The character of Cacambo

Cacambo comes into the story, when Candide escapes with Cunegonde and the old woman after he had committed the dual murder in Lisbon.  When they set sail from Cadiz to Buenos Aires, Candide takes Cacambo along with him as his valet (Chapter 14).
Cacambo plays the role of the faithful and resourceful servant - a stock figure found in many books and plays.  Cacambo is, however more than just a stereotype; he has distinct individual features. Quarter Spanish, born from half-caste parents in South America, he had played many different roles in his life.  Chapter 14 Page 87:
 Il avait été enfant de chœur, sacristain, matelot, moine, facteur, soldat, laquais.

The aspects of his character

Cacambo is resourceful.
Candide has, indeed, all the immediate resourcefulness of the traditional  servant, met previously in literature.  When Candide is in despair and at a loss about what to do, it is Cacambo who steps in and saves the situation:

Cacambo is Candide’s friend and colleague.

The traditional valet was often an impudent peasant, using his natural guile for his master’s and his own benefit.  As he was dependent on his master for his livelihood, he was treated as the property of his master.  Cacambo’s character and role has no resemblance to this.  He serves his master well, not because he is his slave, but because he respects and loves him.  We are told (Chapter 14 Page 87) that Cacambo
…….aimait fort son maître, parce que son maître était un fort bon homme.

As an older man with a wide experience of life, his judgement was sound and Candide heeded his mature advice.  Candide had his illusions but Cacambo, understanding her true character, recognised that Cunégonde would not be at a loss if they left her in Buenos Aires with the Governor.

Seeing the girls with the two monkeys, Candide was mystified but Cacambo quickly recognised that the monkeys that Candide killed had been the lovers of the two girls.

Cacambo’s realism causes him to share some of the pessimism that Martin voices later.   Cacambo believes that it is natural law that man kills man.  He tells the cannibals (chapter 16 Page 95):
- Messieurs, dit Cacambo, vous comptez donc manger aujourd’hui un jésuite? C'est très bien fait ; rien n'est plus juste que de traiter ainsi ses ennemis, En effet le droit naturel nous enseigne à tuer notre prochain, et c'est ainsi qu'on en agit dans toute la terre.

Cacambo uses similar irony when he describes to his master the political situation in the Jesuit administered areas of Paraguay. Comparing the poverty of the people of Paraguay with the wealth of the Jesuit priests who rule over them, he says (Chapter 14.  Page 88):
Los Padres y ont tout, et les peuples rien; c’est le chef-d'oeuvre de la raison et de la justice

Cacambo is faithful in his service to Candide
Candide trusted him enough to hand over to him a lot of money to go and buy Cunégonde back from the Governor of Buenos Aires.  Cacambo could have kept the money for himself, but he is absolutely loyal.  Having bought Cunégonde’s freedom, he stayed by her side through all the hardships that ensued when they and the Old Woman were taken prisoner by pirates and transported across the world and sold as slaves.   Finally when they were toiling as slaves of the dethroned Grand Sultan, Cacambo had the ingenuity to find some way of making contact with Candide to let him know their fate.

It is significant that in the sufferings which the characters experience from the boredom of a peaceful day, Cacambo has different problems because he is overworked in the garden.
Cacambo is an energetic and resilient character.  He has no illusions but does not fall into despair.  Candide misses his support when he is absent for the long period of his quest for Cunégonde.  In the face of Martin’s confidence that Cacambo would have betrayed his master, Candide’s faith in his friend and colleague is proved to be soundly based.