“The Princess Bride” is a novel written by William Goldman and published in 1973. The novel’s premise is that the author, William Goldman discovers that a favorite childhood book is, in fact, actually a boring meditation on the history of a country called Florin. As a child, his father read him only the interesting, action-filled parts of the book. Goldman takes it upon himself to re-write the story with only the good parts left in. Of course, the book that he works off of, “The Princess Bride” by S. Morgenstern does not exist in real life, and only this version of The Princess Bride is real.
The novel’s real story revolves around a beautiful young woman named Buttercup, her true love, Westley and a Prince named Humperdinck who wishes to make Buttercup his bride. Westley must enlist the help of a giant named Fezzik and the world’s best swordsman, Inigo Montoya to find his lost love and win her back.
The novel became a success primarily after it was adapted into a screenplay by William Goldman himself and released as a feature film in 1987 which has since become a modern classic.
The story begins with an introduction by the author and the main narrator, William Goldman. William explains that when he was a child he often annoyed his teacher Miss Roginski with his lack of interest in reading. Now that he is an adult he has published a book and sent her a copy. Touched by this, Miss Roginski writes a letter back to him, ending it with the words, “Not even the immortal S. Morgenstern could feel more parental as I”.
Seeing this name, S. Morgenstern, makes William remember back to the first time he read the classic book, “The Princess Bride”. He relates that he was ten years old and sick with pneumonia. The whole time he was sick, his father sat next to his bed and read “The Princess Bride” to him. When he returned to school after he became well again, he shocked Miss Roginski with how much interest he suddenly had in reading.
Years later, after William grew up and had a family of his own, he called his wife while he was away on business and asked her to pick up a copy of “The Princess Bride” for their son’s tenth birthday. His wife has trouble locating the book, and William grows increasingly frustrated. When he returns home, the reader meets William’s son, a spoiled, overweight, unintelligent boy who has not even bothered to read the book that his father worked so hard to locate for him. Disheartened, William leaves the house and walks alone through Central Park. When he returns home later, he finds the book where his son had discarded it and picks it up. Handling the book makes him realize that he has never before touched a copy of “The Princess Bride” as that was always his father’s role.
Looking through the book, William is shocked to see that it is not, in fact, a daring fantasy/adventure book but a tedious recollection of the history of a country called Florin with small action parts sprinkled in. That night, William calls his editor to put all of his other work on hold so that he may begin working on a punishing abridgment of the original S. Morgenstern non-fiction book. He then tells the reader that he intends to present this to them. Although he notes that high adventure and true love no longer exist the way they are portrayed in the novel. He says that no one handles revenge the way that Inigo Montoya did and he, himself has never loved his wife the way Westley loved Buttercup.
Finally, he ends the introduction by saying: “Here’s the ‘good parts version”. S. Morgenstern wrote it. And my father read it to me. And now I give it to you. What you do with it will be of more than passing interest to us all”.
Chapter one is called “The Bride” and it begins by telling the reader of a young girl named Buttercup. The year that Buttercup was born the most beautiful woman in the world was a French scullery maid named Annette, who worked in Paris for the Duke. When the Duke started to become attracted to her, his wife, the Duchess became jealous, and she eventually discovered that Annette’s weakness was chocolate. The Duchess than sat about feeding Annette so much chocolate that she lost her figure and was no longer the most beautiful woman in the world.
The chapter then goes on to explain who the current most beautiful woman in the world was during all of Buttercup’s formative years and explain their humorous and unfortunate downfalls. Eventually, Buttercup at the age of seventeen made it to the top twenty of the list of the most beautiful women in the entire world. However, Buttercup was not concerned with beauty. She enjoyed riding her horses and avoided even so much as brushing her hair or bathing. Buttercup also enjoyed taunting the stable boy, a young man named Westley whom she called “Farm Boy”.
Slowly, the townspeople began to notice that Buttercup was growing more and more beautiful as she grew up and the news of her beauty spread throughout the kingdom. Nearby, a Count named Rugen heard tell of her beauty and dropped by her farm with his wife. They pretend that they are seeking to learn more about caring for cattle, but the narrator says that this was an obvious lie because Buttercup’s parents were well known for having the worst cows in the land.
