/ The Brown Wolves. Summary and main characters of the Jack London story "Brown Wolf"

Brown wolves. Summary and main characters of the Jack London story "Brown Wolf"

Brown wolves - this is one of the main topics in thethe work of the famous American writer Jack London. He traveled extensively in Alaska in search of gold mines, but instead of gold he found there stories for his fascinating and life stories, stories and novels. Very often the main characters of his books were animals, primarily wild dogs and wolves. They symbolized freedom, independence and pride in the author's works.

a brief description of

Brown wolves are a special kind of wildDogs that are half predators, half domestic animals. This is the main character of the writer's story. This short story was included in his collection Love for Life (1907). This work belongs to his early works.

brown wolves

Against the background of other major works of the author it is considerednot very famous, but deserves no less attention, because it can be traced features of the writer's style of the author. Brown wolves in North America - not uncommon. They were used in the far north and in the central states as sled dogs. That was the fate of the main character of the story.


At the beginning of his work Jack London introducesreaders with a happy young married couple, who lives a wild dog, which they called the "Wolf" among themselves. The writer draws a short, but very expressive picture of their home comfort. From the very beginning, we learn that young people do not live very well, very simply, but very happy.

Jack London

Husband, Walt Irwin is a poet, his wife is Mage,is engaged in housekeeping. They have a small cottage, located in a very picturesque area, which, apparently, is a source of inspiration for Walt.

Description of the hero

Brown wolves are a special breed of animals thatremarkable for its appearance and character. The main character has a very specific appearance, which, as it were, emphasizes the contradictoriness of his nature. He is covered with brown hair, but he has white spots on his paws and belly. His ears were slightly frostbitten, which at once gave out a heavy past in the North. His grin was wide, but he never barked and only growled. He was extremely hardy and physically strong. The wolf was able to develop very high speed and overcome hundreds of miles a day. Outwardly, he looked like a wild dog, but he seemed like a real wolf in his habits.


Jack London always portrayed animals as livingof people. He very subtly and accurately transmitted their psychological experiences, which are very similar to human feelings. Therefore, his stories about animals enjoyed such popularity among readers. The wolf, who lived with the Irving couple, was extremely shrewd and wayward in character.

brown wolf

He was stubborn and did not respond to the caresses who sheltered himof people. With any attempt at affection, he only roared and frightened not only neighbors, but even the owners themselves. The beast was extremely persistent in its thrust to the north. Several times he ran from the Irvins and rushed north. This wild irrepressible thirst for freedom did not leave him even when the young spouses managed to tame him. However, remaining with their owners, he retained his closed and unsociable temper. It took a very long time before they managed to achieve his location to himself.

Prehistory of the hero

The story "Brown Wolf", a brief summary of whichis the subject of this review, written in the best traditions of the work of the writer of London. One of the main themes in his work is the idea of ​​freedom, which was possible only in the wild. The main character of the story suddenly appeared at the cottage Irvinov. He was wounded and very thin. They fed him, and after a while the beast fled. About a year later, Walt discovered him in another state and returned it home. The couple again fed him and left, but the wolf was drawn to the will and, barely recovered, he again went north.

brown wolf theme

Many times he was caught and returned, and passed anotherone year before he resigned himself and stayed at home with his new owners. In the work "The Brown Wolf," whose summary should include a description of his relationship with the Irvins, the author focuses on how difficult it was for the spouses to gain his trust. He did not immediately fondle himself, and when used to it, he expressed his gratitude very restrained, as shown at the very beginning of the work. It was evident that the Wolf had not forgotten his past life, and although he was attached to new people, he yearned for his former master.

