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MonkeyNotes-Cymbeline by William Shakespeare
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Major Characters

Cymbeline - King of Britain during the occupation of Rome. From his first marriage, he has three children: Imogen, Guiderius, and Arivaragus. The two boys have been missing for many years and in the meantime, Cymbeline has remarried a woman who is deceptive and scheming.

Imogen - Cymbeline's daughter by a former queen and wife of Posthumus. As the heroine of the play, she is the centralizing figure in the play: "From everyone the best she hath, and she of all compounded, outsells them all."

Cloten - the Queen's son by a former husband. He is arrogant and buffoonish and attempts to win the heart of Imogen so he can rule the throne.

Posthumus Leonatus - husband of Imogen and son of Sicilius, an old friend of the king, who served Cymbeline's father "with glory and admired success." He is praised with such words: "So fair an outward, and such stuff within, endows a man but he."

Queen - Cymbeline's wife. She is a scheming and power-hungry woman who flatters Imogen yet wants her killed, so her son can inherit the throne.

Belarius - a banished lord, disguised under the name of Morgan. He kidnaps the princes and educates them in the best possible manner.

Guiderius and Arviragus - Cymbeline's sons disguised under the names of Polydore and Cadwal and raised by Belarius in the woods.

Iachimo - a friend of Philario who spars with Posthumos over the fidelity of Imogen and ends up devising a scheme which makes it appear as if Imogen has slept with him. Although he is a schemer, he has a side of him that is remorseful about the results of his trickery.

Pisanio - a trusted servant of Posthumus. By his nobility he attains heroic stature.

Minor Characters

Philario - friend of Posthumus who lives in Rome. Philario is prudent and sagacious, warning Posthumus not to jump to conclusions when he hears of his wife's infidelity.

Caius Lucius - general of the Roman forces. He is an ideal Roman warrior who is principled and honest.

Cornelius - a physician who sees through the queen's plans to poison her husband and stepdaughter and gives her a sleeping potion instead.

Philarmonus - a soothsayer who foretells that Rome will win the war against Britain. Yet later he redeems himself by interpreting the prophecy by Jupiter.

A Frenchman - friend of Philario.

Two lords of Cymbeline's court - they comment on the general action and events of the play

Two gentlemen of Cymbeline's court

Helen - a lady attending Imogen

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MonkeyNotes-Cymbeline by William Shakespeare


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