Beloved British Literary Characters

Just this last week we celebrated National Winnie the Pooh Day at Ingla, but beloved British literary characters aren’t just for kids. So, the theme for our term is British Literary Characters (BLC for short), we’re even having a big giveaway for our social media followers who know the most about this. As an English school, we love to encourage people to read, and what better way than forming a connection with a beloved character. Here’s a small sample of some of our favourite BLCs and why they’ve left a mark on British, and English-speaking, culture.

Sherlock Holmes

Sherlock is the archetypal detective. With a magnifying glass in one hand, a smoking pipe in another, and his famous deerstalker hat on his head, Sherlock’s detective stories became the standard for how crime fighters could use their logic and brains to solve cases. His dry sense of humour is what makes him so unique and so loved in Britain.

Winnie the Pooh

Winnie the Pooh is a big, soft, yellow bear with a heart of gold. He, along with his friends Tigger, Eeyore, Piglet, and Christopher Robin, taught generations of children about friendship and love.

James Bond

Beloved British Literary Characters pic 2

Going in the completely opposite direction, James Bond is a master spy and womaniser whose sense of style and sarcastic humour became the epitome of “cool” in the 1960s. Many don’t realise that Bond began as a character in a book; he’s not just in films. There are dozens of Bond novels, originally penned by Ian Fleming.


The little girl with magical powers is one of Roald Dahl’s most beloved characters (and he has many, such as Willy Wonka or James, from James and the Giant Peach). Matilda is a beloved British Literary Character because she’s an outsider who’s gentle, intellectual and sensitive. When it seems like you can’t find a friend anywhere, Matilda reminds us that friendship can be found even when it seems like you’re different from everyone.


Match the bold words with the definitions below.

  1. (n.) a person or thing that is a perfect example of a particular quality or type
  2. (v.) wrote or written
  3. (ph.) to say something briefly, without a lot of detail
  4. (n.) a man who has a lot of casual affairs with women
  5. (adj.) very typical of a certain type of person or thing; a commonly repeated symbol
  1. Epitome
  2. Penned
  3. In short
  4. Womaniser
  5. Archetypal

This is Ingla School of English‘s weekly blog, intended as reading practise for our students in Turnpike Lane, in London, and around the globe. We hope you’ve enjoyed it and take a look at the rest of our writing, much of which has activities for teachers to use in the classroom.