Arthur Kirkland
アーサー・カークランド
UK.png
Name: United Kingdom (aka Great Britain or England)
Human Name: {{{human}}}
Alternative Spelling(s): N/A
Age: 23
Gender: Male
Birthday: Unknown
Hair Color: Blond
Eye Color: Green
Height: 175 cm (5'7 ft est)
First Appearance (volume): {{{firstvolume}}}
First Appearance (strip): {{{firstcomic}}}
First Appearance (anime): Episode 01
Japanese VA: Noriaki Sugiyama, Sho Sudo (Young UK, drama CD "Prologue")
English VA: N/A


Arthur Kirkland is a main character in the popular anime and manga series, Axis Powers Hetalia. He is the characterisation of England and also represents the overall, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland ( イギリス, Igirisu, or simply UK for short), and is part of the Allied Forces.

Appearance

He has short blond hair, green eyes, and dresses in a green military uniform. His eyebrows are rather thick and prominent, a trait that is shared by his younger brother Peter, as well as Australia and Hong Kong.

Personality And Interests

Arthur used to be a pirate and tormented Antonio where he stripped his status as a powerful nation. Now, he is a gentleman, if a cynical and sharp-tongued one - and prone to rough speech. He is said be to be horrible at cooking, which has caused America to have bad taste in food. He is also apparently the 'king of losing things'. He is a strong believer of spirits/ghosts, faeries/fairies, magic, and other fantasy related things and has a list of spiritual residents and ghost tours. He can see and interact with beings of supernatural origin, not just fey and unicorns from his own land but spirits like kappa from Japan. Behind his cynical realistic view on the world, he is deep down a romanticist.

It is mentioned at least two times in the series that Arthur has older brothers (one representing Scotland, the others presumably Wales and/or Ireland), who regularly bullied him in their childhood.

According to the author's notes, Arthur's interests includes embroidery, craftsmanship, reading literature, rock music and giving scathing criticisms to Alfred's movies. "He also have very beautiful legs." - Francis Bonnefoy

Relationships

Francis Bonnefoy (France)

Main Article: Francis Bonnefoy

Despite both being members of the Allied forces, Arthur and Francis have a deep-rooted rivalry between them. While they can be seen to constantly argue with each other over the littlest things, they appear to have a level of respect for each other and are quick to team up with each other if a third party should enter the argument. Francis tried to marry Arthur to save himself once, even though neither of them really wanted it. In a strip focusing on Arthur's childhood, he is often picked on by a pre-teen Francis, who scoffs at him for not growing his hair long - and when Arthur's long hair turns out a mess, Francis teases him by saying he'll cut it into a 'cool' style - by cutting it back to the style he had before.

Alfred F. Jones (America)

Main Article: Alfred F.Jones

Alfred was discovered as a small child by Arthur, who adopted him and raised him as his younger brother. Arthur always drops by at Alfred's place whenever he finds time, but he always needed to return to Europe after his visits, which makes Alfred very sad. Only Alfred is capable of liking or tolerating Arthur's terrible cooking. At times he wants to complain about it but changes his mind once he sees Arthur being very happy. Arthur didn't only cook for Alfred, but he gave him toys and clothes as well. They also sleep together whenever Alfred can't sleep after reading or watching something related to ghosts. Arthur easily falls asleep however, leaving Alfred still frightened.

Then, the Revolutionary War, also known as the American War of Independence, came. Near the end of the war, Arthur gave up, not being able to shoot Alfred when he had the opportunity. Alfred declared his independence and split from Arthur. That event had always made Arthur heartbroken (Arthur states that someone left him heartbroken for centuries and it is assumed he refers to Alfred), especially when American Independence Day arrives.

During the World War, both Arthur and Alfred are part of the Allied Forces. Arthur quickly disagrees with the unusual or silly ideas that Alfred presents.

