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Jules gabriel verne born Feb. 8, 1828




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JULES GABRIEL VERNE

Born Feb. 8, 1828.


Jules Verne' whole life was spent either writing or preparing for it. Jules Gabriel Verne was born in Nantes, France in 1828. Born as the second child of four, in a middle class Nantes family, his schooldays were reasonably successful without being brilliant. Jules’ parents belonged to the seafaring tradition, a factor that greatly influenced his writings. When very young, he ran off to be a cabin boy on a merchant ship, but was caught and had to return to his parents. Verne went to school from 1834- 1838, where his teacher was the widow of a sea captain, and she kept waiting for her husband’s return. He was in college from 1838 - 1842 where he performed well in geography, singing and in translations from Greek and Latin. Between 1841 - 1846, Verne started writing short prose pieces. In 1847, Jules was sent to study law in Paris. His cousin, Caroline Tronson with whom he had been unhappily in love for several years, got engaged. His passion for theatre grew, while he was there. He wrote a play called Alexandre VI. In 1848, there was a revolution in Paris and Verne was present in the July disturbances. His uncle introduced him into literary salons where he met novelists such as Dumas. Later in 1850, this budding author’s first play was published.His father was outraged when he heard that Jules was not going to continue law and discontinued the money he was giving him to pay for his expenses in Paris.



In 1850, his one act comedy ^ Les Pailles rompues (‘Broken Straws’) ran for twelve nights at Dumas’s Theatre historique, and was published. Verne started making money by selling his stories, which included ‘A Drama in Mexico’ and ‘Drama in the Air’. Between 1852 -1855, he became secretary of Theatre lyrique. In 1857 this talented writer married Honorine and became a stockbroker in Paris. He moved his house several times. In 1859, still living in cramped conditions in the Latin Quarter, but now with his pregnant wife and two stepdaughters, he was invited by a friend on a free trip to Scotland and England. He was delighted by his visit and was greatly marked by the experience. A son was born to him in 1861 and in 1862 he went to Norway and Denmark with Hignard. After spending many hours in Paris libraries studying geology, engineering, and astronomy, Jules Verne published his first novel Five Weeks in a Balloon in 1863, which was an immediate success. His publisher was quite impressed and from that point on, Verne’s livelihood was guaranteed by successively more lucrative contracts, although requiring him to produce between one and two books each year. In 1867, there was the first English translation of his novel. Soon, he started writing novels such as Journey to the Center of the Earth, From the Earth to the Moon, and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Because of the popularity of these and other novels, Jules Verne became a very rich man. He wrote
steadily - often he would be changing the published serial version of one novel while correcting the proofs of another, writing the manuscript of yet another, and planning the extensive reading required for a fourth.

In 1871 Jules’s father died and between 1876-77 he bought his second and third boats and even organized a huge fancy dress ball. His marriage was not totally happy; and he seems to have had mistresses. His wife was critically ill that year but recovered. In 1876, he bought a large yacht and sailed around Europe. In 1877, Verne sailed to Lisbon and Algiers. His son Michel married an actress in 1879, despite the opposition of his father.
In 1883-84, Verne left with his wife on a grand tour of the Mediterranean. In 1888 he was elected local councilor on a Republican list and for the next fifteen years, he attended council meetings, administrated theatres and fairs and gave public talks. In 1895 he wrote his first novel in a European language in the present tense and third person. After 1897 his health deteriorated. In 1905 he fell seriously ill from diabetes and died in the city of Amines. On Verne’s death, The Invasion of the Sea and The Lighthouse at the end of the World were in the course of publication. Michel, his son then took responsibility for the remaining manuscripts and published them later. It was only in 1978 that it was discovered that the Jules Verne books that appeared posthumously had a major part of their writing done by Michel. This came as a surprise to many. The simplicity of Verne’s life seems to be in opposition to the complexity of his works.

