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Last Updated on May 11, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 470

Characters Discussed

Gospodar Stevan Milic

Gospodar Stevan Milic, a farmer and the father of two sons, both grown. One is a monster, hidden since birth. He crawls on all fours like a goat and screams terribly. A physician wants Stevan to have him placed in a home, but Stevan refuses because this will mean revealing his secret. The monster’s escape worries Stevan so much that people think him mad. In a struggle between the villagers and nearby vagabonds, the monster, now bound and hidden behind the church altar, is regarded as a saint. The vagabonds murder and plunder, thinking that they are appeasing the monster. At last, Stevan is forced to claim the monster as his son before everyone. Later, with both sons dead, Stevan feels young. Their guilty secret disclosed, he and his wife find each other again.

Mirko Milic

Mirko Milic, his normal son. When he attacks the leader of the vagabonds, he is killed by a guard.

Stanja Vesilic

Stanja Vesilic, who is betrothed to Mirko. The marriage has been arranged by the parents, and Stanja comes to stay in the Milic house for a month, as is the custom. Because the vagabond leader says that the monster is to be released only to Stanja, she takes a knife to go into the sanctuary to cut the monster’s bonds. After Mirko’s death, she insists on staying with Stevan and his wife. At the end of the drama, she reveals that she is carrying the monster’s child.

Mirko’s mother

Mirko’s mother, Stevan’s wife. She always yearns secretly for the misshapen son she has not seen since birth. When Mirko is killed, she is happy, though she does not understand why she wants her good son dead.


Juvan, a student and the leader of the vagabonds. Knowing the truth about the monster, he uses his knowledge to work the vagabonds into a frenzy, thus forcing the landowners to bargain. He sends Stanja in to release the monster. Later, condemned to hang, Juvan tells Stanja that he loves her; her sacrifice to the monster has changed him from an animal knowing only lust to a man capable of love. Although she wants to die with him, Juvan insists that she live.

The monster

The monster, Stevan’s malformed son. Hidden in a hut since birth and now grown, the human monster is released by a physician who visits him. He is captured by vagabonds, who are in the area demanding land from the farmers, and they install him as a god behind the church altar. The vagabonds force Stevan to acknowledge his afflicted son and then sacrifice Stanja to him before they are dispersed by soldiers. The monster escapes from the church and is later found burned to death in the woods.

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