What contributions to the novel "Jeckyll and Hyde" are made by minor characters such as Poole and Sir Edward Danvers?

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What contributions to the novel are made by minor characters such as Poole and Sir Edward Danvers?

There are many minor characters who play a crucial role in themes  and  foreshadowing ;  they  act as triggers for the development of incidents  in the story of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.  These characters are:  Enfield, the maid who witnessed Danvers Carew’s murder, Sir Danvers Carew himself, the policeman (Newcomen), the old woman who answers at Hyde’s house and of course, Poole who is Jekyll’s manservant.  All these characters are witnesses to events that trigger the movement of the plot.  This change in the plot leads to Utterson being drawn back into the mystery.  As well as witnesses to events, these characters create an atmosphere of secrecy and hypocrisy – themes that are incorporated in the novella.


Enfield is a witness to a cruel act that Hyde commits.  He recounts his story to Utterson.  In his description of what happened he describes an atmosphere that is deserted and unnerving which makes him “begin to long for the sight of a policeman”.  This contributes to a foreshadowing of bad events to come in the future;  the word “policeman” suggests these events go against the law.  Enfield later tells Utterson about a strange character that brings a sense of disgust and detestation to all the witnesses of a young girl being trampled.   He describes him as “deformed somewhere;  he gives a strong feeling of deformity, although I couldn’t specify the point.”  This contribution acts as a device  to the unfolding of the story as Utterson finds such a character quite intriguing- and follows on in “the search for Mr Hyde”.   I think that Enfield’s contribution to the theme of secrecy is shown in the book after he recounts the story.  He has a feeling of regret and says he is “ashamed of my long tongue” and that he “never wants to refer to this again”.  His statement reflects a very secretive character which creates a sense of mystery portraying the themes of the book right from the first chapter.

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Another minor character who has a major contribution to the book is the maid servant who, like Enfield, witnesses another act of ferocity as Hyde “clubbed him to the earth”. We see the crime in her eyes  as well as her ears as his “bones were audibly shattered”. This combination of using sound and sight reiterates the ‘power’ with which Hyde beats him to the ground. This makes the maid servant faint- her contribution being her devastating story  told to the police. Utterson is again drawn back into the mystery as Carew is carrying a letter addressed to Utterson. ...

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