The Hiding Place

by

Corrie Ten Boom

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Father / Casper ten Boom Character Analysis

Corrie’s father, the benevolent patriarch of the ten Boom family. Father is a highly skilled watchmaker whose shop is one of the oldest institutions in Haarlem. However, he’s best known in the city for his good nature and generosity with time and money: Father takes in and raises several foster children after his own are grown, and his shop barely makes a profit because he often forgets to charge his customers. Father inculcates in Corrie and her siblings the Christian principles which guide them throughout their lives; during her childhood, Corrie is always impressed with his thoughtful approach to philosophical dilemmas and steadfast reliance on God. He also emphasizes the importance of tolerance, which later leads the family to risk their lives sheltering Jews. Corrie recalls childhood visits to Father’s close friends in the Jewish community, with whom he bonds over a shared love of the Old Testament. By the time of the Nazi occupation, Father is very elderly, but he supports Corrie and Betsie as they turn the house into a shelter and raises morale by reading aloud from the Bible every night. Arrested alongside Corrie and the rest of the family, Father becomes ill and dies in a public hospital, without any of his children by his side.

Father / Casper ten Boom Quotes in The Hiding Place

The The Hiding Place quotes below are all either spoken by Father / Casper ten Boom or refer to Father / Casper ten Boom. 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:
Faith and Action Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Chosen Books edition of The Hiding Place published in 1974.
The One Hundredth Birthday Party Quotes

Young and old, poor and rich, scholarly gentlemen and illiterate servant girls—only to Father did it seem that they were all alike. That was Father’s secret: not that he overlooked the differences in people; that he didn’t know they were there.

Related Characters: Corrie ten Boom (speaker), Father / Casper ten Boom
Page Number: 29
Explanation and Analysis:
Full Table Quotes

After the briefest possible discussion of business, Father would draw a small Bible form his traveling case; the wholesaler […] would snatch a book or scroll out of a drawer, clap a prayer cap onto his head; and the two of them would be off, arguing, comparing, interpreting, contradiction—reveling in each other’s company.

Related Characters: Corrie ten Boom (speaker), Father / Casper ten Boom
Related Symbols: The Bible
Page Number: 40
Explanation and Analysis:
Karel Quotes

God loves Karel—even more than you do—and if you ask Him, He will give you His love for this man, a love nothing can prevent, nothing destroy. Whenever we cannot love in the old, human way, Corrie, God can give us the perfect way.

Related Characters: Father / Casper ten Boom (speaker), Corrie ten Boom, Karel
Page Number: 60
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Hiding Place PDF

