Les Miserables

Les Miserables

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M. Gillenormand Character Analysis

A jovial, somewhat ridiculous old man who lives on the Rue des Filles-du-Calvaire. Politically reactionary, a ladies’ man, and prone to outbreaks of temper, Gillenormand is portrayed as a rather absurd character, prone to making rambling speeches of uncertain meaning. But his love for Marius, even though he often proves unable to show it well, redeems him in the eyes of the narrator.
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M. Gillenormand Character Timeline in Les Miserables

The timeline below shows where the character M. Gillenormand appears in Les Miserables. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Volume 3, Book 2: The Great Bourgeois
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...Rue de Saintonge a few old inhabitants still remember an even older man named M. Gillenormand, an 18th-century bourgeois who is over 90 years old in 1831. He had always had... (full context)
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Chapter 2 Gillenormand now lives in the Marais, the Rue des Filles-du-Calvaire. In his youth he had been... (full context)
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Chapter 3 Sometimes Gillenormand recalls lovers from his youth, and speaks of them crudely. (full context)
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Chapter 4 Gillenormand despises all mention of 1789, and often says he hopes he won’t see ’93 twice. (full context)
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Chapter 5 Gillenormand often says that the way to rid oneself of a disagreeable wife is to give... (full context)
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Chapter 6 Gillenormand takes many liberties, and isn’t at all surprised when a servant-maid named Magnon accuses the... (full context)
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Chapter 7 The narrator notes that Gillenormand is both frivolous and great, in the style of the 18th century. On abandoning society... (full context)
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Chapter 8 As young women, Gillenormand’s daughters had been quite different: one charming, musical, and artistic, the other shrewd and hoping... (full context)
Volume 3, Book 3: The Grandfather and the Grandson
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Chapter 1 Gillenormand had always been well-received in society because of his wit. Around 1817, he had often... (full context)
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Though Pontmercy adores his son Marius, the boy’s grandfather, Gillenormand, had threatened to disinherit him if Pontmercy did not allow Marius to live with his... (full context)
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...In 1827, Marius has just turned 17, and he returns home one evening to hear Gillenormand order him to set off to Vernon tomorrow to see his father, who is ill... (full context)
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Marius accompanies the man home, and the next day he asks Gillenormand for permission to leave for three days for a hunting-party with friends. (full context)
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...served, and comes to know his father better in that way. He’s so preoccupied that Gillenormand assumes a love affair is the cause. (full context)
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...to the truth. Finally, though, he becomes a true democratic revolutionist. Slowly he withdraws from Gillenormand, feeling greater aversion for the man who cut him off from his father. He spends... (full context)
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Chapter 7 One morning, Marius again asks his grandfather’s permission to take a trip. Gillenormand still thinks it’s for a love affair, but Mademoiselle Gillenormand is starting to be suspicious.... (full context)
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...Marius returns on the third day, and quickly leaves his room to take a bath. Gillenormand mounts the stairs to greet Marius. In the empty room, he sees a great coat,... (full context)
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...in silence. Then Marius comes downstairs, and sees his grandfather holding one of his cards. Gillenormand asks what the meaning of this is, and Marius, with downcast eyes, says that his... (full context)
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The next day, Gillenormand tells his daughter to send Marius money every six months, but to never mention his... (full context)
Volume 3, Book 4: The Friends of the ABC
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...her father had said he never wanted to hear the boy’s name again, doesn’t tell Gillenormand. (full context)
Volume 3, Book 5: The Excellence of Misfortune
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...practice as a lawyer, and he tells his grandfather in a cold but respectful letter. Gillenormand trembles as he reads it and then throws it into the trash. But he later... (full context)
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Chapter 3 Three years after he left, Marius still imagines that Gillenormand had never loved him, although his grandfather had adored him despite his severity. Gillenormand secretly... (full context)
