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Code title biography
151 Molly Worsham Beauchamp

The wife of Lucas Beauchamp figures in five different texts. In the first two ("A Point of Law" and "Gold Is Not Always") she is unnamed. In the first one she speaks a thick, essentially mistrelish dialect ("Yawl and your Gawge Wilkins!" 223), in the second she is only mentioned, once.

150 Unnamed Husband of Fonsiba

The man who marries Fonsiba in Go Down, Moses looks and talks "like a white man," though he is a Negro "from the North," where he has lived "since a child" (261). He owns a farm in Arkansas, which he inherited from his father, who acquired it in return for his "military service" during the Civil War in what McCaslin calls "the Yankee army" but which Fonsiba's future husband corrects to "the United States army" (261).

149 Lucas Quintus Carothers McCaslin Beauchamp

Lucas Beauchamp appears in seven fictions, all written after 1940. In Faulkner's last published novel, The Reivers, he is only mentioned, but the brief description of him there that one white character gives another sums him up well: "except for color," Lucas "looked (and behaved: just as arrogant, just as iron-headed, just as intolerant) exactly like" Lucius the first, the patriarch of the McCaslin family who is both Lucas' grandfather and his great-grandfather (223), and whom Lucas himself claims as his birthright.

148 Sophonsiba Beauchamp

In Go Down, Moses Fonsiba Beauchamp is the fifth child of Tomey’s Turl and Tennie Beauchamp. She is named Sophonsiba after white mistress of the plantation where Tennie was enslaved. In 1886, at the age of seventeen, she marries a Northern black, and moves with him to a farm in Arkansas, where Ike McCaslin finds her and arranges for her $1000 inheritance to be issued to her in monthly installments. Although Ike attempts to remove her from the squalor of her new life in Arkansas, her priorities are evident in the two words she offers in return: "I'm free" (267).

147 Tennie's Jim|James Beauchamp

Although always a minor character, this black man reveals a lot about how Faulkner's imagination led him into and out of the haunted issue of slavery and its legacy. In his first published appearance he is "Tennie's Jim" in the hunting story "The Bear"; in that character he's a revised version of "Jimbo," one of the servants Major de Spain takes with him in "The Old People" on his annual hunting trips into the big woods.

146 Child of Tomey's Turl and Tennie Beauchamp

In Go Down, Moses this child is the third of Tomey’s Turl and Tennie Beauchamp, and also the third to die in infancy.

145 Callina Beauchamp

In Go Down, Moses, Callina, or Carolina, Beauchamp is the daughter of Tomey’s Turl and Tennie Beauchamp. She dies as an infant.

144 Amodeus McCaslin Beauchamp

Amodeus McCaslin Beauchamp is the first child of Tomey’s Turl and Tennie Beauchamp. Named after the white son of Old Carothers McCaslin, the father and grandfather of Tomey's Turl, he dies as an infant.

143 Mrs. Isaac McCaslin

Isaac McCaslin's "dead wife" is very briefly referred to in "Delta Autumn." Go Down, Moses evokes her from the start, by identifying Ike as a "widower" twice on its first page (5). His wife - who may be the daughter of the bank president who hires Ike and his partner to put a new roof on his stable - remains in the background for most of the novel, but in her brief appearances Faulkner emphasizes her hostility, as Ike meets her "tense bitter indomitable voice" with a posture of familiarity (104).

142 Mrs. Edmonds

The "Mrs. Edmonds" who is Cass Edmonds' mother in Go Down, Moses may be Lucius (Old Carothers) McCaslin's granddaughter, or she may be the wife of McCaslin's grandson - depending on whether her mother or she herself married a man named Edmonds. The novel doesn't allow us to decide between these alternatives. All it says about this character is that she died, presumably when her son was very young: his grandmother, McCaslin's daughter, "raised him following his mother's death" (9).

141 Edmonds

The Edmonds family descends from Lucius (Old Carothers) McCaslin "by the distaff" - that is, from McCaslin's daughter rather than one of his sons (5). The first Edmonds in this line may have been the man who married that daughter, or could just as easily be the man who married the daughter of that daughter - the novel provides no information about the sequence, nor any information at all about this man.

140 Isaac McCaslin

Few characters in the Yoknapatawpha canon are as protean as Isaac (Uncle Ike) McCaslin. If you only read "A Bear Hunt" (1934), "Lion" (1935), "The Old People" (1940), Intruder in the Dust (1948) and "Race at Morning" (1955), Uncle Ike is one of the men who are part of the annual hunting parties into the big woods.

139 Tennie Beauchamp

Tennie was born a slave and worked on the Beauchamp plantation. In Go Down, Moses she is won in a card game by Buddy McCaslin, and brings the surname "Beauchamp" with her when she comes to the McCaslin plantation and marries a McCaslin slave (and half-brother to Buddy and Buck McCaslin) named Tomey's Turl. Together they have six children, three of whom - James ("Tennie's Jim"), Sophonsiba ("Fonsiba"), and Lucas - survive into adulthood. Also at the McCaslin place, she nurses the infant Ike McCaslin.

