Bertram: a young Count
of Rossillion who goes to the King of France as his ward after his father dies. He is young and
naive and wants to go fight but is not allowed. When he is married to Helena he rebels which leads
to the subsequent actions of the play.
Helena: a young sweet girl who is plagued by her love of Bertram. When given the
opportunity, she befriends the King of France, and wins Bertram for marriage. Bertram for the
majority of the play despises her but only because she not nobly born. Helena is persistent in
getting what she wants, even though she feels guilty for making Bertram's life miserable.
Countess of Rossillion
: a nice woman who loves both her son and Helena very much, and wants them to be happy. She
tries to help Helena and is disappointed in her son for his lack of interest in such a wonderful girl.
King of France: the
King starts out as a very sick man in the story and very kind. When Helena cures him, he is generous
in his praise and gives her what she desires. He doesn't like to be disobeyed but is quick to
forgive as he shows with Bertram.
Duke of Florence: one of the leaders perpetrating the war that the French Lords go to
fight in. He appoints Bertram as the General of the Horse.
Parolles: a lord and friend of Bertram who everyone realizes is a coward and disloyal.
During the play his true nature is revealed, and he plans to reform his ways.
Widow: a woman who takes in people on pilgrimages
to Florence who helps Helena with her plan to get Bertram back. She is Diana's mother.
Diana: a young Florentine
virgin who Bertram tries to seduce. She resists him until she decides to help Helena then she
pretends to return his affections.
Lavatch: the clown in the house of Rossillion.
Lefew: a French lord who is friends with both the King of France and the Countess of Rossillion.
He is one of the first to see the true nature of Parolles but forgives him in the end.
Rinaldo: the steward of
the house of Rossillion.