Good grief it’s been a while… but never fear, after a bit of an extended hiatus, I have returned with another Character Connections article! This particular connection has been one I’ve wanted to do for some time, as it concerns a few favorite figures of mine. Though both tend to take a secondary role in light of others around them, there is still much to be learned and discussed from both of their lives. This article focuses on none other than Jewel the Unicorn and Jonathan, friend of David.
A Noble Warrior
Perhaps the best similarity to start with is the status the two share. Jonathan was the son of King Saul, the first King of Israel. This establishes an air of nobility about him due to his royal status. Jonathan was also an accomplished warrior. The Bible records several of his military exploits, such as his attack on the Philistines detailed in 1 Samuel 14. Jewel shares these particular characteristics with Jonathan. As a Unicorn, he also brings a certain air of nobility with him. He is described as a “lordly beast” and as “one of the noblest and delicatest of beasts.” He also proves his skill as a warrior, having been described as saving Tirian’s life in battle, and can be seen fighting furiously in the Last Battle itself. Right off the bat, Jonathan and Jewel demonstrate certain similiarities.
Bonds of Friendship
However, there are other qualities that more firmly solidify the link between these two characters. One of these qualities is their friendship with a king. Jewel is described as the “dearest” friend of Tirian, the last king of Narnia. Jonathan was the friend of David, the man who became king of Israel after Saul. Of more interest, however, is the depth of these friendships. Tirian and Jewel are portrayed as “loving each other like brothers,” and time and time again throughout the course of the Last Battle, this depth is made evident. In the same way, Jonathan “loved [David] as himself.” He also demonstrates this depth through what he does for his friend.
A True Friend
The actions both Jewel and Jonathan take for the sake of their friends also demonstrate a few more similarities between the two of them. Both are willing to sacrifice for the sake of their friend, and in doing so show their deep sense of loyalty. While examples of these abound, for the sake of brevity I shall focus on only a few, and leave the rest for you to examine for yourself. Let’s start with Jewel. In the introduction of Tirian and Jewel, as has been mentioned elsewhere, we learn that “each had saved each other’s life in the wars.” Though no specifics are given, this does imply that Jewel willingly put himself at risk in order to defend the life of his friend. In the same strain, Jewel willingly puts himself on the line again in Chapter Three of The Last Battle, giving himself up alongside Tirian, saying that “‘If ever we loved one another, let me go with you now… if you are dead and if Aslan is not Aslan, what life is left for me?” Though he does not need to and is even told this by Tirian, Jewel puts himself on the line again, out of loyalty to his king and friend.
Jonathan too was willing to put himself at risk for his friend’s sake. A good example of this can be found in 1 Samuel 20. At this point, Saul is rather angry with David, and Jonathan attempts to discover his father’s feelings, so he can advise David how best to protect himself. When Saul tells Jonathan to send for David and bring him before Saul, because he wants to kill David, Jonathan asks him why, and what David as done. In response, “Saul hurled his spear at [Jonathan] to kill him. Then Jonathan knew that his father intended to kill David.” Knowing full well how his father might react to it, Jonathan then proceeds to advise David to leave. He risked things with his father in order to defend and protect his friend.
One final and somewhat more loose connection is the end of both Jewel and Jonathan’s stories. Jonathan dies in a fierce battle with the Philistines, a warrior for his country and what he believes in to the end. Jewel does much the same in the Last Battle. We know that he is “fighting furiously” during the battle, and though we do not see him again until he comes through the Stable Door, it would not be too terribly unreasonable to assume he died as well in the battle – he is among “all those who they had thought dead” in the company of those such as Roonwit the Centaur and the Talking Horses shot by the dwarfs. Though this may be a bit of a fuzzy similarity, I believe it still worth mentioning.
I conclude this article with yet another reminder that not everything between these two characters will connect. Jewel and Jonathan have their differences as well. But when it comes to examples of a true and strong friendship, these two display the characteristics of a loyal friend better than any other. May you all find such friends in your life, and remember the importance and value of such a strong friendship.