Rochester is described to be very ugly - a dark face, with stern features, a craggy face and a heavy brow. He is 'pigeon-chested' and he is around middle-age, 35 years or so. He has a shaggy 'mane' of black hair. After the fire at Thornfield, he loses a hand and his sight, (which is only returned after he marries Jane). In the novel, he is often compared to a wild beast or bird.
Barely anything is known about Mr. Edward Fairfax Rochester (usually referred to as "Mr. Rochester" or just "Rochester") except he is the youngest son of his father with an older brother whose name is Rowland.
Jane first meets Mr. Rochester while running an errand for Mrs. Fairfax (who Jane had initially mistaken for her employer). She runs into his horse which causes him to fall and sprain his ankle. When she returns she learns that the man she met was in fact the master of Thornfield Hall. He wishes to see her and in first of the many conversations that follow then on, he accuses her of bewitching his horse. He also acknowledges that she is a 'rare breed' and is quite interested in knowing more about her. He throws a grand house party where he openly courts Blanche Ingram, a local belle. Jane suffers in silence at his preference for the other more attractive woman but never expresses her feelings. The longer she stays the stranger things become (a mysterious laugh, Rochester being nearly burned in his bed but saved by Jane and one of his guests being stabbed and bitten) .
When Jane returns she learns that Mr. Rochester is about to marry Blanche and she grows even more morose and makes up her mind to leave. Eventually he admits that he loves her and only her and proposes to her and she accepts. She later tells Rochester about a woman who entered her room in the middle of the night and ripped her wedding veil in two. When the wedding day approaches, Mason and a lawyer interrupt and say that he can't marry Jane because he is already married to another woman who has gone insane. He later tells Jane that he was tricked into the marriage and had no knowledge of Bertha being insane, that insanity ran through the woman like a black river of disease and that he lived her for 4 years until he realized that she was rapidly sinking into madness.
He is later seen again after Jane found out that his wife committed suicide and that he lost his sight. When she sees him again she promises that she will never leave again, she ends up marrying him and since then has been married to him for 10 years, but before Jane finishes her story she says that Mr. Rochester regained his sight after their 2 years of marriage and when Jane gave birth to their First born son he could that the boy inherited his own dark eyes.