Characters Discussed

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Dr. Thomas Thorne

Dr. Thomas Thorne, the benevolent physician of Greshamsbury in East Barsetshire. He had adopted Mary, the illegitimate child of his brother and Mary Scatcherd, a village girl, after his brother was killed by Roger Scatcherd, Mary’s brother. Dr. Thorne conceals Mary’s identity until after she has inherited Roger Scatcherd’s fortune. a humane man, Dr. Thorne is friendly with both the Scatcherds and with the aristocratic Greshams of Greshamsbury Park.

Mary Thorne

Mary Thorne, the niece of Dr. Thorne, unaware, until the end of the novel, of her illegitimate origin. She was brought up with the young Greshams at Greshamsbury Park and is in love with Frank Gresham, the heir. Although banished from Greshamsbury Park because Frank must marry money, Mary remains true to Frank. When she learns of her origin and her inheritance, she is able to marry Frank.

Frank Gresham

Frank Gresham, the young heir to Greshamsbury Park. Although his mother constantly insists on his need to marry a wealthy heiress, Frank never wavers in his devotion to Mary. Sent to win wealthy Miss Dunstable, Frank cannot overcome his innate honesty, despite family pressure.

Francis Newbold Gresham

Francis Newbold Gresham, the father of Frank and squire of Greshamsbury. He has dissipated his family fortune in an unsuccessful attempt to regain his father’s seat in Parliament. He has also sired ten children and watched his land gradually sold in order to pay his bills. Although kindly, he recognizes that his son must marry money in order to rebuild the family’s holdings.

Lady Arabella De Courcy Gresham

Lady Arabella De Courcy Gresham, wife of Squire Gresham and mother of Frank. a proud member of the De Courcy clan, she is ambitious for her son and eager to assert her lineage. She insists that Frank marry money and banishes Mary Thorne from her house.

Sir Roger Scatcherd

Sir Roger Scatcherd, the poor stonemason who served six months in jail for killing Dr. Thorne’s brother after he betrayed Mary Scatcherd. Through intelligence and industry, he becomes a wealthy railroad manufacturer. He is elected to Parliament but later is unseated when an election fraud of which he is innocent is uncovered. Always fond of alcohol, he then drinks himself to death. His will leaves all his property to his son, and, in the event of his son’s death, to his sister’s child.

Lady Scatcherd

Lady Scatcherd, Sir Roger’s loyal and patient wife. She is a good friend to Dr. Thorne and was once wet nurse to young Frank Gresham.

Louis Philippe Scatcherd

Louis Philippe Scatcherd, Sir Roger’s only son, a drunkard. He is in love with Mary Thorne; rejected, he drinks himself to death. His early death brings the family fortune to Mary Thorne.

Countess Rosina De Courcy

Countess Rosina De Courcy, sister-in-law of Lady Arabella, equally ambitious both politically and socially. She invites young Frank to Courcy Castle to give him his chance at an heiress.

Earl De Courcy

Earl De Courcy, the owner of Courcy Castle and one of the principal Whig aristocrats of Barsetshire. He is completely overshadowed by his wife.

Lord Porlock

Lord Porlock, the oldest son and heir to Courcy Castle.

The Honourable George De Courcy

The Honourable George De Courcy, the second son, neither honorable nor wise.

The Honourable John De Courcy

The Honourable John De Courcy, the third son, a spendthrift.

Martha Dunstable

Martha Dunstable, the wealthy heiress to a patent medicine fortune, accustomed to refusing importunate young men. Frank Gresham is expected to win her at Courcy Castle, and she is rather charmed by his naïve inability to be dishonest (she is ten...

(This entire section contains 967 words.)

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years older than he). They become good friends, and she gives him advice about Mary Thorne. The Honourable George proposes to her but is not accepted.

Augusta Gresham

Augusta Gresham, the dutiful eldest daughter of the squire of Greshamsbury, jilted by her fiancée, Mr. Moffat.

Mr. Moffat

Mr. Moffat, a local member of Parliament, defeated by Sir Roger Scatcherd. He jilts Augusta Gresham when he realizes that the Greshams have less money than he has assumed.

Beatrice Gresham

Beatrice Gresham, the second daughter of the squire of Greshamsbury and particular friend of Mary Thorne, later married to the Reverend Caleb Oriel.

The Reverend Caleb Oriel

The Reverend Caleb Oriel, the young rector of Greshamsbury, an adherent of High Church doctrine.

Patience Oriel

Patience Oriel, his sister, a close friend to Mary Thorne.

Lady Amelia De Courcy

Lady Amelia De Courcy, eldest daughter of the De Courcys. She maintains rigorous standards of propriety and social caste.

Mortimer Gazebee

Mortimer Gazebee, a hardworking and opportunistic young attorney of no family. He proposes to Augusta Gresham, who, on the advice of her cousin, Lady Amelia, rejects him. He later marries Lady Amelia.

Dr. Fillgrave

Dr. Fillgrave, the Barchester physician who sometimes attends Sir Roger Scatcherd.

Harry Baker

Harry Baker, a friend of Frank Gresham.

Mr. Nearthewinde

Mr. Nearthewinde, a Parliamentary agent.

Mr. Closerstil

Mr. Closerstil, another Parliamentary agent.

Mr. Romer

Mr. Romer, a barrister who manages Sir Roger Scratcherd’s campaign for Parliament.

Mrs. Proudie

Mrs. Proudie, the aggressive wife of the Bishop of Barchester.

Mr. Reddypalm

Mr. Reddypalm, a publican interested in politics.

The Duke of Omnium

The Duke of Omnium, owner of Gatherum Castle and the leading Whig aristocrat in the vicinity.


Fothergill, the duke’s agent.

Miss Gushing

Miss Gushing, a young lady in love with the Reverend Caleb Oriel; she later marries Mr. Rantaway.

Jonah (Joe)

Jonah (Joe), a brutal servant to Louis Philippe Scatcherd.

Mr. Bideawhile

Mr. Bideawhile, a London attorney.

Lady Rosina De Courcy

Lady Rosina De Courcy,

Lady Margaretta De Courcy

Lady Margaretta De Courcy, and

Lady Alexandrina De Courcy

Lady Alexandrina De Courcy, younger daughters of the De Courcys.




Critical Essays