The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

by

Ann Shaffer

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Captain Christian Hellman Character Analysis

Christian Hellman was a German soldier stationed on Guernsey. He fell in love with Elizabeth and is Kit's father. Most of the Society members found that Christian was very kind, loved literature, and didn't believe in the Nazi ideals. He helped Dawsey carry water for islanders, helped Sam Withers dig graves, and won Amelia's heart by informing her that he intended to return and marry Elizabeth after the war. Many of the islanders who write to Juliet say that they were good friends with Christian. He was also a doctor and not long before Kit's birth, he was sent to the continent to a hospital. However, his ship was torpedoed and he died somewhere in the English Channel.

Captain Christian Hellman Quotes in The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

The The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society quotes below are all either spoken by Captain Christian Hellman or refer to Captain Christian Hellman. 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:
Literature and Connection Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Dial edition of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society published in 2008.
Part 1: 12 Mar, 1946 Quotes

Though I had little hope of success, I knew it was my duty to warn her of the fate that awaited her. I told her she would be cast out of decent society, but she did not heed me. In fact, she laughed. I bore it. Then she told me to get out of her house.

Page Number: 82
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 1: 2 Apr, 1946 Quotes

The way that Christian and I met may have been unusual, but our friendship was not. I'm sure many Islanders grew to be friends with some of the soldiers. But sometimes I think of Charles Lamb and marvel that a man born in 1775 enabled me to make two such friends as you and Christian.

Related Characters: Dawsey Adams (speaker), Juliet Ashton, Captain Christian Hellman
Page Number: 97
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 1: 13 May, 1946 Quotes

I sometimes think that we are morally obliged to begin a search for Kit's German relations, but I cannot bring myself to do it. Christian was a rare soul, and he detested what his country was doing, but the same cannot be true for many Germans...And how could we send our Kit away to a foreign—and destroyed—land, even if her relations could be found? We are the only family she's ever known.

Page Number: 137-38
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 2: 19 Jul, 1946 Quotes

Why, there'd be soldiers riding guard in the back of potato lorries going to the army's mess hall—children would follow them, hoping potatoes would fall off into the street. Soldiers would look straight ahead, grim-like, and then flick potatoes off the pile—on purpose.

Page Number: 208
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 2: 7 Sep, 1946 Quotes

She was showing me her treasures, Sophie—her eyes did not leave my face once. We were both so solemn, and I, for once, didn't start crying; I just held out my arms. She climbed right into them, and under the covers with me—and went sound asleep. Not me! I couldn't. I was too happy planning the rest of our lives.

Page Number: 259
Explanation and Analysis:
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Captain Christian Hellman Character Timeline in The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

The timeline below shows where the character Captain Christian Hellman appears in The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part One, 12th March, 1946
Family, Parenting, and Legitimacy Theme Icon
War, Hunger, and Humanity Theme Icon
Women, Marriage, and Work Theme Icon
...truth: the Society is raising the "bastard" child of Elizabeth and her German lover, Captain Christian Hellman. Adelaide assures Juliet she wouldn't call Elizabeth a "Jerry-bag;" Elizabeth didn't go out with... (full context)
Part One, 2nd April, 1946
War, Hunger, and Humanity Theme Icon
...Some people thought that greeting Germans was conspiring with the enemy, but Dawsey found that Christian Hellman was a good man. (full context)
Family, Parenting, and Legitimacy Theme Icon
War, Hunger, and Humanity Theme Icon
...casks and began carrying water to those who couldn't fetch it themselves. One November day, Christian helped Dawsey lift one full barrel and then helped him lug the second up the... (full context)
Literature and Connection Theme Icon
War, Hunger, and Humanity Theme Icon
Christian noticed that Dawsey dropped his Charles Lamb book and mentioned that he loved the author.... (full context)
Part One, 4th April, 1946
Family, Parenting, and Legitimacy Theme Icon
War, Hunger, and Humanity Theme Icon
...rubble so she can pretend London is beautiful. She mentions Dawsey's letter telling her about Christian and laments that the war goes on and on. In closing, Juliet writes that she's... (full context)
Part One, 13th May, 1946
Family, Parenting, and Legitimacy Theme Icon
...feels obligated to look for any German relations of Kit's, but she feels as though Christian was a rare good man. She doesn't want to send Kit to a foreign land,... (full context)
Part Two, 17th July, 1946
Literature and Connection Theme Icon
War, Hunger, and Humanity Theme Icon
...of supplies. Most of the drawings are of Kit or Society members. There's one of Christian. Upon seeing the drawing, Amelia explained that she'd been set against Christian, as she was... (full context)
Part Two, 19th July, 1946
Family, Parenting, and Legitimacy Theme Icon
War, Hunger, and Humanity Theme Icon
...her as a girl and mentioned that Kit was sweet and he knew she was Christian's daughter. Sam said he'd liked Christian and told Juliet that she couldn't cast Kit off... (full context)
Part Two, 7th September, 1946
Literature and Connection Theme Icon
Family, Parenting, and Legitimacy Theme Icon
...photo of Elizabeth, a handkerchief, a signet ring, and a book of Rilke's poetry that Christian gave to Elizabeth. In the book was the note that Elizabeth left for Amelia on... (full context)