138 Tomey's Turl

In Go Down, Moses Tomey's Turl is both the son and the grandson of the white man, Old Carothers McCaslin, who owned his grandmother and mother. The name by which he is known, Tomey’s Turl, instead of simply Terrel, underscores his ties to his mother, Tomey, but Hubert Beauchamp puts in words the paternal identity that makes white men nervous around Tomey's Turl: he is "that damn white half-McCaslin" (7). And actually, as Ike discovers in the plantation ledgers, he is 'three-quarters' McCaslin, though his incestuous origin is not ever mentioned explicitly.

137 Sophonsiba Beauchamp McCaslin

Sophonsiba is Hubert Beauchamp's sister and the one who insists that their plantation be called "Warwick," as a claim on the family's purported connection to English royalty. The onstage role she plays in Go Down, Moses tends toward absurdity rather than elegance, in part because it is related through nine-year-old Cass Edmonds: "Her hair was roached under a lace cap; she had on her Sunday dress and beads and a red ribbon around her throat" (12).

135 Carothers McCaslin's Daughter

Old Carothers McCaslin has three legitimate white children, one of whom is this daughter. This elusive figure is never named; the first time she appears in Go Down, Moses she is referred to as Cass Edmonds' "grandmother" (who "raised him following his mother's death") and "Uncle Buck and Uncle Buddy's sister" (9). She is at the head of the "distaff" side of the white McCaslins (5), "the woman" through whom Cass inherits both McCaslin blood, and, since Ike renounces his inheritance, the McCaslin property (243).

134 Amodeus (Buddy) McCaslin

Amodeus (Uncle Buddy) McCaslin is the son of Old Carothers McCaslin and the twin brother of Theophilus (Uncle Buck). He is an outstanding poker player, a good cook and housekeeper, and a less significant presence in the fiction that his brother. During the Civil War present of The Unvanquished Buddy is in Virginia fighting in Tennant's brigade after beating his brother in a card game for the privilege of serving in the Confederate regiment that was raised in Yoknapatawpha.

133 Theophilus McCaslin 1

Theophilus McCaslin - better know as "Uncle Buck" - is a son of Old Carothers McCaslin, the twin brother of Buddy, and the father of Ike. While Buddy appears in only two texts, Buck is present or mentioned in ten of them. He is actually called "Theophilus" when he attends the burial of Charles Bon in Absalom! and sends him off as a "Confedrit soldier" (122); the passage contains no hint of the larger McCaslin family or this man's place in it.

132 Tomasina

In Go Down, Moses, Tomey, born Tomasina, is listed in the McCaslin ledgers as the daughter of Thucydus and Eunice, slaves on the McCaslin plantation. Biologically, however, she was fathered by Lucius Quintus Carothers McCaslin, the white man who owned her and who was also her father. Like her mother, Tomey was a slave on the McCaslin plantation, and also like her mother, she was impregnated by Lucius McCaslin. She dies giving birth to their child.

131 Eunice 2

Eunice appears in the novel only as a name in the McCaslin plantation ledgers, but behind those entries is the terrible story that much of Go Down, Moses is organized around. Eunice was bought by Lucius Quintus Carothers McCaslin in New Orleans in 1807 for $650. Although she is never physically described, our decision to identify her race as 'Mixed' rather than 'Black' is based on the extravagant amount of money Old Carothers paid for her on the New Orleans slave market, which is associated elsewhere in Faulkner with the sale of quadroons as concubines to wealthy white men.

130 Mrs. Carothers McCaslin

The wife of Lucius Quintus Carothers McCaslin, the slave-owning patriarch at the head of the McCaslin, Beauchamp, Edmonds and Priest families in Faulkner's late fictions, is mentioned only once, in The Reivers. It is her Bible that Ned, the only one of her husband's illegitimate and biracial descendants who is named McCaslin rather than Beauchamp, carries in his bag - a symbolic gesture that is extremely interesting and opaque.

129 Lucius Quintus Carothers McCaslin

Lucius Quintus Carothers McCaslin - often referred to as "Old Carothers" - was one of Yoknapatawpha's earliest and wealthiest white settlers, the slave-owning patriarch of the racially diverse family that Faulkner puts at the center of two novels: Go Down, Moses and The Reivers. In two other texts - The Unvanquished and Intruder in the Dust he is a minor presence.

128 Unnamed Grandchildren of Mohataha

In Requiem for a Nun an unspecified group of Indians, identified only as "old Mohataha's forty-year-old grandchildren," charge candy to Ratcliffe's trading post (28-29).

127 Unnamed Granddaughter of Issetibbeha|Mohataha

This is one of the several Faulkner characters whose inconsistencies cannot be reconciled. In the short story "A Name for the City," it is this unnamed granddaughter of Issetibbeha who marries a white man, Doctor Habersham's son; together the couple "emigrated to Oklahoma" in "the thirties" (i.e. the 1830s) along with the rest of the Chickasaws (202).

126 Unnamed Son of Moketubbe

The unnamed son of Moketubbe is identified as an "eight-year-old" in "The Old People" and in Go Down, Moses (202, 158) and as "Moketubbe's little son" in "A Courtship" (363). He should have grown up to succeed his father as the chief of the tribe. However, in all three texts he dies within the same sentence in which he is first mentioned and within a few days after Ikkemotubbe, his father's cousin, returns to the tribe from New Orleans with a white powder that kills at least a puppy - and probably, though none of the texts say so explicitly, this child.