^

Popular Books by Jules Verne


1863 - Five Weeks in a Balloon
1864 - A Journey to the Center of the Earth
1866 - From the Earth to the Moon
1870 - Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
1873 - Around the World in Eighty Days
1874 - Mysterious Island
1904 - Master of the World


^ AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS

(A PLOT SUMMARY)


Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne is a novel about the adventures of Phileas Fogg and his servant Passerpartout. The plot structure is simple and follows a linear line; there is hardly any interchanging of the past and present; neither is there much interpolation. One day while Phileas Fogg is with some fellow whist players; he reads in a newspaper that it is possible to travel around the world in eighty days. No one believes this is true, except Phileas Fogg. Phileas Fogg bets his challengers, that he can make the journey in eighty or under days, and then leaves along with his servant Passerpartout immediately. The plot then traces Fogg’s journey around the world, the obstacles that he overcomes and the lasting love that he finds. The novel is definitely based on the nature of the challenge and whether Fogg will be able to travel around the world. The subplots are intertwined with the main thread and include Detective Fix’s suspicion that Fogg is a robber, Aouda’s love for her savior Fogg and Passepartout’s profuse buffooning and blustering.

From Chapter 1, in which Phileas Fogg and Passepartout accept each other, the one as master, the other as man to Chapter Four - when the master astounds his servant, the narrative is based in London and the seed of the plot is sown. From Chapter Five, the interesting journey begins and we are introduced to the major obstacle in the travels - Detective Fix and his suspicions. He befriends Passepartout and the latter is not in the least suspicious of the detective, little knowing that he would be a major hindrance to his master. In Chapter Nine, Fogg sails the Red Ocean and the Indian Ocean and they are both propitious to his designs. From Chapter 10, in which Passepartout is only too glad to get off with the loss of his shoes to Chapter Sixteen - In which Fix does not seem to understand in the least what is said to him, the adventurers are in India and the narrative is simply linear. In Chapter 17 Fogg travels from Singapore to Hong Kong. It is between Chapters Twenty and Twenty Three that there is a slight mixing of the past and the present in an otherwise simple narrative. This happens because Passepartout gets opiated and he and his master are separated. While Fogg has to hire a separate ship to take him along, Passepartout manages to board the ship that they were all scheduled to travel in. At the end of Chapter twenty-three, master and servant are reunited and in the next chapter they travel together towards the continent of America. From Chapter twenty-five onwards till the second last chapter, the narrative is once again linear. The last chapter has a small segment that recounts the past and it is explained how Fogg is mistaken regarding the day that he reached London and how the folly is rectified at the very last moment.

In Chapter twenty-five, a slight glimpse is had of San Francisco, from chapter twenty-six to thirty; the adventures on the American railroad are recounted. While in Chapter thirty-one, Fix helps Fogg, later when they step on England soil, Fix proves to be a bane and arrests Fogg. After coping with exasperating delays in Chapters thirty-two and thirty-three, Fogg finally lands in London in chapter thirty-four. The story and the plot is wrapped up in the last three chapters and there is a complete reversal in fortune. Fogg seems to have lost the bet in chapter thirty-five but in the last two chapters, we see how he is not a loser, but is a winner.

The sub theme of Aouda and Fogg’s love gains prominence in the last chapter. The author upholds love over both money and the winning of challenges. This is highlighted in the topic of the chapter itself - Chapter 37- in which it is shown that Phileas Fogg gained nothing by his tour around the world, unless it were happiness.

While the plot structure throughout the narrative remains simple, variety is added through the range of exciting adventures that Fogg and his companions experience. The simple plot helps as it provides a strong foundation to the wide range of experiences in the journey. A complicated plot combined with undulating adventures would have only added confusion and would not have helped much. In fact, the plot is very neatly portrayed in the title of the book itself -Around The World In Eighty Days.


CHARACTER ANALYSIS

^

MAJOR CHARACTERS



Phileas Fogg

This precise and intelligent man is one to the most memorable characters of Verne. When we are introduced to him, he is an English man who lives a very regularized life. He is impeccable in his manners and is very punctual as well as particular about what he wants. If it weren’t for the title we would never have guessed that he makes a plan to go around the world. What is most distinct about his character is his eccentricity and even his trip around the world results out of a stubborn quirk and not out of a greed for the wager money.


