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Rebecca de Winter

The titular character of du Maurier’s novel never appears in the book, yet she exerts a powerful influence over all the other characters. As a young woman, Rebecca marries the charismatic aristocrat Maxim de Winter(read full character analysis)

The narrator

The narrator of Rebecca is a young woman who marries a wealthy, middle-aged aristocrat, Maxim de Winter, and goes to live with him at his estate, Manderley. It’s significant that we’re never told… (read full character analysis)

Maximilian de Winter

The wealthy, charismatic, middle-aged owner of Manderley. On the surface, Maxim, or Max, is a calm, dapper man—the very image of the English gentleman. He’s perfectly well aware of his power and charisma, and… (read full character analysis)

Mrs. Danvers

Perhaps the most ambiguous character in the novel, Mrs. Danvers is the elderly caretaker and chief servant at Manderley. Danvers remains utterly devoted to Rebecca—it’s never clear if this is because she doesn’t… (read full character analysis)

Jack Favell

Jack Favell is Rebecca’s cousin and, we later learn, her lover. Like his cousin, he seems friendly on the outside, but is secretly greedy, unethical, and manipulative—and yet he also reveals that he was… (read full character analysis)
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Frank Crawley

Frank Crawley, the manager and businessman of the Manderley estate, is one of the most interesting characters in Rebecca. Although he’s not directly involved in any of the main storylines of the novel, he’s… (read full character analysis)

Beatrice Lacy

Maxim de Winter’s energetic, talkative sister, Beatrice Lacy is an important foil to the narrator. She’s entirely comfortable among wealthy, aristocratic people, and she’s never shy about expressing her opinion. Surprisingly, Beatrice is… (read full character analysis)

Mrs. Van Hopper

The obnoxious woman who hires the narrator to work as her companion in Monte Carlo. Mrs. Van Hopper doesn’t appear in Rebecca for very long, but if she hadn’t introduced herself to Maxim de Winter(read full character analysis)


A mentally challenged gardener who works at Manderley. Like Manderley itself, Ben is a mysterious force in the novel: although he’s dim-witted, he has a good memory, and recalls serving Rebecca de Winter(read full character analysis)
Minor Characters
Colonel Julyan
The local detective for Manderley, who investigates Rebecca’s death after her body is found in a boat.
Dr. Baker
The doctor who examines Rebecca de Winter and determines that she has a terminal case of uterine cancer.
A maid at Manderley, whom the narrator likes because she doesn’t judge or condescend to the narrator for her lack of aristocratic bearing.
Mrs. Van Hopper’s nephew.
A loyal servant at Manderley.
A maid at Manderley.
Major Giles Lacy
The friendly but oblivious husband of Beatrice Lacy.
A young servant at Manderley.
The grandmother of Beatrice and Maxim, who remains devoted to Rebecca de Winter.
The son of Beatrice and Giles Lacey.
Lady Crowan
An elderly, rather grotesque guest at the Manderley summer ball.
Captain Searle
The captain of the ship that runs aground near Manderley, inadvertently exposing the boat in which Maxim de Winter placed Rebecca’s body.
The local coroner, who rules that Rebecca’s death was a suicide.
James Tabb
The carpenter who builds the boat in which Rebecca is found dead.
Manderley’s old, faithful dog.