123 Unnamed Enslaved Grandmother|Mother of Sam Fathers

The woman who is the mother of Sam Fathers appears in four texts, though never as exactly the same person; her character changes as Faulkner's idea of the character Sam Fathers changes. In "A Justice," Sam is the son a slave whom Doom wins on a steamboat; she is married to another slave, but forced into a sexual relationship with one of the Indians, Crawford, who is the biological father of Sam.

122 Sometimes-Wakeup

Sometimes-Wakeup is one of Doom's two uncles in "A Justice," the brother of the Man prior to Doom, and he lives "by himself in a cabin by the creek" (349). He is apparently a recluse, whom the People only see when they take him food. After Doom murders the Man and the Man's son, Sometimes-Wakeup is next in the order of succession, though he declines to accept the position.

121 Unnamed Mother of Moketubbe

In "Red Leaves," "Moketubbe's mother" is introduced as a "comely girl" (320) whom Issetibbeha marries after seeing her at work in a melon patch. She is described as having "broad, solid thighs," a "sound back" and a "serene face" (321). Her race is not specified. Our identification of her as "Black" and "Enslaved" (rather than "Indian" and "Tribal Member") is based on her clothing (a "shift") and the fact that she is engaged in field labor, along with the way seeing her reminds Issetibbeha of his "own mother," with "her Negro blood" (321). But this is an interpretive choice.

120 Unnamed Newest Wife of Issetibbeha

The Indians in "Red Leaves" - or at least the tribal chief, the Man - practice polygamy, as is clear from the reference to "Issetibbeha dying among his wives" (329). This is Issetibbeha's "newest wife" (321), not Moketubbe's mother but the woman who tells him Moketubbe has hidden the red slippers that he has always coveted. She is unwilling to sleep in the gilt bed that Issetibbeha brought back from Paris, but no other details about her are provided.

119 Unnamed Mother of Issetibbeha

The "young woman" in "Red Leaves" whom Doom seduces in New Orleans is first described as the "daughter of a fairly well-to-do West Indian family" (318). She is mainly white, but when her son Issetibbeha remembers her a few pages later, the narrative explicitly refers to "her Negro blood" (321). Given the casualness of the later reference, Faulkner might have expected his readers to read the designation "West Indian" as code for racial mixing in the first description, though that's by no means certain.

118 Unnamed Maternal Uncle of Issetibbeha

In "Red Leaves" the "son and brother" of the well-to-do family of Issetibbeha's mother presumably also has some "Negro blood," as she does (321). But his behavior links him to the upper class: after Doom gets his sister pregnant, he seeks him out "with a pistol" (318) to avenge the family's honor. Years later, however, as the "maternal uncle" of the child she bears, this brother "conducts" Doom on a trip abroad, to Paris and elsewhere in Europe (320).

117 Unnamed Uncles of Issetibbeha

The head of the tribe in "Red Leaves" is a single chief, "the Man." But the narrative notes that the larger political structure includes "a hierarchy of cousins and uncles who ruled the clan," and who meet as a group to discuss tribal issues like "the Negro question" (319). The narrative refers to them in the "conclave" as "one," "a third," "a second," and so on, but does not give them names or individualities or distinguish the generation of "uncles" from the generation of "cousins" (319).

116 Unnamed Cousins of Issetibbeha

At the head of the tribe in "Red Leaves" is a single chief, "the Man." But the narrative notes that the larger political structure includes "a hierarchy of cousins and uncles who ruled the clan," and who meet as a group to discuss tribal issues like "the Negro question" (319). The narrative refers to them in the "conclave" as "one," "a third," "a second," and so on, but does not give them names or individualities or distinguish between the two generations in any way (319).

115 Unnamed Siblings of Doom

In "Red Leaves" Doom is described as "one of three children" (317), but the narrative does not say if his siblings are male or female.

114 Sam Fathers

This is not the Indian named "Had-Two-Fathers" who plays a minor role in "Red Leaves." This is the character best known as Sam Fathers, though as he tells Quentin Compson in Faulkner's second Indian story, "A Justice," his Indian name was "Had-Two-Fathers" too (345). In that story he is the child of a Choctaw named Crawfish-ford and an enslaved woman whom Doom, the chief, won gambling on a Mississippi riverboat.

113 Moketubbe

In five texts Moketubbe is the son of Issetibbeha, and so, according to Faulkner's representation of Indian society, the heir to the title of 'The Man,' or chief of the tribe that lives in Yoknapatawpha when the white settlers begin arriving. The only one that shows him as the chief is "Red Leaves," Faulkner's first 'Indian story,' which begins after the death of his father.

112 Ikkemotubbe

The Choctaw|Chickasaw chief Ikkemotubbe appears in fourteen texts, more than any of the other Indian characters in the fictions. His significance in most of them is either as Sam Fathers' father or as the chief who sold or traded Indian land to white settlers like Compson and Sutpen, but his own story is a fascinating one. It is first told - in two pages!

111 Mohataha

In the first five texts that mention this character, she is referred to as either "The Man's|Issetibbeha's sister" or "Ikkemotubbe's|Doom's mother." She is a member of the family of chiefs in the tribe of Indians who lived in Yoknapatawpha when the white settlers began arriving, but Faulkner defines the tribe (variously called Choctaw or Chickasaw) as patriarchal, and so as a woman neither she nor her son is in the direct line of succession.

