If Winter Comes

(Great Characters in Literature)

Characters Discussed

Mark Sabre

Mark Sabre, an idealistic man whose love for humanity results in his persecution and betrayal by unsympathetic people. Suspected of fathering the child of a girl he befriends and later of having been responsible for her suicide, he loses his wife, his job, and his reputation. After discovering the identity of the illegitimate child’s father, he generously refrains from disclosing it.

Mabel Sabre

Mabel Sabre, his wife, a totally conventional and unsympathetic woman. Never able to understand her husband, she construes his willingness to help an unwed mother as guilt, and she divorces him.

Effie Bright

Effie Bright, the daughter of an employee at Sabre’s office. Cast off after the birth of her baby by everyone, including her father, Effie appeals for help to Sabre. Later, horrified by the trouble she has caused him, she kills her child and herself.

Lady Nona Tybar

Lady Nona Tybar, Sabre’s former sweetheart and his one understanding friend. She believes in him throughout his troubles and finally marries him.

Mr. Twyning

Mr. Twyning, Sabre’s business associate. His misunderstanding and persecution of Sabre are largely responsible for Sabre’s ruin.

Harold Twyning

Harold Twyning, the son of Mr. Twyning. Effie’s suicide letter names him as her child’s father. Sabre, going to Twyning’s office with the letter, finds him grieving over the news that Harold has been killed in battle. Sabre then destroys the letter.

Mr. Fortune

Mr. Fortune, Sabre’s employer, concerned that scandal will hurt his business.

Lord Tybar

Lord Tybar, Nona’s charming and unfaithful husband. He is killed in the war.

Mrs. Perch

Mrs. Perch, an old woman whose son wishes to enlist in the army. Sabre’s first act of benevolence to Effie, before her troubles begin, is to arrange for her to be Mrs. Perch’s companion. The news of young Perch’s death kills Mrs. Perch.

Mr. Fargus

Mr. Fargus, Sabre’s neighbor and friend.

Literary Techniques

(Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction)

A simple plot summary would make If Winter Comes appear very melodramatic and didactic. Hutchinson's style in the novel works to...

(The entire section is 187 words.)

Social Concerns

(Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction)

Hutchinson's fiction is very much a product of its time and of Hutchinson's relation to his time. Hutchinson is an heir of Dickens in his...

(The entire section is 218 words.)

Literary Precedents

(Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction)

Hutchinson's fiction derives from the great tradition of the English novel as seen in the work of Charles Dickens. Like him, Hutchinson...

(The entire section is 143 words.)

Related Titles

(Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction)

Hutchinson followed the success of If Winter Comes with This Freedom. Like If Winter Comes, it is an intensely serious...

(The entire section is 282 words.)