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The All-Time Best Shakespeare Characters

Updated June 2, 2019 6.5k votes 1.1k voters 23.6k views61 items

List of William Shakespeare's best characters. Shakespeare wrote between 37 and 40 plays (depending on who you ask), and they are filled with many, many colorful and memorable characters. From heroes, heroines, villains, historical figures, and young lovers, which Shakespeare characters are the best?

Shakespeare's greatest characters are listed here, along with the famous play (or plays) in which each one appeared. Vote up the best characters below or add a character you think is the best, though they must have had spoken lines in at least one of Shakespeare's works.

Many of these characters have been played by celebrities who have done Shakespeare in the Park, or even on screen in a film adaptation of Shakespeare.
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  • 26
    61
    35

    Hippolyta

    A Midsummer Night's Dream
  • 27
    53
    31

    Cleopatra

    Antony and Cleopatra
  • 28
    48
    28

    Desdemona

    Othello
  • 29
    69
    59

    Romeo Montague

    Romeo and Juliet
  • 30
    54
    24

    Fool

    King Lear
  • 31
    44
    26

    Miranda

    The Tempest
  • 32
    45
    28

    Katerina

    The Taming of the Shrew
  • 33
    53
    46

    Tybalt

    Romeo and Juliet
  • 34
    42
    16

    Bianca Minola

    The Taming of the Shrew, The Taming of the Shrew
  • 35
    54
    29

    Nick Bottom

    Table for Three, A Midsummer Night's Dream
  • 36
    37
    14

    Henry V

    Henry V, Henry V

    Once more into the breach, dear friends, once more, or close the wall up with our English dead!

  • 37
    43
    21

    Emilia

    Otello, Othello
  • 38
    33
    17

    Jacques

    As You Like It, As You Like It
  • 39
    27
    5

    Marc Antony

    Julius Caesar
  • 40
    29
    7

    Ariel

    The Tempest, The Tempest
  • 41
    29
    18

    Touchstone

    As You Like It, As You Like It
  • 42
    44
    26

    Hermia

    Table for Three, A Midsummer Night’s Dream
  • 43
    35
    28
  • 44
    35
    28

    Petruchio

    Taming of the Shrew
  • 45
    34
    22

    Edmund

    King Lear, King Lear
  • 46
    22
    27

    Titus Andronicus

    Titus Andronicus
  • 47
    25
    14

    Helena

    Midsummer Dream, A Midsummer Night's Dream
  • 48
    26
    16

    Dogberry

    Much Ado About Nothing, Much Ado About Nothing

    "God Save the Foundation"

  • 49
    21
    24

    Don John

    Much Ado About Nothing
  • 50
    17
    25

    Tamora

    Titus Andronicus