Jude the Obscure

Jude the Obscure Character List

Jude Fawley

A young man with a passion for learning who aspires to be a professor despite his position in the working class. He works as a stone-mason and academic life is always outside of his reach. The novel follows his career woes and his tumultuous love life, centered on his tragic relationship with cousin Sue Bridehead.

Mr. Richard Phillotson

The schoolmaster of Marygreen, and young Jude Fawley's role model. He never realizes his dream of getting a university degree, and marries Sue Bridehead, twenty years his junior.

Aunt Drusilla

Jude's elderly great-aunt, who works as a baker in Marygreen. She is a fiercely pious evangelical who raises him indifferently after Jude's father dies.

Farmer Troutham

A Marygreen farmer who pays eleven-year-old Jude to scare the birds away from his fields.

Sue Bridehead

Jude's intelligent, independent cousin. She works first as an artist-designer and later as a teacher. Sue is a modern woman and a free-thinker. She rebels in her marriage and carries out a scandalous affair with Jude. She has a nervous disposition and has trouble making decisions about relationships.

Physician Vilbert

A foppish “itinerant quack-doctor” (30) who takes advantage of the cottagers of Wessex by selling them fake medicines.

Arabella Donn

The flirtatious daughter of a pig-butcher who lives in Alfredston, near Marygreen. She is Jude's first romance.


A friend of Arabella’s who helps her with her chores. She is present when Arabella and Jude meet for the first time.


One of Arabella’s friends who helps her dress pork for Mr. Donn’s business. She and Anny advise Arabella to get pregnant in order to coerce Jude into marriage.


The professional butcher that Jude and Arabella pay to kill and skin their pig. He does not arrive for his task on time, which leads Jude to try to kill the pig himself.

Miss Fontover

Sue's conservative elderly landlady. Sue lives with her when she is working as a designer in Christminster before she meets Jude.

Mrs. Hawes

The elderly woman whom Mr. Phillotson hires as a chaperone so he can give private lessons to Sue.

Mr. Highridge

A young clergyman who works at Marygreen.

Miss Tracely

The disciplinarian headmistress of the Melchester training school for teachers.

Tinker Taylor

A Christminster ironmonger who occasionally drinks with Jude.

Widow Edlin

A kindly old widow whom Jude hires to take care of Aunt Drusilla when the latter falls ill. She becomes a close friend of Jude and Sue.

George Gillingham

Mr. Phillotson’s best friend from childhood. Like Phillotson and Sue, Mr. Gillingham works as a teacher in Shaston.


Arabella’s second husband, whom she married in Australia before getting divorced from Jude. He owns a bar in London.

Little Father Time

Jude's son by Arabella. He does not meet his father until Jude and Sue adopt him at 'an intelligent age'. The boy's nickname arises from his serious, almost morbid, nature.

Jack Stagg

One of the laborers Jude works with as a stone-mason at Christminster.

Uncle Joe

One of the laborers Jude works with as a stone-mason at Christminster.


A barmaid at the Christminster pub.

Bower o'Bliss

A barmaid at the Christminster pub.