Les Misérables


Cast of Characters

Jean Valjean (M. Madeleine/M. Fauchelevent/ M. Leblanc): The novel’s protagonist, a reformed convict who dedicates his life to charity and good works. Nonetheless, he continues to be pursued by the unforgiving arm of the law, personified by Javert. He cares for Fantine on her deathbed, and then for her orphaned daughter, Cosette.

Fantine: An innocent, beautiful orphan girl who is abandoned by her lover, Tholomyes, and then has his child. Her life is riddled with tragedy after she leaves her daughter, Cosette, in the care of cruel innkeepers. Out of desperation, she becomes a prostitute and, in spite of Valjean’s kind efforts to help her, she dies without ever seeing her daughter again.

Cosette: Fantine’s daughter. Left in the care of the wicked Thenardier couple, she is abused and neglected until Valjean rescues her and raises her lovingly as his daughter. Ultimately, she is happily married to Marius Pontmercy.

Monseigneur Charles François-Bienvenu Myriel (M. Bienvenu/the Bishop): A bishop, dedicated to God and to the poor, whose kindness towards Jean Valjean inspires the convict to become a good man.

Mlle. Baptistine: The devoted sister of M. Bienvenu, who lives with him and cares for him after he has gone blind.

Mme. Magliore: The kind housekeeper at the home of the Bishop and Mlle. Baptistine.

Little Gervais: The little boy from whom Valjean steals a silver piece. The theft is Valjean’s last act of wickedness before his reformation.

Felix Tholomyes: The bombastic, well-to-do university student with whom Fantine falls in love. He abandons Fantine, leaving her pregnant with Cosette.

M. Thenardier and Mme. Thenardier (also the Jondrettes): The cruel innkeepers who agree to care for Cosette while Fantine goes in search of work. They take advantage of Fantine’s desperate situation to get money from her, and give...

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Essays About Les Misérables