The Melancholy Hussar of the German Legion


Thomas Hardy

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The Melancholy Hussar of the German Legion Characters

Phyllis Grove

Phyllis Grove is the story’s protagonist, and the character who relays the story to the narrator many years later. She is a young woman who lives with her father in the countryside in Dorset, southwest… read analysis of Phyllis Grove

Matthäus Tina/German Hussar/Soldier

Matthäus Tina is a soldier in the German Legion who forms a connection—first friendly, then romantic—with Phyllis when the Legion is posted nearby. He is deeply homesick for the part of Germany he is from… read analysis of Matthäus Tina/German Hussar/Soldier

Humphrey Gould

Humphrey Gould is a bachelor from a local family, unremarkable in both appearance and personality, who becomes engaged to Phyllis Grove. He is considered an unusually good match for her due to his slightly… read analysis of Humphrey Gould

Dr. Grove/Phyllis’s Father

Phyllis’s father, Dr. Grove, was once a professional, but his habits of solitary philosophical meditation reduced his income so greatly that he and Phyllis were forced to move to the countryside, no longer able to… read analysis of Dr. Grove/Phyllis’s Father


The unnamed narrator is a man from the part of the English countryside in which the story takes place. He was told the story by Phyllis many years ago, when he was a teenager and… read analysis of Narrator
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Christoph is Matthäus Tina’s friend in the German Legion and his collaborator in the escape to Germany. He plays a vital part in the plan, collecting a boat from the harbor in which the… read analysis of Christoph

Humphrey’s Father

Humphrey’s father is an elderly man who has become too feeble to attend to his own affairs. Humphrey claims that his father’s weakness is the reason he needs to stay away from Phyllis for so… read analysis of Humphrey’s Father