Buttercup sees the Countess openly flirting with Westley and becomes jealous. That night she tosses and turns in her bed wondering what the Countess could have possibly wanted with Westley. The narrator tells the reader that, under the irritant of the fourth worst case of jealousy in recorded history, Buttercup rose from bed and knocked on Westley’s door. That night, she confessed her love to him with a grand speech. When she finished the speech, Westley slams the door in her face. Embarrassed, Buttercup returns to her room and rationalizes that the Farm Boy must have been too dumb to know how to respond to her speech.
That evening, Buttercup sees that Westley has packed all of his things. She assumes that he is running away with the Countess and furiously says that the Countess will leave him before long. Westley finally interrupts her and explains that he feels the same way for her that she does for him. He tells her that he is going to America to seek his fortune so that they may marry. They two then share a kiss that the narrator says is one of the five best kisses in history.
During the first few weeks without Westley, Buttercup begins to care for her appearance more so that Westley will still think she is beautiful when he returns. She is happy and in love until one day she receives news that Westley’s ship was captured and taken over by pirates. She is told that Westley was killed and stays in her room for days, crying and refusing to eat. When she at last emerges, the narrator says that she is thinner, wiser and sadder and that these things have finally made her the most beautiful woman in the world.
Over the next three chapters, William Goldman confesses that he had to edit a lot of dry, boring Florinese history out. He says that S. Morgenstern opened this chapter with 66 pages of Florinese history that would only be interesting to Florinese historians. He says that when his abridgment is released he fully expects every living Florinese historian to want to slaughter him.
However, at the end of the second chapter, “The Groom” the reader of S. Morgenstern’s lengthy work is introduced to Prince Humperdinck, the Prince of Florin and the next in line for the throne. The Prince is a spoiled, selfish man whose only great love is hunting. He built within his grounds a place that he called, “The Zoo of Death” where he keeps a collection of the fastest and most frightening animals on earth so that he can release and hunt them. One day while the Prince is hunting, his right-hand man, Count Rugen comes to tell him that his father is dying. The Prince is mostly upset because he realizes that this means that he will have to get married.
In chapter three, “The Courtship” the reader is introduced to King Lotharon and his wife, Bella. Bella is a sweet, loving woman that the Prince called his E.S. (short for Evil Stepmother). King Lotharon is dying and can only speak in barely audible mumbles that only Bella can understand. Through Bella’s translation, Humperdinck learns that he has to make an alliance with the country across the sea, Guilder by marrying their princess.
At this point, William Goldman cuts in again to explain that he cut out dozens and dozens of pages explaining the Princess, Noreena’s, hat collection and how she packed it to travel to Florin. However, this does explain why at the grand climactic feast where Humperdinck was supposed to propose to Noreena, things went terribly awry. Noreena’s hat is blown away by the wind, revealing that she is bald. Humperdinck calls off the wedding immediately, insisting that he cannot marry bald women because he must marry the beautiful woman.
Count Rugen then informs him of the existence of Buttercup. Humperdinck meets Buttercup and threatens to kill her if she does not agree to marry him. She only agrees to these terms and tells him that she will never love him since she has already loved and lost. He seems content with this agreement.
Chapter four, “The Preparations” has been entirely left out by Goldman, who confesses that he never even knew this chapter existed let alone that it was the longest chapter in the book. He says that the chapter consisted entirely of the rules of Florinese wedding preparations and princess training and it was useless for the narrative, so he left it out.
Chapter Five, “The Announcement” begins with Buttercup being brought to the Great Square to meet her new subjects. She tells Humperdinck that she wishes to walk among the commoners and ignores his attempt to forbid her from doing this. The commoners all love Buttercup immediately. But later that day, when she is riding her horse in the woods she is kidnapped by three men.
