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Characters in The Great Gatsby

written by: Trent Lorcher • edited by: SForsyth • updated: 1/20/2012

Review characters in The Great Gatsby and feel really good that your life isn't as messed up as theirs.

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    Main Characters

    This section includes Nick Carraway and Jay Gatsby.

    • Nick Carraway - The novel's narrator hails from the Midwest, attended Yale, and fought in World War I. He moves to New York to learn the bond business and soon befriends his next door neighbor Jay Gatsby. He helps reignite a romance between his cousin, Daisy Buchanan, and Gatsby. Nick narrates the entire story and remains torn between the flashy lifestyle of New York and the honest living of the Midwest.
    • Jay Gatsby - The novel's title character lives a life of mystery. His desperate longing to relive the past by rekindling his romance with Daisy Buchanan borders on pathetic. He buys a mansion across the water from her home and stares at a green light from her dock every night. Speculation abounds regarding the origin of his riches. It's apparent, his wealth is ill-gotten.
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    Other Characters

    Jay with his love. 

    • Tom Buchanan - Daisy's husband is the type of guy you secretly hope dies an agonizing death. You don't tell him this, of course, because he's immensely wealthy and might put you in his will. He symbolizes greed and the corrupting force of possessing large sums of money without actually earning it. He's also an adulterer, a bigot, and a moron. He's perfect for Daisy.
    • George Wilson - George WIlson owns a garage in the Valley of Ashes, a dreary neighborhood between West Egg and New York City. George Wilson's wife has an affair with Tom. He suspects Gatsby.
    • Meyer Wolfsheim - A local mobster who helps establish Gatsby in New York.
    • Owl Eyes - Owl Eyes hangs out in Gatsby's library during parties. He's the only partier who shows up at Gatsby's funeral.
    • Klipspringer - Klipspringer is a freeloading guest who practically lives at Gatsby's mansion. He does not attend Gatsby's funeral, but calls in hopes of retrieving a pair of shoes he left there.
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    Women in The Great Gatsby

    • Daisy Buchanan - Nick's cousin, Tom's wife, Gatsby's lover--Daisy commands a lot of attention. As a young woman she promises Gatsby she will wait for him to return from the war and become wealthy. She marries Tom Buchanan soon after Gatsby's departure. She struggles deciding between the two men. Daisy loves money, status, and luxuries.
    • Jordan Baker - Jordan Baker, Daisy's best friend, is the beautiful, dishonest romantic interest of Nick.
    • Myrtle Wilson - She hates her husband and is desperate to improve her station in life. She becomes Tom Buchanan's lover and his object.


  • Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby.
  • Image in the Public Domain courtesty of Wikimedia Commons.

The Great Gatsby Study Guide

Don't get humiliated in front of your friends and riddled with bullets on your next exam. Take a look at this study guide instead.
  1. Symbolism in The Great Gatsby
  2. Famous Quotes From The Great Gatsby With Analysis
  3. The Main Themes in The Great Gatsby
  4. Characters in The Great Gatsby
  5. The Great Gatsby Study Guide: Answers to Important Questions