Bleak House

Bleak House

by

Charles Dickens

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Mr. Rouncewell Character Analysis

Mr. Rouncewell is the son of Mrs. Rouncewell, the father of Watt, and the brother of George. Mr. Rouncewell is an industrious and practical man who has made his fortune in the iron trade. He has rejected a career in Sir Leicester Dedlock’s service, where his family has worked for generations. He is very proud that he has deviated from this course and that he has made his own way in the world and provides for his family with his money made in manufacturing. Mr. Rouncewell is a caring man and a political activist. The reader is told that he successfully runs for Parliament and is staunchly opposed to Sir Leicester’s political conservativism. Mr. Rouncewell represents changes in social mobility during the 19th century, in which working men were no longer reliant on wealthy patrons to make their fortune but could make their own way in new industries and trade.
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Mr. Rouncewell Character Timeline in Bleak House

The timeline below shows where the character Mr. Rouncewell appears in Bleak House. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 28
Social Mobility, Class, and Lineage Theme Icon
Philanthropy, Social Responsibility, and Kindness Theme Icon
 In fact, says Sir Leicester, Mr. Rouncewell is waiting downstairs to speak to them about Rosa. Volumnia and the other cousins hurry... (full context)
Chapter 40
Social Mobility, Class, and Lineage Theme Icon
Law vs. Justice Theme Icon
...Sir Leicester that the Dedlocks’ favored party has been ousted in one constituency, and that Mr. Rouncewell has taken this seat. Sir Leicester thinks this is most improper, and Volumnia is very... (full context)
Social Mobility, Class, and Lineage Theme Icon
Law vs. Justice Theme Icon
Haunting, Guilt, and Destiny Theme Icon
Mr. Tulkinghorn says that Mr. Rouncewell ’s political group is very active and “proud.” He launches into a story about an... (full context)
Chapter 48
Social Mobility, Class, and Lineage Theme Icon
Law vs. Justice Theme Icon
Haunting, Guilt, and Destiny Theme Icon
Identity and Appearance Theme Icon
Not long after this, Mr. Rouncewell arrives and Lady Dedlock informs him that he must take Rosa away because she is... (full context)
Chapter 55
Social Mobility, Class, and Lineage Theme Icon
Law vs. Justice Theme Icon
Passion, Obsession, and Madness Theme Icon
Haunting, Guilt, and Destiny Theme Icon
...to find him one for him, and Mrs. Rouncewell says that they must send for Mr. Rouncewell , George’s brother. George begs her not to because, he says, he cannot face him;... (full context)
Chapter 63
Social Mobility, Class, and Lineage Theme Icon
Passion, Obsession, and Madness Theme Icon
Haunting, Guilt, and Destiny Theme Icon
...visit to an industrial town in the north of England to track down his brother, Mr. Rouncewell . When George arrives, in a landscape of sprawling factories and ironworks, and asks after... (full context)
Social Mobility, Class, and Lineage Theme Icon
Passion, Obsession, and Madness Theme Icon
Haunting, Guilt, and Destiny Theme Icon
Identity and Appearance Theme Icon
Watt goes to tell his father and, when George is shown into Mr. Rouncewell ’s office, he tells his brother that his name is Mr. Steel. George tells Mr.... (full context)
Social Mobility, Class, and Lineage Theme Icon
Law vs. Justice Theme Icon
Passion, Obsession, and Madness Theme Icon
Haunting, Guilt, and Destiny Theme Icon
...Mrs. Rouncewell to erase him from the will; since he has no children, he wants Mr. Rouncewell ’s family to inherit everything. Mr. Rouncewell says that there is no way Mrs. Rouncewell... (full context)
Social Mobility, Class, and Lineage Theme Icon
Passion, Obsession, and Madness Theme Icon
The brothers are very alike and get on well. Mr. Rouncewell hopes to incorporate George into the family business, but George explains that he has taken... (full context)
Social Mobility, Class, and Lineage Theme Icon
Law vs. Justice Theme Icon
George asks Mr. Rouncewell to look at a letter he has written. The letter is to Esther and tells... (full context)