Cymbeline, King of Britain, is a cranky old man led by the nose by his second wife.
Though he brought up the orphaned Posthumus Leonatus, he considers the young man too poor to be worthy of being his son-in-law, and is furious when he learns that his daughter Imogen has married him in secret. He is not the brightest of monarchs, having been easily convinced that his friend Belarius was a traitor, just as he fails to see Cloten as a fool. By his first wife he had three children; the two boys (Guiderius and Arviragus) were kidnapped and are presumed dead. He tends to react to matters rather than initiate them, is a good warrior but still needs to be rescued in a battle, and rejects Roman sovereignty more because his people won’t stand for it than or of personal belief – as evidenced, perhaps, by his decision to submit to the Romans just after his armies give them a licking. He is a courteous and conservative man, not a deep thinker, and rather slow on the uptake.