Companion to Summer Half

5.   Summer Half. Young Colin Keith decides to become a schoolmaster at Southbridge for the summer half term in order to support himself, rather than follow his father into the law. This is the introduction to Southbridge School, which is prominent in many of AT's novels. Highlights: Philip Winter is disastrously engaged to Rose Birkett; Everard Carter feels "love at first sight" for Kate Keith; the beginning of Noel Merton's delighted friendship with boisterous Lydia Keith; scenes of life at prep school (cricket matches, chameleons, floods, tea parties, Matron); a rainy picnic on the river. Philip is rescued from Rose, Colin is rescued from schoolmastering, Everard wins Kate. No earth-shaking events, but a great book.

Book title and abbreviation

High Rising HR1
Wild Strawberries WS
The Demon in the House DH
Mrs. Morland and Son MMS
August Folly AF
Summer Half SH
Pomfret Towers PT
The Brandons B
Before Lunch BL
Cheerfulness Breaks In CBI
Northbridge Rectory NR
Marling Hall MH
Growing Up GU
The Headmistress HM
Miss Bunting MB
Peace Breaks Out PBO
Private Enterprise PE
Love Among the Ruins LAR
The Old Bank House OBH
County Chronicle CC
The Duke's Daughter DD
Happy Return HR2
Jutland Cottage JC
What Did It Mean? WDIM
Enter Sir Robert ESR
Never Too Late NTL
A Double Affair DA
Close Quarters CQ
Love at All Ages LAA
Three Score and Ten 3S&T

Character, description and book abbreviations

Andrew

Youngest of Helen Keith's grandfather's second family. Married a Miss Winter (his second wife) whose parents were from Bermuda and who supposedly had a trace of black blood.

SH

Birkett, Amy

Wife of William Birkett, headmaster of Southbridge School. "Ma Birky" to the schoolboys. Daughters Rose and Geraldine. Close friend of Laura Morland, the novelist.

HR1, DH, SH, CBI, NR, GU, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, HR2, JC, WDIM, 3S&T, MMS

Birkett, Geraldine

Younger daughter of William and Amy Birkett. Attended Barchester High School. As high school student, fond of the more gruesome aspects of nursing and medicine. Worked in Barchester Infirmary during war. Infatuated with Fritz Gissing until she finally saw him in his true colors. Married Geoffrey Fairweather. Son John.

HR1, SH, B, CBI, GU, MB, PBO, PE, OBH, CC, DD, JC, NTL, CQ

Birkett, Rose

Older daughter of William and Amy Birkett. Beautiful but mentally negligible. Engaged six or more times, including to Philip Winter in SH until she threw her ring at him at the Keiths'. Always had an oft- repeated catchword (perfectly foul, meager, dispiriting, shattering, etc.) In CBI married John Fairweather of the Royal Navy, who could control his "elegant nitwit" well. Stationed abroad most of the war in Washington, S. America, Portugal, etc. Returned to England after war and became much more sensible, often helping others with their problems. Children Henry, Amy, two others all born 1940-1946.

HR1, SH, CBI, GU, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, DD, HR2, JC, WDIM, ESR, NTL, DA, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Birkett, William (Henry?)

Headmaster of Southbridge School. Usually called William, but is called Henry in GU and 3S&T. Had been assistant master and Head of the Prep School before becoming Headmaster. Retired in 1947 and took the Dower House at Worsted.

HR1, SH, CBI, NR, GU, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, HR2, JC, WDIM, ESR, DA, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Bishop of Barchester

Never mentioned by name. Parsimonious, low-church, unpopular. One son, said to be "in mission field" but really worked in office at Westminster. Preached love for Germans, Communists, etc., and was a Liberal. Nicknamed "Old Gasbag." Worthy successor to Trollope's Bishop Proudie. Never made on "on-stage" appearance.

SH, B, BL, CBI, NR, MH, GU, HM, MB, PBO, PE, OBH, CC, DD, HR2, JC, WDIM, ESR, NTL, DA, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Bradford

Elderly Southbridge Jr. Classics master, replaced (briefly) by Colin Keith.

SH

Brown, Farmer

Of Northbridge. Owner of Parsley Island where Swan and Tony  Morland camped and where a rain-soaked picnic helped to begin the  breakup of Philip Winter and Rose Birkett.

