The Wars

The Wars


Timothy Findley

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The commanding officer of the troops who are stationed near La Chodrelle when Robert Ross passes through with the large number of horses that he has freed from the Military Compound. After Robert allegedly kills Mickle’s soldier, Private Cassles (who tries to prevent Robert from passing), the C.F.A. assigns Mickle the duty of capturing him. Mickle finds Robert and the horses in an abandoned farmyard and the orders his men to set fire to the barn in order to smoke him out, ultimately trapping him and the animals in the flaming building. Robert is badly disfigured by the fire, and all of the horses perish.

Major Mickle Quotes in The Wars

The The Wars quotes below are all either spoken by Major Mickle or refer to Major Mickle. 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:
Trauma and War Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Penguin Australia edition of The Wars published in 1995.
Part 5, Chapter 13 Quotes

Robert called out very distinctly (and there are twenty witnesses to this): “We shall not be taken.”

It was the “we” that doomed him. To Mickle, it signified that Robert had an accomplice. Maybe more than one. Mickle thought he knew how to get “them” out.

Related Characters: Robert Ross (speaker), Major Mickle
Related Symbols: Horses
Page Number: 210-211
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Wars PDF

Major Mickle Character Timeline in The Wars

The timeline below shows where the character Major Mickle appears in The Wars. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 5, Chapter 12
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Blame, Revenge, and Justice Theme Icon
Honor, Duty, and Heroism Theme Icon
...made a detour around the woods near La Chodrelle and woke the troops of Major Mickle, whose bivouac was nearby. Witnesses claim that a soldier named Private Cassles went out unarmed... (full context)
Blame, Revenge, and Justice Theme Icon
...horses are indeed missing and that no one had been given permission to remove them. Mickle is assigned to capture Robert, and within a few hours he and forty men set... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 13
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Loss of Innocence Theme Icon in the abandoned barns that he had first seen while walking to Bailleul. Major Mickle deploys his men around the barns and orders them to shoot to kill if Robert... (full context)
Trauma and War Theme Icon
Blame, Revenge, and Justice Theme Icon
Loss of Innocence Theme Icon
Honor, Duty, and Heroism Theme Icon
Mickle, believing that Robert has gone mad, decides to “dispense not only with mercy—but with reason.”... (full context)