(Great Characters in Literature)

Characters Discussed

Mr. Richard Tebrick

Mr. Richard Tebrick, a young Englishman who finds he has married a vixen. His worry over her and her cubs and his jealousy of her mate make him seem a madman not only to his neighbors but even occasionally to himself. When he and his wife are attacked by dogs who kill her, Mr. Tebrick loses his reason. He recovers, however, and lives many years.

Silvia Fox Tebrick

Silvia Fox Tebrick, his wife, a beautiful country girl with hazel eyes, reddish-brown hair, and brownish, freckled skin who, in her twenty-third year, turns into a small, bright-red fox. Though she can no longer speak, she communicates by looks and signs, and she understands her husband as she did before. At first retaining in part her womanly nature, she gradually becomes more foxlike in eating and in other habits. When released, she disappears, mates with a dog-fox, and later lets her cubs play with their godfather, Mr. Tebrick.

Nanny Cork

Nanny Cork, Silvia’s old nurse, who becomes the Tebricks’ housekeeper. She accepts Silvia’s transformation as if it were nothing unusual and continues her interest in Silvia’s welfare.


Askew, a jockey hired by Mr. Tebrick to follow the fox hunts and report on the animals killed.








Esther, and


Angelica, Silvia’s cubs. Angelica, who greatly resembles her mother, is Mr. Tebrick’s favorite.

The Reverend Canon Fox

The Reverend Canon Fox, Silvia’s uncle, a clergyman who visits Mr. Tebrick and thinks him insane.


James, the Tebrick gardener and groom.


Polly, Mrs. Cork’s grandaughter, who enjoys playing with Mrs. Tebrick until the vixen leaves to seek a mate.


Simon, Mrs. Cork’s son.