The Castle of Otranto

Father Jerome Character Analysis

Father Jerome is a devout, intelligent, and kind-hearted friar in one of Otranto’s two convents. As Manfred’s foil, he constantly urges the prince to renounce his thirst for worldly power and to take up faith. Jerome sees through Manfred’s attempts to manipulate him and attempts to deceive Manfred to protect Isabella. When this results in Theodore’s death sentence, it sets in a motion a series of events in which Jerome sees a mark on Theodore’s shoulder, realizes that Theodore is his long lost son, and reveals his own past identity as the Count of Falconara. After Manfred kills Matilda, Jerome reveals that Theodore has a stronger claim to the throne than Frederic, because Jerome’s wife (Theodore’s mother) was Alfonso’s daughter. Throughout the story, Jerome acts as a true man of faith and goodness, working to protect others and counseling against greed and lust.

Father Jerome Quotes in The Castle of Otranto

The The Castle of Otranto quotes below are all either spoken by Father Jerome or refer to Father Jerome. 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:
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Dover Publications edition of The Castle of Otranto published in 2004.
Chapter 2 Quotes

“Father,” interrupted Manfred, “I pay due reverence to your holy profession; but I am sovereign here, and will allow no meddling priest to interfere in the affairs of my domestic. If you have aught to say, attend me to my chamber—I do not use to let my wife be acquainted with the secret affairs of my state; they are not within a woman’s province.”

Related Characters: Manfred (speaker), Father Jerome, Hippolita
Page Number: 52
Explanation and Analysis:

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“Holy father,” said Hippolita, “it is your office to be no respecter of persons: you must speak as your duty prescribes—but it is my duty to hear nothing that it pleases not my lord I should hear.”

Related Characters: Hippolita (speaker), Manfred, Father Jerome
Page Number: 53-43
Explanation and Analysis:

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Chapter 4 Quotes

“Come, come,” resumed the friar, “inconsiderate youth, this must not be; eradicate this guilty passion from thy breast.”—“Guilty passion!” cried Theodore, “Can guilt dwell with innocent beauty and virtuous modesty?”—“It is sinful,” replied the friar, “to cherish those whom heaven has doomed to destruction. A tyrant’s race must be swept from the earth to the third and fourth generation.”

Related Characters: Theodore (speaker), Father Jerome (speaker), Manfred, Matilda
Page Number: 89-90
Explanation and Analysis:

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Father Jerome Character Timeline in The Castle of Otranto

The timeline below shows where the character Father Jerome appears in The Castle of Otranto. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 2
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
...with the news that Isabella has sought sanctuary at St. Nicholas’s church and that Father Jerome of the church is now informing Manfred, who is in Hippolita’s room. The narrator jumps... (full context)
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
Jerome then passes along a message from Isabella to both Manfred and Hippolita, affirming her compassion... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
Now in his own room, Manfred has a private discussion with Jerome and claims that his attempt to rape Isabella was motivated by “reasons of state.” He... (full context)
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
Seething over the false information Jerome gave him, Manfred has the peasant brought from his room to the great hall for... (full context)
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
When Jerome arrives as a confessor, he realizes that he inadvertently put Theodore in danger. Remorseful, he... (full context)
Chapter 3
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Shaken by the helmet’s moving feathers, Manfred seeks an explanation from Jerome, who says that Manfred has angered heaven and must submit himself to the church. At... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Once Jerome is ushered out and Manfred imprisons Theodore in a tower, the herald announces the reason... (full context)
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
...continues to talk and begins to discuss his marriage to Hippolita. As he did with Jerome, he claims that his supposedly incestuous marriage has troubled him and that in order to... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
At that moment, Jerome and his fellow friars arrive at the castle, interrupting Manfred’s speech. Jerome then reveals to... (full context)
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
Theodore goes to one of the church’s convents to tell Jerome that he is free, but when he arrives he discovers that Jerome is elsewhere and... (full context)
Chapter 4
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
...for Alfonso. When Manfred realizes it is Theodore, he is furious that Theodore escaped. Assuming Jerome helped him, Manfred demands to know how Theodore came to be separated from and then... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Hippolita then finds Jerome in the church, seeking his guidance about the morality of a divorce. At that moment,... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
While Hippolita is conversing with Jerome, up at the castle Manfred is proposing to Frederic that they marry each other’s daughters.... (full context)
Chapter 5
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
...rocks and the giant helmet clamors. Believing the end of days is here, Frederic and Jerome rush out to the court, dragging Theodore behind them. As soon as Theodore steps out,... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
Jerome then completes the story by recounting Alfonso’s secret past. Before Alfonso fought in the crusades,... (full context)