While Fogg does travel around the world he does not really bother to find out more about the possible sources of tourist interest that he passes through. Surprisingly if anyone had a conversation with Fogg regarding the very same places, he would know a lot about them. It is the volatility and fire beneath the calm exterior that makes Fogg so very attractive.

Another outstanding trait of Fogg is his large heartedness. He decides to help the sacrificial victim, Aouda and risks his own life in the bargain. The same attribute in Fogg enables him to pardon Passepartout despite the latter’s many blunders. Towards the end of the novel, Fogg even forgives the detective who had put so many hurdles in Fogg’s path. Fogg goes to the extent of giving Fix some money, while anyone else in Fogg’s place would have been livid with anger.

As the protagonist of the story, Fogg demands a great deal of attention. It is he who sets most of the action rolling and it is he who initiates the entire adventure. He never gives up despite all odds and hires boats, captures ships, rides on a snow mobile and even hires a train in order to attain his goal.

Verne adds an unexpected twist in the story when the precise Fogg slips up and mistakes the time. He thinks he has reached London late, when in fact, he reaches it a full day earlier. The entire England and the readers too cheer, when Fogg wins the wager and manages to go around the world in the stipulated period.

Verne shows growth in Fogg’s character. While Verne celebrates Fogg’s rationality and his detachment at the end Verne maintains that Fogg attains nothing but love through his entire endeavor. He may have won a wager, which is good for his pride but more than anything else he finds lasting love, which is wonderful for his heart. Aouda would have kept Fogg very happy and we are glad that the ex-shipman marries the exotic Indian princess.


Passepartout

Fogg’s valet, Passepartout is a foil to Fogg’s character. This interesting Frenchman is an integral part of the story, from the very first chapter. He is shown as a man, who is on the lookout for some peace and quiet after having had a very exciting and adventurous life. It is for this reason that he decides to serve the impeccable Fogg, who comes across as a meticulous man, who will not undertake travels. Passepartout soon realizes that he is
completely wrong for Fogg suddenly plans a journey around the world and Passepartout is tugged along. This journey is not undertaken at a leisurely pace but is completed at a hectic gallop complete with many bumps.

While Passepartout is very loyal, it is he who serves to delay his master several times. Passepartout is naïve to a certain extent and tends to get carried away at several occasions. While Fogg, Aouda and Passepartout are at Hong Kong, Passepartout gets opiated in the company of Fix and is unable to inform his master about the change in the departure time of the Carnatic. Fogg is thus forced to hire a special boat to Shanghai. Later in the story
while the group is traversing America, Passepartout is taken captive by the Sioux. Fogg’s journey is delayed yet again, while he decides to rescue his menial-Passepartout. But the worst blow comes when Fogg is arrested by detective Fix in England. Passepartout can be greatly held blame for this arrest. He should have warned his master about Fix’s suspicions regarding the robbery, but he didn’t. Passepartout does feel guilty that he is a major source of delay as well as financial loss to his master. On the other hand, he makes up for his errors by his jovial nature and his unflinching love and loyalty for his master. Moreover it is Passepartout who takes the most crucial step in the rescue of Aouda. It is he who manages to lift her from the sacrificial pyre by pretending to be the dead Rajah reawakened. Thus while Aouda’s rescue is Fogg’s idea, it is Passepartout who makes it possible. At the end of the book Fogg is grateful to Passepartout again. It is Passepartout who goes to the Reverend Samuel Wilson, of the Parish of Marylebone, in order to tell him about Fogg and Aouda’s planned wedding. When he requests the priest to marry the couple, he realizes that the next day is Sunday, not Monday. He rushes back to his master and drags him to the Reform Club. Fogg wins the wager as a result of his menial’s last minute realization of their joint mistake.

Both Fogg and Aouda are fond of the funny Passepartout. Fogg gives Passepartout a part of the money he wins, while Aouda gives this French man her affection and care.

Passepartout serves to add a comic touch to the story with his antics. He is all the more interesting because he has been an acrobat before. His little role as a long nosed acrobat in Japanese clothes is a very bright cameo. His lightheartedness and his blunders are in complete contrast to Fogg’s seriousness and meticulousness. Together they make an unforgettable pair. Passepartout enthralls the audience and the readers grow to like this crazy, eccentric Frenchman.