SH

Bunce

d. 1957. "Old Bunce," the ferryman at Northbridge. Claimed the war would start in the fall because he knew the signs. Daughters Effie and Ruby. Foul-mouthed domestic tyrant, suspected of beating his daughters (who probably deserved it.) Probably meant to be a descendant of Trollope's Bunce, senior bedesman in Hiram's Hospital, though Old Bunce represents all the negative traits of the "lower orders," unlike Trollope's Bunce.

SH, CBI, NR, MB, PE, OBH, JC, WDIM, DA, LAA, 3S&T

Bunce, Effie

Came by the day to do for Miss Pemberton in Northbridge. Worked at Master's Dairy near Hallbury in MB. Had several illegitimate children by unknown fathers.

SH, NR, MB, OBH, WDIM, NTL, DA, LAA, 3S&T

Bunce, Mrs.

Wife of "Old Bunce" the ferryman, but in reality never married him, Died of excessive quantities of gin.

SH, NR, MB, PE, WDIM, LAA,

Bunce, Ruby

Like her sister Effie, she was slovenly but hard-working, amoral, haphazard, and near illiterate. Had several illegitimate offspring by unknown fathers.

SH, NR, WDIM, NTL, DA, LAA, 3S&T

Bunce, Young

Son of "Old Bunce." He was 63 and was hit with a mattock by Hibberd for digging a grave in "Hibberd's churchyard" while Hibberd was delirious with flu. Cowman for the Mertons at Northbridge.

SH, NR, OBH, WDIM, 3S&T,

Carter, Archdeacon

Great-uncle of Everard. Wife Lady Sibyl. They were both Egyptologists and "both mad."

SH

Carter, Everard

b. 1909?. Southbridge School History master and Housemaster who succeeded Mr. Birkett as Headmaster. Became engaged to Kate Keith in SH. Cambridge man. Retired by time of 3S&T. Lived at Northbridge Rectory after retirement

SH, B, CBI, GU, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, DD, HR2, JC, WDIM, ESR, NTL, DA, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Carter, Lady Sibyl

1802-?. Widow of Archdeacon Carter. Her father was governor of an Indian province.

SH

Crawley, Josiah

Canon, Dean of Barchester. First seen as a friend of Lady Pomfret in PT. Eight children, 17 grandchildren in PE. Had shared digs with George Knox at Oxford. Once blackballed Sir Ogilvy Hibberd for Polyanthus Club. Grandson of Josiah Crawley, curate of Hogglestock in Trollope's novels. Opposed Bishop's parsimony and low-church, Liberal views.

DH, SH, PT, B, CBI, NR, MH, GU, HM, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, DD, HR2, JC, WDIM, ESR, DA, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Crawley, Josiah

Grandfather of Dean of Barchester, most prominent in Trollope's Framley Parsonage and Last Chronicle of Barset. Moody, unhappy, ascetic, conscientious, hard-working curate of Hogglestock. Vindicated of stealing a cheque in Last Chronicle. Son Bob, daughters Grace and Jane, wife Mary. Later Vicar of St. Ewold's.

SH, CBI, HM, LAR, OBH, DD, HR2, JC, DA, CQ, LAA,

Crawley, Mrs.

Wife of Josiah Crawley, Dean of Barchester. Gave lavish teas to county families, subtly underscoring the miserliness of the Bishop and Bishopess at the Palace. Two sons, six daughters, including Secunda, Tertia, Octavia.

SH, BL, CBI, NR, MH, GU, HM, MB, PBO, LAR, OBH, CC, DD, HR2, JC, WDIM, NTL, DA, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Damper, Dr. J. J.

Honorary Canon of Barchester. Former Head of Southbridge School (1849-56). Author of several hymns including the Duke of Omnium's favorite, "Each morn we humbly bow the face. Before the coming of Thy Grace." Also author of the Southbridge School Carmen. Wrote travel book Peregrinations in Palestine.

SH, CBI, PE

Dandridge, Amber

Barchester High School student. Refused swimming colors by Miss Pettinger for cheeking Miss Moore in the bookroom.

SH

Dudley, Matron Poppy

Matron at Southbridge School, aunt of George Empson the wireless expert. Frequently at odds with Mr. Ferris, the Housemaster.

HR1, DH, SH, CBI, GU, MB, PBO, PE, CC, HR2, JC, ESR, NTL, CQ, 3S&T, MMS

Empson, George

Southbridge School Matron Poppy Dudley's nephew. Normally a wireless operator and electrician on luxury liners to New York, he wired Editha Cottage for the Arbuthnots, with a running commentary on old wiring and proper method for rewiring that almost drove them crazy. His ship was RMS Vomitorium. Torpedoed twice during war.