The men, Vizzini, Fezzik and Inigo Montoya, bring her aboard a ship and begin to talk about their plan to kill her to start a war between Florin and Guilder. Scared out of her mind, Buttercup jumps into the sea to escape her kidnappers. But she is soon surrounded by sharks and agrees to let the enormous giant, Fezzik pull her back up onto the boat.
The narrator breaks in to assure us that Buttercup does not die in the shark infested waters as she is the leading lady, and it wouldn’t do for her to die when the story is just getting started. Inigo notices that a ship is following them toward the Cliffs of Insanity. Vizzini, the leader of the gang, dismisses this idea as “inconceivable.” But Inigo keeps an eye on the black ship gaining on them as the three criminals take Buttercup off of the ship and begin to climb the cliffs. Fezzik is so large and strong that he can lift himself, Buttercup, and his two other cohorts straight up a rope and to the top of the cliffs.
When the gang makes it to the top of the cliffs they look down and see that a man in black is following them up the rope. Vizzini cuts the rope and is astonished to see that the man does not fall but begins to climb the cliffs with his hands and feet. He again calls this “Inconceivable” and tells Inigo to wait at the top of the cliffs and kill the man in black when he makes it up there. Vizzini then drags Fezzik and Buttercup with him off of the cliffs.
At this point, the narrative begins to include a back story of Inigo’s childhood. Inigo grew up in the hills of Spain with his father, Domingo Montoya, a sword-maker. Domingo worked for a man called Yeste, who was the most famous sword-maker in all of Madrid. One day a six-fingered Count approached and requested a special sword. Domingo slaved over this sword for one year and considered it his best work ever. However, the Count refused to pay full price for the sword when it was finished and killed Domingo in front of Inigo for the asking.
Inigo was only a boy at this time. With no one else to turn to, he left his village and sought to train in sword-fighting until he was the best sword hand in the world so that he could find this Count and take revenge on him. But Inigo struggled to find the Count and soon became a drunkard. It was while he was drunk that he was found by Vizzini and given the job of kidnapping Buttercup.
Back on the cliffs, Inigo begins to grow impatient waiting for the man in black to make it to the top and decides to help him, promising not to kill him until he is safe on solid ground. The man thanks him for this and when he makes it to the top the two begin a sword fight that is fantastically described by the narrator.
Inigo is happy to find that the man in black is an excellent swordsman. Eventually, the man in black wins the fight, but only knocks Inigo unconscious instead of killing him. He runs off after the princess. Vizzini sees the man in black from a distance, running toward them and tells Fezzik to stay so that he can stop him.
At this point, the reader is told Fezzik’s back story. Fezzik was Turkish and extremely large from a young age. However, he was a very timid, worried child who was often bullied. Fezzik’s parents encouraged him to fight the next largest child in school to keep the other children from bullying him and Fezzik continued on in this way, fighting the stronger and stronger men until he bested all of the strongest men in Turkey. He then began touring the world, finishing off the strongest men in Greece and Korea. The audiences began booing him as he was making the fights look too easy and quick. After Fezzik lost his parents, he was left alone without a anchor in Greenland. He often comforted himself with rhymes. It was in Greenland that Vizzini found him and asked him to join his crew.
Back on the cliffs, Fezzik breaks Vizzini’s instruction by alerting the man in black to his presence before he begins fighting him. He says that he wants to face him as God intended and the two begin wrestling. Unbelievably, the man in black manages to cling to Fezzik’s neck and block his windpipe by strangling him until Fezzik passes out. The man in black once again leaves his opponent alive and runs off to find Vizzini.
Vizzini has blindfolded Buttercup and set up a picnic while he waits for the man in black. Vizzini smugly insists that he knew he should have bested the man in black himself and that his great intelligence will be too much for the man. He tells him that they will have a battle of wits and the man in black agrees. The man produces iocane powder that he has found on his travels. He has Vizzini pour two glasses of wine and hides them both behind his back while he poisons one glass. He then sets one glass down in front of himself and one down in front of Vizzini, telling the little man that they will both drink from a glass after Vizzini chooses and whoever dies with losing the battle.
