George Bernard Shaw

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Ezra D. Wannafeller Character Analysis

The wealthy American who leaves money to Mr. Doolittle in his will. He stands in for the American idea of meritocratic social mobility—the belief that those who work hard can move up the social ladder—as opposed to Victorian ideas of natural social hierarchy which hold that people are born into the social position they deserve. The inheritance he leaves Mr. Doolittle allows Doolittle to become a gentleman, though ironically Mr. Doolittle hates his newfound wealth.

Ezra D. Wannafeller Quotes in Pygmalion

The Pygmalion quotes below are all either spoken by Ezra D. Wannafeller or refer to Ezra D. Wannafeller. 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:
Language and Speech Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Penguin Classics edition of Pygmalion published in 2000.
Act 5 Quotes

Who asked him to make a gentleman of me? I was happy. I was free. I touched pretty nigh everybody for money when I wanted it, same as I touched you, Henry Higgins. Now I am worrited; tied neck and heels; and everybody touches me for money. It's a fine thing for you, says my solicitor. Is it? says I. ...A year ago I hadn't a relative in the world except two or three that wouldn't speak to me. Now I've fifty, and not a decent week's wages among the lot of them. I have to live for others and not for myself: that's middle class morality.

Related Characters: Alfred Doolittle (speaker), Ezra D. Wannafeller
Page Number: 89
Explanation and Analysis:
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Ezra D. Wannafeller Character Timeline in Pygmalion

The timeline below shows where the character Ezra D. Wannafeller appears in Pygmalion. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 5
Appearance and Identity Theme Icon
Social Class and Manners Theme Icon mad at him. Doolittle says that Higgins mentioned him to a wealthy American named Ezra D. Wannafeller , who founded Moral Reform Societies across the world. Higgins had joked that Mr. Doolittle... (full context)