Following inoculation of the mouse cornea with herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), the spread of virus was investigated and the types of immune cell infiltrating the trigeminal ganglion (TG) were identified in low temperature paraffin wax sections. Virus antigen was first found on day 3 and was absent after day 14. Early presentation of antigen to T cells may occur since increased expression of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II antigens, including de novo expression on satellite and Schwann cells, was detected in foci of such antigen on day 3. A second large peak of such expression was detected on day 10 together with increasing numbers of B and T cells. Large numbers of these lymphocytes and extensive expression of MHC class II were seen in the TG well into the phase of virus latency; the significance of this is discussed.