 1949 to 1963. He led Germany through the postwar reconstruction, beat down both Fascist and Communist threats, brought Germany into world politics, and restored German prosperity in the Economic Miracle.