The bumbling, ne’er-do-well father of Ruby Thewes, Stobrod is one of the novel’s most complex characters—he’s both comic and deeply serious, likable and despicable. As a younger man, Stobrod was a poor father—he never hit Ruby, but neither did he take care of her. After the beginning of the Civil War, Stobrod went off to fight, leaving Ruby to fend for herself. Halfway through the war, Stobrod deserted and returned to Black Cove, where he finds Ruby living with Ada Monroe. In spite of Stobrod’s poor parenting, it’s suggested that he’s beginning to redeem himself by playing the fiddle—something he does with jaw-dropping artistry and craft. As Ada acknowledges, Stobrod’s example proves that any man can change, provided they have the will to do so.
Stobrod Thewes Quotes in Cold Mountain
The Cold Mountain quotes below are all either spoken by Stobrod Thewes or refer to Stobrod Thewes. 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: Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Grove Press edition of Cold Mountain published in 2006.).
Chapter 12 Quotes
To Ada, though, it seemed akin to miracle that Stobrod, of all people, should offer himself up as proof positive that no matter what a waste one has made of one's life, it is ever possible to find some path to redemption, however partial.
Stobrod Thewes Character Timeline in Cold Mountain
The timeline below shows where the character Stobrod Thewes appears in Cold Mountain. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 4: verbs, all of them tiring
...began to wonder about her mother—the kind of woman who would marry a man like Stobrod. She never succeeded in learning anything about her mother, because Stobrod enlisted in the army... (full context)
Chapter 8: source and root
...childhood, during which she saw plenty of herons. In fact, Ruby’s mother told her father, Stobrod, that it was a heron that impregnated her, not Stobrod himself. This reminds Ada of... (full context)
Chapter 12: freewill savages
...very well dressed, and looks surprisingly casual. Suddenly, Ruby realizes who she’s looking at: it’s Stobrod, her father. Amazed, Ruby asks Stobrod how old he is, and he says that he’s... (full context)
Chapter 14: a satisfied mind
Chapter 16: naught and grief
Chapter 17: black bark in winter
...old stone shelter, and arrowheads. As she washes her hands, Ruby is surprised to see Stobrod, leaning against a big rock. Ruby and Ada realize that Stobrod is still alive—he’s breathing... (full context)
Chapter 18: footsteps in the snow
...inside. The boy invites Inman in, and Inman hears about the Georgia boy’s witnessing of Stobrod and Pangle’s deaths. Inman listens patiently to the boy’s story, then asks him if he... (full context)
Chapter 19: the far side of trouble
...married, and to order books about art, botany, and travel. Inman will learn Greek, and Stobrod will play the fiddle for them, assuming that he survives. Ada tells Inman about what... (full context)
Chapter 20: spirits of crows, dancing
Epilogue: October of 1874