Are you new to teaching William Golding’s famous novel? Overwhelmed by the big list of all male characters from Lord of the Flies?
If so, you might be looking for a cheat sheet on the novel’s main characters.
Look no further! I’ve been teaching this novel study for 7 years and in this post I’ll introduce you to the key players in William Golding’s classic tale. Starting your novel study soon? Read these 5 Simple Tips for your Lord of the Flies Introduction Lesson.
Ralph - the Protagonist of the Novel
Ralph is a level-headed boy who strives for democracy and order on the island. He is elected as chief by the other boys at the beginning of the novel.
Ralph is a well-rounded character who serves as the protagonist of the novel “Lord of the Flies”. He is elected as leader shortly after arriving on the island and works hard to keep a sense of order and democracy amongst the boys. His character boasts admirable traits that center around reason and fairness.
However, Ralph must battle intertwined feelings of loneliness which amplify his mistrust of Jack and his increasingly unruly gang. Even so, he remains consistent in his beliefs; he has faith in democracy as a way to bring cohesion to their harsh environment. Resilient and motivated, Ralph’s ambition drives him to seek salvation from the island.
Piggy - the most memorable of characters from Lord of the Flies
Ugh – will students even remember any characters from Lord of the Flies? YES! …and do you know who they WILL remember?
Piggy! It’s always Piggy!
Piggy is one of the primary characters in William Golding’s classic novel “Lord of the Flies”. He is a bit of an outcast because he is an overweight, asthmatic boy that wears glasses. He is not physically strong, but he is very intelligent and often comes up with good ideas that the others don’t think of.
Despite his physical disability, Piggy possesses many character traits and intellect beyond his years. His sharp mind oftentimes provides deep insights and clever solutions to problems, which the other boys may overlook.
What’s more, Piggy has logical thinking and impressive problem-solving skills, as well as a strong moral compass for what is right or wrong. Though he doesn’t have physical strength like some of the others on the island, Piggy stands out due to his character traits, intelligence and resilience.
Jack - The bully character in Lord of the Flies
Jack is an aggressive and violent boy who leads the “hunters” on the island. He eventually becomes a tyrannical leader, obsessed with hunting and killing pigs.
Jack is always the least likable character from Lord of the Flies. He is aggressive, domineering and violent, leading the group of “hunters” on the island.
While his only true interest lies in hunting and killing pigs, Jack shows no mercy when it comes to the rules, becoming a tyrannical leader through fear alone.
His character progresses from a character driven by fear to one seeking power over others – an interesting perspective that can be taken away from this character’s arc as readers take away more than just entertainment.
Simon - A shy introvert with an imaginary friend
Simon is a shy, introverted boy who doesn’t really fit in with any of the groups on the island. He has visions and talks to imaginary friends, which causes some of the other boys to think he’s crazy.
Simon the most quiet and introverted of characters from Lord of the Flies. Despite his shyness, Simon manages to gain insight on the island by carrying out his own independent exploration which reveals the inherent darkness of human nature. Simon has visions that cause some of the boys to think he’s crazy and he talks to imaginary friends.
His character traits of introspection and perception ultimately help him uncover the truth about the island and its inhabitants. In addition, Simon exercises compassion by caring for a helpless Piggy, which shows he is more than just an outsider on the island; he’s a leader.
Roger - The Sadistic character who enjoys hurting others
Roger is one of Jack’s hunters, and he enjoys causing pain and suffering to others. He sadistically tortures animals before killing them, and later does the same to one of his fellow human beings.
Roger is one of the more antagonistic characters in “Lord of the Flies.” He is abrasive and enjoys causing pain and suffering to others. There seems to be no limit on his cruelty – he frequently tortures animals, even if they do not threaten him, and later takes pleasure in tormenting one of his human peers.
An intricate character, Roger also has moments of restraint – as much as he wants to enforce order and instill his own form of authority on the Island, he can keep his instincts in check.
Minor Characters from Lord of the Flies: The Littuns, Maurice, Percival and Samneric.
Primarily composed of children under the age of six, they rely heavily on the older boys for survival.
The term Littuns is derived from “little ones” and is used to describe the youngest members of the group.
Littuns possess a certain level of innocence and naivety that sets them apart from the older boys, who quickly succumb to their savage impulses.
They spend most of their time building sandcastles, playing games, or engaging in other childlike activities.
Percival AKA The Crying Boy
A young boy who is one of the youngest on the island. He is described as being frail and weak, and it’s noted that he is prone to crying.
He struggles to remember his own name and even forgot where he was from before the crash.
- He becomes obsessed with the idea of being rescued and keeps repeating his address to anyone who will listen in hopes of being reunited with his family.
- Initially introduced as one of the choir boys, he becomes a member of Jack’s tribe.
- Maurice is a hard worker who helps hunt and gather food.
- Maurice also participates in the violence that unfolds in the later half of the story. He is depicted as a violent and savage person who relishes the cruelty of hurting others.
The Twins Sam & Eric AKA “Samneric”
They are referred to as “Samneric” because they are essentially one character in the book.
Loyal to Ralph, the protagonist, and members of his tribe.
Portrayed as kind-hearted and innocent. They often perform menial tasks or work together to support the tribe.
As the story progresses, Sam and Eric become increasingly afraid of the other boys on the island, especially when they are taken prisoner by Jack’s tribe.
The twins are tortured and forced to join Jack’s tribe against their will.
It can be tough to keep track of all the characters from Lord of the Flies
Ralph is a heroic leader who tries to keep order while Jack and his hunters instinctually abandon civilization to satisfy their primal desires. Piggy is intelligent but scorned, Simon stands apart from everyone else, and Roger has no regard for human life.
All these characters from Lord of the Flies come together to create an intense journey through difficult times on the island, showing us all what it means to live without society’s rules and regulations.
Check out all the teaching resources I use in my own classroom in my TPT Store Visual Thinking Classroom, and make sure you read all about how I introduce my Lord of the Flies Unit to my students.