- The Doctor's Wife
- A woman in her late forties, and the wife of an ophthalmologist. When the plague of blindness first devastates the city and the infected are placed into isolation, the doctor's wife feigns the sickness to stay with and care for her husband. She expects to lose her vision at any moment and keeps it secret, yet somehow she is the only person that remains immune to the contagion of blindness. She secretly assumes responsibility for the blind inmates, yet she admits that the pressures of caring for a band of helpless people exhausts her, and she even begins to wish she too were blind. She murders a sadistic inmate ("King of Ward 3") in the asylum where the blind are contained and helps the others escape the quarantine. She and her husband reappear in the novel's sequel, Seeing, where she is credited as the "Seeing Woman", and is viewed with mistrust and disdain by the other city dwellers, as no one knows how or why she retained her sight when the rest of the country was struck blind.
- The Doctor
- A friendly ophthalmologist who becomes blind after attempting to treat the first patient who is infected by the "white blindness." He too quickly goes blind and is placed into quarantine with his wife, who can still see but together they hide this fact for fear that she may be forced into becoming a slave for the blind inmates. He resents the dependence he has on his wife after he loses his sight. He is elected leader of his ward and does his best to keep order and peace through diplomatic strategies, but quickly finds his compassion does him little to no good amongst the bands of ruthless detainees in the asylum.
- Girl with Dark Glasses
- A beautiful young woman with a cold and unfeeling demeanor. She is struck blind while having casual sex in a hotel and is committed to the derelict asylum. Though at first she seems hard-hearted and icy, she reveals her naturally loving and warm nature while caring for an orphaned boy with a squint. By the end of the novel she has reformed her uncaring ways and compliments the doctor's wife as being "beautiful", despite having never seen her, claiming that in her (the girl's) dreams, the doctor's wife is always beautiful.
- King of Ward 3
- A brutal and cruel tyrant who holds the rest of the blind in the asylum at his mercy by controlling a group of thugs and wielding a gun. He deprives them of food and supplies in exchange for their valuables, but when those assets are exhausted, he establishes a system of nightly rape for his men to enjoy. The doctor's wife murders him with a pair of scissors when she can stand his evils no longer. Upon his death his assistant takes his gun and barricades the clique into their ward. This escalation starts a terrifying war, which ends in a woman setting fire to their ward, with the King's thugs becoming trapped and perishing in the blaze that ultimately consumes the entire asylum.
- Man with Black Eye Patch
- A kind and mysterious old man who reacts calmly to the blindness that is infesting the city, and keeps the inmates of the asylum updated with news of the outside world with his radio. He is very spiritual, and after the blindness lifts from the country, he states that he hopes they have learned a very valuable lesson about human nature.
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