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Character Sketch of the Tale of Despereaux

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    Character Sketcher of the Tale of Despereaux Despereaux Tilling * Brave * Polite * Sickly * Different * Dreamy * Conforms * Infatuated * Love-sick Despereaux is a sickly mouse who always ran temperatures and fainted at loud noises. The moment he was born, he was classified as “different”, because he was born with his eyes open and had large ears. Then, as he grew up, he became more and more different by letting a human touch him and even speak to a human. Despereaux could hear the music which the other mice couldn’t hear and he could read.

    He always read the story about a knight and a fair maiden, and he was almost the only person who knew about love. Despereaux is polite as he says words like “pardon” and speaks softly, unlike his brother Furlough. He is dreamy, because when Furlough told him that he was in a lot of trouble with the mouse council, he didn’t seem scared at all and was still talking about love and bravery. Despite being different, Despereaux also makes an effort to not be a disappointment to his parents and usually conforms and does what he is told to do.

    His infatuation for Princess Pea made him so lovesick that even when he was sentenced to the dungeon to be eaten by the rats, he was still dreamy about love. Furlough Tilling- * Law-abiding * Rude * Betrays * Hard-hearted? Furlough is the brother of Despereaux. He is a law-abiding mouse, in that he thinks Despereaux should be punished for committing an illegal act, to the extent that he would betray his own brother by telling on him and sending him personally to the dungeon. He is also rude as he says word like “cripes” and “geez” and talks loudly. Lester Tilling Hard-hearted (see above) * Law-abiding (see above) * Irresponsible * Not Caring Lester is irresponsible because he blames his wife about Despereaux being different. He is uncaring and hard-hearted towards his own son as he feared that Despereaux would “be the end of us all” and so he turned his own son in to the Mouse Council. When the Mouse Council voted on whether Despereaux should be sent to the dungeon, he didn’t vote against his son being sent there. Both Lester and Antoinette never said a word in Despereaux’s defence. Antoinette Tilling- * Dramatic * Not Caring * Vain Narcissistic Antoinette is a drama queen, because when Despereaux was being sent to the dungeon, she was making a show in front of the whole mouse community, “executed a flawless faint” and uses a lot of exaggerated expressions when she speaks. She is not a caring mother, because when Despereaux was sent to the dungeon, she wasn’t really that sad and didn’t even try to save him. Antoinette is also very vain and narcissistic because she always puts on a large amount of make-up and right after she had Despereaux, she asked for a mirror to look at herself rather than to look at Desperaux.

    Both Lester and Antoinette never said a word in Despereaux’s defence. Threadmaster * Conforms * Cowardly * Fearful * Different The threadmaster, whose job is to tie the red thread on the mice that has done something wrong, is also different from the other mice. He knows about fairy tales, love, devotion and courtesy. Although he supports Despereaux, he conforms and does not save Despereaux from his fate as he is scared that he might get in trouble. Most Very Honoured Head Mouse * Formal * Has authority The Most Very Honoured Head Mouse is the head of the Mouse Council.

    As the Head of the Mouse Council, he speaks with authority and formality, and the whole mouse community respects him. Chiaroscuro (known as “Roscuro”) * Rude * Easily influenced * Fearless * Different * Conforms Chiaroscuro is a rat who is very easily influenced, because whenever his friend Botticelli tells him to do something (with the help of the heart-shaped necklace which is used for hypnotising), he does it. He also conforms, because when Botticelli told him that he was a rat and had nothing to do with light, he listened and tried to make himself believe that too.

    Roscuro is also rude and cheeky, because when he met Gregory the jailor, he showed no respect to Gregory and when Gregory told him to apologize for nibbling on his rope, he refused. Like Despereaux, Roscuro is different too, because he shows an inordinate interest in light. Botticelli Remorso * Evil * Crafty (full of tricks) * Domineering * Condescending Botticelli is an evil, filthy rat who loves darkness and loathes mice and light. He is evil because he thinks that the meaning of life is to make others suffer, and he even thinks that it is a funny game to play on the prisoners, and doesn’t care about people’s feelings.

    Botticelli is crafty, because he keeps on thinking about different tricks in order to make others suffer, and because he uses hypnosis to make Roscuro become a real rat and not like light. He is also domineering as he tries to boss Roscuro around by telling him what to do and what not to do. He looks down on mice, and thinks that they are “nothing but little packages of blood and bones, afraid of everything. ” Princess Pea- * Stubborn * Strong-headed * Sharp-eyed * Conforms * Gentle and Kind

    Princess Pea is a stubborn and strong-headed girl, as she stood firmly to her beliefs and kept arguing with her father about whether Despereaux was a bug or a mouse. She is also very sharp-eyed, and can spot things easily, like when she spotted the tiny Despereaux. Unlike normal humans, she isn’t scared of mice, but was even gentle and kind to Despereaux when they first met. Although she is stubborn, she also conforms, because she doesn’t want to make King Phillip angry. King Phillip * Stereotypes * Stubborn * Over-protective of Princess Pea * Loving * Demands for respect * Likes to be right

    King Phillip is the father of Princess Pea. He is very loving towards the princess, because he would even play music for Despereaux just to make his daughter happy; he is also loving towards his wife, the queen, because he was very upset about her death. King Phillip is over-protective of Princess Pea and stereotypes, because although Despereaux is a mouse, and not a rat, he still wouldn’t let the princess keep Despereaux as a pet, because of his past, dark experience with rats. Despite the fact that he is near-sighted and mistook Despereaux as a bug, he wouldn’t budge when Pea argued with him.

    This shows that he is stubborn and likes to be right. Gregory the Jailer * Unforgiving * Loyal Gregory the jailer is unforgiving, because when Roscuro nibbled on his rope, he wasn’t just angry, he also burnt his whiskers as a punishment. Although he is a jailer, he is in effect a prisoner himself, because he is stuck in the dungeons all the time. In fact, we also know that he longed for light, whilst he was always in the darkness. In spite of this, he remained loyal to his job for many, many years, and not once has he saved a prisoner or mouse, except for Despereaux.

    Gregory doesn’t believe in love; he thinks love is foolish and will result in something bad. Prisoner * Selfish * Cruel * Regretful * Stupid * Immature The prisoner is a very stupid, immature, selfish and cruel person, because he shouldn’t have sold his daughter for anything. Although he regrets selling his daughter now, he still doesn’t learn from his lesson, and steals some cows again and didn’t seem to think it was wrong as he didn’t regret stealing the cows. Character Comparison Roscuro + Despereaux -> being different, brave and stands up to their beliefs Roscuro + Furlough -> rude

    Lester + Furlough -> law-abiding Lester + Furlough + Prisoner -> betraying their family members Lester + Prisoner -> betraying their children Threadmaster + Despereaux -> knows about fairy tales and believes in love Gregory + Chiaroscuro -> likes light Despereaux + Princess Pea + Threadmaster + Chiaroscuro -> conforming Antoinette + Prisoner -> selfish Despereaux + Gregory -> one’s got a thread (Despereaux’s symbolises death) and the other’s got a rope (Gregory’s helps him find his way around the dungeon) Despereaux + Prisoner -> red objects (Despereaux’s red

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