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Chapter 6 Theodule’s regiment arrives in Paris for garrison duty, and Mademoiselle Gillenormand decides to plot to have Theodule take Marius’s place as the heir. She tells her... (full context)
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Political disagreements are now devolving into chaos and disorder, Gillenormand says, growing more and more dramatic. At each pronouncement, Theodule says that his uncle is... (full context)
Volume 4, Book 6: Little Gavroche
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...how she got rid of the sons: a woman Magnon, the mistress of the old Gillenormand who lived on the Quai des Celestins, had lost both her (and Gillenormand’s) sons in... (full context)
Volume 4, Book 8: Enchantments and Desolations
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Chapter 7 Gillenormand is over 91 years old and still lives with his daughter. He’s been waiting for... (full context)
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Still, Mademoiselle Gillenormand’s attempt to insert Theodule as the new heir hasn’t worked. Theodule is vulgar and gloats... (full context)
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Gillenormand’s joy is not clear in his harsh words asking why Marius has come—and Marius says... (full context)
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Gillenormand rings for his daughter, who looks at Marius, frightened. Sarcastically, Gillenormand remarks that Marius has... (full context)
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Marius begins to tell Gillenormand about Cosette. Gillenormand responds that it’s right to be in love at his age: Marius... (full context)
Volume 5, Book 3: Mud But the Soul
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...hatred. He finds the note in his pocket asking that his body be carried to Gillenormand’s address. Valjean continues on, gradually becoming aware, with the growing intermittency of vehicles overhead, that... (full context)
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...10 The trio arrives at the Rue des Filles-du-Calvaire. Javert addresses the porter, saying that Gillenormand’s son is brought back, dead. The porter doesn’t seem to understand, but wakes up Marius’s... (full context)
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...doctor inspects the patient. Then a pale figure creeps around the door: the old man Gillenormand. He gazes at Marius, astonished, and exclaims that he is dead. Gillenormand wrings his hands... (full context)
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Gillenormand says that instead of dancing and carousing, as a twenty-year-old should do, Marius has gotten... (full context)
Volume 5, Book 5: Grandson and Grandfather
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When the doctor announces that Marius will recover, Gillenormand grows delirious with joy. Before, he had never really believed in God, but now he... (full context)
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Chapter 3 One day, Gillenormand suggests that Marius begin to eat meat to regain his strength. Marius takes the opportunity... (full context)
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...on June 7th carrying Marius, but he still feels that he’s seen Valjean’s face before. Gillenormand asks Valjean for Cosette’s hand on behalf of Marius, and Valjean bows. Cosette tells Marius... (full context)
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Gillenormand exclaims that Cosette is beautiful, but then he turns gloomy, and says that much of... (full context)
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Chapter 6 Valjean and Gillenormand prepare the wedding. Valjean concocts a whole deceased family for Cosette, in which he is... (full context)
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Gillenormand is more excited than anyone about the wedding, but claims that the 18th century knew... (full context)
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...to find two men: Thenardier and the unknown man who had brought him back to Gillenormand. But Madame Thenardier had died in prison, and no one can find a trace of... (full context)
Volume 5, Book 6: The Sleepless Night
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Chapter 1 February 16th, 1833, is the wedding night. The ceremony takes place in Gillenormand’s house on Shrove Tuesday (the day before Lent begins). The prior evening, Valjean gives the... (full context)
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At this time, the Rue Saint-Louis (between the Gillenormand house and the Saint-Paul church) is barred off for renovations, so the guests have to... (full context)
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...2 Cosette and Marius both look young and lustrous, though Marius’s scars are still visible. Gillenormand confides to Fauchelevent that he is only interested in joy rather than sadness now—his political... (full context)
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After dessert, Gillenormand makes a toast, saying that they should be happy, and then delivers a winding speech... (full context)
Volume 5, Book 8: Fading Away of the Twilight
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Chapter 1 The next day, Valjean arrives at Gillenormand’s and waits in the antechamber on the ground floor. Basque accompanies Cosette to meet him,... (full context)