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Course Hero. "The Turn of the Screw Study Guide." February 9, 2017. Accessed November 12, 2018.


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The Turn of the Screw | Characters

Character Description
Governess The governess is a young woman hired to take care of Miles and Flora, the children who live at Bly, a country house in England. The governess's first employment opportunity turns out to be a horrifying and tragic experience. After her death, her old friend Douglas reads her story aloud from a manuscript she wrote about the experience before she died. Read More
Miles Miles, 10 years old when the story takes place, is the older of the two children at Bly. He attended a boarding school for a short time but was expelled for reasons initially unclear. Read More
Flora Flora, eight years old when the story takes place, is the younger of the two children at Bly. Read More
Mrs. Grose Mrs. Grose is the housekeeper at Bly. She takes care of Miles and Flora before the governess arrives. She is older than the governess, though her age is not specified. Read More
Peter Quint Peter Quint is a deceased employee at Bly who reappears as a ghost. He worked as a valet (personal attendant to the children's uncle). After the uncle's departure, Peter Quint remained at Bly with the children, and Mrs. Grose implies he was responsible for the children's welfare. He has red hair, whiskers, and a pale face. Read More
Miss Jessel Miss Jessel is a deceased employee at Bly who reappears as a ghost. She was Miles and Flora's governess before her death. Read More
The Anonymous Narrator The anonymous narrator is a man or woman in the group of friends to whom Douglas tells the governess's story. This person narrates the Prologue in first person but gives few details about themselves other than his or her presence in the group.
Douglas Douglas is a friend of the governess. He reads her story—the story told in The Turn of the Screw—to a group of friends around a fire a few days after Christmas Eve.
Luke Luke is a house servant and messenger at Bly. He delivers letters to the children's uncle. He's mentioned but never appears in the story. The governess mentions she plans to deliver an important letter through Luke, but Miles intercepts the letter first.
The Uncle The uncle, who does not appear in the story, is a wealthy bachelor living in London. He gained custody of his niece and nephew Flora and Miles after the deaths of his brother (the children's father) and his parents. He hires the governess to teach the children at his country estate in Bly and instructs her never to bother him or ask him for anything.
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