The Canterville Ghost By Oscar Wilde Character Sketch Essay

In "The Canterville Ghost," Virginia is the only member of the family who shows no interest in the ghost at all. She does not bother him nor does she try to remove the blood-stain in the library, like the other members of her family. This demonstrates her unprejudiced and inclusive attitude towards others: she not only accepts the ghost as a fellow inhabitant of the house but she respects his historic position.

Secondly, Virginia is kind-hearted, as we see in Chapter Five when she meets the Canterville ghost in person. When he tells her that he was starved to death, for example, she offers him a sandwich from her case. In addition, when the ghost says that he has not slept for three hundred years and is very tired, her reaction provides further evidence of her kind and gentle nature:

Virginia grew quite grave, and her little lips trembled like rose-leaves.

Finally, Virginia is helpful and generous, even when her safety is in peril. This is shown by her willingness to help the ghost, even though she is warned against it:

Horrible animals with lizard tails, and goggle eyes, blinked at her from the carven chimney-piece, and murmured 'Beware! little Virginia, beware! we may never see you again."

Sir Simon Canterville

See Ghost


See Duke of Cheshire

Duke of Cheshire

Desperately in love with the fifteen-year old Virginia Otis, the boyish Duke of Cheshire proposes after watching her win a pony race. However, his guardians pack him off to Eton, and he must wait to marry. But his impetuousness cannot be quelled. When Virginia vanishes, he insists on being part of the search party. As soon as she reappears, he smothers her with kisses. His devotion is rewarded, and Virginia consents to become the Duchess of Cheshire.


The Ghost, or Sir Simon Canterville, has haunted Canterville Chase since he was starved to death in 1584 by his dead wife's brothers. They murdered him because he had murdered his wife for the trivial reasons that she was plain and a bad housekeeper. For three hundred years, Sir Simon has frightened the inhabitants of Canterville Chase and has...

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