Season 4 Episode 11

The Hunter's Heart

Aired Unknown Dec 10, 2011 on BBC



  • Trivia

    • Goof: When Gwen introduces herself to Helios, the South African coat of arms can be seen tattooed on Helios's left arm. The South African coat of arms was only introduced in April, 2000.

    • Merlin's floor runner 'Stumpy' can be seen standing and then walking behind Agravaine and Arthur during the banquet scene for his series 4 cameo.

    • Goof: Despite Agravaine stabs Eoghan, neither Gaius nor Sir Leon notice about it when they examine the body. Also, a stab wound to the abdomen would have produced a noticeable bleeding on the dead man's clothes, but they are clean when the body is turned over.

    • Just like it occurred with Mary Collins in episode 1x01 The Dragon's Call and Morgause in episode 3x08 The Eye Of The Phoenix, the deer's reflection in the mirror reveals the real person behind the enchantment (Gwen).

    • Arthur has known Agravaine since he was a child.

    • Goof: In the scene where princess Mithian and the knights of Nemeth arrive to Camelot, a sewer can be seen in the castle square.

    • Merlin refers to Arthur as "the once and future king". Gwen was referred to as "the once and future queen " in episode 2x02 The Once and Future Queen.

    • Goof: When Morgana blasts Gwen against a tree, Gwen falls on her left side and is rendered unconscious. However, when Morgana retrieves the ring from her neck, Gwen is laying flat on her back.

    • It is a tradition in Camelot to have a hunt during the Festival of Ostara.

    • Goof: The fire that Gwen makes is too small to raise the smoke column that alerts Morgana of her presence.

    • The kingdoms of Camelot and Nemeth have held a dispute over the lands of Gedref for years. The dispute is to be settled by forming an alliance through King Arthur and princess Mithian's marriage. However, Arthur breaks the engagement and gives up to such ancient claims offering the lands to princess Mithian and her descendants as a way to avoid war and to make amends for the grieve caused.

    • Goof: The length of the cord in which Gwen wears her engagement ring to Arthur is shorter in the first scene than later on in the episode.

    • Goof: Strawberries can be seen on Helios' table. However, strawberries were only first introduced in Europe in the 17th century.

    • Adetomiwa Edun (Sir Elyan), Eoin Macken (Sir Gwaine) and Tom Hopper (Sir Percival) appear in the episode although they have no lines.

  • Quotes

    • Merlin: I'm not saying it's inappropriate, you're the King, I'm not, it's your choice, no doubt. It could hardly be my choice what with me not being the King. But I do feel I have to say something because these clothes are only supposed to...
      Arthur: Merlin?
      Merlin: Yes, my Lord?
      Arthur: Could you do something for me?
      Merlin: Absolutely, whatever needs doing.
      Arthur: Could you, please... shut up!
      Merlin: Yes, I can do that. Of course I can. That's not a problem.
      Arthur: Now!

    • Arthur: My Lords, fellow knights, gentlemen. As you are all aware, Camelot's claim to the lands of Gedref has long been in dispute. Today I can announce that after many months of confidential negotiations, the kingdoms of Nemeth and Camelot have reached an agreement.
      (People murmur)
      Arthur: There is nothing to fear. It is a fair and honourable agreement that befits two great kingdoms. Furthermore, our friendship will be cemented by a union that cannot be broken, my hand in marriage to her Royal Highness, Princess Mithian.
      (People whisper and clap)
      Gaius: Smile!
      Merlin: He can't mean that.
      Gaius: And clap. Smile and clap.
      (Merlin smiles and claps, pretending)

    • (After Arthur has announced his wedding plans with Princess Mithian)
      Merlin: How come I didn't know any of this? How come you didn't say anything?
      Arthur: That's what confidential means, Merlin. Keeping it from blabbermouths like you.
      Merlin: You can't do this!
      Arthur: No. You're right, I can't. Oh, wait a second, I'm the King so I can.
      Merlin: But surely it's a little bit...
      Arthur: A bit what?
      Merlin: Soon?
      Arthur: What do you mean?
      Merlin: Well...
      Arthur: You mean Guinevere? I told you not to mention her name again.
      Merlin: Which is why I didn't.
      Arthur: How many times do I have to tell you? Guinevere made her choice. She betrayed me. Now she must take the consequences.
      Merlin: But...
      Arthur: But what?
      Merlin: Nothing.
      Arthur: That's right... nothing.
      Merlin: Except that you still love her!
      Arthur: You ever say anything like that again, and I swear you'll join her in exile forever!

