Study Guide

War and Peace Characters

By Leo Tolstoy

Pierre Bezukhov

After inheriting a vast fortune from his father, Pierre spends the novel trying to answer...

Natasha Rostov

The beautiful, accomplished youngest daughter of the Rostov family, Natasha begins the novel as a...

Andrei (Andrew) Bolkonsky

The oldest son of a controlling and sometimes vicious father, Andrei is an intellectual and...

Nikolai (Nicholas) Rostov

The oldest Rostov son, Nikolai is a hardcore patriot. He loves his emperor and embraces his...

Count and Countess Rostov

A loving couple, the Rostovs are the heads of a functional and happy family. Their main problem...

Sonya

A poor relation taken in by the Rostovs, Sonya has a brief romance with Nikolai but then falls...

Marya (Mary) Bolkonsky

Andrei's younger sister, Marya, is terrorized by her father and becomes a deeply religious and...

Prince Bolkonsky

An aging politician who is out of favor with the court of Alexander, Prince Bolkonsky is a...

Liza (Lise) Bolkonsky

Liza is a pretty good example of how there just are no one-note characters in Tolstoy. She starts...

Mademoiselle Bourienne

This character might well be the only stock type that Tolstoy puts into the book. There's a whole...

Helene Kuragin

A beautiful and sexually free woman, Helene becomes Pierre's wife, then cheats on him and falls...

Anatole and Ippolit Kuragin

These guys are dynamic duo of the totally perverse Kuragin clan. Just how can a dysfunctional...

Boris Drubetskoy

A young man from an aristocratic but poor family, Boris is a no-holds-barred striver and social...

Anna Mikhailovna Drubetskoy

This lady, Boris's mom, is a good example of a Tolstoy technique that boosts the realism of the...

Julie Karagin

Julie is a pretty minor character, and so it's probably for the best that she isn't much more...

Napoleon

Emperor of France and the would-be creator of a European empire, Napoleon is also an actual...

General Kutuzov

Kutuzov is an old general brought out of retirement to be the commander in chief during...

General Bagration

Bagration is our counterpoint to Kutuzov. If Kutuzov is general as poet, all feeling feelings and...

Dolokhov and Denisov

You know what's interesting about these two guys? If you take them separately, not much. But...

Platon Karataev

A near-angelic peasant imprisoned with Pierre, Platon is endlessly optimistic, kind, and...

Osip (Iosif) Alexeevich Bazdeev

This is the guy who introduces Pierre to Freemasonry and becomes Pierre's mentor. He dies right...

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