The Little White Bird


  • Captain W____, the first person narrator, described by author and filmmaker Andrew Birkin as "Barrie thinly disguised"[9] Captain W____, although narrating the story, also refers to his own writing of the story, within the story, when in the book's conclusion, he gives the newly completed manuscript to the character Mary (mother of David and later Barbara, who has just been born), explaining to her that it is the story of her and her children, which she apparently wanted to write before her daughter was born and which she would have called "The Little White Bird".[4]
  • David, A boy child, 6 years old at the start of the book, but who appears at various ages throughout the story, ranging from an unborn baby in the womb to a baby, infant, and up to age 6. The character is based on George Llewelyn Davies, one of several children of the Davies family who provided inspiration for many characters in Barrie's writings.
  • Mary A____, "The Little Nursery Governess",[10] David's mother, who shares a name with Barrie's wife (born Mary Ansell) but according to Birkin is "closely modelled" on Sylvia Llewelyn Davies. During the story, Captain W____ sees Mary progress from young lover, to newlywed, through pregnancy and the birth of David, and as a young mother. The narrator's feelings expressed towards and about Mary vary from affection to anger and jealousy as he competes with her for David's affections.[3][11]
  • Peter Pan, A magical boy who escaped from being human as an infant, and ever since flies about and cavorts with fairies. He differs from the better known portrayal of the character, primarily being only a week old rather than an older child.
  • Maimie Mannering, a four-year-old girl who becomes one of Peter Pan's main cohorts in the Kensington Gardens part of the story. Her part of the adventure begins when she gets stuck inside Kensington Gardens after "lock-out time" because the fairies changed the large clock in the garden to show an earlier hour, in preparation for the fairy ball planned for that night.[12] The Mamie character is the literary forerunner of the Wendy Darling character of the later Peter Pan play and novel.[13]
  • Porthos, a very large St Bernard, based on Barrie's dog of the same name; Porthos was the literary forerunner of the character Nana, a Newfoundland appearing in the Peter Pan play and novel as the Darling family's nursemaid.[14]

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