Guests of the Nation

Noble Character Analysis

Noble is a young soldier of comparable rank to Bonaparte who also takes a liking to the British prisoners. His brother is a priest, so he’s a religious believer. This puts him at odds with Awkins, who needles him constantly about his belief in god and the afterlife, which he’s unable to fully defend.

Noble Quotes in Guests of the Nation

The Guests of the Nation quotes below are all either spoken by Noble or refer to Noble. 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:
National Identity Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of Guests of the Nation published in 1982.
Part 4 Quotes

“Listen to me, Noble,” he said. “You and me are chums. You won't come over to my side, so I'll come over to your side. Is that fair? Just you give me a rifle and I'll go with you wherever you want.”

Related Characters: ‘Awkins (speaker), Noble
Page Number: 10
Explanation and Analysis:
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Noble Character Timeline in Guests of the Nation

The timeline below shows where the character Noble appears in Guests of the Nation. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 1
National Identity Theme Icon
War and Duty Theme Icon
Home Theme Icon
Bonaparte wonders why he and Noble are there with Belcher and ‘Awkins at all. He describes how the two Englishmen are... (full context)
Home Theme Icon
Bonaparte, Noble, ‘Awkins, and Belcher are staying at the house of an old woman, whom Bonaparte describes... (full context)
Religion, Spirituality, and Materialism Theme Icon
Home Theme Icon
Bonaparte says that ‘Awkins loves to argue with Noble about religion, which needles Noble in part because Noble’s brother is a priest. Bonaparte describes... (full context)
Part 2
National Identity Theme Icon
Religion, Spirituality, and Materialism Theme Icon
War and Duty Theme Icon
...‘Awkins argues that the capitalist class bribes the priesthood to distract the common man, while Noble responds that people believed in “the next world” long before capitalists existed. (full context)
Religion, Spirituality, and Materialism Theme Icon
Home Theme Icon
...further, and he continues to mock Biblical beliefs using offensive and profane language that irritates Noble. Belcher just humors him by agreeing periodically while warming himself by the fireplace. (full context)
Religion, Spirituality, and Materialism Theme Icon
...as he returns to the house. When he arrives, the religious argument between ‘Awkins and Noble is still raging. ‘Awkins challenges Noble on the gaps in his belief in the afterlife,... (full context)
National Identity Theme Icon
War and Duty Theme Icon
After the British prisoners are locked up for the night, Bonaparte tells Noble about the true purpose for keeping them under guard. They resolve not to tell ‘Awkins... (full context)
National Identity Theme Icon
Religion, Spirituality, and Materialism Theme Icon
War and Duty Theme Icon
Home Theme Icon
The next morning, both Bonaparte and Noble have trouble interacting with the Englishmen. Belcher is at his customary place by the fireplace,... (full context)
Part 3
National Identity Theme Icon
War and Duty Theme Icon
Jeremiah sends Feeney and Noble to gather tools from the shed and dig a hole near the bog, while Bonaparte... (full context)
Part 4
National Identity Theme Icon
War and Duty Theme Icon
Jeremiah, Bonaparte, ‘Awkins, and Belcher meet Noble and Feeney. ‘Awkins immediately lays into Noble for his complicity in this scheme and continues... (full context)
National Identity Theme Icon
Religion, Spirituality, and Materialism Theme Icon
War and Duty Theme Icon
...and asks ‘Awkins whether he has any final messages or prayers. Instead, ‘Awkins appeals to Noble and Bonaparte as his “chums” and even offers to desert and fight for the Irish... (full context)
Religion, Spirituality, and Materialism Theme Icon
Home Theme Icon
With both men dead, the Irish take the corpses to the bog to bury them. Noble finds the letter on ‘Awkins’ body. After the burial, Noble and Bonaparte return in silence... (full context)
Religion, Spirituality, and Materialism Theme Icon
Home Theme Icon
The old woman falls to the ground in grief, praying with her rosary beads. Noble also sinks to his knees near the fireplace. Overwhelmed, Bonaparte pushes his way out of... (full context)