Vizzini then begins detailing his reasoning process which is winding and deliberately confusing so that he may switch the two glasses while the man in black is distracted. He then drinks from the glass in front of him. Vizzini begins to laugh about how he has tricked the man and then falls over dead. The man in black unties Buttercup and takes off her blindfold. She is frightened and asks him how he tricked Vizzini. The man in black explains that both cups were poisoned, but that he has spent many years developing an immunity to iocane powder.
Buttercup begs the man to release her but he ignores her pleas and tells her to get to her feet. The two begin escaping through the plains of Guilder with Humperdinck’s army close behind them. The man in black sees Humperdinck’s armada from the cliffs and begins to mock Buttercup’s upcoming wedding and who he believes to be her beloved fiance. He says that she is heartless and unable to love anyone truly. She gets so angry at him that she pushes him down a hill saying that he can die for all she cares. As the man in black falls, a faint whisper of the words, “As you wish” makes it’s way to Buttercup and, as this is what Westley used to say to her often, she realizes that the man in black is, in fact, her love. She throws herself down the hill after him.
Humperdinck and his army make it to the top of the cliffs, and he sees the evidence of the fight with Inigo. He demonstrates his hunting abilities by using the tracks in the sand to track Westley off of the cliff and into Guilder. He follows the tracks until he realizes that they are headed toward the Fire Swamp, which is a terrifying place that few return from alive.
Westley and Buttercup reunite and S. Morgenstern confesses that he feels unfair describing something so private, so he leaves it out. William Goldman says that he finds it unfair that the scene would be left out, so he wrote one of his own. However, his editors would not agree to add it in. He encourages readers to write in to request a copy of it. He does, however say that the reunion was beautiful and there were tears, embraces and then an argument.
Buttercup and Westley unknowingly enter the Fire Swamp. Once they realize where they are, they recollect the three main terrors of the swamp. Fire bursts that shoot out of the ground at random intervals, Snow Sand that can suck a person underground in seconds, and Rodents of Unusual Size. The couple encounters all three terrors and almost die each time. During the trip, Westley explains how he survived being attacked by the pirate ship and the most feared pirate of all time, the Dread Pirate Roberts. He managed to survive initially because he didn’t try to beg or bribe as others did, but only asked for his life. This intrigued the pirate and after this Westley made himself useful until he eventually became the pirate’s first mate.
One day, the Dread Pirate Roberts pulled Westley aside and told him that he was not actually, the original Dread Pirate Roberts. That man had retired long ago, and the name had been passed down for twenty years to this man. This Roberts told Westley that he wished to retire and that he was passing the name down to Westley.
Westley’s ship is now anchored on the other side of the swamp, but when the couple finally manages to make it out of the swamp, they are met with Humperdinck and his men. Buttercup agrees as she thinks it is the only way that Humperdinck will not hurt Westley. She chooses life without love over death with love. However, after Humperdinck takes her away, Count Rugen takes Westley back to his torture chamber.
Chapter six, “The Festivities” begins with William Goldman telling the reader that S. Morgenstern started this chapter by explaining more Florinese wedding traditions before tuning back in to what was happening with the main characters. On the Cliffs of Insanity, Inigo finally awakens and realizes that he must “go back to the beginning” meaning the place where Vizzini found him, the Thieves Quarter. Inigo returns to the Thieves Quarter and begins drinking himself into a stupor.
Back on the cliffs, Fezzik also awakens and finds Vizzini’s corpse. He worries that Inigo has been killed, too and becomes sad and confused. He stops to rest in a cave and begins chanting his rhymes to himself to calm down. Westley is taken to the Zoo of Death, where he has his wounds seen to by a mute albino man. He learns through questioning the man and guessing at what is to happen that he is to be tortured to death. He resolves not to be broken. Buttercup begins having nightmares about a crowd of commoners booing her and telling her that she is pathetic for giving up her true love.