^ Detective Fix

He is the closest to being termed the ‘antagonist’ in this story of a challenge to travel around the world in eighty days. He appears in the fifth chapter and is then a permanent feature in the story till the very end. Mr. Fix is one of the many detectives who are on the trail of the infamous robber of the Bank of England. Somehow he gets suspicious of Mr. Fogg and starts to believe passionately that it is none other than Fogg who is guilty of the bank robbery. Fix has a drawing of the suspected culprit that is given to all detectives. The portrait happens to resemble Fogg’s persona and this strengthens Fix’s conviction about Fogg’s guilt. Thus, Fix decides to obtain a warrant to arrest Fogg. The catch is that the warrant takes time to reach Fix and till then he has to shadow Fogg all over the world. He succeeds in placing many obstacles in Fogg’s path without Fogg ever realizing that Fix is out to ruin his plans. Fix befriends Passepartout with the sole aim of keeping a tab on Fogg. Passepartout’s naivete and innocence makes him incapable of smelling a rat in Fix’s pretended friendly behavior.

Fix is not at all a straightforward man. In his desperation to get hold of the reward money that a detective gets for arresting a robber, he even goes to the extent of intoxicating Passepartout with opium. Passepartout is then unable to inform his master about the change in the departure time of a ship and Fogg is delayed as a result. Previously it was Fix, who encouraged the Indian priests of a pagoda at Malabar Hill, to pursue Passepartout till Calcutta in order to arrest the latter on the change of desecrating a holy place. Indeed, Fix’s antics make the reader detest him. We are even more frustrated, when Passepartout does not tell his master about Fix after having learnt the latter’s true identity. Thus Fix continues to accompany Fogg and his group on their travels. He is shameless in that he accepts Fogg’s offer to travel with the group on special ships and trains, without contributing to the finances that make these exclusive conveyances possible. While viewing Fogg’s gallantry in America, Fix does have a twinge of embarrassment at whether his suspicious are mistaken but these thoughts remain passing whims only. The only place where Fix does help Fogg is when he arranges for a unique mode of conveyance from Fort Kearney to Omaha Station and that is by a sledge. There is of course a very selfish reason behind this extended help. Fix too wishes to reach English soil as soon as possible, so that he may arrest Fogg. He cannot arrest Fogg in America. Fix finally does arrest Fogg at Liverpool and Fogg is imprisoned. When Fogg is
released with due apologies, he hits Fix and this is a blow that Fix very much deserves.

What is most amazing is that despite Fix’s misbehavior, Fogg feels sorely sorry for the defeated Fix and gives him some part of the wager money that he wins. We can imagine how Fix would have been indebted to Fogg and his generously for the rest of his life.


Aouda

Aouda, as a beautiful and exotic Indian princess is a major source of glamour in the novel. In a story, which is mainly about men, Aouda is the sole source of femininity. Fogg and his group come across her while traveling through India. In fact, the story of her rescue is one of the most dramatic episodes in the novel. She is a rich princess who is forcibly married to an old rajah after her father’s death. When the rajah too passes away, she is forced to commit ‘suttee’- that is sacrifice of the wife’s life on the funeral pyre of the husband’s. Being young and intelligent, she obviously does not want to sacrifice herself but she is literally intoxicated with opium by the fanatic priests and is trapped by them.

Fogg and his companions had hired an elephant to take them to Allahabad. The guide relates Aouda’s story to them when they see the procession of priests with Aouda. Fogg in a rare emotional moment insists on trying to rescue Aouda. Finally through the courageous daring of Passepartout the princess is saved from the jaws of death. She is then eternally grateful to both Fogg and Passepartout for the rest of her life.

It is decided that she will travel with Fogg till Hong Kong, where she will ask one of her rich relatives for aid. But when they reach Hong Kong, they find out that the relative has moved away. Thus Aouda accompanies Fogg in his journey around the world. Despite Fogg’s cold exterior Aouda senses a warm heart beneath and falls in love with him. Passepartout alone can sense that Aouda’s feelings for Fogg surpass mere gratefulness but Fogg shows no apparent sign of reciprocity. But nevertheless, we learn that Fogg does love Aouda and he confesses his love towards the end of the novel. Aouda and Fogg do marry and Passepartout is especially happy to see two of his favorite people yoked together.

