In A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS, the Common Man assumed several different roles as they became necessary in the play. In each role, he portrayed a simple bystander in the midst of the chaos around him, mainly looking out for himself. The Common Man had many masters throughout A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS but was ultimately serving his own priorities. .
While the Common Man was the Steward and worked for More, he was loyal to his master if it suited him. He spoke to Cromwell, Chapuys, and Richard Rich about More. The Steward told Cromwell and Chapuys that Sir Thomas said his prayers and went to confession. When Richard asked why he told them this, he replied, "That's what they wanted to know, sir. I mean I could have told them any number of things about Sir Thomas.But that's what he wanted to know, sir," The Steward gave them information for the money and that was his only concern. What he told them could have been twisted to mean something else and be used against More, but the Steward had no need to care because that would not cause harm to himself.
The next time The Common Man came into the play, he was a poor boatman. The Boatman was an anxious man who was focused completely on earning a living. He represented the on again, off again favor of the common people towards government issues. He was much more concerned at the moment with putting food on the table than politics.
Near the end of the play, the Common Man showed up as the Jailer when Sir Thomas was put in prison. The Jailer showed sympathy for More's position. But he also stated "I"d let him out if I could but I can't. Not without taking up residence in there myself so what's the point?" He showed that he was more interested in his own life than attempting to help another. The Jailer was obviously aware of Sir Thomas's innocence but decided he would much rather keep his safety by withholding what he knew. Finally, at the end of the play, The Common Man played the part of the executioner.