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The Secret History - Characters - Edmund (Bunny) Corcoran

The Secret History | The Secret History Characters
Bunny Corcoran: | Favorite Excerpts | Leave a Comment | Comments | Videos

EDMUND (m) "rich protector" from Old English ead "rich, blessed" and mund "protector". Saint Edmund was a 9th-century king of East Anglia who, according to tradition, was shot to death with arrows after refusing to divide his Christian kingdom with an invading pagan Danish leader. This Old English name remained in use after the Norman conquest.

Favorite Excerpts

Consider even bluff old Bunny, if you would. Not a childhood of reefer coats and dancing lessons, any more than mine was. But an American childhood. Son of a Clemson football star turned banker. Four brothers, no sisters, in a big noisy house in the suburbs, with sailboats and tennis rackets and golden retrievers at their disposal; summers on Cape Cod, boarding schools near Boston and tailgate picnics during football season; an upbringing vitally present in Bunny in every respect, from the way he shoot your hand to the way he told a joke.

Bunny Corcoran had a habit of playing John Philip Sousa march tunes in his room, at full volume, late at night.

"Can't be." This was Bunny. His voice was nasal, garrulous, W.C. Fields with a bad case of Long Island lockjaw.

"I don't see how," said Bunny. He sounded like Thurston Howell on "Gilligan's Island."

- Donna Tartt, The Secret History

Bunny is just this very sort of bumbling, comic, pontificating, character. Typical product of a second-rate, American boarding school. Superficially, as far as education and social position go, he's very much like the rest of them, but actually he's far less intelligent. The kind of person you just know is going to be this useless alcoholic fixture at the country club by the time he's thirty-five.

- Donna Tartt, on the character, Bunny


I don't know what I think about Bunny. I liked him in the beginning when he fascinated me. I thought he was great and Henry's take on him explained a lot about both their characters. I fully believed everything about him.
- mel

4:32 pm, friday, march 24, 2006
Bunny was believable-I think we've all encountered his type along the way, in either school or university. He didn't deserve to die, of course, no-one ever deserves murder. But the nifty thing about how Bunny is written in contrast to the rest of the group is that we're glad to see him die. Not only do we find the deerslayers blameless, we find them justified, which really says a lot about how loathsome the seemingly-harmless Bunny was.
- sybaryte

3:09 pm, tuesday, july 19, 2005
the only reason Bunny became obnoxious towards his friends was because he saw them in a different light after the murder. He was the only innocent in the story and the only charecter who was morally outraged, this made him a danger to his friends who used his spiteful behavior as an excuse to cold bloodedly murder him.

12:56 am, sunday, july 10, 2005
Considering the character of Bunny: I think we are made to hate him, but if you act like an ouside onlooker, all he really did was feel remorse for his friends killing an innocent man- this is why he becomes an alcoholic and an "ass". We become so involved with the group, as if we are part of it, that we feel the same way the group may have felt about Bunny. That is one of the beauties of Tartt's writing style.

- raina

1:54 pm, saturday, april 3, 2004
Bunny was an ass. I was glad when they killed him.

- seed

12:20 am, friday, march 19, 2004
bunny makes me think of stiva oblonskij, from "anna karenina". trying to be very social and friendly, with lots of money problems. he annoyed me a bit.oox
- daria

2:35 pm, monday, march 8, 2004
Found him believable and richly unsympathetic.
- Laura Argiri

5:53 pm, sunday, february 22, 2004
Bunny was probably the only character who was not entirely believable. His spurts of intellect and elitist perception come in the form of satirical outbursts - criticism of Richard's ever-so-slightly imperfect clothing, for example - but this is at odds with his immense stupidity (his bad jokes and his frequent inability to pick up on the slightest subtext are reminiscent of some brain-dead footballer). An ambitious character nonetheless, and perfectly irritating.

- Karene

5:02 am, saturday, december 13, 2003
Bunny reminds me of the turtle (groad?) in "The Wind in the Willow" - he is so active - hyper active, so in eager to BE SOMEONE or at least SOMETHING, living in a fantasy. I think Bunny is a typical student you will find around in different european countries today, unsatisfied, in search, in lack of a focus, totally miserable. I feel pity for him, and wish that someone like that guy who played Frodo could do his part, yes that small little blue-eyed bloke - Elijha Woods, was it?

- peerdulyver - A T -

8:24 am, friday, october 24, 2003
he should have been more cooperative with his friends

- obs

3:17 am, saturday, august 16, 2003
Bunny is, of course, a prick: he's selfish and snooty in a vulgar sort of way. But without him, I wonder I do think the book would be, er shall we, grim. I must admit that I like the way he speaks, and actually do find him funny.

- Lwandile

4:40 am, thursday, february 27, 2003
I thought the author did an incredible job fleshing out the personality of Bunny, and in fact, of his entire family. Bunny wasn't one dimensional, vile, or easy to dispense with. Lots of annoying and damaging behaviors...a terrible childhood that looked pretty on the outside...a learning disability, and what appeared at times to be ADHD...and many, many pages when we observed Bunny to be suffering from more moral outrage over a murder he had nothing to do with than all of the murderers combined.
- Judy

9:39 pm, friday, january 24, 2003
Why does everyone dislike him so much? I liked him very much, chose to ignore his sponging off Henry, but stopped liking him after the way he treated Francis and Richard. I also disliked the bigotry, but as a whole, before the murder of the man was discovered, he was a good character.
- Just Sarah

6:06 am, monday, december 30, 2002
It's easy to dislike Bunny, perhaps largely because he is perceived as less of an intellect than the others. Bunny is selfish, yes, tactless, undoubtedly, but for all his flaws, did he deserve to die? I think not. He was a victim of the self-centered group of his so-called friends. I feel sorry for him.
- Yulia

9:13 pm, thursday, december 19, 2002
Perhaps the only literary character that I've felt a deep, intense hatred for. Never before had I despised someone so very much! Bunny disgusted me, and I was so, so relieved when he died.
- Anon.

5:26 am, wednesday, december 11, 2002
Bunny was hard to like, but there was something endearing about the character's quirks, i.e., his penchant for Sousa marches. I felt sorry for him, caught up in a circle of friends who were all more confident and all far more intellectual. He was out of his element and he knew it; hence his reaction when he discovered their secret. Hard to like, yes, but likeable nonetheless.
- Sarah Jane

3:52 pm, sunday, december 1, 2002
Bunny deserved to die. If he'd been sympathetic, we might've wanted the others to get caught

- John

10:48 am, saturday, september 28, 2002
Would probably have been charming in person but I disliked him intensely.

- lbislander

4:07 pm, wednesday, july 24, 2002