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The male protagonist of the novel. Langdon, a professor of symbology at Harvard, is honest and trustworthy. He is also an extremely successful academic and the author of several books. Although he studies religion, Langdon does not profess any particular religion and prefers to remain an outside observer in matters of faith. He, like Sophie, has a great affection for puzzles of all kinds.
Read an in-depth analysis of Robert Langdon.
A cryptologist with the French Judicial Police, and the female protagonist of the novel. Sophie, who is about thirty years old, is attractive, single, compassionate, and very intelligent. She was raised by her grandfather after her parents, brother, and grandmother died in a car accident, and her grandfather instilled in her a love of puzzles and codes. In her twenties, Sophie trained in Britain in cryptology. In the novel, she is one of the major players who attempt to crack her grandfather’s code. She is also a descendent of Jesus and Mary Magdalene.
Read an in-depth analysis of Sophie Neveu.
An historian and the antagonist of the novel. Sir Leigh Teabing is a knight, a Royal Historian, and an extremely wealthy man. He is crippled from polio and is not married. The Holy Grail has been his one passion for years, and the search for the Truth, which he believes to be present in the Grail, obsesses him. Eventually, his need to know turns him into a murderer. He creates an alter ego, the Teacher, who carries out his evil plot.
Read an in-depth analysis of Leigh Teabing.
Bishop of Opus Dei. Aringarosa is conservative in his religious views and longs for the Church to return to strict ways. He has affection for material things that represent the power of his order. He is kind to Silas.
Nun and keeper of the Church of Saint-Sulpice. She favors loosening of church strictures and modernizing of the church, and she objects to Opus Dei’s attitude toward women. She is murdered by Silas while acting as a sentry for the Priory of Sion.
Sophie’s grandmother and Saunière’s wife. A kind and smart woman, Mary Chauvel is part of the Priory’s plan to keep the secret. She is a descendent of Jesus and Mary Magdalene.
An agent with the French Judicial Police. In some ways the classic bumbling police officer, Collet commits numerous errors during the pursuit of Sophie and Langdon. His missteps contrast with Fache’s efficiency. He believes in Sophie’s innocence, however, and proves himself to Fache in the end.
The executive services officer of Biggin Hill Airport south of London. Edwards is accustomed to fulfilling the every desire of the very rich, as the airport serves the private business community.
The captain of the French Judicial Police. Nicknamed “the Bull,” Fache is strong, strong-willed, and religious. He has great faith in the use of technology in his work, which sometimes leads him down the wrong road. Fache’s policing methods are a bit unorthodox, but he is good at heart. The name Fache is very similar to fâché, which is French for “angry.”
Langdon’s editor. He is a classic New York publishing type. Faukman is eager to make money, but he is also a cultured and classy man.
The religious librarian at Kings College. A kindly soul, Gettum is willing to help Sophie and Langdon in their search.
A security warden at the Louvre. Grouard is a good man who was a friend of Saunière’s.
Manservant to Leigh Teabing and participant in the plot to recover the Grail. Rémy is a mercenary who gets involved in the plot only for the money.
The curator at the Louvre, and Sophie’s grandfather. His murder sets off the chain of events that takes place in the novel. Saunière’s scholarly passions include Leonardo Da Vinci, goddess iconography, and puzzles. He is also secretly the head of the Priory of Sion, the secret brotherhood charged with protecting the Grail, and a descendent of Jesus and Mary Magdalene.
A monk of Opus Dei, and the murderer of Jacques Saunière. Silas, an albino, is motivated by the rejection and horror he has faced since he was young. When he falls into the orbit of Bishop Aringarosa, he finds religion and devotes himself to the strict Catholic ways of Opus Dei. He is obsessed with self-punishment and celibacy, and his goal in life is to aid the Bishop and Opus Dei.
The president of the Paris branch of the Depository Bank of Zurich. Vernet was a friend to Jacques Saunière, and sworn protector of his secret. The immaculately groomed Vernet lives among the rich but wishes only to be immersed in culture.
A woman in Langdon’s past. She appears only in his memory and demonstrates the difficulty he has maintaining relationships.
Ace your assignments with our guide to The Da Vinci Code!