The Castle of Otranto

Theodore Character Analysis

The hero of the story, Theodore is first presented as the peasant whom Manfred wrongfully imprisons for an offhand observation. Well-spoken, noble, and brave, he bears a striking resemblance to the statue of Alfonso the Good. After he helps Isabella escape, he is again imprisoned and sentenced to death until Matilda, with whom he falls in love, helps him escape. Near the end of the novel, Theodore reveals his backstory — that he was enslaved by pirates, only to be freed by Christians many years later, and has been working as a farmer in Otranto for the past two years. Father Jerome reveals that Theodore is not only his son but also a direct descendant of Alfonso and the rightful ruler of Otranto. After Matilda’s death, Theodore takes over Otranto and marries Isabella as its rightful ruler – the rightness of his rulership is supported both by his bloodline and by his always-noble behavior.

Theodore Quotes in The Castle of Otranto

The The Castle of Otranto quotes below are all either spoken by Theodore or refer to Theodore. 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 and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Dover Publications edition of The Castle of Otranto published in 2004.
Chapter 1 Quotes

The Castle and Lordship of Otranto should pass from the present family whenever the real owner should be grown too large to inhabit it.

Related Characters: Manfred, Theodore, Alfonso
Related Symbols: Castle of Otranto, The Giant Suit of Armor
Page Number: 27
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Unlock explanations and citation info for this and every other The Castle of Otranto quote.

Plus so much more...

Get LitCharts A+
Already a LitCharts A+ member? Sign in!

In vain did Manfred’s friends endeavour to divert him from this savage and ill-grounded resolution. The generality were charmed with their lord’s decision, which, to their apprehensions, carried great appearance of justice; as the magician was to be punished by the very instrument with which he had offended: nor were they struck with the least compunction at the probability of the youth being starved; for they firmly believed, that, by his diabolical skill, he could easily supply himself with nutriment.

Related Characters: Theodore, Alfonso
Related Symbols: The Giant Suit of Armor
Page Number: 31
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Chapter 2 Quotes

I fear no man’s displeasure when a woman in distress puts herself under my protection.

Related Characters: Theodore (speaker), Manfred, Isabella
Page Number: 57
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Chapter 3 Quotes

Matilda disengaged herself from her women, stole up to the black tower, and unbolting the door, presented herself to the astonished Theodore. “Young man,” said she, “though filial duty and womanly modesty condemn the step I am taking, yet holy charity, surmounting all other ties, justifies this act. Fly, the doors of thy prison are open: my father and his domestics are absent, but they may soon return.”

Related Characters: Matilda (speaker), Manfred, Theodore
Page Number: 71
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui offici

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim

Arriving there, he sought the gloomiest shades, as best suited to the pleasing melancholy that reigned in his mind. In this mood he roved insensibly to the caves which had formerly served as a retreat to hermits, and were now reported round the country to be haunted by evil spirits. He recollected to have heard this tradition; and being of a brave and adventurous disposition, he willingly indulged his curiosity in exploring the secret recesses of this labyrinth…He thought the place more likely to be infested by robbers than by those infernal agents who are reported to molest and bewilder travelers.

Related Characters: Theodore
Page Number: 74
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit

Chapter 4 Quotes

Where’er a casque that suits this sword is found,
With perils is thy daughter compass’ed round;
Alfonso’s blood alone can save the maid,
And quiet a long restless prince’s shade.

Related Characters: Frederic (speaker), Theodore, Isabella, Alfonso
Related Symbols: The Giant Suit of Armor
Page Number: 80
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia d

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proidLorem ipsLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nu

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

And jealousy, that, for a moment, had raised a coolness between these amiable maidens, soon gave way to the natural sincerity and candour of their souls. Each confessed to the other the impression that Theodore had made on her; and this confidence was followed by a struggle of generosity, each insisting on yielding her claim to her friend.

Related Characters: Theodore, Isabella, Matilda
Page Number: 85
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

“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:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate v

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quiLorem iLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Chapter 5 Quotes

The moment Theodore appeared, the walls of the castle behind Manfred were thrown down with a mighty force, and the form of Alfonso, dilated to an immense magnitude, appeared in the centre of the ruins. “Behold in Theodore the true heir of Alfonso!” said the vision: and having pronounced these words, accompanied by a clap of thunder, it ascended solemnly towards Heaven, where, the clouds parting asunder, the form of St. Nicholas was seen, and receiving Alfonso’s shade, they were soon wrapt from mortal eyes in a blaze of glory.