Life of Irwin

Separately, we should mention the way of lifespouses. They lived not rich, but in abundance. The main item of their income was royalties from the publishing house, which Walt received for his poems. On this money, the spouses lived economically, but quite comfortably. They provided themselves and their beloved pet. Their house was located in the south of the mainland.

brown wolf description of a wolf

More than once the author emphasizes this fact instory "Brown Wolf." Irvine's address is even exact: California, Sonoma, Glen Ellen. By indicating this address, the writer probably wanted to emphasize the difference in the old and new life of his hero. After all, from the very beginning it is clear that Bury came from the North, where the living conditions were extremely harsh and difficult. At his new owners, he began to live a full and quiet life, although it took a long time before he resigned himself to his new existence. He still lived in love for his homeland, and it took a whole year for him to get used to his new place. Much merit in this belongs to the Irvins themselves, who have made great efforts to win his trust.

brown wolf who defended the rights of the wolf

However, in the first part of the story the authorshows that from time to time they had to save money in order to buy the necessary products. Nevertheless, the beast did not know of any need, since both loved him and looked after him well. This image, almost accustomed to the home lifestyle brown wolf. The theme of the work, however, constantly brings the reader back to his past.


The unexpected appearance of a sudden guest breaksthe familiar and quiet way of life of the married Irvins. Once near their cottage they meet a traveler, who in appearance looked like a traveler. His appearance is a sharp contrast with young people. He was stern and seemed a man hardened in trials. At first glance, it could be concluded that he traveled a lot, that his life was difficult and severe. When meeting him in the most unexpected way, the brown wolf behaved. Description of the wolf at the time of the meeting deserves a separate mention.

brown wolf

At the sight of this man, who called himself SkiffMiller, he whined for the first time, and that meant that he was extremely pleased with this meeting. Surprised young people did not immediately realize that this stern man was the master of their pet. Skiff said that the real name of the beast is Brown. He was his favorite and ran as a leader in a dog sled. He was considered the best dog, because he was faithful, devoted to his master, was extremely hardy, could overcome long distances in a short period of time. The story of the traveler was struck by Irwinov.

The History of Skiff

One of the best, though not very well knownworks of London is the story "Brown Wolf". Who defended the rights of the wolf - this is perhaps the main question that the writer puts in his story. Skiff's story shows that this man had a brutal working life, full of hardships, troubles and troubles. Once the owner, being in the cold without food, nearly ate his own pet. Fortunately, at that time he caught a wild elk, and this saved the Wolf.

Nevertheless, from the traveler's story the readerlearns that the beast was happy, being at his master. He was devoted to him and sincerely loved him, despite the harsh treatment and difficult life. Knowingly, at an unexpected meeting, he rushed to meet him and the very first allowed himself to caress what had never happened before. Skiff also said that many travelers showed interest in his pet, since he was strong and enduring. But he defended the dog in his own way, since he did not sell it even for very large sums.

The relationship of the hero with Skiff

The work "Brown Wolf" is dedicated to the drama of thishero, who at the time of the appearance of his first, but now the former owner was facing a very difficult choice. He managed to get very attached to the Irvins, although he did not express his feelings too violently. He was very reserved with them and did not allow himself to be caressed much. Nevertheless, the Wolf fell in love with Walt and even used to Medj after a while. But at the same time, he was very happy with the meeting with Skiff. The latter stated that he had raised him and left him as a child, took care of him, spent the last money for his food. Two times for him they offered big money, but Skiff refused, because he loved him. According to Miller, he was the smartest and smartest in the whole team. The heroes of the story "Brown Wolf" began to argue for the right to leave a clever dog in their home.

Development of action

The spouses and Miller argued for a while,who will take the dog to himself. Each of them felt right to shelter the dog in his house. Their dialogue is interesting in that two worldviews, absolutely opposite to each other, collided in it. From Skiff's remarks we learn that he never thought about his pet's feelings, being sure that the dog is happy with him and that he does not need another life. Medzh reasoned otherwise. She talked about the dog's right to make her choice. Of particular interest is the clash of two views on life in the work "Brown Wolf." The main idea of ​​the work is the assertion of the right to freedom, which, according to the writer, everyone has, even a running dog. Skiff was sure that with him the dog would still be happy. Mej also claimed that the dog deserved peace and quiet, well-fed life after all the tests that she had to endure during the difficult time when she was running in harness. Walt supported his wife, and Skiff after some thought was forced to agree with her. So, all three decided to give the Wolf the right to choose, and this decision turned out to be fatal for all the participants in the dispute.