Father / Casper ten Boom Character Timeline in The Hiding Place

The timeline below shows where the character Father / Casper ten Boom appears in The Hiding Place. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
The One Hundredth Birthday Party
Family Theme Icon
Betsie and Corrie carry the flowers into the shop, where Father displays his wares and performs complicated watch repairs. In the center of the room is... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
...arrive at the house. People throughout the city are eager to offer their respects to Father, sometimes known as “Haarlem’s Grand Old Man.” Betsie is especially happy to receive them; because... (full context)
Tolerance Theme Icon
...saleslady, Toos. Toos has such a harsh and negative demeanor that she’s almost unemployable, but Father has not only given her a job but charmed her completely. (full context)
Family Theme Icon
...a fort. Once the table used to be crowded at every meal, but now only Father, Corrie, and Betsie use it. Her older siblings, Willem and Nollie, have married and left... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
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As Betsie brings in coffee and breakfast, Father carefully descends the stairs. He prays over the meal and then compliments Betsie and Corrie... (full context)
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...always an excuse for a birthday party or celebratory meal. Caught up in memories himself, Father reminds his daughters that he was born right here, in the dining room. Since his... (full context)
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...day, what lay in store for her family. It would have been impossible to imagine Father dead and buried in an unmarked grave, or Betsie “standing naked before a roomful of... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
At eight-thirty, Hans and Toos come upstairs for the daily Bible reading. However, Father doesn’t begin as Christoffels is still absent. Christoffels is an old and “wizened” man, who... (full context)
Tolerance Theme Icon
Father has just begun to read when Christoffels arrives. Although he’s usually dressed in tattered clothes,... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
...for the rest of the morning, finishing the cooking and greeting callers eager to congratulate Father. Running out of cups, Betsie sends Corrie to ask their sister Nollie for hers. She... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
Tolerance Theme Icon
After lunch, neighborhood children begin to arrive, making a beeline for Father. Children love him because he’s always kind and always wearing many interesting watches. Pickwick himself... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
...Mrs. Kan, who own the watch shop across the street. More adept at business than Father, they have cheaper prices and always sell more. But Father admonishes Peter, telling him that... (full context)
Tolerance Theme Icon
...out of the house. The guests are rich and poor, educated and illiterate. However, to Father, everyone is alike. The secret of his universal popularity is “not that he overlooked the... (full context)
Moral Choices Theme Icon
...Dutch that the man fled Munich yesterday after being attacked by a group of teenagers. Father rises to shake the man’s hand, and Corrie hurries to bring coffee and cookies. (full context)
Full Table
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...for being late—a former governess, she often compares her nieces’ behavior to her erstwhile charges—but Father says it doesn’t matter. Mama warns them quietly to be nice to Tante Jans today,... (full context)
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...starts meditating on the uselessness of medicine, as nothing can stop the will of God. Father gently points out that medicine has “prolonged many a life,” and Tante Jans launches into... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
...instantly distracts Tante Jans, who is extremely concerned with spoiled food. Nollie is saved and Father starts his daily Bible reading. The text of today’s psalm reads, “Thou art my hiding... (full context)
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...All of her aunts begin to give their opinions on this statement at once, but Father grandly says that he will walk her himself. Corrie clings to the railing in front... (full context)
Tolerance Theme Icon
During the summer, Corrie accompanies Father on his weekly trips into Amsterdam, where he gets the precise time from the Naval... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
Afterwards, Father and Corrie watch the naval clock strike twelve; Father records the time on his pocket... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
...sobbing as soon as it’s time to go to bed, wailing that she doesn’t want Father to die. Father hugs Corrie and tells her that, just as he gives her a... (full context)
Karel
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After some time, Corrie hears Father climbing the stairs. She’s afraid he will comfort her with some platitude about finding someone... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
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Listening to Father, Corrie doesn’t yet know that this advice will sustain her through far more drastic situations,... (full context)
The Watch Shop
Faith and Action Theme Icon
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...keeps repeating Corrie’s name over and over again; Corrie puts her to bed and fetches Father and Betsie, but Mama is suffering an unstoppable cerebral hemorrhage. (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
...over her duties in the watch shop. Frustrated by the lack of tidy records and Father’s indifference to business matters, Corrie takes it upon herself to devise a system, and realizes... (full context)
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...and eventually becomes the first certified female watchmaker in Holland. For the next twenty years Father, Corrie, and Betsie live in this comfortable pattern. (full context)
Moral Choices Theme Icon
...busy not just with customers but visitors who come to chat or seek advice from Father, who prays for guidance from God. Corrie tries to emulate Betsie’s habit of learning details... (full context)
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...their piano. One day, the family is listening to a concert on the radio that Father’s friends have bought him when Peter notices that the radio piano is slightly out of... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
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Every day Father and Corrie take a walk at the same time, during the shop’s midday break. They... (full context)
Tolerance Theme Icon
During this time, a young German watchmaker named Otto travels to be Father’s apprentice. He brags about being part of the Hitler Youth, constantly talks about how much... (full context)
Tolerance Theme Icon
...the old, who “have no value to the State.” According to him, Otto only respects Father because he owns a business and has authority. (full context)
Tolerance Theme Icon
...kicking and tormenting the older man for months, but he’s been too proud to complain. Father attempts to plead with Otto, but as the apprentice shows no remorse, he’s forced to... (full context)
