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Characters

Meet the Cast

King Lear

Lear, the King of Britain, is a powerful and important man. But he's getting near retirement age. Lear thinks he can hand over the hard work of ruling the kingdom to his children and relax. He want...

Edmund

Edmund the "Illegitimate"The big thing to know about Edmund is that, as Shakespeare repeatedly says, he's "a bastard." Not only was he born out of wedlock, but he also acts like a jerk from the beg...

Edgar

Edgar begins the play as the rich and clueless son of Gloucester, one of the kingdom's most powerful men. Edmund, Edgar's illegitimate brother, easily manipulates the trusting Edgar, and succeeds i...

Earl of Gloucester

A powerful lord in Lear's court, Gloucester is part of Lear's generation – one of the old guards. In the power struggle that follows Lear's retirement, this pits Gloucester against the younge...

Cordelia

Cordelia is King Lear's favorite daughter until she refuses to flatter the old man and gets booted out of the kingdom without a dowry. Soon after, she marries the King of France and raises an army...

Goneril

Goneril is one of Lear's wicked daughters. After Lear gives her half his lands, she promptly betrays him and doesn't shed a tear when Lear is forced to wander, homeless and exposed to the elements...

Duke of Albany

Albany is Goneril's husband. Goneril walks all over him for the first half of the play, and even once he realizes his wife is a totally vicious, Albany still doesn't do much to stop her. Albany is...

Regan

Regan is the younger and potentially less wicked of Lear's two evil daughters. Slightly more passive, Regan can't oppose her father on her own (she waits for Goneril to show up and support her). Sh...

Duke of Cornwall

Cornwall, Regan's husband, represents abuse of power at its worst. Lear is certainly one for getting angry and making poor decisions, but Cornwall's anger has a sadistic edge. He enjoys causing oth...

Earl of Kent

Kent is Lear's servant. He's also the guy Lear banishes in the first act after Kent warns his king not to disown Cordelia. The thing to know about Kent is that he is loyalty personified. He would d...

The Fool

The Fool is Lear's own stand-up comedian, sure, but more interestingly, he's the only guy that Lear allows to criticize him. (Remember, when Kent lips off, Lear boots him out of the kingdom and whe...

Oswald

Oswald, Goneril's servant, is your typical slime-ball. He does whatever Goneril wants him to do, immoral or not. Oswald's fight with Kent is symbolic: a loyal servant who has his master's best inte...
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