William Goldman cuts in to explain how this section, where S. Morgenstern uses the dream sequence to trick the reader into thinking that the wedding has already happened, bothered him as a child. He explains that he was disturbed to think that Buttercup could ever marry Humperdinck and it wasn’t until an older neighbor told him that life wasn’t fair that he began to realize that that was what bothered him about this section of the book. Goldman then explains that “The Princess Bride” is not a fair book either.
Back in the narrative, Buttercup goes to Humperdinck and tells him that she still loves Westley and must only marry him. Humperdinck, who is surprisingly calm, saying that he will send his four fastest ships out with a letter from Buttercup to Westley so that she may tell him that she has changed her mind. If he returns, than she can marry him but if not, Humperdinck asks if she would consider going through with their wedding.
Humperdinck internally thinks that he intends to demonstrate to his kingdom how deeply he loves Buttercup so that when he strangles her on their wedding night, they will believe him when he blames Guilder and want to start a war between the two countries.
The next few weeks pass quickly. Count Rugen begins torturing Westley with strange experiments and machines. He intends to find out how much a man can take before he breaks. Humperdinck becomes irritated by Buttercup’s praise of Westley and demands that Rugen tortures him further. He instructs a man named Yellin to empty out the Thieves Quarter so that he may appear to be trying to root out anyone who may want to assassinate Buttercup.
Yellin struggles to go through with this request, since one drunken Spaniard is intent on staying and threatens the brute squad with his sword. Of course, this is Inigo who is saved by Fezzik when the large man shows up and knocks out the brute squad. Fezzik nurses Inigo back to health and tells him of the news of the past few weeks. Inigo realizes that they must find the man in black and ask him to help him find the six-fingered count so that he may avenge his father. He also thinks that this will save the man in black from Rugen’s torture chamber.
Meanwhile, Buttercup realizes that Humperdinck was lying about sending out his four fastest ships. She argues with him and he becomes so furious that he locks her in her room and marches straight to the Zoo of Death so that he may put Westley’s torture machine up to it’s highest level. This kills Westley and his death scream can be heard all over Florin. Inigo recognizes the scream as the sound of ultimate suffering as it was the sound his heart made the day his father was killed. Inigo and Fezzik make their way to the Zoo of Death and manage to find the entrance with the albino man’s help.
Inigo and Fezzik enter the Zoo of Death at the beginning of Chapter 7, “The Wedding.” When they enter, they are scared by the idea of the deadly animals inside but descend five levels despite their fear. On the first two levels, they pass animals in cages and begin to relax. But on the third level, the door locks behind them and the lights go out. A large Arabian Garstini snake begins to wraps around them. Fezzik shouts that the snake is too strong for him and Inigo encourages him by saying that he still has more rhymes to tell him. Fezzik becomes outraged that he may die before hearing these rhymes and manages to fight the snake, killing it and saving them both.
On the staircase, to level four they are surrounded by king bats, which Inigo fights off with his sword. On the staircase down to the last level, they are surprised to find that there are no threats. However, the narrator reveals to the reader that the world’s deadliest spider is waiting behind the doorknob. But Fezzik charges through the door without using the knob and Fezzik steps on the spider in his rush into the room. The friends see Westley dead on a bed. They decide to bring him to a man called Miracle Max. Max worked for the king for many years but was fired by Humperdinck.
Max agrees to see Westley only when he realizes that he is already dead because Max is good with the dead. Max tells his wife, Valerie, that two customers have arrived. She persuades him to find out why they need the miracle that they are seeking. Max uses a fireplace bellows to pump air into Westley’s lungs and then presses on his chest as he asks him why he must live.
Westley groans out, “Tr…oooooo….luv,” which Max mishears as “To bluff.” Valerie then runs into the room and begins scolding him, telling him that he is a liar and explaining to Inigo and Fezzik that he has been different ever since Humperdinck fired him. Hearing this, Inigo tells Max that helping Westley will hurt Humperdinck. Max is happy to help after this is revealed.
