An imposing, elegant figure, Francis Guise is one of the main lieutenants of King Francis. He is arrogant, and one of the most conservative figures in France. A devote Catholic, Guise is determined to stamp out the Hugenots for religious, not political, reasons. He is man with strong ideas about the way France should be, but maintains honor and chivalrous at least to others of equal rank. For much of the novel he kept his forces intact, fearful of the power of the King, Colingy, and Montmorency uniting against him. His hand is often forced by his much bolder son, Henry.