Aouda seems to be the perfect companion for a man such as Fogg. She is shown as beautiful, polished in manners and kind at heart. Moreover, she is just as self-respecting as Fogg himself is and is also equally brave. When they are attacked by the Sioux in America, she puts up a courageous fight. She gets hold of arms and defends herself magnificently. She refuses to be left with Passepartout at Kearney station and braves the acute suffering of a journey in the open air in order to accompany Fogg to Omaha station. Verne uses the character of Aouda to drive home a crucial point. In the last chapter titled-‘In which it is shown that Phileas Fogg gained nothing by traveling round the world unless it were happiness, Verne points out that Fogg’s ultimate victory was not the one of the wager, but one in which he attained Aouda’s love. Verne goes on to write that Aouda was a charming woman, who made Fogg the happiest of men! In Verne’s own words-‘And forsooth, who would not go round the world for less?’ the author refers to Aouda as being a more important attainment than the completion of a successful journey round the world. Aouda reiterates the fact that human relationships and love are more important than any number of worldly challenges, wagers or money.


^ MINOR CHARACTERS

James Foster

He has practically no part to play in this adventurous story. Through the reference to him what we do learn is that Fogg is a exceedingly precise and eccentric man. Foster had been Fogg’s valet but was fired from service for bringing shaving water, at the wrong temperature. Passepartout proves to be more fortunate than Foster, for he commits many blunders but is still retained in service by his master.

^ Phileas Fogg’s partners at whist

The five gentlemen who play whist with Fogg can be clubbed together to form one characteristic group-the group that challenges Fogg to go around the world. In contrast to Fogg’s heroic nature, these men are shown as slaves of mischance and those who do not have much faith in human endeavor and determination. They believe that it is completely impossible to go around the world in eighty days, but Fogg proves them wrong. In further contrast to Fogg’s precision and confidence, these men are shown as scared and vulnerable. We see how they watch the seconds of the clock move as they wait to see whether Fogg will make his appearance in time. Their waiting has a panic stricken quality to it and in that they can be said to be united. They are worried about the financial aspects of losing the wager
unlike Fogg for whom it is more important to accomplish a task than to be bothered about the loss or gain of money.

Phileas’ partners at whist gain importance in that, they provide a thrust to the story but they are not of great value in terms of any character development. They serve to highlight Fogg’s heroism with their cowardice and their animal like huddling together in a group. They are not precise and objective as Fogg is and belong to diverse and unimpressive careers.

^ Lord Albermale

He is the symbol of the kind of man that would support a figure such as that of Fogg. He is not a man, who stays with the mob and he has his own individualistic opinions. While most of England is convinced that Fogg will be unable to travel around the world in eighty days Lord Albermale alone has faith in Fogg’s endeavor. This lone man seems to be the older version of Fogg. He has the same adventurous spirit as that of Fogg. He would have happily undertaken the exercise of going round the world if he had had the youth and energy of Fogg. The reader immediately begins to respect Lord Albermale and we see that this old noble is proved right, for Fogg does win the challenge.

^ British Consul at Suez

We first get to see the British Consul in chapter VI. He is waiting for the arrival of the Mongolia ship at Suez, along with detective Fix. His character serves no special purpose except perhaps to illustrate the fact that the British respect for rules is severe. That is the reason this British Consul refuses to detain Fogg, though the detective Fix requests him to. This man seems to be a sensible and logical person and it is he who points out to Fix that Fix’s suspected culprit of the robbery sounds like an honest man. Later, in the Seventh chapter, the fair minded Consul validates Fogg’s passport because he sees no logical reason not to. The Consul is right when he comments that Fogg looks like a perfectly honest man. The British Consul at Suez is indeed an intelligent and sane man. His qualities can be easily contrasted with those of detective Fix.

