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rrteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Dill's real name is Charles Baker Harris, and he is Scout's very close friend. He is from Meridian, Mississippi, and visits Maycomb during the summers. He stays with his aunt Rachel, but actually spends most of his time with the Finches.

He is a very small boy, and Scout describes him as having white hair like "duckfluff." Dill is a very imaginative child, and he is intensely interested in Boo Radley's house when the book opens. He dares Jem to run up and touch the house.

Dill actually runs away from home at one point, fleeing to the Finch house to try to find sanctuary there. He is very reticent to talk about his home life, especially his father, and when Scout pries into his background, Jem urges her to let up. He is present with the Finch children at Tom Robinson's trial, and like them, is confused by the racism and the hatred that leads to his conviction. Above all, though, he is Scout's best friend in Maycomb.

bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Charles Baker "Dill" Harris is the pint-sized member of the child threesome that also includes Jem and Scout. Dill hails from Meridian, Mississippi but comes to spend each summer in Maycomb with his Aunt Rachel, the Finches' neighbor. It is Dill who spurs the children's interest in Boo Radley, and he quickly becomes Jem's best friend--and, later, Scout's "permanent fiance." Dill is involved in most of the children's summertime adventures, boldly following Jem's lead; and, when Jem is not looking, he sneaks kisses from Scout, who clearly has fallen for her little friend.

With him, life was routine; without him, life was unbearable.  (Scout, Chapter 12)

Dill is based on author Harper Lee's own summertime neighbor and lifelong friend--the late writer Truman Capote. 

Read the study guide:
To Kill a Mockingbird

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