The Man Who Would Be King Characters

Characters (Great Characters in Literature)

Characters Discussed

An unnamed newspaperman

An unnamed newspaperman, who serves as the narrator. It is probable that this character is the author himself. With a journalist’s sixth sense, he allows himself to become involved in the adventures of Daniel Dravot and Peachey Carnehan. Against his better judgment, he helps them prepare to seize control of the kingdom of Kafiristan. With his books and maps, he provides them with the information they need. Three years later, when Carnehan returns more dead than alive, the narrator persuades the horribly crippled man to tell his fantastic story, although it exhausts his last bit of strength. Out of a spirit of charity and pity, the narrator arranges for Carnehan’s care, only to learn that his friend died two days after telling his tale of wonder and terror.

Peachey Carnehan

Peachey Carnehan, a vagabond adventurer who risks his life to become one of the rulers of Kafiristan, a mystical kingdom that supposedly forms part of Afghanistan. Although he is a big man, he involves the narrator in his scheme by persuasion and not by intimidation. Although committed to their plan, Carnehan is far more cautious than Dravot and is determined to remain true to their contract, which forbids consuming liquor or becoming involved with women. Seemingly more interested in the business of governing and the mystic nature of kingship than in personal gain, Carnehan is disturbed by his...

(The entire section is 506 words.)