Study Guide

Lonesome Dove The Texas Bull

By Larry McMurtry

The Texas Bull

Longhorn Stake-Out

The Texas Bull is a unique animal. He wanders into the cowboys' herd and just stays there, making the whole journey with them. He isn't branded, and everyone hates him because he occasionally charges a horse—and sometimes the men. In fact, the Texas Bull is almost a symbol for the cowboys themselves—free, roaming, and a little bit dangerous.

One of the book's most dramatic scenes of nature versus nature happens when the Texas Bull fights a grizzly bear.

"Everyone expected to see the bull down—but the bull wasn't down. Neither was the bear" (91.60).

Needle says, "I was rooting for the bear" (91.78), because he has a history of being tormented by the bull. Does the bull remind you of any of the men on the trip?

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