Cyrano de Bergerac dies at the convent near Paris where his beloved Roxane has been living for the past fifteen years. Cyrano has loved Roxane for a long time, but he helps his friend Christian woo and win her by writing Christian's letters for him and actually speaking to Roxane in the dark while pretending to be Christian.
Christian and Roxane marry, but shortly later, Christian and Cyrano go off to war. Roxane arrives unexpectedly right before the beginning of a battle. Cyrano is just about to tell her the truth of the whole matter (at Christian's insistence) when Christian is struck by a bullet and killed. Roxane faints, and Cyrano never tells her the truth.
The play then shifts ahead in time by fifteen years. Roxane is living in the convent, and Cyrano visits her regularly. One day, a mutual friend stops by to tell Roxane that Cyrano is dying. His enemies have finally caught up with him, and he has been hit on the head with a heavy log. Not long after, Cyrano walks in. He is clearly in pain, but he must see Roxane one last time. As Cyrano reads Christian's final letter to Roxane (that Cyrano actually wrote), the light fades, but Cyrano continues to “read” from memory. Roxane realizes that it was Cyrano who had written all those letters. He is the one she has really been in love with the whole time. Cyrano, now delirious, fights invisible enemies but dies smiling as Roxane tells him of her love and kisses him.