Max brings out a pill hidden in a lump of clay that is supposed to bring Westley back to life for one hour. Fezzik and Inigo thank him and drag Westley up to the top of one of the castle walls. They feed him the miracle pill, and he instantly begins to speak, not remembering anything except who Buttercup is. Westley threatens them and Fezzik and Inigo answer his questions about what is going on and explain that the castle is being guarded by a hundred men. Westley says that it is impossible, but his cohorts do not let him give up. He devises a scheme that uses a wheelbarrow and a cloak.
Inside the castle, Buttercup calmly walks down the aisle to her marriage, as she assumes that Westley is going to save her. Inigo manages to drag Westley, who still cannot walk, along with him as Fezzik dons the cloak and stands atop the wheelbarrow. Inigo lights the cloak on fire and Fezzik booms out about being the Dread Pirate Roberts as he is wheeled toward the guards who run from him in fear.
The last chapter of the book is called “Honeymoon”, and it begins with Fezzik, Inigo, and Westley facing Yellin who is the last guard at the gate. He gives them the key to the gate after Fezzik threatens to tear off his arms. From here on, we are given a countdown to the wedding. At 5:30, Westley, Inigo, and Fezzik encounter Count Rugen in the castle. The wedding progresses slowly because of the officiant, the Archdean, is very old and speaks at length. Nevertheless, at 5:31, Humperdinck and Buttercup are wed.
Inigo realizes that Count Rugen is the six-fingered man and at 5:34 he is finally able to make his long-rehearsed speech to the man who killed his father, “Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die”. However, hearing this, Rugen turns and flees.
At 5:46, Buttercup, who has been left alone in Humperdinck’s chamber, looks through his weapons for something that she can use to commit suicide. At 5:37 Inigo realizes that he needs Fezzik’s help to break down a locked door that Rugen has fled through and Fezzik must leave Westley alone to do this. Fezzik breaks down the door, and Inigo follows Rugen through the castles corridors. At 5:48, Buttercup prepares to commit suicide by the sight of Westley lying in bed behind her. At 5:41, Rugen throws a dagger into Inigo’s stomach. At 5:50, Humperdinck finds Westley and Buttercup in his room and dives for his weapons. He shouts, “To the death!” only to have Westley counter, “To the pain!” At 5:42, Inigo begins to prepare for his death. He apologizes to his father. But his father bursts into his dying mind and demands that he keep fighting.
Inigo pulls the knife from his stomach and renews his pursuit of Rugen. Finally, he manages to corner Rugen and kills him. He takes his revenge at last. At 5:52, Westley explains what “to the pain” means to Humperdinck. This is a duel where if Westley wins, he keeps the Prince alive but only after slicing off his wrists, ankles, nose and eyes. But he will leave the ears so that he can hear the screams of everyone who is horrified by his appearance.
This explanation disturbs Humperdinck so much that he drops his sword when Westley demands it. Buttercup ties the Prince up, and Inigo enters the room. Fezzik calls to them from the window, and they see that he has found four white horses so that they can escape together. However, Yellin and his brute squad confront them once they get out of the window. Buttercup rescues them at last by insisting as the queen that they run back inside and see to Humperdinck. The four heroes ride to freedom and Buttercup and Westley promise to love each other forever and share a final kiss that enters the ranking as the most romantic kiss of all time.
William Goldman explains that this was where his father ended the book, but when he read S. Morgenstern’s ending, the final pages were much more sad. In S. Morgenstern’s version, Inigo’s wound suddenly takes his life, Westley’s pill runs out and he dies again, Fezzik takes a wrong turn and Buttercup’s horse throws a shoe all while the princes horsemen follow close behind. Goldman says that he likes to maintain the ending he heard so many times, that all of the heroes got away and lived happily ever after with some squabbles and dilemmas. He says that life is not fair but it is fairer than death.
Buttercup – Buttercup is the title – and arguably the main – character of “The Princess Bride.” In the beginning, she is a very beautiful farmer’s daughter whose only concern in life is riding her horses and belittling the farm hand, a boy named Westley. Buttercup is a bit of a difficult character to like in the first chapters but over the course of the novel she grows into her own and even saves the day in the end by convincing Humperdinck’s men to go back inside the caste and tend to him instead of arresting the heroes.
