The main character of the novel, Whittington, is a tom cat who was abandoned by his family and sought out a new home in a barn. He is a world-worn, wise cat with a talent for killing rats and telling stories. He has a proud heritage of which he speaks often and which is reflected in his regal manner. He serves as the narrator for the interlacing story of the merchant Dick Whittington, bringing the reader back in time to learn of the merchant trade and life hundreds of years before. Whittington also steps into the role of patriarch for the barn, bringing with him order, unity, and protection.
Dick rose from being a poor farm boy to a successful and affluent businessman. Dick was also the owner of Whittington’s famous ancestor, a cat renowned for her ratting prowess. Through Dick, the reader learns a lot about the lifestyle that people led hundreds of years ago and glimpses the varied and fascinating world of a renowned merchant.
The Unnamed Cat
Whittington’s great ancestor is a cat with no name of her own. She belongs to Dick Whittington and earns fame and fortune not only for herself but for Dick Whittington also. She is the best ratter around, and this earns her favor in the eyes of all whom she meets. She travels the world, defeats rats of infamous strength, and leaves a heritage of which Whittington is especially proud.
Hugh Fitzwarren is a kindly merchant who takes in the young and starving Dick Whittington and nurses him to health, then he teaches him the merchant business, which launches Dick on a path to success and fame. Fitzwarren is an academic who is fascinated by herbs and their medicinal properties; this is his life’s passion and pursuit. Fitzwarren serves as Dick’s mentor and the catalyst to his fame and fortune; without him, Dick might have died of starvation on the streets of London.
Sir Louis Green
Sir Louis Green is the old man who first sells Dick Whittington his famous cat, then he helps invest Dick’s wealth, and eventually he gives his...
(The entire section is 883 words.)