110 Issetibbeha

Issetibbeha is a chief of the tribe of Indians who are living in Yoknapatawpha when the white settlers arrive. The Indians are called Choctaws in Faulkner's earlier fictions, and Chickasaws, the more historically appropriate name, in the later ones. Issetibbeha is identified as the son of Doom (AKA Ikkemotubbe) in the earliest 'Indian story," "Red Leaves," but later becomes Ikkemotubbe's uncle - although at one point in Go Down, Moses he is identified as "Ikkemotubbe's father old Issetibbeha" (245). He is consistently identified as the father of Moketubbe.

109 Mrs. Charles Etienne Saint-Valery Bon

The "inescapably negro" woman whom Charles Etienne Saint-Valery Bon marries in Absalom! (168) is apparently somewhat mentally deficient; at least, "her mentality" is mentioned disparagingly (167), and she is described as "existing" in an "automaton-like state" (166). The phrase "inescapably negro" is attributed to Judith; the phrases that Mr. Compson uses to describe her include "coal black and ape-like" (166); "resembling something in a zoo" (169), and "the black gargoyle" (170).

108 Milly Jones' Daughter

In both "Wash" and again in Absalom!, this girl was born on an unspecified Sunday in 1869, denied by her father and murdered by her great-grandfather on the same day.

107 Milly Jones

Milly Jones appears in both "Wash" and Absalom! as the poor white and illegitimate grandaughter of Wash, who is described in the novel's "Genealogy" as a "hanger-on of Sutpen" (308). She is "eight-years-old" when first mentioned in the short story, and an "infant" when first mentioned in the novel (536, 99). In both texts she is "a fifteen-year-old gal," as Wash puts it in the story, when Sutpen begins a kind of courtship of her, and "already mature [i.e. sexually], after the early way of her kind" (541).

106 Wash Jones' Daughter|Melicent

The "daughter" of Wash Jones and the mother of Milly is not named either in the short story "Wash," were she is first mentioned (536), or in Absalom!, where she plays a somewhat more visible role, but she has her own entry as "MELICENT JONES" in the "Genealogy" at the end of the novel (308). In the novel itself, she lives with her father for some years in the "abandoned" fishing camp at Sutpen's (99). The daughter she gives birth to there is "fatherless" (139).

105 Wash Jones

The title character of "Wash" can hardly be called its hero, but his story there and again in Absalom! acquires great moral force before it ends in blood and fire. Described in the novel as a "gaunt gangling man malaria-ridden with pale eyes and a face that might have been any age between twenty-five and sixty" (69), he survives as a "hanger-on of Sutpen," the richest planter in Yoknapatawpha (308).

104 Goodhue Coldfield

In Absalom!, the man who is Rosa Coldfield's "papa" and Thomas Sutpen's father-in-law is "a Methodist steward, [and] a merchant" (11). He arrived in Jefferson from Tennessee half a decade before Sutpen, with a single wagonload of merchandise as the basis for his business. Mr. Compson calls him a "queer silent man whose only companion and friend seems to have been his conscience" (47), though apparently he compromises that when he and Sutpen work a mysterious deal that provides the rich furnishings for Sutpen's mansion. When he acquires two slaves "though a debt . . .

103 Ellen Coldfield Sutpen

This character is barely mentioned as "Mrs. Sutpen," Thomas' only wife, in "Wash," but as Ellen Coldfield Sutpen, his second wife in Absalom!, she presents a different image of the plantation mistress than someone like Rosa Millard, who presides over the Sartoris plantation in The Unvanquished. In Absalom! Ellen is the daughter of a merchant. She is described as "small-boned" but also "what is known as fullbodied" (51). According to the storytellers, Sutpen marries her to gain respectability.

102 Jim Bond

In Absalom! Jim Bond is the child of Charles Etienne Saint-Valery Bon and the "inescapably negro" woman he married (168). He is also the great-grandson and last living descendant of Thomas Sutpen, "the scion, the heir, the apparent (though not obvious)" (296). He is described as "hulking slack-mouthed saddle-colored" (173) and again as "a hulking young light-colored negro man in clean faded overalls and shirt, his arms dangling, no surprise, no nothing in the saddle-colored and slack-mouthed idiot face" (296).

101 Unnamed Haitian Planter

The "French sugar planter" (199) who in Absalom! becomes Sutpen's "first father-in-law" (268) after Sutpen saves him and his plantation from a slave rebellion is not described in any detail. Since his daughter is described as "Haiti-born" (268), it seems likely that he himself is originally from France. He is apparently a widower, since he tells Sutpen that his daughter's "mother had been a Spanish woman" (283).

100 Judith Sutpen

Sutpen's daughter Judith first appears in the prequel to Absalom!, the short story "Wash"; though her character is barely sketched, her actions often anticipate her story in the novel. As "Miss Judith" she lives alone in the big house on the Sutpen plantation during much of the Civil War, after the deaths of her mother and brother and while her father is away fighting (541).