    • Agravaine: Have you what I asked for?
      Eoghan: I... It was not so easy as I thought.
      Agravaine: I hope you haven't forgotten how much I have done for you.
      Eoghan: No, of course not, my Lord.
      Agravaine: Or how simple it would be for a man in my position to have you arrested? I should hate to see such a young life wasted.I cannot do it.
      Eoghan: I cannot betray my master's trust, my Lord, I'm sorry.
      Agravaine: You'd rather betray mine? (Laughs) Of course, I understand. You swore loyalty to your master, it's commendable. Now, come. Neither you nor I will say any more about it (Agravaine stabs Eoghan to death) Particularly you.

    • Morgana: I hope you're not going to tell me you've failed once again.
      Agravaine: I'm sure there'll be other opportunities in the future.
      Morgana: Camelot grows in power every day, Agravaine. If we don't act now, there will be no future. Particularly for you.
      Agravaine: It is not easy, my Lady. The plans for the siege tunnels have always been very well protected.
      Morgana: And yet you assured me you could bring them to me. Or were you exaggerating?
      Agravaine: No. Not at all. But it will take time...
      Morgana: Enough! A man of your standing can go wherever he pleases, Agravaine.
      Agravaine: You're not suggesting I take the risk myself? But if I should be caught...
      Morgana: Best not to be caught, then.

    • Helios: I was not mistaken. The filth of the pig-sty cannot disguise true beauty. Helios. I am only sorry we had to meet under such circumstances...
      Gwen: Guinevere. I suppose I must thank you for my life. The villagers were not so lucky.
      Helios: These are difficult times. I need new recruits and the youth of today are not always... enthusiastic. Who are you? From what family do you come?
      Gwen: I am no one.
      Helios: I find that hard to believe.
      Gwen: Nevertheless, it is true.
      Helios: No matter. I'm not concerned with where a person comes from, only with what they can become.

    • Arthur: Princess Mithian, you are most welcome.
      Princess Mithian: Thank you, Your Highness. I have heard much about you. And you are more handsome in person than reports suggested (Arthur falls silent) Are we to stay in this chill all day?

    • Helios: I want to know all about you.
      Gwen: There's not much to tell.
      Helios: Except how a beautiful woman ended up swilling out pigs in the middle of nowhere.
      Gwen: It's a long story.
      Helios: I have all night.
      Gwen: ...once they killed my family, I knew they would come after me. I had no choice but to flee. I travelled many months before I found someone willing to take me in. Helping with the pigs seemed a fair price for such charity.
      Helios: You have suffered much for one so young. But now those days are truly behind you.

    • Helios: Do you have the plans?
      Morgana: Not yet...
      Helios: That was our agreement, Morgana! Without them any attack on Camelot would be suicidal.
      Morgana: I hear your force is not yet up to strength.
      Helios: Preparations are nearly complete.
      Morgana: But not quite yet.
      Helios: Are you doubting me?
      Morgana: No more than you, me.
      Helios: I am sure we understand each other perfectly.

    • Morgana: Take care not to get too distracted, Helios, there is still much to do. Once I am crowned Queen of Camelot you may indulge yourself all you wish.
      Helios: I may keep you to your word.
      Morgana: I look forward to it.

    • Gaius: Are you going to sulk all day?
      Merlin: I'm not sulking.
      Gaius: You haven't said a word all morning.
      Merlin: I'm thinking.
      Gaius: You know how bad that is for you.

