I suspect everything could be a trap. It's why I'm still alive.
~ Prince Humperdinck.
You truly love each other, and so you might have been truly happy. Not one couple in a century has that chance, no matter what the storybooks say. And so I think no man in a century will suffer as greatly as you will.
~ Humperdinck, before torturing Wesley

Prince Humperdinck (simply known as Humperdinck) is the main antagonist of the 1987 live action fantasy film, The Princess Bride.

He was portrayed by the legendary actor Chris Sarandon, who also played Jerry Dandridge from Fright Night


Humperdinck is heir to the throne of Florin. While initially seen only as a love rival, Humperdinck is later revealed to be the villain of the story. He plans to marry Princess Buttercup so he could have her assasinated in order to start a war with Florin's sworn enemy Guilder (by blaming Guilder for her death). For this, he hired Sicilian criminal mastermind Vizzini to kidnap and kill Buttercup for this goal.

When Westley foils this plot, Humperdinck takes Buttercup back after she has him promise not to hurt him. Instead, he has his ally Count Rugen imprison Westley with the intention of torturing him to death. After being insulted by Buttercup on the eve of their wedding, Humperdinck tries to kill Wesley. Inigo and Fezzik find his corpse and have him revived by Miracle Max, whom Humperdinck had fired. While Wesley was still too physically weak to fight, he was still lucid enough to hatch a plan that would stop the wedding.

When Humperdinck comes across Wesley, he plans to kill him then and there, but Wesley surprises him by standing on his own with his sword pointed out. Wesley then says Drop. Your. Sword, which Humperdinck is only too eager to do. Buttercup then ties him to a chair and they gallop off into the sunset.

Since Humperdinck was never killed, he may very well have put a bounty on their heads afterwards. With Fezzik and Inigo accompanying them, however, this would make his revenge difficult to achieve.



  • Prince Humperdinck has become somewhat of a byword for villainly online, as Film Brain says in TGWTG "Who'd have thought Prince Humperdinck could be such an asshole?" in reference to a blatant antagonist being revealed as an antagonist, much to nobody's surprise.
  • As the grandfather who is reading the story to his grandson notes, Prince Humperdinck survives the events of the movie, as opposed to Count Rugen and Vizzini. However, it's indicated that he will spend the rest of his life knowing that he is a coward, which considering his fondness for war and hunting is a terrible fate for him.
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