^ Whist partners on the Mongolia

While the author explains how the whimsical Fogg passed his time on the Mongolia, he writes that this precise man played a whole lot of whist with partners who were just as passionately fond of the game. They all played on for hours as silently absorbed as Fogg himself. This entire whist-playing group is not very significant in itself except perhaps in its illustration of the fact that Fogg manages to find his own like-minded people whenever and wherever he wants to. Only one of these players is actually developed as a character later and that is the brigadier- general of the English Army, who was going to rejoin his brigade at Banares. In fact, he is a part of Fogg’s group who take it upon themselves to rescue Aouda.


^ The guard on the train to Calcutta

It is this guard who informs the brigadier general and Fogg that the train from Bombay to Calcutta has an unfinished rail line on the route too. The guard states this matter of factly in a way that is typically Indian, in that it accepts interruptions without much questioning. The guard’s excuse is that all the passengers are aware that they will have to find means of transport from Kholby to Allahabad. The guard’s words to them eventually lead them
into an exciting adventure that includes Aouda.

^ Parsee guide

The Parsee, who was an expert mahout, leads the elephant that transports Fogg and his companions from Kholby hamlet to Allahabad. He covers the elephant’s back with a sort of saddlecloth and fixes on either side a couple of rather uncomfortable litters. The guide is presented as a very reliable and trustworthy man, who is also very courageous. He agrees to help Fogg’s group in their attempt to rescue the princess Aouda. Later, it is he who facilitates the hurried escape of this adventurous group on the elephant-Kiouni. We are glad to see that Fogg repays the guide’s excellent service by giving away Kiouni, the elephant to him. We can see that even Passepartout had grown fond of the guide as he is disappointed when he thinks that his master Fogg is only paying the guide-the agreed amount of money and not anymore. Of course, the gift of an elephant to the Parsee, makes Passepartout very happy. The guide is one of the few Indians who are painted in positive and bright colors.


^ The priests and fanatics who try and force Aouda into
committing suttee


While Fogg’s group is traveling from Kholby hamlet to Allahabad on an elephant, they come across a procession of priests and fanatics, who are forcing a young Indian princess to give up her life for the sake of the old dead husband Rajah. These priests and fanatics are painted in a typically single viewed European point of sight. They are the ‘negative characters’, those who forcefully imprison a young beautiful woman. When Fogg realizes the seriousness of the crime that they seek to commit, he urges his friends to save the princess Aouda together.When these travelers approach the fanatics’ camp they see that most are intoxicated with opium.But, despite the opium the guards are so vigilant that the adventures have no way of getting through to the princess. When all seems to have been lost, it is Passepartout who exploits the priests’ and fanatics’ superstitions to walk away with Aouda in his arms. When they see a figure rise from the pyre, they assume that it is the ghost of the dead rajah and bow in reverence. When reality dawns, it is too late and the adventures have already escaped with Aouda. Fogg and his companions are sure that they will be persecuted by the fanatics in Calcutta but they manage to escape India, without being caught.

^ Judge Obadiah

He is the judge who sits over the case against Passepartout’s crime at Calcutta. He seems stern and non-compromising. He is amazed when Passepartout cries that the priests must confess what they were going to do at the pagoda of Pillagi. The judge obviously knew only about one offence-that which Passepartout committed when he entered the pagoda of Malabar Hill with his shoes on.

He is surprised by this obscure reference to sacrifice and the pagoda of Pillagi. When Fogg and Passepartout admit the facts in the Malabar case Judge Obadiah states the crime that Passepartout has committed and then relates the punishment that both master and servant shall undergo. Fogg claims his stake to paying bail instead and Judge Obadiah allows them to leave. Judge Obadiah represents the severity of English Law and is a characteristic Anglo Judge.


