Bernard is a modern day character in his late thirties. He is a don at Sussex University and is extremely literary. He is also pompous, solipsistic, and as Hannah says of him in Scene 5:
"Arrogant, greedy and reckless."
Bernard is trying to prove that Lord Byron killed Mr Chater in a duel at Sidley Park in 1809, and ignores the overwhelming amounts of evidence that points to the contrary in pursuit of fame and recognition. He is self-centred and over-confident, as well as being extremely condescending towards what he considers to be Hannah's "trivial" research, although she uncovers many important things that prove to be valuable to his work. He is important to the plot in that he provides much of the intrigue through his biased research, and he conveys ideas about the conflict between literature and science. He obviously values literature and "personalities" more than scientific research and…