Characters Discussed

(Great Characters in Literature)


Timon (TI-muhn), a noble Athenian who impoverishes himself through his unceasing generosity to his friends. He lavishes gifts on them, offers help when they find themselves in trouble, and entertains them at extravagant feasts, paying no attention to the warnings of his steward that his fortune is dwindling. Refused at every door when he himself needs assistance, he is so completely disillusioned with human ingratitude that he becomes a misanthrope and flees to the woods to escape humanity. Before his departure, he invites his acquaintances to a final banquet, where he sets before them bowls of water. Bent on avenging his injuries and knowing that wealth breeds discontent and misfortune, he dispenses gold from a newly discovered treasure trove, and he encourages Alcibiades’ attack on his native city. He composes his own epitaph as a final defiance of ungrateful humankind: “Pass by, and curse thy fill, but pass and stay not here thy gait.”


Alcibiades (al-sih-BI-uh-deez), the great Athenian captain, Timon’s friend, and several times the savior of his state. Banished by the senate when he defends one of his soldiers against a death sentence, he later returns with an army to take vengeance on the city and purge it of evil.


Flavius (FLAY-vee-uhs), Timon’s loyal steward,...

(The entire section is 592 words.)

Timon of Athens Character Analysis

Timon of Athens Alcibiades

An Athenian general and statesman, he lived in the fifth century B.C. During the Peloponnesian War (431-404 B.C.) between Athens and Sparta,...

(The entire section is 625 words.)

Timon of Athens Apemantus

A deeply cynical man, he observes his fellow citizens with acute insight and never hesitates to speak the truth. On the other hand, he...

(The entire section is 486 words.)

Timon of Athens Senators

Several unnamed Athenian senators appear throughout the play. They are portrayed as self-centered men, untrustworthy and hypocritical. Some...

(The entire section is 411 words.)

Timon of Athens Steward

The steward is depicted as a model of honesty and loyalty. He manages Timon's household, supervises the other servants, and keeps track of...

(The entire section is 504 words.)

Timon of Athens Timon

Historically, Timon the Misanthrope lived in the fifth century B.C. According to Greek historians, he withdrew from the world and lived in...

(The entire section is 1071 words.)

Timon of Athens Other Characters

Having heard about Timon's discovery of a cache of gold, they connive to steal it. They present themselves to Timon as...

(The entire section is 2639 words.)