Invasion
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...war with Germany. The prime minister assures everyone that Germany will respect Holland’s neutrality, but Father shuts off the radio, saying that war will surely come and it’s wrong to give... (full context)
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...and sees an old cart roll across the square. She herself is inside it, alongside Father, Betsie, Willem, Peter, and family friends like Pickwick and Toos. She feels that they should... (full context)
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...important before the war. People take to walking in the streets more than usual, even Father. One morning, Corrie and Father are in a large crowd on a bridge when word... (full context)
Tolerance Theme Icon
Moral Choices Theme Icon
...membership, but some want to act on their latent anti-Semitism. On their walks, Corrie and Father see more and more signs barring Jews from restaurants and public places. They see people... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
...NSB family takes over his apartment. Sometimes arrests even take place in public. One day Father and Corrie see German soldiers piling several Jewish families into trucks in the middle of... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
Moral Choices Theme Icon
Father, Betsie, and Corrie begin to discuss what they can do to help Jewish friends. Already... (full context)
Family Theme Icon
A month later, Father and Corrie are on their usual walk when they spot The Bulldog—except he’s no longer... (full context)
Tolerance Theme Icon
Struck with sympathy, Father offers to accompany Harry on his daily walks. The other man refuses, saying that to... (full context)
The Secret Room
Tolerance Theme Icon
...At the end of the service, Peter proudly and suddenly plays the Wilhelmus. Led by Father, everyone stands, and people spontaneously begin singing the words. (full context)
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One morning, the architect arrives at the store and introduces himself as “Mr. Smit.” Father is eager to ascertain if this man is related to any of the other Smits... (full context)
Eusie
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...by arranging her kitchen table over a trap door in the basement. One night, Corrie, Father and Betsie are visiting for Flip’s birthday when the children run inside, saying that soldiers... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
Father quietly appears in the doorway and takes the baby in his own arms. He tells... (full context)
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Tolerance Theme Icon
Corrie brings Meyer upstairs, where he immediately bonds with Father, whom he jokingly calls “one of the Patriarchs” for his long white beard. Meyer and... (full context)
Moral Choices Theme Icon
By the fifth drill, they’ve reduced their time to two minutes. Meanwhile, Corrie, Toos, and Father develop stalling techniques they can use if the Gestapo come into the shop. (full context)
Storm Clouds Gather
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...Clearly reveling in his new power, Otto asks after “the pious old Bible reader,” meaning Father, and demands to be invited upstairs. Corrie surreptitiously presses the buzzer button and dawdles for... (full context)
Forgiveness Theme Icon
When Otto bursts into the dining room, only Father and Betsie are sitting at the table. Corrie herself can barely believe that twelve people... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
...but she doesn’t say that they’ve been asked to aid in a murder, fearing that Father and Betsie will be upset. (full context)
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Corrie, Father, and Betsie stay up praying long after everyone has gone to sleep. In spite of... (full context)
The Raid
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Downstairs Father, Betsie, and Toos are sitting against the wall, along with three underground workers who had... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
The officer jerks the Bible off its shelf and shouts at Father that the holy book prescribes obedience to the government. Mildly, Father quotes the psalm to... (full context)
Tolerance Theme Icon
...Willem, Nollie, and Peter emerge from another room, caught up in the raid as well. Father insists on winding the clock before he leaves. (full context)
Moral Choices Theme Icon
...story, but Peter silences her with a frown, whispering that the watchmaker currently talking with Father is a Gestapo informer. Corrie realizes that her faculties have been impaired by the flu,... (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
Everyone gathers around Father for evening prayers—just like they did at home. Although the Bible has been left behind,... (full context)
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...building and into a large bus. Many people are gathered along the police barricades. Recognizing Father, they cry out in horror at the idea of him going to prison. Corrie sees... (full context)
Scheveningen
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...headquarters for another round of officers recording names and addresses. When the chief interrogator sees Father, he’s distressed that such an old man has been arrested and offers to send him... (full context)
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...women prisoners are led away. Looking back towards her male relatives, Corrie cries out to Father, “God be with you!” He echoes her farewell calmly. (full context)
Faith and Action Theme Icon
Tolerance Theme Icon
...Toos, Peter, Pickwick, Willem, and everyone else from the raid has been released. Only about Father is there no information. (full context)
Family Theme Icon
...letter is thrust under the door. It’s from Nollie and it delivers the news that Father is dead, having survived his arrest only ten days. The family still doesn’t know how... (full context)
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Corrie takes comfort from her faith that Father is now with Jesus. She scratches down the date of his “release” in her improvised... (full context)
The Lieutenant
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...the divine meaning of suffering. He asks her what kind of God would let her father die in prison. However, before she can try to answer a guard comes to take... (full context)
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Family Theme Icon
Moral Choices Theme Icon
...Rahms organizes a brief family reunion at the prison—the pretext is the official reading of Father’s will, for which all family members must be present. Stunned, Corrie walks into his office... (full context)
Vught
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Knowing the identity of their betrayer makes Corrie furious. She imagines Father spending his last hours alone, and the life-saving work that has now ground to a... (full context)
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...car with eighty other women, all sobbing and confused. Betsie says she is thankful that Father is dead and spared this experience. (full context)
The Three Visions
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...through the house, remembering all the meals and fond evenings they shared with Betsie and Father there. (full context)