Characters Discussed

(Great Characters in Literature)

Colonel Abel Pargiter

Colonel Abel Pargiter, a solid, middle-class, retired army officer, father of the family whose progress through the years is traced in fragmentary episodes from 1880 to 1937. Lonely and purposeless, he sits in his club, goes to the city, visits his mistress, Mira, and returns to his genteel but rather shabby home on Abercorn Terrace, where his wife lies ill of a lingering illness and his children are gathered for tea. Mrs. Pargiter dies that night. All his children but one leave for lives of their own. The exception is Eleanor, with whom the colonel lives in the same pattern until his death some thirty years later.

Eleanor Pargiter

Eleanor Pargiter, Colonel Abel Pargiter’s eldest daughter. Naturally cheerful, efficient, and given to social work, she is, at the age of twenty-two, the mainstay of the family during her mother’s lingering illness. After her mother’s death, she continues to live with her father as his housekeeper and companion, staying with him until he dies when she is fifty-five years old. She sells the house on Abercorn Terrace and goes to live alone between her travels abroad. When she is over seventy, she still finds life a continual discovery and enjoys the prospects of a bright new day.

Edward Pargiter

Edward Pargiter, Abel’s scholarly son. As a student at Oxford, he is in love with Kitty Malone, who refuses him. He later becomes a Greek scholar of considerable distinction.

Morris Pargiter

Morris Pargiter, Abel’s not-too-successful barrister son.

Delia Pargiter

Delia Pargiter, Abel’s daughter. Rebellious and resentful of the...

(The entire section is 706 words.)