HR1, SH, CBI, GU, PE, CC, HR2, JC, NTL, CQ, 3S&T

Fairweather, Geoffrey

Elder brother of John. Sister Edith married Robert Keith. Contemporary of Tony Morland at Southbridge. Not brilliant, but good athlete, captain of boxing. School nickname "Fairy." Married Geraldine Birkett, had son John. Became a Colonel in the Barsetshire Regt. during war.

DH, SH, CBI, GU, PBO, PE, JC, CQ

Fairweather, Mary

d. 1946. Mother of Edith Keith, Geoffrey and John Fairweather. Spoiled her grandchildren. Died in PE.

SH, PE

Featherstone- haugh

1920-1939. Captain of Rowing at Southbridge School in '37, went into Nigerian police. Killed when Lancashire was torpedoed and sunk. Contemporary of Tony Morland, Swan and Hacker. Very shy. Enamoured of Matron when in Junior form. Special prize for Greek was named for his uncle.

SH, CBI, PBO, ESR

Gibbon

Chameleon belonging to Percy Hacker of Southbridge School. Name was changed from Greta Garbo.

SH, GU, PE

Hacker, Percy

b. 1921. First encountered in SH as a very silent Southbridge student, friend of Tony Morland. Had pet chameleon named Gibbon, which he once offered to Philip Winter for coaching him before a scholarship exam. Once left the hot tap running and nearly flooded the lower dorm. In Ministry of Information during war. Became fellow and senior classics tutor at Lazarus College, later Latin Chair at Redbrick Univ. Author of well-known Latin text.

SH, CBI, GU, MB, PBO, DD, HR2, JC, WDIM, ESR, NTL, 3S&T

Harrison

Replaced Colin Keith as Junior Classics master at Southbridge School. Broke his leg in Lake District so Colin had to take the mixed 5th form.

SH

Harwood, C

d. 1939. Cricket pro who attended Southbridge. Once hit a ball from nets through window of Lower Dorm of Everard Carter's house, crushing a print of the Martyrdom of St. Ursula. Mark that remained was called the "Martyr's Memorial."

SH, CBI

Holinshed

A parent of one of the Southbridge School students in Tony Morland's time. Had seven children. "Disgraced his family" by taking Holy Orders at an advanced age and having family prayers no matter where they were.

SH, CBI

Holinshed

Senior boy at Southbridge with chance at mathematical scholarship. Once was given a C- in General Knowledge by Philip Winter. Concerned because he couldn't get into the armed forces at the beginning of the war.

SH, CBI, GU

Jessie

Head housemaid for Everard and Kate Carter. Eyesight too poor for war service, but would never wear her glasses. Had a brother who was a milkman, a cousin in laundry in Southbridge.

SH, CBI, GU, PBO, PE, CC, ESR, CQ

Keith, Catherine

b. 1935. Daughter of Robert and Edith (Fairweather) Keith.

SH, GU, WDIM

Keith, Colin

b. 1912. First seen in SH as a new master at Southbridge School, then read law with Noel Merton. Gunnery officer with Territorials in war, served in N. Africa. Became successful barrister, author of Keith on Lemon on Running Powers, the last word on railway law. Briefly infatuated with Peggy Arbuthnot and fond of Susan Dean; finally became engaged to Eleanor Grantly in OBH, proving sister Lydia wrong when she dubbed him a "perpetual uncle."

SH, B, GU, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, DD, HR2, WDIM, CQ, LAA

Keith, Edith Fairweather

Wife of Robert Keith, sister of John and Geoffrey Fairweather.Mother of Catherine, Henry and another. Former Head Girl at Barchester High School and a favorite of Miss Pettinger. Hearty and athletic, was once captain of school cricket and hockey.

SH, CBI, GU, PE, OBH, WDIM

Keith, Helen

Mother of Robert, Kate, Colin and Lydia. Boring and domestic, not very intelligent. Lived at Northbridge Manor. Had "a bit of a heart." During war went to Bournemouth to live with her sister Kate. Dead by WDIM 1954.

SH, B, CBI, NR,GU, PE, OBH,HR2, JC, WDIM

Keith, Henry

d. 1939. Resident of Northbridge Manor. Wife Helen. Killed when struck by a lorry when leaving Old Lord Pomfret's funeral. Country-squirish landowner and solicitor.

