The Barrymores act essentially as one unit, never appearing separately for any length of time. Both of their families have served the Baskerville estate for centuries, and they take great pride in this fact. Nevertheless, they worry that the new, young master of Baskerville Hall, Sir Henry Baskerville, will expect a level of service and grandeur that they will be unable to provide. Both Mr. and Mrs. Barrymore take their duty to Sir Henry quite seriously, but they are loyal to one another before all else. When Sir Henry and Dr. Watson catch Mr. Barrymore using a lantern to send signals to the escaped convict Selden, Mr. Barrymore refuses to explain himself, because it would incriminate his wife. This would have costed Mr. Barrymore his lifelong career, had Mrs. Barrymore not revealed the secret to Sir Henry in order to save her husband (even at the expense of her brother’s life). Mr. and Mrs. Barrymore’s primary function in The Hound of the Baskervilles is to provide information about Baskerville Hall’s past and the stories of its past inhabitants (through, for instance, the family portraits), since Sir Henry Baskerville—the only living Baskerville, so far as anyone knows—has not been there since he was a small child and knows little about his family’s history. They have a secondary function, however, as red herrings, because of the strange behavior they exhibit while covering up the location of Selden.