Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

Drosoula Character Analysis

Drosoula is Mandras's mother. She was born in Turkey and was moved with her mother to Greece as a young teen as part of an effort to ease ethnic tensions in both countries. In two years she learned Greek and married, a feat that surprises many people as she's always been an ugly woman. In her old age, this means that she's not jaded and mean, as she was never able to develop a sense of vanity. After Pelagia and Mandras become engaged, Pelagia and Drosoula become good friends. They work together to rehabilitate Mandras when he returns from his stint in the Greek army, though Drosoula barely recognizes her son. She also notices that Pelagia doesn't love Mandras. The two women continue to be friendly with each other when Mandras joins ELAS, and Drosoula doesn't hold it against Pelagia that she's obviously no longer in love with Mandras. When Mandras returns and attempts to rape Pelagia, Drosoula disowns him and sides with Pelagia. In the years following the war, Drosoula and Pelagia live together and adopt the baby Antonia. Drosoula acts as the child's grandmother. She and Antonia encourage Pelagia to follow in Dr. Iannis's footsteps and write the history of Cephalonia to pull her out of her grief when Dr. Iannis dies. Following the tourist boom that begins after the earthquake, Drosoula opens a restaurant that caters to tourists and becomes a beloved fixture on the island until her death.

Drosoula Quotes in Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

The Captain Corelli’s Mandolin quotes below are all either spoken by Drosoula or refer to Drosoula. 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:
War: Horror, Beauty, and Humanity Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin published in 1994.
Chapter 21 Quotes

As she reached for it she realized for the first time, and with a small shock, that she had learned enough from her father over the years to become a doctor herself. If there was such a thing as a doctor who was also a woman. She toyed with the idea, and then went to look for a paintbrush, as though this action could cancel the uncomfortable sensation of having been born into the wrong world.

Related Characters: Pelagia, Dr. Iannis, Mandras, Drosoula
Page Number: 134
Explanation and Analysis:
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Drosoula Character Timeline in Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

The timeline below shows where the character Drosoula appears in Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 16. Letters to Mandras at the Front
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
...mentions that the Italians bombed Corfu on Christmas Day and implores him to write to Drosoula, as she's very worried. (full context)
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
...taking down Mussolini, but Metaxas apparently isn't well. She again asks him to write to Drosoula. (full context)
Chapter 21. Pelagia's First Patient
War: Horror, Beauty, and Humanity Theme Icon
History and Storytelling Theme Icon
Drosoula has always been ugly, yet she married a handsome man, had a child, and hasn't... (full context)
Politics and Friendship Theme Icon
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
Drosoula hacks away at Mandras's hair and burns the lice. She discovers eczema and infected scratches.... (full context)
War: Horror, Beauty, and Humanity Theme Icon
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
When Pelagia finally recovers from the stench, she instructs Drosoula to attend to the rest of Mandras's body while she deals with his feet. Fortunately,... (full context)
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
...Mandras and then praises Pelagia, suggesting he might retire and let her be the doctor. Drosoula is thrilled to have Pelagia as a daughter soon and ignores it when Pelagia sidesteps... (full context)
Chapter 22. Mandras Behind the Veil
War: Horror, Beauty, and Humanity Theme Icon
Power, Reality, and Absurdity Theme Icon
History and Storytelling Theme Icon
Mandras tells the reader that Pelagia, Dr. Iannis, and Drosoula all talk about him as though he's not there. He spent all his time away... (full context)
Chapter 23. April 30th, 1941
History and Storytelling Theme Icon
Politics and Friendship Theme Icon
At Drosoula's house, Pelagia sits shamefully with Mandras. She believes he's torturing her deliberately, as he spent... (full context)
Chapter 26. Sharp Edges
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
...side to side. Pelagia feels disappointed and betrayed. He apologizes and asks Pelagia to tell Drosoula that he's leaving. He promises to think of her every minute and as he leaves,... (full context)
Chapter 62. Of the German Occupation
War: Horror, Beauty, and Humanity Theme Icon
Politics and Friendship Theme Icon
...human. They stole, raped, and let people starve. One soldier killed Psipsina, and others burned Drosoula with cigarettes. That year, neither the holy snakes nor the sacred lily appeared at all.... (full context)
Chapter 63. Liberation
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
...Greek people, was invited to a party by Greek communists and shot. Fortunately, Pelagia has Drosoula. Drosoula doesn't hold Pelagia's love for Corelli against her and treats her like a daughter. (full context)
Power, Reality, and Absurdity Theme Icon
Politics and Friendship Theme Icon
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
Drosoula is out when Mandras returns. He doesn't knock and comes upon Pelagia finishing her bedcover,... (full context)
Politics and Friendship Theme Icon
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
...derringer falls out of her apron pocket. She shoots him in the collarbone just as Drosoula enters the kitchen. She pushes into the bedroom and sees Mandras, but runs to Pelagia.... (full context)
Chapter 64. Antonia
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
Drosoula and Pelagia aren't surprised when they find a baby girl on their doorstep. She's calm... (full context)
War: Horror, Beauty, and Humanity Theme Icon
Fortunately, a depressed Canadian poet arrives and rents Drosoula's old house for nearly ten times what she'd planned to ask. He stays for three... (full context)
Chapter 65. 1953
War: Horror, Beauty, and Humanity Theme Icon
History and Storytelling Theme Icon
Pelagia stops taking pride in being Greek. She sees Drosoula mistreated for being a widow and herself scorned as a witch for trying to heal.... (full context)
War: Horror, Beauty, and Humanity Theme Icon
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
...owls, and other animals in plain sight outside. Dogs bay, things inexplicably fall over, and Drosoula feels ill. Antonia also suffers a headache but laughs as the cat races around. Antonia... (full context)
War: Horror, Beauty, and Humanity Theme Icon
Power, Reality, and Absurdity Theme Icon
Drosoula and Pelagia watch the olive tree split in half and boulders start to roll down... (full context)
Chapter 66. Rescue
Power, Reality, and Absurdity Theme Icon
...wells and shuts down silly rumors. He coaxes Pelagia out to set bones and puts Drosoula in charge of tending children so their parents can help. (full context)
Chapter 68. The Resurrection of the History
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
Drosoula, Pelagia, and Antonia become even closer, but Pelagia wallows in guilt and remorse. She fixates... (full context)
History and Storytelling Theme Icon
Politics and Friendship Theme Icon
At breakfast the next morning, Drosoula and Antonia brightly discuss that they had dreams about Dr. Iannis the night before. They... (full context)
History and Storytelling Theme Icon
Politics and Friendship Theme Icon
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
...discovered that she's Marxist, but believes that capitalism is most appropriate for dealing with problems. Drosoula won't listen, so Pelagia sits up late with teenage Antonia and they discuss politics and... (full context)
Chapter 69. Bean by Bean the Sack Fills
War: Horror, Beauty, and Humanity Theme Icon
History and Storytelling Theme Icon
Pelagia waits for a grandchild while Drosoula opens a taverna in her old home. Cephalonia begins to attract tourists from Italy and... (full context)
Politics and Friendship Theme Icon
Family, Opportunity, and Gender Dynamics Theme Icon
...as she taught Antonia to think. However, Pelagia resents Antonia for not having a baby. Drosoula dies in her rocking chair in 1972 and Pelagia takes over the taverna. (full context)
Power, Reality, and Absurdity Theme Icon
Politics and Friendship Theme Icon
...needs something to pass on to his son, so he builds vacation rentals and updates Drosoula's tavern for Pelagia. (full context)