SH, B, CBI, PE, LAR, OBH, HR2, WDIM, CQ, LAA

Keith, Henry

b. 1932. Son of Robert and Edith (Fairweather) Keith.

SH, CBI, GU, WDIM

Keith, Kate

b. 1916. Became engaged to Everard Carter in SH. Boring and domestic but nice. Children Bobbie, Angela, Philip and Noel.

SH, B, CBI, GU, MB, PE, OBH, CC, DD, JC, WDIM, CQ, LAA<, 3S&T

Keith, Lydia

Tomboyish younger sister of Robert, Kate and Colin. Awkward, gauche, boisterous and energetic, until marriage to Noel Merton moved her energy into constructive channels. Children Lavinia, Harry, Jessica. During war she miscarried her first child because of overwork. Hurt by Noel's flirtation with Peggy Arbuthnot in PE but was reconciled to her husband, whom she loved dearly.

SH, B, CBI, NR, U, HM, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, DD, HR2, JC, WDIM, ESR, DA, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Keith, Robert

Brother of Kate, Colin and Lydia. Wife Edith. Senior partner of Keith and Keith law firm. Bought home in Nutfield in GU and sold Northbridge Manor to brother-in-law Noel Merton.

SH, CBI, NR, MH, GU, PE, OBH, CC, DD, HR2, WDIM, ESR, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Lemon

Author of Lemon on Running Powers, the ultimate legal authority on railroads, which Colin Keith found fascinating.

SH

Lob, Herr

Musician and band conductor to whom Rose Birkett was once engaged.

SH

Lorimer

d. 1937. Classics master at Southbridge (died in SH ). Elderly Scotsman with genius for coaching who crammed Hacker into his Oxford scholarship. Author of standard Latin text. Replaced by Philip Winter. Had sister in Perthshire .

SH, GU, MB, PE, LAR, DD, JC, ESR

Merton, Noel

First seen in SH as a young barrister, Married Lydia Keith having fallen in love with her gradually while watching her grow up. Had miraculous escape at Dunkirk, convalesced at Beliers Priory near Worsted. Later in Military Intelligence. He and, Lydia bought her old home, Northbridge Manor. Had flirtation with Peggy Arbuthnot in PE which caused rare friction with Lydia. (Jessica Dean straightened him out.) Became a QC, ran for Parliament in 1952. Became Sir Noel after Queen Elizabeth's coronation.

SH, B, CBI, NR, GU, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, DD, JC, WDIM, ESR, DA, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Moore, Miss

Teacher at, BarchesterHigh School.

SH

Morland, Laura

b. 1891. Widow of Henry Morland, sons Dick, John, Gerald, and Tony. Lived at High Rising. Author of Madame Koska mystery thrillers, which she began writing to support herself and sons. Also wrote two books anonymously. Attractive but rather scatter-brained, tended to lose glasses and hairpins. Acted as unofficial secretary at Southbridge School during war. It is generally thought that she is at least partially based on the author herself, though AT was, by repute, a more sardonic personality than Laura Morland.

HR1, DH, SH,B, CBI, NR, MH,GU, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, DD, JC, WDIM, ESR, NTL,DA, CQ, LAA, 3S&T, MMS

Morland, Tony

b. 1921. Son of Henry and Laura Morland. Student at Southbridge School at first appearance, major interest was model trains. Became Sr. Monitor at Southbridge. Talkative, self-centered, well- intentioned with frequently disastrous results, one-track mind when a child. Attended Oxford. In Army in, Burma during war. Worked for Red Tape and Sealing Wax Office after war. Married with four children.

HR1, WS, DH, SH,B, CBI, NR, MH,GU, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, DD, JC, WDIM, ESR, NTL, LAA, 3S&T, MMS

Mowbray

Student in Carter's House at Southbridge. Once won the sack race but developed pneumonia.

SH

Norris, The Hon. Mr.

While at Lazarus College he became entangled with a barmaid at the Devonguilla Arms who was already married, but subsequently married Eleanora Purvis, a nice young lady. Once an acquaintance of Colin Keith (who was Eleanora's cousin at Oxford.

SH, HM

Oswald

Cousin of Mrs. Helen Keith. Was head of mission school in Calcutta, and became a bishop.

SH

Palmer

Parlourmaid for the Keiths at Northbridge Manor.

