Character Overview

The Nightingale:

A Nightingale is a small, brown/tan song bird. The name ‘nightingale’ means ‘night songstress’, although you can hear this bird sing during the night and day times. It was one believed that it was the females that sung, which led to its symbolism in literature, when in fact it is the male that sings.

In this short story, The Nightingale is the heroine and protagonist. She is completely selfless, a true lover, and beauty itself embodied in living form. Her undying, pure love for the student drives her to give the ultimate sacrifice to end the suffering of the one she loved.


The Student:

A student is someone who is a student is a learner, who attends some type of educational institution.


The Student is the complete opposite of the Nightingale’s character and the antagonist. It is ironic he is called “Student” because it implies he is smart, which he may be book smart. But is very dense in matters of the heart. He is not a true lover, ignorant to true beauty, and doesn’t appreciate the true beauty of things. His selfishness led to the death of the Nightingale, and he remains ignorant because he doesn’t even know this.


The Professor’s Daughter:

In the story, the Professor’s daughter seems to be the antagonist of the story because she is vain, mean, ungrateful, materialistic, but she is just (the most important) secondary character. She is the epitome of the opposite of love, which is not hate. Its the selfishness she exudes. The Student may not be a true lover, but it is due to his blatant ignorance. In her case, it is due to her self centeredness and blatant disregard for the Student’s feelings.

I believe that the Nightingale and the Student are foil characters. But It could be argued that she is the true foil character of the Nightingale because she is the apple of the Student’s eye while it is the Nightingale who truly loves him.



Other secondary characters:

The Professor

The Prince

The Oak tree

The Moon

The Green Lizard

The Butterfly

The Daisy

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