Main characters

  • Clara Wieland is the narrator of the story, and the sister of Theodore Wieland. She is an intellectual, and has strong character. She is secretly in love with Henry Pleyel.
  • Theodore Wieland hears disembodied voices, and believes these voices tell him to kill his family. He is not as strong as his sister, Clara, which makes him fall prey to the voices and go insane.
  • Catharine Wieland is Theodore's wife, and childhood friend of Clara.
  • Henry Pleyel is Catharine's brother, and Clara's friend. He is incredibly practical, and continually attempts to understand the mysterious voices empirically.
  • Carwin is a mysterious stranger who appears at the Wieland's house. He is a biloquist and the source of many of the disembodied voices heard by Theodore. Carwin is generally thought to be the villain of Wieland, though he claims he never told Theodore to kill anyone, a probability evidenced by Wieland's repeated behavior in Clara's presence where he stands "for a minute as if listening" and acts as if he has heard commands.

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