The Violent Land

by Jorge Amado

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Last Updated September 5, 2023.

Colonel Horacio Silveira is one of the main characters struggling for land that is prized for its ability to grow cacao. His marriage to Ester ends with her death and revelations of her affair with Virgilio Cabral. Despite the revelations, he remains loyal to his wife. He, along with other "colonels," is involved in a bloody battle to obtain control over the plantations. He ultimately wins, as he successfully kills his principle rival, Sinhó, and survives many trials.

Colonel Sinhó Badaró is the other main patriarch in the struggle for obtaining land for growing cacao. He is father to Ana and abhors resorting to violence, incorporating a ritual of reading from the Bible into his daily life. He is forced to abandon his home and plantation once he is wounded by Horacio. Ester Silveira is the wife of Horacio and mother of his son. She falls in love with Virgilio and dreams of a different life. Her life is cut short, as she falls victim to typhoid fever.

Virgilio Cabral, a lawyer, is hired by Silveira. He falls in love with Horacio's wife, Ester. He manages to successfully survey the contested land in Silveira's name. He meets his death once Horacio becomes aware of his affair with Ester.

João Magalhães is a gambler and opportunist turned captain and military engineer. He reinvents his class and social status by becoming a useful asset to the Badaró family. He fakes a survey of the contested land at their request. He falls in love with Ana Badaró and is accepted into the family.

Don'Ana Badaró is the daughter of the Colonel and heir to their fortune. She falls in love with João Magalhães. She is the last defender of the Badaró household and is admired by Horacio's men for her courage. After her family's enemies have succeeded in obtaining the Badaró household, she is let go.

Juco Badaró is the brother of Sinhó Badaró. His character is more hostile than his brother. He is married to Olga with no children of their own. He does not survive the battle and is assassinated by Horacio's men. Margot is the mistress to Juca and a previous lover of Virgilio.

Raimunda is friend to Ana and member of the Badaró household. She marries Antonio. Antonio Victor creates his own destiny, as he climbs the social ladder from field hand to hired hand after saving Juca's life. His reward for saving Juca twice is a marriage to Raimunda.

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