Without Westley, Buttercup’s motivation and will to live are reduced greatly. She moves through life complacently with no passion for anything although she continues to the minimum of what is asked of her. Buttercup is a commoner who is raised to the level of the Queen but does not wish to stay there. Instead, she is elevated not by her title but by her bravery, boldness and willingness to fight for her love.
Westley – the farm boy who begins the story as a simple farm hand working for Buttercup’s parents. Westley’s perspective on his growing love for Buttercup is not shown, although when she reveals her love to him, he confesses back to her over many paragraphs in a way that implies that he has loved her since they met. Westley’s main motivation is his love for Buttercup. He explains to her as he is confessing his love that he has taught himself other languages, made his body strong and other such things because he thought it would please her.
Westley travels to America to seek his fortune so that he and Buttercup may be together without her having to lower herself to marrying a stable hand. However, while he is on his way to America his ship is over taken by the Dread Pirate Roberts. When Westley returns to Florin as the Dread Pirate, he has trained himself to the point that he can best the best swordsman, the strongest man, and the smartest in separate battles.
In his quest to make himself better for Buttercup, Westley achieves almost god-like perfection in everything he attempts. He even manages to come back from the dead with help from his friends. He becomes the ideal man for her just as Buttercup becomes the ideal woman for him.
Inigo Montoya – Inigo is the best swordsman in the world. His quest to become the greatest begins when his father is killed by a mysterious six-fingered Count and Inigo begins to wish for revenge. However, after becoming the greatest swordsman and winning many battles, Inigo still could not find the six-fingered count, and he lapsed into depression and alcoholism to cope. Inigo’s entire motivation in the novel is the need to kill Rugen and enact his revenge for killing his father. Ultimately, Inigo’s quest brings him to Count Rugen whom he kills after a tense battle.
Fezzik – he is the strongest man alive and becomes so by battling all of the other strongest men in the world one on one until he eventually beats them. Fezzik is described as being a “giant” with enormous hands. He initially gets into fighting in order to please his parents who want him to put his size to good use. Fezzik is, however, a gentle giant for the most part, who is easily confused and frightened. He does not enjoy hurting people and has a love of rhymes and songs.
Fezzik is usually bad at remembering instructions, so Inigo begins making up rhymes for him to use as memory devices when they are going forward with Vizzini’s plan. This creates a bond between the two men that makes them more loyal to each other than to Vizzini. Fezzik’s main motivation is the need not to be left alone.
William Goldman Biography
William Goldman was born in Chicago, Illinois on August 12th, 1931. Goldman was the son of successful businessman until his father’s alcoholism eventually sank his career and he sunk into a depression that lasted five years. His father later killed himself while William was in high school.
Despite this, William soon graduated and went on to receive a bachelor of arts degree from Oberlin College in 1952 after which he joined the army. Because he was familiar with typewriters, he was sent to work at the Pentagon as a clerk until September 1954. He then attended Columbia where he graduated with masters of arts degree in 1956. Throughout this time, William wrote many short stories and attempted to have them published.
After graduating with his masters, William decided that he wanted to write professionally. In June of 1956, William began writing what would later be his first novel, “The Temple of Gold.” He went on to publish five more novels over his lifetime including his most famous work, “The Princess Bride” in 1973.
In the 60’s, William began writing screenplays and saw much success as a screenplay writer. He wrote the screenplays for several Academy Award winning movies and eventually sold the screenplay for “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” for $400,000, a record amount in the 1960’s.
Many more of William Goldman’s screenplays have been turned into successful movies including the screenplay for the Stephen King novel, “Misery” (1990), “The Stepford Wives” (1975) and “Marathon Man” (based on his own novel in 1976). In the 1980’s, William wrote a series of memoirs about his career in Hollywood and Broadway.
William was married from 1961 to 1991 to Ilene Jones with whom he had two children named Jenny Rebecca and Susanna. Today he is considered one of the best authors of our time and currently lives in New York City.