- This article is about the character. For the television series, see "Barney & Friends".
Barney the Dinosaur is the main protagonist of Barney & Friends and a two hundred million year (two dinosaur years) old, six-foot tall, purple tyrannosaurus rex with a green belly and green spots on his back and his tail and yellow toes. He comes to life through a child's imagination. He is best known for his silly and optimistic attitude.
Barney was first created in 1987 by Sheryl Leach, who was looking for a way to entertain her then 2 year old son, Patrick. Originally, Barney was going to be a blanket. When that was proven to be too hard, he became a teddy bear who came to life. Patrick was fascinated by a dinosaur exhibit at a museum, particularly the Tyrannosaurus rex. In response, Sheryl made Barney a T. Rex. Kathy Parker, a fellow teacher-turned-mother who had helped Sheryl create the character, agreed to the change, but on the condition that he was not to appear menacing (a realistic t-rex would have scared her daughter Kaitlin). In the end, he was colored purple to appeal to both genders (Leach had a thing for the color purple as well) and had his features softened (i.e. "toe balls" in place of claws).
- David Voss (1988–1990)
- David Joyner (1991–2001)
- Carey Stinson (1994, 1998, 2001, 2002–2014)
- Alan Bruce (1994, understudy in Barney Live in New York City)
- Josh Martin (1997–1998, 2006)
- Maurice Scott (1997, 2002, 2004)
- Antwaun Steele (2000-2001, 2010-2011)
- Bob West (1988–2000)
- Duncan Brannan (1998, 2000–2002)
- Tim Dever (2000–2002)
- Dean Wendt (2002–2014)
- Unknown Stand-in (Barney Live! World Tour - A Celebration!)
- Super Dee Duper
- Remember, I love you!
- You are special!
- Aw, Shucks!
- Some concept names for Barney were Cosby, Colby, and Danny.
- Barney's favorite foods are peanut-butter sandwiches (with a glass of milk), vegetables, pumpernickel bread, and pistachios (as of the Season 11 episode of the same name).
- In the Barney & the Backyard Gang series, Barney had to be kept a secret from the parents. That running gag lasted until Three Wishes where Micheal and Amy's Mom is informed on who Barney is
- Although he celebrates his birthday in the Barney franchise, he remains over 200 million years old.