^ John Bunsby

He is the extremely reliable and heroic master of the boat Tankadere. As a skipper he is a fearless man, the kind who will venture out in any kind of weather in search of ships in distress. A man of forty-five or so, sturdy, sunburned, keen eyed, with a strong face, thoroughly steady and devoted to his business he would have inspired confidence in the most timid. It is this Bunsby’s boat that takes Fogg and his companions from Hong Kong to Shanghai. The Tankadere was a beautiful little schooner of twenty tons and looked like a racing yacht. Bunsby kept her seaworthy and smart. The voyage of eight hundred miles
undertaken by such a small craft was a dangerous venture and one that only a person such as Bunsby would take up. The boat is swept into a typhoon but Bunsby’s precautions see it through. Mr. Bunsby as a courageous man is one who can match Mr. Fogg and when Fogg decides that they will stop at no other port than Shanghai, Bunsby understands perfectly. Finally Bunsby’s Tankadere reaches close to Shanghai despite all odds. Mr. Fogg asks Bunsby to signal the ‘Carnatic’ and he and his companions manage to board the other huge ship. John Bunsby remains in our minds as an extremely smart sailor a heroic personality definitely worth remembering.

^ William Batulcar

Jules Verne adds to his narrative-a host of colorful characters who are sprinkled through the journey around the world. One such character is William Batulcar. When Passepartout is roaming around Yokohama and is on the lookout for some food as well as work he reads a placard which says-‘Honorable William Batulcar’s Troupe of Japanese Acrobats'.Passepartout follows the poster bearer to Batulcar’s establishment. Batulcar was a sort of American Barium, the manager of a troupe of buffoons, jugglers clowns, acrobats and gymnasts, who were giving their last performances before leaving the Empire of the Sun for the States of the Union. On meeting Batulcar Passepartout asks him whether he is in need of a servant.Batulcar replies that his servants are his two sturdy arms, lined with veins as large as the strings of a double bass. Batulcar hires Passepartout as a Jack-of-all-work in the celebrated Japanese troupe. It was not a very gratifying position but Passepartout’s aim was that within a week he would be on his way to San Francisco with this very troupe. The pyramid of which Passepartout is a part, at the performance totters and the structure collapses like a house of cards. It is Passepartout’s fault and the Honorable Batulcar is furious. He claims damages for the ‘breakage’ of the pyramid. His wrath is only soothed by Fogg, who throws a handful of bank notes at him.


^ Colonel Stamp Proctor

Aouda, Fogg and Fix start sauntering the streets of San Francisco together. In Montgomery Street, they see large groups of people, including poster bearers shouting political slogans. The general commotion became more violent after some time and the two opposing parties clashed. Fogg and Fix were try their best to protect Aouda when a huge fellow with a red goatee raises a dread fist over Fogg. This was Colonel Stamp Proctor and he had a ruddy complexion and broad shoulders. He seemed to be the leader of the party. Luckily for Fogg, Fix takes the blow instead. Fogg calls this offender a Yankee and the both yell that they will meet again. They do meet again on an American train and nearly have a duel with each other too. But the duel is interrupted by the invasion of the Sioux on the train that they are fighting in. Colonel Proctor is conspicuous in a crowd because of his loud love of voice and hectoring manner.

When he meets Fogg for the second time on the train he is downright rude and sarcastic to him and that is instigation to the latter’s anger. Luckily the duel is interrupted by the attack of the Sioux and a bloody fight is prevented. After the encounter with the Sioux, Colonel Proctor who had fought bravely was hurt quite badly. He was struck down by a bullet in the groin.


^ Elder William Hitch, Mormon missionary

While traveling in a train in America, Passepartout notices a tall man who boards the train for Elko station. He was tall, very dark, with black moustache, black stockings, a black silk hat, a black waistcoat, black trousers, a white tie and dog skin gloves. He looked like a parson, and was going from one end of the train to the other sticking by means of wafers on the door of each car, a manuscript notice. Passepartout drew near and read one of these notices, which was to the effect that Elder William Hitch, Mormon missionary, taking advantage of his presence on train No. 48 would give a lecture on Mormonism in car No. 117 from eleven to twelve o’clock and that he invited all gentlemen to hear him who cared to learn about the mysteries of the religion of the ‘Latter Day Saints.’

Passepartout is attracted to Elder William Hitch’s lecture and goes and attends it along with thirty others. The Elder starts presenting a long retrospective account, which tries the patience of all the listeners. He is a fanatic and his audience dwindles away. Passepartout is the last to leave. With the example of the Elder William Hitch, Verne demonstrates his in depth knowledge of other kinds of religion.

