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Last Reviewed on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 149

Ibsen’s play The Lady from the Sea is centered around a woman named Ellida. She is the daughter of a lighthouse keeper and, as the title suggests, she is fond of the landscape. Her husband is Doctor Edvard Wangel. He has two daughters, Bolette and Hilde, from his late first wife. Ellida and Edvard did have a son together, but he tragically died as an infant.

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A character called The Stranger also plays a large part in the play. He is Ellida’s former lover who, years ago, fled the area after committing a crime. He returns to try to reunite with Ellida, to whom he was once engaged.

Other characters include: Arnholm, who was once both Bolette’s tutor and Ellida’s suitor but who, upon return, falls in love with Bolette and wishes to marry her; Lyngstrand, an aspiring sculptor; and Ballested, an eccentric local painter.

Characters Discussed

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Last Updated on May 6, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 292

Ellida Wangel

Ellida Wangel, a woman dominated by the sea. She feels stifled in her new home after she marries and goes away from the sea to live in the mountains. She feels strangely drawn to a sailor who had known and loved her years earlier. When he appears again, she feels his hold over her, as well as feeling the conflicting hold of her husband. Left to her own choice, she stays with her husband. She feels that she has retained her sanity by being able to make a choice for herself.

Dr. Wangel

Dr. Wangel, Ellida’s husband, a physician. He tries to understand the strains on his wife’s mind and gives her a verbal release from her vows so that she can decide for herself...

(The entire section contains 441 words.)

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