Characters Discussed

(Great Characters in Literature)

Dr. Charles Primrose

Dr. Charles Primrose, the vicar of Wakefield, “a priest, an husbandman, and the father of a family.” He is generous, kindly, honest, and given to strong opinions (as on monogamy). A homely philosopher, he admonishes his wife and daughters on their vanity, warns them against Squire Thornhill (who later takes him in), urges them to be temperate, and frequently delivers himself of wise saws and modern instances, all the while remaining a good-hearted fool who is easily duped by villains. His fortitude is amazing during his train of calamities. He is so completely a good man that he is lovable despite his frequent gullibility and his occasional absurdity.

Deborah Primrose

Deborah Primrose, his wife, an ambitious woman whose chief interest is in getting her daughters well married. She is vain and, through George, she seeks vengeance on Olivia’s betrayer.

George Primrose

George Primrose, the oldest son. Bred at Oxford for one of the learned professions, he (somewhat like the author himself) tries various occupations, succeeding at none. Through Squire Thornhill, he obtains an army commission. George at long last marries Arabella.

Sophia (Sophy) Primrose

Sophia (Sophy) Primrose, the younger daughter, soft, modest, and alluring, a girl whose beauty increases upon better acquaintance. She marries Sir William Thornhill.

Olivia (Livy) Primrose

Olivia (Livy) Primrose, the older daughter, strikingly and luxuriantly beautiful, open, sprightly, commanding, and coquettish. Deceived by Squire Thornhill, she elopes with him and is deserted shortly afterward. She suffers remorse, especially when she learns that...

(The entire section is 720 words.)