The Waste Land

The Wasteland: Female characters?


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-Madame Sosostris

A famous clairvoyant referred to in Aldous Huxley's novel Crome Yellow and borrowed by Eliot for the Tarot card episode. She suffers from a bad cold, but is nonetheless "known to be the wisest woman in Europe, / With a wicked pack of cards."

-The Rich Lady

Never referred to by name, she sits in the resplendent drawing room of "A Game of Chess." She seems to be surrounded by luxury, but unable to appreciate or enjoy it. She might allude to Eliot's wife Vivienne.


A character from Ovid's Metamorphoses. She was raped by Tereus, then, after taking her vengeance with her sister, morphed into a nightingale.

-A Typist

Lonely, a creature of the modern world. She is visited by a "young man carbuncular," who sleeps with her. She is left alone again, accompanied by just her mirror and a gramophone.