^ Fort Kearney Captain

He is the Captain in command of Fort Kearney. The passenger train stops at Fort Kearney after having been attacked by the Sioux. About a hundred of the Captain’s men had taken up a defensive position in case the Sioux should attempt a direct attack upon the station. When Fogg and the Captain meet, the former questions the latter whether he will follow the Indians. The Captain thinks that is too dangerous to undertake a fight with the Sioux. But, when Fogg insists that he will follow the Sioux alone in order to rescue prisoners, the Captain agrees to send with Fogg-thirty volunteers. The captain too seems to be a gallant and large hearted man. He is impressed by Fogg’s bravery and enthusiasm and in turn, the reader is quite impressed with the Captain. We believe him to be a gentleman. He gets worried when Fogg and the other men do not return one whole night. He is genuinely concerned about his men. Even though this commander does not plays a key role in the story he definitely has a positive impact.

Mudge

Mudge could be considered an equivalent of John Bunsby. John Bunsby had transferred Fogg and his group across the seas to Shanghai, when they had missed their ship. Similarly Mudge uses a unique means of transport to take Fogg and the others from Fort Kearney to Omaha Station. He uses a sledge with sails on it used to catch the wind. The sledge that Mudge used glided over the surface of the plain as lightly as a boat on the surface of the water. When the breeze came skimming along the ground, it felt as though the sledge was lifted up by its sails as by wide spreading wings. Mudge was at the helm, keeping a straight course correcting by a shift of the stern-oar, any sheering the machine showed signs of making. Every bit of canvas was taut and the sledge was traveling at an approximate speed of forty miles an hour. It was in Mudge’s interest to get to Omaha Station within the time agreed for Mr. Fogg had held out a handsome reward The skillful pilot, Mudge manages to make his passengers reach Omaha on time. Mudge was paid liberally by Fogg, while Passepartout gave him a friend’s handgrip. The sledge that Mudge uses makes his character interesting. While he may not have a huge role in the story he stands out because of the sledge with sails!


^ Andrew Speedy

In contrast to John Bunsby, Speedy is not portrayed as the heroic sailor. He is shown as vain and greedy. In the collage that Vern creates, Speedy can be considered as a character with negative shades. When Fogg reaches New York, the ship that he had hoped to aboard in order to go to Liverpool had already left. So he is in desperate need of alternate means of transport. It is then that Fogg sees a screw steamer. Andrew Speedy is the captain of this screw steamer called Henrietta. He says he is from Cardiff. He was a man of fifty, a sort of sea dog with a growl, who seemed anything but easy to tackle. He had large bulging eyes, an oxidized copper complexion, red hair and a bull like neck, and nothing of the man of the world.Andrew Speedy is about to guide his ship to Bordeaux, but Fogg wants to go to Liverpool. Finally Fogg makes Speedy agree to taking him and his group to Bordeaux, after paying a large sum of money. After the ship has traversed but little of its course, Fogg takes over as Captain and Andrew Speedy is locked up in his cabin. The reader does not question Fogg’s action as Speedy had been projected as not so nice a person. Fogg uses the wood on the ship to provide the fuel and after they reach Queenstown Harbor, Fogg pays Speedy generously for the breakdown of the ship. The incident with Speedy shows how determined Fogg is to complete his journey around the world in the stipulated time.

Clergyman-Reverend Samuel Wilson

The Clergyman plays a small but crucial role in this saga of a journey around the world. Fogg, Passepartout and Aouda are all disappointed that they have not reached England in time. But they do not realize the time gap and the fact that they have actually reached a full day earlier. It is the Clergyman who is the source of this enlightenment. When Passepartout is asked to inform the Clergyman about Aouda and Fogg’s marriage, the next day that is Monday he comes across a surprisingly positive piece of information. The clergyman refuses to hold the marriage the next day as it is Sunday not Monday. It is then that our tiny group of travelers realizes the mistake they have made and Fogg rushes to the Reform Club. The clergyman is the last minor character of importance in the novel.


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