Dantes, the Count of Monte Cristo: Dantes is the main character of the novel. At the age of nineteen he is wrongfully imprisoned, escaping fourteen years later. When he returns to society, having found buried treasure, he becomes very rich and shrewd. It's at this point where he changes his name to the Count of Monte Cristo. The rest of the story is dedicated to the count's pursuit of revenge against the enemies who imprisoned him. Though for a time the count almost sees himself acting in place of God, eventually he is humbled and learns that God alone possesses the power to punish and forgive.
Danglars: Danglars is the chief villain of the story, being most directly responsible for Dantes' imprisonment. Danglars grows very rich as an investment banker but in the end of the story Monte Cristo gets his revenge, leaving Danglars without family or fortune.
Madame Danglars: She is the wife of Danglars, though she is not faithful to him. One of her past affairs comes to light due to Monte Cristo, who uncovers the baby she and Villefort made together and then buried. After the novel's conclusion, she is left rich but lonely.
Eugenie Danglars: She is the daughter of Danglars and his wife. Though she was supposed to marry Albert and then Andrea, Monte Cristo ruins both marriages, causing Eugenie to flee with her lady "friend" to become a musician or artist.
Villefort: Monsieur Villefort is another archenemy of Dantes, being the chief magistrate who put Dantes in jail for political and personal reasons. Villefort had an affair with Madame Danglars, which produced a baby whom he tried to get rid of by burying. In the end, Villefort's secret past is revealed and he is shamed before the whole community.
Madame Villefort: She is the wife of Villefort who secretly poisons several people in the family in order to ensure their inheritance for her son. After the novel's conclusion, she is forced to kill herself and her son.
Valentine Villefort: She is the daughter of Villefort and his first wife. Though she is suppose to marry Franz, her true lover is Maximilien Morrel. In the end (with the help of Monte Cristo of course), Valentine is able to avoid being poisoned and eventually marry Maximilien.
Noirtier: Noirtier is the father of Villefort, yet he is not a royalist, but a supporter of Napoleon. Though he is unable to speak or move, he works with Monte Cristo to arrange his Valentine's escape and marriage to Maximilien.
Monsieur Morrel: He is the owner of the Pharaon, the merchant vessel which employs Dantes. Morrel is one of the few people to support Dantes and his father during their hard times. Monte Cristo rewards the Morrel family when he returns to civilization.
Fernand: Fernand is a co-conspirator of Danglars, also responsible for Dantes' imprisonment. After Dantes is put in jail, Fernand marries Mercedes and they have a son named Albert. By the end of the story, Fernand's evil deeds are avenged, and he is humiliated in a scandal, which drives him to suicide.
Mercedes: Mercedes is the fiance of Dantes but concedes to marry Fernand after Dantes is imprisoned. Although she later reminisces with Monte Cristo years later, she realizes she's destined to a life of solitude and sorrow.
Albert: Albert is the son of Fernand and Mercedes. Though at first he is supposed to marry Eugenie Danglars, Monte Cristo helps him break it off. When Fernand is shamed, Albert leaves to join the military.
Andrea/Benedetto: He's the escaped convict who the count uses to advance his own agenda of revenge. Later, he murders Caderousse.
Caderousse: He's the neighbor of Dantes' father who doesn't prevent Danglars from putting Dantes in prison. He is later shamed by the count and eventually murdered by Andrea.
Faria: Faria is the cellmate of Dantes who teaches him about the world and leaves him with a mode of escape.