Reepicheep

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Bio Info

Titles: High Mouse, Chief Mouse, Sir Reepicheep

Age: Unknown

Species: Talking Mouse

Home: A little hole in a green bank, southwest of Aslan's How

Physical Description: Dark (almost black) fur. He is bigger than a common mouse, about two feet tall, and walks on his hind legs. He has a shrill voice. In VDT, a thin gold band passes round his head under one ear and over the other, and he wears a long crimson feather in it. His ears are nearly as long (though broader than) a rabbit's. He calls his tail "the honour and glory of a Mouse."

Tools: A rapier nearly as long as his tail

First Appearance: Prince Caspian, Ch. 6 (1951)


Appearances

~ Prince Caspian ~ (1951)

Reepicheep the Mouse is one of the first Old Narnians that Caspian meets. When he is presented to the young king, Reepicheep immediately places his band of twelve valiant Mice at Caspian's disposal. He fights by Caspian's side as they battle Miraz's army. Reepicheep and the other Mice are aggrieved when they are not chosen to deliver High King Peter's challenge of single combat, since the only trumpeter in the army is a Mouse. Reepicheep asks if he may serve as a marshal of the lists at the duel between Peter and Miraz, but Peter says that it would not do because some humans are afraid of mice. Reepicheep gallantly concedes the point, and goes on to win undying glory in the second Battle of Beruna, during which he is terribly wounded. Lucy uses her cordial to heal his wounds, but it could not grow back his missing tail. The other Mice unsheath their swords, ready to cut off their own tails if their High Mouse could not have his. Because of their "great hearts," and the kindness that Reepicheep's people had shown Him when they ate away at the cords that bound the dead Lion before they were Talking Mice, Aslan grants Reepicheep a new tail.

~ The Voyage of the Dawn Treader ~ (1952)

Reepicheep sails with King Caspian aboard the Dawn Treader as they set out on their quest to find the lost seven lords of Narnia. But the Mouse has an even higher hope for the journey: to sail to the eastern end of the world, and into Aslan's own country. A Dryad had spoken a prophecy over Reepicheep's cradle that the Mouse would find all he sought in the Utter East. When the company lands on the Lone Islands, Reepicheep and the others are captured by slavers and remain imprisoned until Caspian abolishes the slave trade on the Lone Islands the next day. When Eustace is turned into a dragon, Reepicheep does his best to comfort him, even though Eustace had treated Reepicheep rudely at the beginning of the voyage. After they discover the island whose water turns objects to gold (and one of the seven lords who now rests on the bottom as a gold statue), Reepicheep suggests calling it "Deathwater Island." Later when they land on the island of the Duffers, the others are pondering how to avoid the invisible people (Dufflepuds) when Reepicheep argues that it is only honorable to meet them boldly. It is at the Mouse's insistence that Caspian orders the Dawn Treader to enter the mist surrounding the Dark Island. When they are attacked by a sea monster, Reepicheep astounds the company by telling them not to fight. It is uncharacteristic of the Mouse to suggest not fighting, but he sees that the only way to escape the monster is to push its coils off the ship. When they finally reach Ramandu's Island and find the last three Narnian lords in an enchanted sleep, Reepicheep is the first to volunteer to spend the night there and keep guard. When Ramandu tells them that in order to break the enchantment they must sail to the World's End and leave one of their number behind, Reepicheep says, "That is my heart's desire." And so, as they come to the eastern end of the world, Reepicheep throws his sword away and paddles his coracle to Aslan's Country. He is never seen in Narnia again.

~ The Last Battle ~ (1956)

At the final reunion, Reepicheep steps out of the front gates and says, "Welcome, in the Lion's name." Peter, Edmund, and Lucy are overjoyed to see him, and hurry forward to greet the Mouse.




About Reepicheep

Reepicheep is one of the most memorable and beloved characters in the Chronicles. Despite his size, he is the most valiant of all the Talking Beasts of Narnia. Lewis writes "his mind was full of forlorn hopes, death-or-glory charges, and last stands." (VDT, Ch. 5) He requests that he and his eleven Mice be put at the front of the battle against Miraz's army. When the Telmarines express fear about entering the doorway back into our world, Reepicheep offers to lead his own Mice through it to set an example. This fearlessness makes Reepicheep an excellent companion aboard the Dawn Treader. On Dragon Island, Caspian has to forbid him from challenging a dragon (who turns out to be Eustace) to single combat. And of course, while all the others want to avoid the Dark Island, Reepicheep urges them to go forward into the blackness (and there they find the Lord Rhoop). He does not lose heart even when it seems they will never escape the Dark Island. When Caspian despairingly tells Reepicheep, "There are some things no man can face," the Mouse replies, "It is, then, my good fortune not to be a man." Despite his fierce nature, Reepicheep is also a very courteous and polite mouse, and a loyal follower of Aslan. Reepicheep's hunger for daring deeds leads him to the greatest adventure of all and his heart's desire: Aslan's Country. Just before saying his goodbyes, he throws his sword into the ocean, saying, "I shall need it no more."


Inspiration

As a child, C. S. Lewis wrote stories about Animal-Land. In these stories, the hero was a brave mouse named Peter who would ride out in armor to slay cats. The notion of a small creature displaying great courage while facing larger opponents is central to the character of Reepicheep.


Quotes

  • "Sire, my life is ever at your command, but my honour is my own." (PC, Ch. 13)
  • "I thought I heard someone laughing just now. If anyone present wishes to make me the subject of his wit, I am very much at his service—with my sword—whenever he has leisure." (PC, Ch. 13)
  • "Sir, I can eat and sleep and die for my King without one. But a tail is the honour and glory of a Mouse." (PC, Ch. 15)
  • "When I was in my cradle, a wood woman, a Dryad, spoke this verse over me: 'Where sky and water meet, Where the waves grow sweet, Doubt not, Reepicheep, To find all you seek, There is the utter East.' I do not know what it means. But the spell of it has been on me all my life." (VDT, Ch. 2)
  • "Do I understand that you do not intend to give me satisfaction? Then take that—and that—to teach you manners—and the respect due to a knight—and a Mouse—and a Mouse's tail—" (VDT, Ch. 2)
  • "Because, this is a very great adventure, and no danger seems to me so great as that of knowing when I get back to Narnia that I left a mystery behind me through fear." (VDT, Ch. 13)
  • "While I can, I sail east in the Dawn Treader. When she fails me, I paddle east in my coracle. When she sinks, I shall swim east with my four paws. And when I can swim no longer, if I have not reached Aslan's country, or shot over the edge of the world in some vast cataract, I shall sink with my nose to the sunrise and Peepiceek will be head of the talking mice in Narnia." (VDT, Ch. 14)
  • "Welcome, in the Lion's name. Come further up and further in." (LB, Ch. 16)


Portrayals

  • Simon Pegg (voice): Fox/Walden The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, 2010

Born: 14 February 1970


  • Eddie Izzard (voice): Disney/Walden Prince Caspian, 2008

Born: 7 February 1962 "One of the things I thought was, 'well the world of Narnia is quite British and [Reepicheep] should be like a noble Britishman.' He's a knight, he's a knight of Narnia and he's very proud of that fact. When we started going through names of who could pull this off, there's a very limited number of actors out there who can bring that ability and somewhat of a poshness to the character without it going to cliched. And one of the people that came up that I was really interested in speaking to was Eddie Izzard." — Director Andrew Adamson




  • Robert Benfield (voice): Focus on the Family Radio Theater, 1999 – 2002


  • Warwick Davis: BBC TV series, 1988 – 1990







  • Sylvester McCoy (voice): BBC Radio Tales of Narnia
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