Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl

by

Harriet Jacobs

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl can help.

Mr. Thorne Character Analysis

Mrs. Hobbs’s brother, a native of the North Carolinian city in which Linda grows up. Mr. Thorne is a careless alcoholic who is constantly in debt, and while visiting the Hobbs family he sexually harasses Ellen, showing that sexual abuse of female slaves is widespread and accepted among white men. After seeing Linda in the Hobbs house, Mr. Thorne apprises Dr. Flint of her whereabouts, forcing her to go into hiding.

Mr. Thorne Quotes in Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl

The Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl quotes below are all either spoken by Mr. Thorne or refer to Mr. Thorne. 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:
The Dehumanizing Effects of Slavery Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Dover Thrift Editions edition of Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl published in 2001.
Chapter 36 Quotes

I did not discover till years afterward that Mr. Thorne’s intemperance was not the only annoyance she suffered from…he had poured vile language into the ears of [Grandmother’s] innocent great-grandchild.

Related Characters: Harriet Jacobs / Linda Brent (speaker), Ellen, Mr. Thorne
Page Number: 146
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl LitChart as a printable PDF.
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl PDF

Mr. Thorne Character Timeline in Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl

The timeline below shows where the character Mr. Thorne appears in Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter Thirty-Six: The Hairbreadth Escape
The Dehumanizing Effects of Slavery Theme Icon
Returning to New York, Linda visits Ellen. She knows that Mrs. Hobbs’s Southern brother, Mr. Thorne , is visiting so she stays in the kitchen. However, he wants to greet her,... (full context)
The Dehumanizing Effects of Slavery Theme Icon
Sexual Virtue and Sexual Abuse Theme Icon
Motherhood and Family Theme Icon
...situation, but Linda can tell she’s unhappy. Questioning her one day, she finds that since Mr. Thorne has arrived, Ellen has been forced to buy and serve liquor every day. Years later,... (full context)
Motherhood and Family Theme Icon
...Linda goes to visit her daughter, Ellen reveals that she’s found a torn-up letter from Mr. Thorne to Dr. Flint, saying that as a “patriot [and] a lover of my country” he... (full context)