99 Henry Sutpen

In two of the three texts in which this son of Thomas Sutpen is mentioned, he is not named and his story is relatively uncomplicated. In "Wash," the prequel to Absalom!, he was "killed in action" during the Civil War (538). In The Unvanquished, published soon after Absalom!, the narrator writes that Sutpen's "son killed his daughter's fiance on the eve of the wedding and vanished" (222). In Absalom! itself, however, he is given the name Henry, and his action provides the narrative with the mystery that haunts it from beginning to end.

98 Clytemnestra

In Absalom! Clytemnestra (Clytie) is the daughter of Thomas Sutpen and one of the two enslaved women he brings with him to Yoknapatawpha. She is first mentioned by Rosa, as the "negro girl" with a "Sutpen face" beside Judith Sutpen, Clytie's half-sister (22); later Rosa refers to her "Sutpen coffee-colored face" (109). Sutpen "named [Clytemnestra] himself," after a legendary Greek queen, though Mr. Compson "likes to believe" that Sutpen "intended to name her Cassandra," after another figure from Greek tragedy (48).

97 Mrs. Charles Bon

While almost nothing is certain in Absalom, Absalom!, it is particularly difficult to know how to identify this character. When she first appears in the narrative she is first called "the other woman" (other than Judith, that is) whose photograph Charles Bon is carrying when he is killed (71). Mr. Compson calls her "the octoroon mistress" (75), Bon's "eighth part negro mistress" (80), and "a hereditary negro concubine" (168). Shreve (who as a non-Southerner is unfamiliar with the caste term "white trash," 147) refers to her as "the octoroon" (249, 286).

96 Charles Etienne Saint-Valery Bon

In Absalom!, the "little boy" in the picture that is found on Charles Bon's body (75) is Bon's "sixteenth part negro son" (80); his grandiloquent name is Charles Etienne Saint-Valery Bon. When Judith and Clytemnestra bring him from New Orleans to Sutpen's Hundred after his mother dies, Judith tells him to "Call me Aunt Judith" (169), perhaps without realizing that he is in fact her half-nephew and her father's grandson.

95 Charles Sutpen Bon

Charles Bon is a major character in Absalom!, although none of the novel's four main narrators ever saw him. Faulkner's first account of him appears in "Evangeline," a story he tried unsuccessfully to sell in mid-1931; there 'Charles Bon' is an orphan from New Orleans who marries Judith Sutpen and is killed by Judith's brother Henry at the end of the Civil War, apparently because Henry discovers he is already married to a woman with "negro blood." The story contains no hint that he is either Thomas Sutpen's son or part Negro.

94 Eulalia Sutpen Bon

In Absalom! the first wife of Thomas Sutpen and the mother of Charles Bon is not given a name until the "Genealogy" that appears after the narrative proper, where she is identified as "Eulalia Bon" (307). She is the "Haiti-born" daughter of a French sugar planter (268). When she first appears in the narrative, it is as "a shadow that almost emerged for a moment and then faded again" (199) - the elusiveness of this is entirely appropriate.

93 Sutpen Ancestors and Descendants

After the young Thomas Sutpen is turned away from the front door of the Tidewater plantation house in Absalom!, he suddenly recognizes his responsibility to "all the men and women that had died to make him" and "all the living ones that would come after him when he would be one of the dead" (178).

92 First American Sutpen

"The first Sutpen" in North America, according to Quentin's narrative in Absalom!, "probably" arrived in Jamestown on a "ship from the Old Bailey" - i.e. a ship transporting convicted criminals from London to the British colony of Virginia (180).

91 Sutpen Infant 3

This is the second of the two illegitimate Sutpen children that one of Thomas' older sisters gives birth to before the family reaches the end of their journey in the Tidewater area of Virginia.

90 Sutpen Infant 2

This is the first of the two illegitimate Sutpen children in Absalom! that one of Thomas' older sisters gives birth to during the family's journey across Virginia; he or she was born in "a cowshed" (183).

89 Sutpen Infant 1

At the time the Sutpens begin traveling east in Absalom!, this youngest member of the family "couldn't even walk yet" (180). The novel's sequence of events implies that his mother died giving birth to him or her, and that death precipitated the father's decision to move back to Tidewater - but that isn't made explicit.

88 Thomas Sutpen's Sister 1

Thomas Sutpen has at least two sisters: according to the narrative in Absalom!, "one of the sisters" altered their father's hand-me-down clothes to fit the young Thomas (185). This entry is for the "sister" who, during the family's move from the mountains to the Tidewater region of Virginia, gives birth in "a cowshed" to an illegitimate child (183), and gets pregnant again, though "still unmarried" (181), while they are still traveling.

87 Thomas Sutpen's Brother 2

This is one of the Sutpen family's "two older boys" (that is, older than Thomas) who leave the family's home in the mountains "some time before" their mother dies and their father moves the family east (181).

86 Thomas Sutpen's Brother 1

Thomas Sutpen comes from a large family, though Absalom! doesn't say exactly how large. He has at least two older brothers: these "two older boys" leave home "some time before" their mother dies and their father moves the family east (181). This is the brother who "had been as far West as the Mississippi River one time" even before the family left the mountains (183).

85 Thomas Sutpen

As the central figure in one of Faulkner's greatest novels, Absalom, Absalom!, Thomas Sutpen is a very different character, depending on which of the novel's story-tellers is telling his story. On the opening pages, for example, he is a dominant if demonic force that, according to Miss Rosa, is responsible for destroying the culture of the Old South. When he gets to tell his own story, however, as transmitted through three generations of Compsons, he appears as a traumatized small boy who is himself determined if not destroyed by the culture of the Old South.