SH, CBI, PE, OBH, WDIM, LAA, 3S&T

Pettinger, Bertha

Headmistress of Barchester High School. Highly unpopular. Known to the girls as "The Beast." Had tired waved hair and painted her face. Madeleine Sparling lived with her before the Hosiers' Girls' School moved to Harefield Park. Received OBE when she retired.

SH, B, CBI, NR, GU, HM, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, DD, JC, WDIM, 3S&T

Protheroe

Master at Southbridge School who returned after brief time in Canada. Tony Morland considered him strict because he gave impositions for pushing a chap at drill and drawing pictures in his Ovid.

DH, SH

Purvis, Marian

Aunt of Helen Keith. Third daughter of her father's second marriage. Daughter Eleanora.

SH

Purvis, The Hon. Eleanora

Wife of the Hon. Mr. Norris of Lazarus College. Mother's name was Marian. Cousin of Helen Keith.

SH, HM

Sanders

Chauffeur for Keiths at Northbridge.

SH, CBI

Smalley, Mr.

Master at Barchester High to whom Rose Birkett was briefly engaged.

SH

Smith, "Holy Joe"

Southbridge School chaplain. Once played football for Cambridge. Avid reader of thrillers. Fond of animals.

SH, CBI, PE, LAR, CC, JC, CQ, LAA

Smith, Mr. Justice

Tried cases of the London and Mid-Western Railroad in 1847.

SH

Swan, Eric

b. 1921. First seen as Southbridge School student who irritated Philip Winter by "looking at him through his spectacles." Friend and classmate of Tony Morland and Percy Hacker. Went to Cambridge. Married Justinia Lufton after once being in love with Grace Grantly. Was in Africa during war. Became master at Beliers Priory School, later replaced Everard Carter as head of Southbridge School.

SH, CBI, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, DD, HR2, JC, WDIM, ESR, NTL, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Swan, Flora Ramsey

Old school friend of Mrs. Grantly, mother of Eric Swan. Her husband died during war.

SH, HR2, JC

Sylvia

Mrs. Birkett's cocker spaniel.

HR1, DH, SH

Turnbull

Junior Classics master at Southbridge. Killed in WWI.

SH

Twicker

Gardener for the Keiths. Married the Keiths' old Nannie. Name is spelled "Twitcher" in some books. Dead by time of LAA.

SH, PE, WDIM, LAA

Twicker, Nannie

The Keiths' Nannie. Married the gardener before the war. Thought poorly of her own grown children because they weren't gentry.

SH, GU, LAR, OBH, DD, WDIM, ESR, LAA

Van Storck, Lt.

Officer to whom Rose Birkett was once engaged.

SH

Villars, Rev. Gregory

b. 1886. Vicar of Northbridge. Former headmaster of Coppin's School. Canon of Barchester by LAX

SH, CBI, NR, GU, MB, PE, CC, JC, WDIM, DA, CQ, LAA

Villars, Verena

b. 1892. Wife of Rev. Gregory Villars, vicar of Northbridge. Typical languid, middle-aged, attractive Thirkell heroine. Had "a bit of a heart." Two sons.

SH, CBI, NR, GU, MB, PE, DD, JC, WDIM, DA, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

Wesendonk, Robert

Friend of Tony Morland at Southbridge School. Intelligent but never said anything (only uttered once in several books where appeared.) Interested in model trains and electricity. Had three sisters and was fond of babies. Played harmonica to indicate emotional moods. Later became an Olympic swimmer.

HR1, DH, SH, MB, 3S&T, MMS

Winter, Miss

Wife of Helen Keith's uncle Andrew. Supposedly had a trace of black blood as her parents lived in Bermuda.

SH

Winter, Philip

Under-housemaster to Everard Carter at Southbridge School, where he was Senior Classics Master. Son of a clergyman. At first meeting, a hot-tempered communist sympathizer. Was engaged to Rose Birkett, the nitwit daughter of the headmaster, and was extremely jealous. Became unengaged on day of memorable picnic on an island in the Rising River at Northbridge, culminating in Rose's throwing her ring at him (a relief to all concerned.) Joined the Territorials during the war, rose to rank of Colonel, and lost his communist sympathies. Was called "Carrots" and "Fireworks" in school because of red hair. Married Leslie Waring, started Priory School in Beliers Priory, later moved school to Harefield.

SH, CBI, GU, MB, PBO, PE, LAR, OBH, CC, DD, HR2, JC, ESR, CQ, LAA, 3S&T

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