In To Kill a Mockingbird, why might some people misjudge Judge Taylor's ability?
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee is set in the south during the time of the Great Depression. It centers around the trial of Tom Robinson, a negro who stands accused of raping a young white girl.
Judge Taylor is not a prominent character since the story is told from the perspective of a six-year-old girl by the name of Scout. Her involvement is due to the fact that she is the daughter of the defense lawyer, Atticus Finch.
Judge Taylor is well advanced in age. He is a man of simple pleasures such as singing and partaking of his dipping tobacco. He is a singularly unremarkable man. The only clue that one might have that he knows more than it seems he does is his appointment of Atticus vs. the newbie lawyer, who would have traditionally "drawn the short straw" in such a controversial case.
A senile, simpleton of a judge who did not even have the good sense to assign the "correct" defense counsel! Those are ample reasons to misjudge the good judge's abilities.