The scene of choosing the owner's dog is, perhaps,the strongest in the story "Brown Wolf". The writer was very lively and believably described his feelings and experiences. The dog behaved like a living person, who is forced to tear between loved ones. It is in this scene that the reader sees how strongly the dog has become attached to the Irvins. He caressed them, as if begging him to stay with him. However, all three agreed not to lure him to their side, and pretend indifferent that the choice of the beast should be as "impartial" as possible.

And it's hard, and painful to read the lines in whichthe author described the throws and torment of the wolf, which each of their attendants sought help and support. He seemed to be seeking support from both Skiff and the Irvines. However, the first with apparent indifference and indifference left the cottage, and Walt pretended indifferent to everything that was happening. The only one who tried to stop the dog was Mage. However, she paused under the imperious glance of her husband. This behavior determined the decision of Buroy, who, in this situation, behaved as the beast, accustomed to freedom and independence, could act.


Very truthfully described the character of his herowriter London. "Brown Wolf" is a story that is devoted to revealing the image of a dog, which the author describes as a person. Not having received support from either Scythian or Irvin, the dog rushed forward, into the forest. He did not remain with any of them, and such a decision proves an irrepressible thirst for freedom in him. The author describes in detail the behavior of his character, who gradually and slowly gained speed as he approached his cherished goal. In this final passage, the dog finally found the desired will. He abandoned his attachments to both Skiff and the Irvines. These people did not treat him well when they rejected him at the most difficult moment of his life. Therefore, he preferred to remain alone. This is the freedom-loving pathos of the whole work.


The native land of the wolf from the story "The Brown Wolf"determines the whole meaning of the story. The fact is that he spent his entire life in the Klondike valley. This is the name of the river in Canada. The region was considered gold-bearing, but it was difficult for those travelers who went in search of metal. However, according to Stiff, Bury was happy when he was running in the harness and shared with the owner all the difficulties of his life. Miller himself was so attached to him that after his disappearance went to his search. The free wild life that the Wolf led in the north made him so unsociable. The character of the beast was heavy, but the stronger and stronger were his attachments to those people who helped him in a difficult moment. At the same time, he was too independent, and therefore, when the three owners refused to give him advice or help, he rushed into the forest, apparently, deciding to live his own way. In this situation, the author's sympathy is entirely on the side of the dog. The author emphasizes that he had no other choice, and at the same time he respected his decision, which at the moment seemed to be the only true one. In another way, this clever dog simply could not act. None of them present supported it. Brown was subjected to a terrible test, from which he emerged victorious.

The writer pays attention to the reader,that this beast, so wild by nature, turned out to be wiser than people. The moral truth remained on the side of this dog, who behaved as his conscience told him, while his masters hid their true feelings from him, forcing himself to decide his own destiny. In fact, their argument was selfish. Although readers can not doubt the sincere desire of Walt and Medge to keep their beloved pet, as they can not doubt Skiff's love for him, nevertheless, we understand that they acted with respect to the unfortunate animal extremely unfairly. Undoubtedly, they should somehow agree among themselves and not torment him with such a rigorous test, which turned out to be beyond his strength.

It is difficult to find in this case the definition of theirbehavior. Everyone acted out of good motives, but the way they chose was not worthy of them. Perhaps this is especially true of Skiff, who at the beginning of his appearance seemed a straightforward, honest man, alien to all sorts of tricks of this kind. As for the spouses Irwin, then on their part, perhaps, it was quite explainable act. It should also be remembered that it was Mage who proposed to conduct such a test. Perhaps she did not fully understand how inappropriate it was to subject the animal to such a serious test. Walt at first almost decided not to end this dispute by force. He and Skiff, it seems, were ready to fight for the right to own a wolf. In this scene, each participant forgot that he is dealing with a very vulnerable person who is difficult to choose between the past and the present. It is not surprising, therefore, that all the sympathies of the author are entirely on the side of Buroy. His simple attitude towards life turned out to be as wise as the life itself is wise. Perhaps, this finale will seem unexpected, as it could be expected that the Wolf will after all rush after his old master, with whom he spent most of his life. Others might have thought that he would stay with the Irvins. But after reading the work there can be no doubt that this was the end of the story.