Study Guide

Fever, 1793 Characters

Matilda (Mattie) Cook

Fourteen-year-old Matilda "Mattie" Cook is the teenage protagonist of a young adult novel. This...

Grandfather (Captain William Farnsworth Cook)

Matilda's Grandfather is a solider, Captain William Farnsworth Cook of the Pennsylvania Fifth...

Lucille Cook

If there were antagonist in this novel, Lucille, Matilda's mother would be it. OK, not really....

Eliza

Eliza is free a black woman who works at Matilda's family's coffeehouse. She's an excellent cook,...

Nathaniel Benson

Nathaniel Benson is Mattie's primary love interest in the novel. He's a painter and an apprentice...

Matilda's Father

Matilda's father died when she was young, having fallen off of a ladder two months after the...

Mrs. Bowles

Mrs. Bowles is a Quaker woman who rides in the cart back to Philadelphia with Matilda and her...

Mr. Brown

Mr. Brown runs The Federal Gazette. Matilda asks him to help her find her family, but he cannot...

Mr. Carris

Mr. Carris is one of Grandfather's opinionated friends. He's a lawyer who is part of the...

Dr. Deveze

Dr. Deveze is the French doctor in charge of fever treatment at Bush Hill. His methods oppose...

Mrs. Flagg

Mrs. Bridget Flagg is one of the caretakers at Bush Hill, the mansion converted into a fever...

Joseph

Joseph is Eliza's brother and a cooper. (That means he makes barrels.) He is stricken with the...

Dr. Kerr

Dr. Kerr is the second doctor to treat Matilda's mother. He diagnoses her with yellow fever. He...

The Ludington Family

The Ludingtons are the family in the country that Matilda's mother threatens to send her to....

Nell

Nell is the orphan girl Matilda finds in the streets of Philadelphia and takes in as her own...

The Ogilvie Family

Pernilla, Jeannine, and Colette are the snobby women of the Ogilvie family. Pernilla is the...

The Peale Family

The Peales are the family with whom Nathaniel is apprenticed. As the novel's Appendix tells us,...

Polly

Polly is a serving girl who worked at the Cook's coffeehouse. She is the first casualty of the...

Robert and William

The twins Robert and William are Eliza's nephews and Joseph's sons (Chapter 22). They lose their...

Mr. Rowley

Mr. Rowley is the first medical professional (though he's not actually a doctor) that treats...

Mother Smith

Mother Smith is an elderly black woman who cares for Joseph, Robert, and William, while Eliza...