    • Merlin: It is Arthur's fate to marry Gwen.
      Gaius: If that's the case, then he will.
      Merlin: But am I supposed to do anything about it?
      Gaius: You don't think that's a little arrogant?
      Merlin: Yes. And no. I don't know. I don't know what to do any more.
      Gaius: You could start by eating your porridge.

    • Gaius: There is something here in his tunic. It's a letter from Odin's Court.
      Agravaine: Let me see. I must tell the King at once.

    • Agravaine: Young Eoghan was the mapmaker's apprentice. A good lad from a decent family.
      Arthur: Yet willing to sell his country's secrets for gold.
      Agravaine: And he had access to the city's most sensitive plans.
      Arthur: The location of the siege tunnels?
      Agravaine: I fear so, my Lord. And I don't need to tell you what an enemy could do with such plans.

    • Morgana: I hope you won't disappoint me once more, Agravaine?
      Agravaine: Plans to the siege tunnels of Camelot. Good as a key to the gates.
      Morgana: But a good deal more deadly (Uses magic to copy the plans) You have done well, Agravaine. Finally.

    • Merlin: (Attempting to distract Arthur from his conversation with Princess Mithian) Would you like more soup, Sire?
      Arthur: No, thanks.
      Merlin: Are you sure?
      Arthur: Merlin, you've asked me that three times now. Just... (Turning back to Princess Mithian) You were saying?
      (Merlin makes Arthur drop his soup)
      Arthur: Erm... sorry, I... erm...
      Princess Mithian: (Using her napking to wipe the soup off Arthur's clothes) No harm done.

    • Arthur: We are to have dancing and I hear that your jig used to be something to behold.
      Agravaine: 'Used' is the word, sire. Alas, I am not as nimble as I once was.
      Arthur: Nonsense.
      Agravaine: I do feel that dancing is best performed in youth and appreciated in age.

    • Arthur: I'm afraid the festival of Ostara will soon be upon us.
      Princess Mithian: Should I be worried?
      Arthur: It is a tradition in Camelot to have a hunt that day. But Merlin can arrange a tour of the city.
      Princess Mithian: A tour?
      Arthur: Some of the buildings go back many centuries.
      Princess Mithian: Arthur, I love hunting.

    • Arthur: Good night, Princess.
      Princess Mithian: (As Arthur is still holding her hand) If I may...?
      Arthur: Sorry (He lets go off her hand and she starts to leave) Mithian?
      Princess Mithian: Yes, my Lord?
      Arthur: I was thinking, perhaps...
      Princess Mithian: Yes?
      Arthur: You might like some breakfast?
      Princess Mithian: Breakfast?
      Arthur: Tomorrow. With me. A picnic. Somewhere. Nice. Somewhere nice.
      Princess Mithian: I look forward to it.
      Arthur: (To himself) Breakfast?! Rubbish thing to say.

    • Helios: Where did you get this?
      Morgana: The source is impeccable.
      Helios: If I'm to risk my men against Camelot, I need more than impeccable, Morgana.
      Morgana: The King's uncle and most trusted adviser, Lord Agravaine. I doubt you'll find a source more impeccable than that.
      Helios: Then it is only a matter of time. I will send word the moment our forces are at full strength.
      Morgana: Don't delay... the treaty with Nemeth will be sealed in days.

    • Morgana: Who is this woman?
      Helios: A serving wench I recently acquired, no more. Check the river.
      Morgana: (Recognizing Gwen's dress) Does this woman have a name?
      Helios: Guinevere.
      Morgana: Your appetite has betrayed you. She's no serving wench. We must find her. Now!

    • (Athur keeps changing his mind about the right spot to have the picnic, making Merlin carry the things from one place to the other)
      Princess Mithian: Don't be mean!
      Arthur: He doesn't mind, do you, Merlin? Besides, he needs building up. Look at him.
      Princess Mithian: Enough! (Picking up a basket) Thank you, Merlin, I'll do the rest.

