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Written by Claire Cornwall
Hazel is the protagonist of the novel and is brother to Fiver. He leads the rabbits from Sandleford and ultimately becomes Chief Rabbit because of his excellent leadership skills. He is not particularly large, or physically powerful, but his personality and cerebral attributed make him a rabbit to look up to. He is loya, courageous and thinks quickly. Hazel sees the good in everyone and appreciates every individual for their own skills and characteristics. Because of this he makes sure nobody gets left behind and this earns him the respect and loyalty of his warren. He trusts his brother's instincts and leans on him for advice, in turn always offering reliability and stability.
Fiver was the runt of his litter but what he lacks in physical stature he makes up for on intellectual greatness. His names means "Little Thousand". Fiver is Hazel's younger brother. He is a visionary with strong instincts and is quietly thoughtful. He is the most intelligent rabbit in the group and whilst not directly a leader he has influence and others listen to and follow his advice.
Bigwig's name in Lapine is Thlayli, which literally means "fur head" and refers to the large shock of fur on the back of his head. Bigwig is an ex-Owsla officer and the largest and bravest rabbit in the group. He is powerful and fierce but equally able to act on brains, not just brawn; he is cunning and devises a plan that enables him to defeat the larger, stronger General Woundwort. His final battle with Woundwort leaves him severely wounded but he survives and when recovered becomes the leader of Hazel's Owsla.
Blackberry is a clever buck rabbit whose ears have black tips. He is capable of understanding concepts that other rabbits find utterly incomprehensible. For example, he realizes that wood floats and the rabbits use this concept twice to travel along water. He also works out how to dismantle the snare that almost kills Bigwig, saving his life. He is one of Hazel's most trusted advisers and is tasked with much of the planning.
Holly is former captain of the Sandleford Warren Owsla. He escapes with Bluebell when his warren is destroyed by man. When he finds the warren at Watership Down he is near death, but is nursed back to health and becomes one of Hazel's most trusted companions.
Dandelion is an athletic buck rabbit known for his speed and well-known for his storytelling ability. He is instrumental in luring the Nuthanger Farm dog into the Efrafans during the siege of Watership Down.
Silver is a strong buck rabbit who fights alongside Bigwig and helps to defend the rabbits during their journey.
Pipkin is a small buck rabbit who is very timid. He looks up to Hazel and looks to him for protection and guidance. He is very loyal to Hazel and thrives on his encouragement. He is a comforter in difficult times, particularly constant for Holly after the destruction of the Sandleford Warren.
Like Fiver, Hyxenthlsy has visions and is very empathetic. She lives in Efrafra and assists Bigwig in planning the liberation of its inhabitants. General Roundwort suspects she is the cause of dissent and orders his guards to watch her closely. She escapes Efrafra with Bigwig and becomes Hazel's mate. Her name means "fur shining like dew".
A rabbit with extremely dark fur who attempts to escape from Efrafra but is apprehended, mutilated and put on public display to discourage others from attempting escape. When he is eventually liberated he quickly proves to be a skilled tracker and excellent ranger.
Kehaar is a black-headed full who is forced to take refuge on Watership Down when he injures his wing. When the rabbits help him he becomes friends with them. He is generally impatient, and has a funny, gutteral accent and unusual phraseology. His character was based on a fighter from the Norwegian Resistance in the Second World War.
He is the prime antagonist of the novel and the villain of the story. He is cunning, brutal and efficient in battle. Roundwort was orphaned at a very young age and was the Founder of the Efrafra Warren which he givens in a tyrannica way. He is larger and stronger than Bigwig and is devoid of compassion or mercy. He has no patience for acts of kindness. He even leads an attack on the Watership Down Warren as an act of revenge against Bigwig for "stealing" doe rabbits from Efrafra. After his apparent death in a fight with the Nuthanger Farm dog, his frightening presence lives on in rabbit legend as the bogeyman.
Campion is Woundwort's most trusted subordinate, a loyal, brave and clever officer who becomes Chief of Efrafra after Roundwort disappears. He acts as a reformer and negotiates peace with the Watership Down rabbits.
The head of the Council Police in Efrafra who is ordered by Woundwort to kill Fiver, but is terrified by Fiver's prophesying his death and ends up fleeing instead.
Frith is the god-like being that created the world and promised that rabbits would thrive.
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