The Big Sleep

The driver for General Sternwood and his family, Taylor is in love with his employer’s daughter, Carmen. He gives her a small gun as a gift. Taylor later kills Arthur Gwynn Geiger out of jealousy as Carmen poses for the pornographic photographer in his house. Taylor steals the photo negatives, which are later stolen by Joe Brody. Later, Taylor drives himself off a pier at high speed to kill himself. The police lean on the newspapers to keep Taylor’s name out of the story about Geiger’s murder, to protect the rich and influential Sternwoods.

Owen Taylor Quotes in The Big Sleep

The The Big Sleep quotes below are all either spoken by Owen Taylor or refer to Owen Taylor. 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 11 Quotes

He didn’t know the right people. That’s all a police record means in this rotten crime-ridden country.

Related Characters: Vivian Regan (speaker), Philip Marlowe, Owen Taylor
Page Number: 57
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Chapter 18 Quotes

I’m kind of glad that Taylor kid went off the pier. I’d hate to have to help send him to the deathhouse for rubbing that skunk.

Related Characters: Bernie Ohls (speaker), Philip Marlowe, Arthur Gwynn Geiger, Owen Taylor
Page Number: 104
Explanation and Analysis:
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Owen Taylor Character Timeline in The Big Sleep

The timeline below shows where the character Owen Taylor appears in The Big Sleep. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 9
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
...Marlowe tells Ohls the dead boy is the Sternwoods’ chauffeur. Ohls gives him the name— Owen Taylor. The police identified him because he has a criminal record and had tried to... (full context)
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
The story goes, Carmen and Owen ran off to Yuma, but Mrs. Regan went and fetched them back. Mrs. Regan had... (full context)
Chapter 11
Wealth, Status, and Social Mobility Theme Icon
...has been trying to track him down all day. When he asks if it’s about Owen, her face and tone reveal sympathy for the dead boy. They discuss Owen’s past, including... (full context)
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
However, Mrs. Regan explains that she didn’t come to talk about Owen. She passes Marlowe an envelope, out of which the detective pulls a photograph of Carmen... (full context)
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
Wealth, Status, and Social Mobility Theme Icon
Marlowe asks Mrs. Regan why Owen had the car, but she doesn’t know the answer—he wasn’t given permission. He then asks... (full context)
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
...Marlowe calls Ohls on his office phone. Ohls has told the Sternwood butler, Norris, about Owen, and checked the chauffeur’s belongings—there is no suicide note. The chief investigator has also confirmed... (full context)
Chapter 16
Masculinity Theme Icon
...Carmen’s little gun has blown the window out. On the gun’s grip reads “Carmen from Owen.” Marlowe thinks she must have all men wrapped around her finger.  (full context)
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
...Brody says Marlowe cannot tie him to that death. Marlowe thinks he can—he suggests that Owen killed Geiger in jealousy over Carmen, took the photo, and then Brody chased after Owen... (full context)
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
Brody agrees that’s probably what happened, but it doesn’t follow that Brody also killed Owen. He admits he heard the shots and followed the fleeing Owen, but only hit him... (full context)
Chapter 17
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
...Bernie Ohls. The private detective asks the cop if they had found a gun on Owen Taylor’s dead body, adding that it should have three empty shells. Ohls is astounded. Marlowe... (full context)
Chapter 18
Masculinity Theme Icon
...Attorney Taggart Wilde’s place. The chief investigator adds he’s glad he doesn’t have to arrest Owen Taylor for killing Geiger. Ohls grabs Lundgren and looks at him with distaste as he... (full context)
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
Ohls explains further that the dead man (Owen Taylor) had killed Geiger the night before. Lundgren, the boy in Ohls’s car outside, had... (full context)
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
Cynicism and Survival Theme Icon
...sure of his story. Marlowe asserts that Joe Brody doesn’t seem the killing “type,” while Taylor had motive to kill Geiger, as he loved Carmen. (full context)
Chapter 19
The Corruption of Society Theme Icon
Wealth, Status, and Social Mobility Theme Icon
...the newspapers and sees the Sternwoods have been kept out of the stories as agreed. Owen’s death is not connected to the other murders. Captain Cronjager supposedly solved the other cases—Brody... (full context)