84 Thomas Sutpen's Mother

As evoked in Absalom!, Thomas Sutpen's mother was "a mountain woman," "bred in the mountains," but in her case the mountains were in Scotland (195). According to Sutpen, she "never did quite learn to speak English" (195). Her husband calls her "a fine wearying woman," and it is suggested that she made him move from coastal Virginia to the mountains (180). Her death precipitates the husband's decision to return east; since there is an infant in the family when the move starts, it seems likely that she died in childbirth.

83 Thomas Sutpen's Father

Sutpen's father moves back to coastal Virginia after his wife's death, where he works ("or maybe supposes" to work, 185) on a large Tidewater plantation. He is characterized in Absalom! mainly by his habitual drunkenness, and his "harsh" belief in "his own worth" and "his own physical prowess" (186) - virtues that he seeks to establish by "whupping" a slave from a neighboring plantation (187).

81 Lee MacCallum

One of the six sons of Virginius MacCallum in Flags in the Dust, and of the five sons of Anse McCallum in "The Tall Men," Lee is described in the novel as the "least talkative of them all"; his face is "a dark, saturnine mask" and his eyes are "black and restless," with "something wild and sad" lurking in them" (334). He plays almost no part in the events in the short story. Like most of the MacCallums, he is named for a prominent Confederate - Robert E. Lee.

80 Lucius MacCallum

Lucius McCallum is one of Buddy McCallum's twin sons in "The Tall Men, "two absolutely identical blue-eyed youths" (49), and is mentioned as one of the "the twin McCallum nephews" of Rafe in "Knight's Gambit" (210). In the first story he and his brother Lucius play have identical histories. They are "wild as spikehorn bucks" as children (55). Later, they go to the agricultural college to learn how to raise whiteface cattle.

79 Anse MacCallum II

Anse McCallum is one of Buddy McCallum's twin sons in "The Tall Men": "two absolutely identical blue-eyed youths" (49) who are mentioned together as "the twin McCallum nephews" of Rafe in "Knight's Gambit" (210). He also appears, but without any mention of his twin brother, The Town. In the first story he and his brother Lucius have identical histories. They are "wild as spikehorn bucks" as children (55). Later, they go to the agricultural college to learn how to raise whiteface cattle.

78 Mrs. Virginius MacCallum 2

Virginius MacCallum is married twice in Flags in the Dust. The novel says very little about his deceased second wife, except that Buddy, Virginius' youngest and her only son, inherited his "hazel eyes and reddish thatch" of hair from her (354).

77 Mrs. Virginius MacCallum 1

In Flags in the Dust Virginius MacCallum has two wives. Both have died before the novel takes place. The first of them was clearly a country girl of humble origins: her dowry consisted of a clock and "a dressed hog" (332). The novel does not mention anything else about her, but what it says later about the second wife - Buddy's mother, from whom he gets his coloring - suggests this wife was the mother of Virginius' five other sons: unlike Buddy, for instance, they all have "brown eyes and black hair" (354).

76 Mrs. Carter MacCallum

Virginius MacCallum's mother is not mentioned in Flags in the Dust, but in "The Tall Men" - where that character is referred to as "Old Anse" - this woman is identified as "a Carter," which explains his determination "to go all the way back to Virginia to do his fighting" at the start of the Civil War (54). (The Carters are one of the oldest white families in Virginia, dating back to the early 17th century.)

75 Stuart MacCallum

One of the six sons of Virginius MacCallum in Flags in the Dust, and of the five sons of Anse McCallum in "The Tall Men," and the twin brother of Rafe, Stuart is named after the famous Confederate cavalry general, J.E.B. Stuart. He also appears in As I Lay Dying, but not as Stuart - because Samson cannot remember his first name. Like his brothers, he is a 'tall man': honorable, strong, stoic.

74 Rafe MacCallum

One of the six sons of Virginius MacCallum in Flags in the Dust, and of the five sons of Anse McCallum in "The Tall Men," and the twin brother of Stuart, Rafe appears in more texts - five - than any of his brothers. In Flags he is an old friend of the Sartoris twins, John and Bayard, and tries to help Bayard with his pain by offering homemade whiskey and a chance to talk about the war. He is only mentioned in As I Lay Dying as the twin brother of the MacCallum (Stuart) whose first name Samson can't remember (119).

73 Jackson MacCallum

The eldest of the sons in the MacCallum|McCallum family, Jackson is named for the Confederate general, Stonewall Jackson, under whom his father served in the Civil War. He appears as a minor character in two texts. In Flags in the Dust he is described as "a sort of shy and impractical Cincinnatus" (337). Much to his father's disgust, he is attempting to transform hunting by interbreeding a fox and a hound.

72 Henry MacCallum

Henry is the second of Virginius MacCallum's six sons in Flags in the Dust and the only one who doesn't appear with the other five in "The Tall Men." In view of that absence, the descriptions of his character in the novel in which he does appear are significant. He is "squat" and "slightly tubby," with "something domestic, womanish" about him (335). Unlike his brothers, he spends "most of the time" inside: he superintends the kitchen, is "a better cook" than the black woman who is the family's official cook, and is locally famous for the quality of his homemade whiskey (335).