Related Characters: Alfonso (speaker), Manfred, Theodore
Related Symbols: Castle of Otranto, The Giant Suit of Armor
Page Number: 104
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillu

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Get the entire The Castle of Otranto LitChart as a printable PDF.
The castle of otranto.pdf.medium

Theodore Character Timeline in The Castle of Otranto

The timeline below shows where the character Theodore appears in The Castle of Otranto. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
In the court, all of Manfred’s attention is on the giant helmet. When a young peasant observes its similarity to the helmet on the statue of Alfonso the Good in the... (full context)
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
At that moment, a few peasants returned from the church, confirming that Alfonso’s statue was missing its helmet. Panicked and enraged,... (full context)
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
However, the figure is a stranger, whose kind voice offers to help Isabella and to protect her from Manfred with his... (full context)
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
While Manfred contemplates pardoning the peasant, two servants, Diego and Jaquez, arrive in fear. With some difficulty because of their rambling... (full context)
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
...to marry him. He then orders his men to guard every exit and orders the peasant to remain in one of the castle’s rooms to be questioned further the next day. (full context)
Chapter 2
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
...servant, Bianca, fills her in on the latest gossip about the discovery of the young peasant and the giant leg in armor. Matilda, however, is more concerned about Isabella, her mother,... (full context)
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
...that it is a ghost, Matilda opens a window and realizes that it is a stranger singing. Though they cannot see each other, the stranger reveals himself to be polite, well... (full context)
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
Bianca reveals that the servants believe the stranger helped Isabella escape. She insinuates that the stranger is unhappy because he is in love... (full context)
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
...requesting their consent to stay at the church. Angry, Manfred refuses and blames the young peasant for Isabella’s flight. While Manfred tries to assert his role as Isabella’s parent in order... (full context)
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
...Isabella, and whomever else Manfred might harm if angered. When Manfred interrogates Jerome about the peasant, Jerome unwisely confirms a romantic connection between the peasant and Isabella, thinking it might help... (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 questioning. As Manfred begins to question... (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 confesses to fabricating a relationship between Isabella and Theodore, which further... (full context)
Chapter 3
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
...heaven and must submit himself to the church. At Jerome’s request, Manfred agrees to let Theodore live and has Jerome see who is waiting outside the castle. The herald outside asks... (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 for his arrival: on behalf of his... (full context)
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
Manfred also gives orders for his men to search for Isabella. But this leaves Theodore’s tower unguarded, and Matilda takes the opportunity to rescue Theodore. The two of them instantly... (full context)
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
Theodore goes to one of the church’s convents to tell Jerome that he is free, but... (full context)
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Not long after, an armed knight approaches the mouth of the cave. Theodore, unaware of the arrival of Frederic’s knights, believes that this man is working for Manfred... (full context)
Chapter 4
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Manfred arrives and is shocked to see an armor-clad Theodore, whom he mistakes for Alfonso. When Manfred realizes it is Theodore, he is furious that... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
...next day, Matilda and Isabella decide to meet, as they are both in love with Theodore, who has come between them. Aware that Theodore is in love with Matilda, Isabella decides... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
...to the third and fourth generation.” Unused to having to obey a father’s orders, though, Theodore finds himself unable to stop loving Matilda. Hippolita asks Jerome to dismiss his son, and... (full context)
Chapter 5
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
...castle, Manfred worries about what he is convinced is a love affair between Isabella and Theodore, but he nevertheless resolves to gain Isabella for himself. He uses every possible argument to... (full context)
Class, Comedy, and Tragedy Theme Icon
...is Isabella’s and Matilda’s confidante, he tries to ascertain the exact nature of Isabella’s and Theodore’s relationship. However, after a long, rambling, and unsatisfactory response from Bianca, Manfred knows little more... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
...Manfred becomes all the more enraged when his spy at the church informs him that Theodore and a lady are secretly meeting at Alfonso’s tomb in the church. Believing that Isabella... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
The monks and Theodore are bringing Matilda to the castle, with Manfred following behind in despair. Hippolita, who had... (full context)
Humor, the Gothic, and the Supernatural Theme Icon
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
As Theodore mourns over the body, Isabella is walking Hippolita back to her room, when they meet... (full context)
The Divine vs. The Mundane Theme Icon
Lineage and Leadership Theme Icon
Gender and Marriage Theme Icon
...who gave birth to a baby girl who eventually became Jerome’s wife. This means that Theodore is a direct descendant of Alfonso. In atonement for his sins, Manfred abdicates the throne... (full context)