The Big Sleep

Harry Jones is a grifter who makes money by running a gambling book. He tails private detective Philip Marlowe’s car, as he wants to sell Marlowe information on the whereabouts of the missing Mona Mars. Jones knew Rusty Regan, who has supposedly run off with Mona, the wife of local racketeer Eddie Mars. Marlowe mocks Jones, calling him “little man” because he is short. Yet, Jones displays great strength of character—namely, he lies to Lash Canino, Mars’s hired assassin, when interrogated about where Agnes Lozelle lives. Canino puts cyanide in Jones’s whiskey, killing him. Marlowe also notes that Jones is smarter than he first realized, yet still refers to him as “little dead man,” his continued lack of respect showing the detective’s inflexible notions of masculinity.

Harry Jones Quotes in The Big Sleep

The The Big Sleep quotes below are all either spoken by Harry Jones or refer to Harry Jones. 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 Corruption of Society Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of The Big Sleep published in 1939.
Chapter 25 Quotes

She’s a grifter, shamus. I’m a grifter. We’re all grifters. So we sell each other out for a nickel.

Related Symbols: Money
Page Number: 168
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He puffed evenly and stared at me level-eyed, a funny little hard guy I could have thrown from home plate to second base. A small man in a big man's world. There was something I liked about him.

Related Characters: Philip Marlowe (speaker), Harry Jones
Page Number: 168
Explanation and Analysis:
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Harry Jones Character Timeline in The Big Sleep

The timeline below shows where the character Harry Jones appears in The Big Sleep. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 25
Wealth, Status, and Social Mobility Theme Icon
Masculinity Theme Icon
...check from General Sternwood. The small man enters Marlowe’s office, and introduces himself as Harry Jones. They both light a cigarette. (full context)
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
Masculinity Theme Icon
Harry Jones introduces his history as a grifter, at which Marlowe scoffs. Marlowe tells Jones to get... (full context)
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
Masculinity Theme Icon
Jones says he’s in contact with Agnes, and has information that he wants to sell to... (full context)
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
Masculinity Theme Icon
Marlowe asks what the information is about, and Jones said it would help find Rusty Regan. Jones says Mars killed Regan, but Marlowe doesn’t... (full context)
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
Jones tells Marlowe he noticed Rusty wasn’t around, and then noticed that Mars’s tough guy Lash... (full context)
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
For the $200, Jones tells Marlowe he can tell him where Mona Mars is now. That gets Marlowe’s attention.... (full context)
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
Jones tells Marlowe to come to his apartment that evening with the money. Jones leaves, and... (full context)
Chapter 26
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
The rain has stopped but the roads are “flooded” as Marlowe drives to Jones’s office, “a nasty building.” Marlowe finds the office on the fourth floor, and hears Jones’s... (full context)
Wealth, Status, and Social Mobility Theme Icon
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
Marlowe breaks into another door to Jones’s office, and stalks through the adjoining rooms to peer through a door into the room... (full context)
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
Jones gives Canino a weak excuse for why Agnes wants to talk to Marlowe, which doesn’t... (full context)
Wealth, Status, and Social Mobility Theme Icon
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
Canino pours a couple of drinks for him and Jones. There is a sound of choking and vomiting, then a “thud.” Canino quips aloud that... (full context)
Wealth, Status, and Social Mobility Theme Icon
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
Marlowe enters the room to find Jones dead in his chair. The detective sniffs the whiskey bottle and smells cyanide. Marlowe picks... (full context)
Masculinity Theme Icon
Standing over Jones’s corpse, Marlowe marvels that the “little dead man” was so honorable. He searches Jones’s body,... (full context)
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
...begins to leave the office when the phone rings. It’s Agnes. Marlowe tells her that Jones ran off when Canino started looking for him, though Agnes doesn’t believe Marlowe. Nevertheless, she... (full context)
Chapter 27
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
...Plymouth, demanding the money from Marlowe with an outstretched hand. She asks what happened to Jones. Marlowe repeats the story that Jones ran for it, scared of Canino. (full context)
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
...off with the money, Marlowe thinks of all the men who have died—Geiger, Brody, and Jones—while Agnes doesn’t have a scratch.  (full context)
Chapter 28
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
...time. He calls her Silver-Wig as she gives him a cigarette. Marlowe tells her about Jones’s death, and how Eddie ordered it. Mona tell him to leave, and laughs, saying she... (full context)
Chapter 30
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
...The Captain asks who told Marlowe where Mona was hiding, and Marlowe tells him about Jones. Gregory says maybe he ought to have found Mona himself, and Marlowe agrees. (full context)
Wealth, Status, and Social Mobility Theme Icon
...place with Mona and told the police the whole story. He had taken them to Jones’s office to show them the body, and they had found Canino’s print to verify Marlowe’s... (full context)