71 Buddy MacCallum

The youngest of the sons in the MacCallum|McCallum family is Buddy. He first appears in Flags in the Dust as a kind of foil to Bayard Sartoris: both have served in World War I - Buddy has a combat medal to show how well he fought - but Buddy is not a member of any 'lost generation.' He returns to Yoknapatawpha, resumes his place in the yeoman family (though he doesn't display the medal, in deference to his un-reconstructed ex-Confederate father who refuses to believe his son fought in a "Yankee" army, 342), and continues his life as a countryman and avid hunter.

70 Virginius MacCallum I|Anse McCallum

The patriarch of the family that first appears in Flags in the Dust as the MacCallums and then re-appears in the 1940s as the McCallums also has two first names: Virginius (in Flags) and then Anse (in The Hamlet and "The Tall Men"). At the start of the Civil War he walked from Mississippi to Virginia to enlist (because his mother came from Virginia) and served til the surrender at Appomattox.

69 Virginius MacCallum's Father

The only detail about Virginius MacCallum's ancestry provided in Flags in the Dust is that he received a mule from his father when he first got married. That one detail, however, makes it likely that his father also lived in Yoknapatawpha, and that he was a small farmer.

68 Unnamed Father of Luster

In The Sound and the Fury Dilsey refers to someone she calls "pappy" when she threatens Luster: "You just wait till your pappy come home" (59). This is the novel's only reference to the man who is Luster's father. In the account of the Compsons and the Gibsons that Faulkner wrote 16 years after The Sound and the Fury was published - familiarly known as "Appendix Compson" - Faulkner says that Frony "married a pullman porter and went to St Louis to live" (343).

67 Unnamed Husband of Frony

This man is the "pullman porter" mentioned in "Appendix Compson" whom Frony Gibson marries and moves to St. Louis to live with (343). He may be dead - that would be one explanation for the fact that Frony later moves to Memphis "to make a home for her mother" (343) - but the text does not say so, nor does it give him a name. It's also possible that this character is the man whom Dilsey refers to as Luster's "pappy" in The Sound and the Fury (59), though there's not enough textual evidence to establish that connection.

66 Luster

Luster is Frony's son, and in The Sound and the Fury the teenager who takes care of Benjy Compson in 1928. While he clearly resents the demands of that job, and can be intentionally and inadvertently cruel to the helpless Benjy, he performs the task as well as he can. That much is clear. There are, however, several unanswerable questions associated with his character. The novel gives no indication who his father is, or what, if Frony is married, Luster's last name is. And Luster's next appearance, as the servant who accompanies Mr.

65 Frony Gibson

Frony Gibson is a member of the black family that lives on the Compson place as servants, and the daughter of Roskus and Dilsey. In The Sound and the Fury she appears in Benjy's memories as a child about the same age as Quentin and Caddy Compson, and in the last section as an adult who still lives close enough to Dilsey to walk to church with her mother on Easter Sunday. She is also Luster's mother, though the novel does not indicate if she has a husband or if, like Caddy's daughter, Luster was conceived out of wedlock.

64 T.P. Gibson

T.P. (Faulkner never explains what the initials stand for) is the second son of Dilsey and Roskus, and like them lives as a servant on the Compson place in The Sound and the Fury. As a young man he takes his brother Versh's place as Benjy's caretaker, and helps his father with the Compsons' horses and cow. In 1910 he gets memorably drunk on the champagne - "sassprilluh," T. P. calls it (37) - that has been bought for Caddy's wedding. In 1928 he no longer lives on the Compson property, but still drives the carriage for Mrs. Compson's Sunday afternoon trips to the cemetery.

63 Versh Gibson

In The Sound and the Fury Versh Gibson is the first-born son of Roskus and Dilsey. In the earliest scenes that Benjy remembers, he works as Benjy's caretaker. Sometime before his father's death he has moved from Yoknapatawpha to Memphis; Dilsey blames her husband for his "bad luck talk" that "got them Memphis notions into Versh" (31). He is mentioned again, briefly, in "That Evening Sun," but otherwise does not appear again in the fictions - not even in "Appendix Compson," where his mother, sister, brother and nephew are described living in Memphis in the early 1940s.

62 Roskus Gibson

In The Sound and the Fury Roskus is husband to Dilsey and father to Versh, T.P., and Frony. He drives for the Compsons while also caring for the farm animals, although over the years his rheumatism makes that increasingly hard. He is slightly less loyal than his wife to the white family he works for, complaining that there "aint no luck on this place" (29). Dilsey reproaches him for giving their son Versh "them Memphis notions" - that is, presumably, encouraging Versh to leave Yoknapatawpha (31).

61 Dilsey Gibson

Dilsey is the matriarch of the Gibson family and the source of whatever emotional stability there is in the Compson family. A major character in The Sound and the Fury, she is married to Roskus, the mother of Versh, Frony, and T.P., and the grandmother of Luster. She is a devout Christian, a loyal servant and a very caring human being. As a character she is both related to the "mammy" stereotype and one of Faulkner's most dignified and impressive creations.