    • Arthur: (Merlin uses magic to make Arthur burp) I'm sorry, I really don't know what came over me. I, er... (Burps again) I don't know what to say...
      (Princess Mithian burps long and loudly)
      (Both chuckle)

    • Helios: (About Gwen) She could be anywhere by now.
      Morgana: There is only one place she will go. To Camelot... and to Arthur.

    • Merlin: I don't know why I bother. I should leave him to it, let him make his own mistakes, see how he gets on without me. I should resign. I said, I should resign.
      Gaius: Quite so.
      Merlin: Gaius! You're supposed to say no, no, he needs you, even if he doesn't realise it.

    • Merlin: I have to go hunting. I hate hunting.

    • Princess Mithian: You're not a fan of hunting?
      Merlin: What sport is it where one side has dogs and spears and crossbows and the other nothing?
      Princess Mithian: You're not much of a fan of me either, are you? Come on, Merlin. I'd have to be a fool not to notice.
      Merlin: I'm sorry if I caused offence.
      Princess Mithian: I'm sure you have good reasons. One thing I've learned since being here is that Arthur values your opinion above almost all others... even if he'd be the last person to admit it.
      Merlin: You can say that again!
      Princess Mithian: I like him, Merlin, I really do. I didn't expect to, but... well, he's a lovable person, isn't he? Underneath it all. All I ask it that you give me a chance. Can you do that?
      Merlin: Yeah.
      Princess Mithian: Thank you.

    • Morgana: Gwen. How nice to see you again. You'd forgotten I've hunted in these woods since I was a child.
      Gwen: Leave me alone. You've already done enough harm.
      Morgana: You misjudge me. We were friends once, were we not? I only wish to help. The path to Camelot is that way.
      Gwen: You think I'd ever trust you again?
      Morgana: True... I might be lying. But perhaps not.
      Gwen: I know these woods too (She starts running away)
      Morgana: Truth is, it doesn't matter which way you go (Morgana blasts Gwen against a tree, rendering her uncosncious. Morgana removes Gwen's engagement ring from her neck and throws it to the ground. Huntsmen's horns can be heard) You wish to see your beloved Arthur again, and so you shall (Morgana enchants Gwen, turning her into a deer).

    • Merlin: Maybe we should call it a day.
      Arthur: Nonsense, we've barely begun.
      Merlin: Not much point in hunting if there's nothing to hunt.
      Arthur: We could always give you a five minute head start, Merlin.

    • (Arthur has found Gwen's engagement ring on the ground)
      Princess Mithian: Have you found the trail? My Lord? My Lord? My Lord?
      Arthur: There'll be no more sport today.
      Princess Mithian: I didn't take you for a poor loser, Sire.

    • Merlin: How are you, Gwen?
      Gwen: I'm all right! I think. What are you doing here?
      Merlin: You were injured.
      Gwen: Yes, I remember now. Where's Morgana?
      Merlin: She was here?
      Gwen: She enchanted me. She and the Southrons and Helios plan to attack Camelot.
      Merlin: They'd never succeed.
      Gwen: They must know that. They have help. Agravaine gave them plans of the siege tunnels under the citadel.
      Merlin: Agravaine? We must tell Arthur.

    • Gwen: I can never see Arthur again.
      Merlin: He wants to see you.
      Gwen: It cannot be. Not after I betrayed him. You go. Tell him of the danger.
      Merlin: Gwen, if you stay here...
      Gwen: I have what I deserve. Go! Hurry! Go!

    • Merlin: Sire? I need to talk to you.
      Arthur: I told you I didn't want to be disturbed!
      Merlin: It is important. Very important.
      Arthur: You defy me? You defy your King?
      Merlin: Yes! I do! You know I would not do so unless the situation was grave.

    • Arthur: (To Merlin, about Agravaine) The idea is preposterous. I've known my uncle since I was a child. I refuse to believe that he would ever betray Camelot.

    • Arthur: (To Merlin) One more word out of you and I swear I will send you into exile.

