The Name of the Rose

Berengar of Arundel Character Analysis

Berengar is assistant librarian, described by Adso as “vain” and “lustful”; his sexual desires and intellectual ambition both have tragic consequences. He is consumed with guilt after the death of Adelmo of Otranto, whom he persuaded to have sex with him in return for access to a mysterious book. He steals William’s glasses from the scriptorium at night in order to prevent him from reading some notes left behind by the murdered Venantius of Salvemec. William and Adso find him drowned in a tub in the infirmary, his tongue blackened with poison after trying to read the mysterious book, the pages of which had been poisoned by Jorge.
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Berengar of Arundel Character Timeline in The Name of the Rose

The timeline below shows where the character Berengar of Arundel appears in The Name of the Rose. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
First Day
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
William and Adso also meet Berengar of Arundel, Malachi’s assistant. They also meet Venantius of Salvemec, a translator, and Benno of... (full context)
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
Judgement and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
Venantius persists, however, insisting that Berengar had also participated in the conversation. Berengar also denies remembering; Venantius suggests that he should... (full context)
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
Afterwards, William hypothesizes that Adelmo’s death had something to do with his intimate relationship with Berengar. He also believes that many people have tried to enter the library at night, and... (full context)
Second Day
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
Judgement and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
...Jorge said that he did not think it wise to take the Africans as models. Berengar laughed and told Jorge that if he were to “seek among the Africans,” he might... (full context)
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
Judgement and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
William then interrogates a distressed and guilty Berengar, who claims that he saw the ghost of Adelmo in the abbey’s graveyard. Berengar claims... (full context)
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
Religion and Politics Theme Icon
...is heretical. They then talk with Aymaro of Alessandria, a gossipy monk who suggests that Berengar and Adelmo had a sexual relationship. He complains that the abbey has been taken over... (full context)
Judgement and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
...argument about laughter in order to try to learn more about the conversation in which Berengar had told him to “seek among the Africans.” He asks why Jorge is so opposed... (full context)
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
Judgement and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
...whole truth of what he knows. It appears that Adelmo had agreed to sleep with Berengar in exchange for access to the forbidden book located in the “finis Africae.” From this... (full context)
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
...room, and Adso goes to investigate, but is interrupted when he has a vision of Berengar and the Apocalypse and collapses. William finds him and concludes that someone has placed dangerous,... (full context)
Third Day
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
Judgement and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
 The next morning, Berengar is not in his cell. It appears he is gone, leaving only a bloodstained cloth... (full context)
Judgement and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
...William meet Alinardo, who again predicts the Apocalypse. In one of the tubs, they find Berengar’s dead body. (full context)
Fourth Day
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
Examining the corpse, Severinus confirms that Berengar died of drowning. He also suggests that Berengar and Venantius might have touched the same... (full context)
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
Severinus finds the stolen glasses in the dead Berengar’s pocket and returns them to William, just as Nicholas arrives with his new lenses. With... (full context)
Fifth Day
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
...parties. Meanwhile, Severinus enters the chapter house and asks to speak to William privately. Apparently Berengar was in the infirmary before he died in the bath. He tells William that there... (full context)
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
...hail (Adelmo fell from the tower of the Aedificium), blood (Venantius died of poison), water (Berengar died of drowning), and now the stars (Severinus was killed with a metal model of... (full context)
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
Judgement and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
...it to the library when Malachi chose him for the position of assistant librarian, replacing Berengar. William fears that the library’s secrecy and the intellectual greed of its custodians will destroy... (full context)
Sixth Day
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
...Greek and Arabic. William observes to Adso that everyone who has died with blackened fingers—Venantius, Berengar, and Malachi—knew Greek, so the next victim will probably know it as well. He suggests... (full context)
Religion and Politics Theme Icon
Judgement and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
...Alinardo—grumbled against the appointment of foreigners to the role. It is possible that Malachi and Berengar were killed, he suggests, because someone didn’t want them to become abbot. Nicholas then shows... (full context)
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
...history of the abbey.” The key wasn’t Remigio’s heretical past, or the illicit relations between Berengar and Adelmo. Rather, everything turns on the theft of a book from the finis Africae.... (full context)
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
...scriptorium is in chaos and no one is working. William suggests that with Malachi and Berengar dead, everyone is looking for a scapegoat. He goes to lie down for a few... (full context)
Seventh Day
The Interpretation of Signs Theme Icon
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
...deadly poison from the infirmary and poisoned the pages of the book which killed Venantius, Berengar, and Malachi (explaining their blackened fingers and tongues). He convinced Malachi to murder Severinus by... (full context)
Knowledge and Secrecy Theme Icon
Berengar found Venantius’s body but didn’t know what to do, fearing there would be an inquiry,... (full context)