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A character sketch should include as many pertinent details about personality and background as possible.
The story opens with the death of Sir Charles Baskerville in 1891. Sir Charles was a wealthy man who had an unfortunate family history. It was rumored that his family was cursed by the supernatural monster The Hound of the Baskervilles. As a result, Sir Charles was a nervous man with a bad heart. He was effectively scared to death, but actually murdered.
The family curse dating back to 1730 had a profound effect on Baskerville. We don’t know much about him except that he was well-respected, but had a nervous disposition. He was a potential candidate for public office for the Liberal party. The newspaper described him as a statesman, and said that “his amiability of character and extreme generosity had won the affection and respect of all who had been brought into contact with him” (enotes etext p. 11). He was childless and a widower, but sought to look after the people of the countryside.
Sir Charles kept a simple household, but had big dreams about bringing his household to its former glory. He was intelligent and shrewd, and made good money in South Africa. In the case of Mrs. Lyons, Sir Charles did seem kind-hearted because he wanted to help her and give her money to get out of her bad marriage.
Alas, Sir Charles’s temperament and poor health led to his death. He foolishly agreed to walk alone at night to meet, and then was frightened to death by Stapleton’s hound.
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