A Wrinkle in Time

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Mr. Murry Character Analysis

Mr. Murry, the children's long disappeared father, is a brilliant physicist who landed on a planet overtaken by the Black Thing when he tried to tesseract for the first time. He's been missing for over a year when his children rescue him from Camazotz. Meg, who had dreamed of everything being all right when they found him, must grow up and take responsibility when she realizes her father cannot save Charles from the clutches of IT: only she can.

Mr. Murry Quotes in A Wrinkle in Time

The A Wrinkle in Time quotes below are all either spoken by Mr. Murry or refer to Mr. Murry. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Nonconformity Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Square Fish edition of A Wrinkle in Time published in 2007.
Chapter 10 Quotes

"You don't even know where we are!" she cried out at her father. "We'll never see Mother or the twins again! We don't know where earth is!...What are you going to do!" She did not realize that she was as much in the power of the Black Thing as Charles Wallace.

Related Characters: Meg Murry (speaker), Mr. Murry
Page Number: 190
Explanation and Analysis:

At this point in the book, Meg, Calvin, and Mr. Murry have tessered away from Camazotz and materialized on another planet. When Meg realizes that Charles Wallace is not with them she loses her temper at her father, whom she blames for everything that has gone wrong. Though Meg has come very far in understanding the importance of nonconformity and accepting (even embracing) her own eccentricities, she is still failing at the most important thing, love.

In A Wrinkle in Time, love for the self (which means being true to individuality) and love for others are the two most important forces for good in the world. Meg is doing better at the former than the latter in this passage – she's still not able to empathize with her father, forgive his shortcomings, and love him for exactly who he is. This failure of love is described as being "in the power of the Black Thing," which shows that L'Engle equates evil not simply with bad intentions, but even with the failure to love fully. 

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"We were sent here for something. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."

Related Characters: Mr. Murry (speaker)
Page Number: 190
Explanation and Analysis:

This is one of the most explicit appeals to Christianity in the book. At this point, Meg, Calvin, and Mr. Murry have tessered away from Camazotz. They were forced to leave Charles Wallace behind, and this passage is Mr. Murry's response to Meg's misdirected fury. Mr. Murry does not instruct Meg to love him more or forgive his shortcomings, but rather to love God in general. This is reminiscent of L'Engle's statement that Meg, when she was furious with her father, was in the grip of The Black Thing.

For L'Engle, good/evil and love/hate are abstract forces with concrete implications. Being filled with love for God is, in practice, the same as loving the individual people in your life. In the book, being filled with love for God is also how you fight The Black Thing, which manifests in everyday life as meanness and bitterness. This chapter, in particular, illuminates L'Engle's idea of opposed cosmic forces for good and evil that individuals can choose between. Being loving to others, then, serves a higher purpose.

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Mr. Murry Character Timeline in A Wrinkle in Time

The timeline below shows where the character Mr. Murry appears in A Wrinkle in Time. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 2
Nonconformity Theme Icon
Deceptive Appearances Theme Icon
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
...my idea, Charlsie, but I think he's a good one." Mrs. Who then mentions that Mr. Murry needs their help, though it's not yet time, and tells them all to go home... (full context)
Chapter 3
Nonconformity Theme Icon
Deceptive Appearances Theme Icon
...him out with his math homework (he's several grades above her). Mrs. Murry explains that Mr. Murry used to play math games with Meg, hence her advanced understanding. Calvin feels absolutely at... (full context)
Deceptive Appearances Theme Icon
...apologizes for interrupting, but tells them that the time has come for them to find Mr. Murry. Mrs. Whatsit and Mrs. Who suddenly appear out of nowhere, and the children then meet... (full context)
Chapter 4
Deceptive Appearances Theme Icon
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
...what is going on, so Mrs. Whatsit explains the situation a bit: the life of Mr. Murry , and of much more, is at stake. They're currently standing on a planet outside... (full context)
Chapter 5
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
Mrs. Which reveals that Mr. Murry has been captured and is behind the dark shadow. And they are going to get... (full context)
Chapter 6
The Value of Love Theme Icon
...one of Calvin's younger siblings, and Mrs. Murry is sitting in her lab, writing to Mr. Murry like she does every night, and eventually puts her face in her hands, showing the... (full context)
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
...children then leave the Happy Medium, and tesser to Camazotz, the dark planet on which Mr. Murry is held captive. This time, the tesseract is painfully cold and dark as they must... (full context)
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
Mrs. Whatsit tells the children that she cannot come with them in search of Mr. Murry ; they are on their own here. However, she gives them three "gifts": to Calvin,... (full context)
Deceptive Appearances Theme Icon
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
...not they ought to go in, especially if this is the place of danger where Mr. Murry is being kept, the three decide to go in together. Charles is worried that he... (full context)
Chapter 8
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
The man with red eyes asks Charles to bring Meg and Calvin to Mr. Murry , and strangely, Charles now knows his way around the building. The three leave the... (full context)
Nonconformity Theme Icon
Charles then lectures them that rather than search for Mr. Murry , Calvin and Meg should give in to IT. He notes how happy everyone is... (full context)
Nonconformity Theme Icon
...a cell, within which is a round, transparent column, within which is…Meg and Charles' father, Mr. Murry. (full context)
Chapter 9
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
...painfully into the cell wall, which she didn't realize was there because it was transparent. Mr. Murry can't seem to hear or see her through the barrier. Charles sniggers, as he isn't... (full context)
Deceptive Appearances Theme Icon
...father's column prison, and in a few seconds, she's in the arms of her father. Mr. Murry 's hair has grown long and he doesn't seem able to see Meg, though he... (full context)
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
...Wallace under the control of IT awaits, displeased. Meg briefly introduces her father to Calvin. Mr. Murry then tries to talk Charles, but Charles behaves nastily towards him, and Mr. Murry can't... (full context)
Nonconformity Theme Icon
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
Mr. Murry shouts that they must not give into ITs efforts to control them with its pulses.... (full context)
Chapter 11
Deceptive Appearances Theme Icon
Though Mr. Murry is at first against it, he consents to allowing these beasts to take Meg to... (full context)
Language and Knowing Theme Icon
Christian References Theme Icon
...the Black Thing. Aunt Beast then takes Meg to an open hall, where Calvin and Mr. Murry and many others of the beasts are eating and waiting for her. As soon as... (full context)
Chapter 12
The Value of Love Theme Icon
...who clearly have a lot of respect for Meg's father, will have none of it. Mr. Murry tells them that he is going to try to return to Camazotz to get Charles... (full context)
Nonconformity Theme Icon
The Value of Love Theme Icon
Mr. Murry and Calvin immediately protest Meg going back to Camazotz alone. But they are persuaded when... (full context)
The Value of Love Theme Icon
...a tesseract, they find themselves back home in the Murry's backyard, along with Calvin and Mr. Murry ! The twins and Mrs. Murry come out at once to investigate the ruckus, and... (full context)