A travelling salesman whom Grace meets while working at Mrs. Alderman Parkinson’s. Jeremiah is one of Grace’s few friends, and there are some hints that she might be sexually attracted to him. Jeremiah, a mysterious and nomadic person, tries unsuccessfully to convince Grace to run away with him, and then he resurfaces when Grace is in prison in the guise of Dr. Jerome DuPont, a practitioner of neuro-hypnotism (the reader does not learn that Dr. DuPont and Jeremiah are one and the same until near the end of the novel). Jeremiah is thus the person who performs the hypnosis in which it is “revealed” that Grace has been possessed by the spirit of Mary Whitney. Because Grace feels powerfully drawn to him, it seems possible that Jeremiah and Grace are in cahoots in staging the hypnosis. In a letter Grace writes to Jeremiah toward the end of the novel, after he has left Kingston and adopted a different alias, Grace writes ambiguously: “Why did you want to help me? Was it as a challenge, and to outwit the others, as with the smuggling you used to do; or was it out of affection and fellow-feeling?” This vague passage is the only “proof” that the hypnosis might have been deliberately staged by Jeremiah and Grace. Grace does see Jeremiah once more after she is released from prison; though the encounter is very brief Grace is comforted by the feeling that Jeremiah is someone with whom her secrets will always be safe.
Jeremiah the peddler (aka Dr. Jerome DuPont) Character Timeline in Alias Grace
The timeline below shows where the character Jeremiah the peddler (aka Dr. Jerome DuPont) appears in Alias Grace. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
...the two discuss his travels. Grace thinks that Dr. Jordan “must be a wanderer, like Jeremiah the peddler.” Dr. Jordan then offers Grace an apple, which she accepts; she tells him,... (full context)
...Governor’s wife hosts at her home. Mrs. Quennell then introduces Simon to a Dr. Jerome DuPont. Simon snidely thinks that the people who practice Spiritualism, which involves communing with the dead,... (full context)
...purchase materials to make Grace “a decent dress.” The next day, when a peddler named Jeremiah comes to the Parkinson house, Grace purchases thread and buttons from him. Jeremiah gives Grace... (full context)
...will, Grace is able to inherit her few possessions, many of which she sells to Jeremiah the peddler. Agnes helps Grace arrange Mary’s burial. After Mary is buried, Grace lays wildflowers... (full context)
...Richmond Hill at an inn, where her neighbor from the coach tries to assault her. Jeremiah the peddler shows up and defends Grace. Soon thereafter, Mr. Kinnear arrives to fetch Grace.... (full context)
...the room, causing Grace to wonder if he had been eavesdropping on her conversation with Jeremiah. Jeremiah offers to sell McDermott some shirts, in an effort to diffuse the tense situation;... (full context)
...shirt now on Mr. Kinnear’s body was one of the four that McDermott purchased from Jeremiah the peddler; she is concerned that Jeremiah will be blamed for participating in Kinnear’s murder. (full context)
...to Canada, McDermott insists that Mr. Kinnear was most likely killed by a “suspicious-looking man” (Jeremiah) who had been “hanging around” the house, which angers Grace. Grace and McDermott are imprisoned... (full context)
...him is her trial, which began on November 3rd. She recalls searching the crowd for Jeremiah, who was not present. Jamie Walsh testified against her, which pained her because she “valued... (full context)
...is secretly as “eager as a schoolboy at a carnival,” hoping to be “astonished.” Dr. DuPont enters the room, leading Grace. Simon notes that Grace’s eyes are “fixed upon DuPont with... (full context)
...questioned her about whether Dr. Jordan ever made any sexual advances toward her. She tells Jeremiah she does not “believe everything that was being said against [Dr. Jordan], as [she knows]... (full context)