It's also implied that Arthur has a one-sided(?) crush on Alfred, seen in the Valentine Special when he blushed and looked shy while giving Alfred chocolate (even though Alfred had a whole bucket full of his own).

In The Anime

England in Episode 11

Arthur first appeared in Episode 01 where disagreed with Alfred's plan and later on began fighting with Francis before being stopped by Ludwig. Arthur briefly appears in Episode 06 with the rest of the Allies, as they spy on the Axis, and later roast marshmallows. In Episode 07, he gets irritated at Alfred for eating while speaking (of their plan to bring down the Axis). In Episode 08, Arthur attempts to feed the kidnapped Feliciano his cooking, but after he complains of the taste, the Allies send him back in a "FUCK" box. Arthur later manages to successfully capture Ludwig by kidnapping Feliciano again to use him as bait.

In Episode 09, Arthur and Alfred argue over the latter's plan at an Allied Forces meeting, and proceed to argue over each others' taste in food. After re-planning their tactics, Arthur decides which members of the Allies will take down each member of the Axis.

Arthur cameos in Episode 10 in Francis's series of flashbacks, first as a knight who manages to conquer France. He is then shown to have masterminded the defeat of Napoleon's army (by a pit trap), and later defeats Antonio's armada as a pirate. In Episode 11, after another Allied Forces meeting went sour, Arthur is cheered up by his "imaginary" friends.

In a flash-forward to 1956 in Episode 12, a war-torn Francis proposes to Arthur, but is rejected. Later in the same episode (and back in the WWII timeframe), Arthur is shown to be spying on the Axis.

After being defeated by Ludwig in Episode 13, Arthur attempts to get revenge by summoning the devil, but gets Ivan instead.

Episode 30 focuses on Arthur's visit to see Kiku after the Anglo-Japanese alliance of 1902.

In the anime, his hair is a more vivid yellow shade of blond, rather than the darker blond used in the manga illustrations.

Trivia

  • Before fans settled on the Kirkland rendering (which was more accurate from the katakana), some early fanworks referred to him as Arthur Clarkland.
  • He is referred to as United Kingdom (or UK) in most merchandise and in his character design on the official anime website. But in other instances, he is referred to as England, most notably in Gakuen Hetalia and the English-language preview for America's Cleaning Of The Storage. The Japanese word Igirisu means Britain but is sometimes used to refer to England (normally rendered as Ingurando in katakana or eikoku in kanji) in colloquial speech. He is commonly referred to with either name by fans, though England tends to be used to differentiate him from his brothers (that represent the other parts of the UK). A note by Hidekaz Himaruya confirms that Arthur would only be known as England to his brothers, while he would be known as UK to the others.
  • In some fanworks and official merchandise, he is referred to by his full nation name of The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
  • Although he's always called Igirisu in the manga and anime, historically, he would be known as simply England up until the 18th century, when The Kingdom Of Great Britain was formed, uniting both England and Scotland (The Act of Union of Wales and England had already taken place 1536-1543). In the early 19th century, Ireland was added, creating The United Kingdom Of Great Britain And Ireland. After Ireland split to declare itself independent in 1919, the Irish War Of Independence waged until 1922, when it became the Irish Free State. The northern half of Ireland would later rejoin the UK, while the southern half came to be known as The Republic Of Ireland.
  • Arthur has a genderswapped version of himself, minus the brows and now with twin pigtails and glasses. She has no official name but fans often refer to her as Igiko, which stands from Igirisu and the Japanese word for girl, ko, thus meaning England girl.
  • The name 'Arthur' is likely to be a reference to Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle, the author of the Sherlock Holmes series, who was famed for his obssession with fairies. It could also refer to the legendary King Arthur.
  • A UK character is actually first seen at the end of Hetalia: Chapter 1, however, his design was not yet completely finalized. He appears as a short-haired man with a UK label on his shirt.
  • Apparently he is modeled after the character Hikone Kalom from Himaruya's other webcomic Balyona Bombers and is the exact opposite of him.
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