For students in Rizal's Life and Works (3-unit requirement in college curriculum), here is a guide in knowing the 30 characters in Noli Me Tangere.
* Crisóstomo Ibarra – also known in his full name as Juan Crisóstomo Ibarra y Magsalin, a Filipino who studied in Europe for 7 years, the love interest of Maria Clara. Son of the deceased Don Rafael Ibarra; Crisostomo changed his surname from Eibarramendia to Ibarra, from his ancestor's surname.
* Elías – Ibarra's mysterious friend, a master boater, also a fugitive. He was referred to at one point as "the pilot." He wants to revolutionize his country. In the past, Ibarra's grandfather condemned his grandfather of burning a warehouse, making Elias the fugitive he is.
* María Clara – María Clara de los Santos, Ibarra's sweetheart; the illegitimate daughter of Father Dámaso and Pía Alba
* Father Dámaso – also known in his full name as Dámaso Verdoglagas, Franciscan friar and María Clara's biological father
* Don Filipo – A close relative of Ibarra, and a filibuster.
* Linares – A distant nephew of Don Tiburcio de Espadaña, the would-be fiance of Maria Clara.
* Captain-General (no specific name) – The most powerful official in the Philippines, a hater of secular priests and corrupt officials, and a friend of Ibarra.
* Tandang Pablo – The Leader of the rebels, whose family was destroyed because of the Spaniards.
* Tarcilo and Bruno – Brothers, whose father was killed by the Spaniards.
* Sisa – the mother of Basilio and Crispín, who went insane after losing her sons
* Basilio – the elder son of Sisa.
* Crispín – the younger son of Sisa who died from the punishment of the soldiers from the false accusation of stealing an amount of money.
* Padre Sibyla – Hernando de la Sibyla, a Filipino friar. He is described as short and has fair skin.
* Kaptain Tiago – also known in his fullname as Don Santiago de los Santos the known father of María Clara but not the real one; lives in Binondo
* Padre Salví – also known in his full name as Bernardo Salví, a secret admirer of María Clara
* Pilosopo Tasyo – also known as Don Anastasio, portrayed in the novel as pessimistic, cynic, and mad by his neighbors
* The Alférez – chief of the Guardia Civil ; mortal enemy of the priests for power in San Diego
* Don Tiburcio – Spanish husband of Donya Victorina who is limp and submissive to his wife; he also pretends to be a doctor
* Doña Victorina – Victorina de los Reyes de De Espadaña, a woman who passes herself off as a Peninsular
* Doña Consolación – wife of the alférez, another woman who passes herself as a Peninsular; best remembered for her abusive treatment of Sisa
* Pedro – abusive husband of Sisa who loves cockfighting