    • Arthur: How can I love someone who's betrayed me? It doesn't make any sense. Yet how can I make myself love another? Tell me that.
      Merlin: If there is nothing else you require, perhaps I could...
      Arthur: I don't know what to do. I have no idea... what to do. What should I do, Merlin?
      Merlin: All I know, my Lord, is that no one would sacrifice more for Camelot or you than Gwen.
      Arthur: And if that were so?
      Merlin: You must do what your heart tells you, Sire.
      Arthur: What if I don't know what that is?
      Merlin: I think you do. Is there anything else, Sire?
      Arthur: You may go. Thank you, Merlin.

    • (After Arthur has decided to call off the wedding)
      Arthur: Princess? Forgive me.
      Princess Mithian: The time for words is over, Sire.
      Arthur: I understand. And it's for this reason that I hereby offer you and your descendants all the disputed land of Gedref.
      Princess Mithian: You would give up your ancient claims?
      Arthur: I have no desire for war... or to grieve you any more than I already have.

    • Princess Mithian: Tell me... who is it that trumps a princess?
      Arthur: No one. And everyone.
      Princess Mithian: What great family is she from?
      Arthur: None. She's the daughter of a blacksmith.
      Princess Mithian: And for her you would risk your kingship, your kingdom?
      Arthur: Without her they're worth nothing to me.
      Princess Mithian: I would give up my own kingdom to be so loved.

    • Arthur: Have I been a fool to give up so much for a woman who betrayed me, a woman I might not see again?
      Merlin: You will see her again. You did the right thing, my Lord as I knew you would.
      Arthur: And how could you be so sure?
      Merlin: Because you're Arthur, you're noble, the Once and Future King.
      Arthur: Doomed to be a bachelor. What's the point of loving someone who cannot be found?
      Merlin: Gwen will be found. You will find each other.
      Arthur: Are you really wise, Merlin, or just a prating fool? I can no longer tell (Merlin trips on Arthur's chamber pot) As if there was ever any doubt.

  • Notes

    • Also Known As:
      France: La Princesse de Nemeth (meaning 'The Princess From Nemeth').
      Germany: Des Jägers Herz.
      Italy: Una Sposa Per Re Artù (meaning 'A Wife For King Arthur).
      Poland: Serce �owcy.
      Portugal: O Coraçao Do Caçador.

    • International Air Dates:
      Australia: December 25th, 2011 on Ten.
      Canada: March 18th, 2012 on Space.
      France: France: April 6th, 2012 on Canal + Family.
      Germany: March 14th, 2012 on Super RTL.
      Italy: September 24th, 2012 on Italia 1.
      Sweden: November 17th, 2012 on SVT2.
      Turkey: April 29, 2012 on CNBC-e.
      USA: March 16th, 2012 on Syfy.

    • Janet Montgomery is the 5th Dis/Connected (Tom Harper's 2008 British TV movie) actor to make an appearance in Merlin after Bradley James (Arthur), Caroline Faber (Hunith), Holly Grainger (Sophia) and Kyle Redmond-Jones (Sir Owain).

    • The Great Dragon does not appear in this episode, but John Hurt is credited (for the voice-over at the beginning of the opening credits).

    • Filming locations:
      Château de Pierrefonds, Pierrefonds, Oise, France (Camelot).
      Cardiff, Wales, UK (Studio sets).
      Cosmeston Medieval Village, Wales, UK (Gwen's village).
      Fforest Fawr, Cardiff, Wales, UK (Arthur and Mithian's picnic spot).
      Speech House Lake, Spruce Ride, Ruspidge, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, England (Lake where Gwen submerges to escape Helios' men).

    • Broadcasts:
      Sat 10 Dec 2011 at 20:15-21:00pm on BBC One and BBC HD.
      Fri 16 Dec 2011 at 19:45-20:30pm on BBC Three.

  • Allusions

    • Merlin: (To Arthur) You are the once and future king.

      It is a reference to the supposed inscription over King Arthur's grave: "HIC IACET ARTHURUS REX QUONDAM REXQUE FUTURUS" (Here lies Arthur, the once and future king).

      Also, T.H. White wrote an Arthurian fantasy novel published in 1958 and entitled The Once and Future King.