What two dead people that appear in "The Adventures of Huck Finn" have the most impact on the protagonists Huck and how?If you could include quotes from the book that would be great- if not just a...

What two dead people that appear in "The Adventures of Huck Finn" have the most impact on the protagonists Huck and how?

If you could include quotes from the book that would be great- if not just a good reason on how they serve to teach Huck a lesson. thanks

Expert Answers
ms-mcgregor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Pap and Buck Grangerford are probably the two most important characters who die during the novel. Pap, Huck's father, is actually the reason Huck leaves St. Petersburg and sails down the Mississippi with Jim. After one drunken night, Pap tries to kill Huck and mistakes Huck for "the angel of death".  By that time, Huck realizes he must literally escape from Pap or face the possiblity of death.  What Huck does not realize, however, is that Jim finds Pap's body in a house that floats by but does not reveal this to Huck until the end of the novel. Thus, one of the great ironies of the novel is that fact that Huck has been running from a dead man during his entire journey down the Mississippi.

The other character that greatly affects Huck is Buck Grangerford. Buck is killed during a useless squabble between his family and the Stepherdsons. The two families have been feuding so long, no one remembers what started the fighting. As far as Huck is concerned, this is the first time he is forced to deal with the death of a close friend. Huck witnesses the death of his friend as he is shot in cold blood by members of the Stepherdson family. When he writes about the death, it is clear it made a tremendous impact on Huck.

"I ain't a-going to tell all that happened—it would make me sick

again if I was to do that. I wished I hadn't ever come ashore that night to see such things. I ain't ever going to get shut of them—lots of times I dream about them."

 

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The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

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