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The Importance of Being Earnest

The Importance of Being Earnest


by Oscar Wilde

 Table of Contents

The Importance of Being Earnest Characters

Meet the Cast

Jack Worthing

Jack and AlgyWe know what you’re thinking. Which one’s Jack and which one’s Algernon? It's hard to keep the two characters straight. Wilde built so many echoes into their actions...

Algernon Moncrieff

Algy and JackJack and Algernon certainly are a lot alike. So much so that it feels like we’re writing a Siamese twin character analysis. Take a look at the first section of Jack’s "Char...

Gwendolen Fairfax

Gwen and CecilyLike the two male leads, Gwendolen and Cecily also have a lot in common. There’s the Ernest thing: marrying a man named Ernest seems to be the founding principal of their lives...

Cecily Cardew

Cecily and GwenYes, they’re so much alike they could be sisters – and now they will be. You might want to check out "Gwen and Cecily" in Gwendolen's "Character Analysis" for more inform...

Lady Bracknell

Lady Bracknell AloneThis very symmetrical play has an odd number of characters, nine. Everybody has somebody: Jack and Gwendolen, Algernon and Cecily, Miss Prism and Chasuble, Lane and Merriman. Wh...

Miss Prism

Smarty-Pants SchoolmarmWilde gets a kick out of Miss Prism. His own sons had governesses that he disliked, and he seems to channel all that aggression (good-naturedly) into her character. Romantic,...

Dr. Chasuble

As a clergyman, Dr. Chasuble is a natural target for the irreverent Oscar Wilde. The playwright has already lampooned the Victorian Virtues of beauty, youth, fashion, social ascendance, and educati...


Lane is Algernon’s butler – and his comic sidekick in the first scene. Algernon knows his master well and is able to cover for him when, for example, all of Lady Bracknell’s sandw...


Merriman is the mirror-butler for Lane. Because everything in this play seems to be symmetrical – Merriman serves Jack in his country home. As with many butlers in Wilde’s plays, heR...
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