60 Mother of Quentin MacLachan Compson

In the "Appendix" to The Sound and the Fury that Faulkner published in 1946, the mother of Quentin MacLachan Compson I apparently dies early in his life. He is an "orphan" who is raised by her family in "the Perth highlands" (326).

59 Father of Quentin MacLachan Compson

In the "Appendix" to The Sound and the Fury that Faulkner published in 1946, the family line begins with this man: a printer in Glasgow, Scotland, who is the father of Quentin MacLachan Compson. Apparently he died when his son was still a child (326).

58 Damuddy Bascomb

The grandmother whom the Compson children call "Damuddy" in The Sound and the Fury does not appear elsewhere in the fictions. The day of her death, in the summer of 1898, is the earliest scene in Benjy and Quentin's memories. The novel does not explicitly say that she is their maternal grandmother, but Mrs. Compson's reaction to her death and Damuddy's association with Jason - until Damuddy got "sick," for example, Jason apparently slept in her bed with her (26) - suggest she is a Bascomb rather than a Compson.

57 Mrs. Quentin Compson II

The "Mrs. Compson" who appears in "Skirmish at Sartoris" as both a short story and a chapter in The Unvanquished is a hard character to identify. Throughout the other four Unvanquished stories that mention "Mrs. Compson" it seems clear that she is married to General (Quentin) Compson, who is off fighting the Civil War until the final story, "Odor of Verbena," when he makes a brief appearance (245). But in "Skirmish at Sartoris," readers are told that the "only husband [Mrs.

56 Mrs. Jason Compson II

The wife of General Compson first appears in the mid-1930s in at least four of the Unvanquished stories and the novel Absalom, Absalom! In the stories she appears mainly in the pieces of a lady's equipment that she lends Rosa Millard on two occasions: a hat, a shawl and a parasol.

55 Caroline Bascomb Compson

In The Sound and the Fury Caroline Compson is the sister of Maury Bascomb (Uncle Maury), the wife of Jason Compson III, and the mother of Quentin, Candace, Jason and Maury|Benjamin. She is probably also the daughter of the woman called "Damuddy" whose death is the earliest event (and loss) in Benjy and Quentin's memories. A bed-ridden neurotic and a hypochondriac, Caroline seems hopelessly preoccupied with herself. She is obsessed with the social standing of the Bascomb family and largely oblivious to the misery of her own.

54 (Miss) Quentin

It's not easy to know what to call Yoknapatawpha's one female "Quentin" - of two in The Sound and the Fury and of four altogether on the Compson family tree. She's the daughter of Caddy, but even Caddy seems not to know who her father might be (many readers and even quite a few scholars assume it's Dalton Ames, the man who took Caddy's virginity in that novel, but Caddy tells the other Quentin in the novel that before she married she had "too many" lovers, 115). Caddy named her Quentin in honor of her brother, who committed suicide before his niece was born.

53 Benjamin Compson

Benjy Compson is one of the most original characters in American literature. To Mrs. Compson, who originally named him Maury in honor of her brother, Benjy's severe mental handicap is shameful, and a reason to change his name to Benjamin - apparently on her son Quentin's suggestion, though tellingly he gets the Biblical significance of the name Benjamin wrong.

52 Jason Compson IV

In "Appendix Compson" Faulkner calls Jason the one "sane" male Compson (338). Readers of The Sound and the Fury, aware of his extraordinary mental cruelty to his siblings and his niece, not to mention his bigotries and venalities, are likely to use an even harsher term. But if we set his story in the context of the past that matters most in this novel, the Freudian landscape of compulsions and projections, it seems more accurate to say that Jason is as much the victim of his childhood as any of those siblings.

51 Candace Compson

Speaking outside the pages of his art, Faulkner called Caddy Compson his "heart's darling," and The Sound and the Fury his attempt to draw her "picture." It's a very modern portrait, however, defined by her absence everywhere in the novel except in the minds of her three brothers, each of whom attempts to fill the absences at the center of his own life with what he tries to make her represent or (to use the term that is both there and absent in the novel's Shakespearean title) to 'signify.' On her own terms, Caddy almost too good to be believable.

50 Quentin Compson III

Quentin Compson is a major character in two of Faulkner's greatest novels, The Sound and the Fury and Absalom, Absalom!, and the narrator of four early short stories. He is also the oldest son in one of the most prominent Yoknapatawpha families but born after the South's defeat in the Civil War and at the end of the 19th century, and so has to try to grow up in a modern world that that has no place for him.

49 Jason Compson III

The third Compson named Jason and the father of Quentin, Caddy, Jason and Benjy was born around the time the South was defeated in the Civil War and as a result, his story suggests, grew up to become what Faulkner's "Appendix Compson" calls a "cultured dipsomaniac" (335). His story, however, is never directly told. Instead, his character is defined chiefly by his role in the life and death of his oldest son, Quentin. "Father said" is a phrase that sounds again and again from the first to the penultimate page of Quentin's section in The Sound and the Fury (76, 178).

48 Jason Lycurgus Compson II

General Jason Compson, the grandfather of Quentin, Caddy, Jason and Benjy, appears in thirteen different texts, the most of any Compson. Given Faulkner's willingness to sacrifice consistency to the needs of a particular story, it's not surprising that it's hard to pull all his appearances into one cumulative biography.

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