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THE MANY BACKGROUNDS OF
A. KENNEDY
The various backstories fanfic writers have provided for Archie.

I'm so confused!



Oh, man! "Many" is not an exaggeration. This page turned out to be so long that I may eventually break it up into sub-pages. The reason for so many backstories is that the Hornblower series tells us only a little about Archie. To wit: he may or may not have been on the Justinian six months longer or more (or less) than Horatio, his father has a gillie, he knows someone named Maria, he speaks Spanish "a little," he can quote Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra, and he knew Drury Lane like it was his home. The book The Making of Hornblower adds that he is the third son of a lord.

And that's it! Fertile ground for fanfic speculation if ever there was one, and the Horatio Hornblower Fan Fiction Archive rises to the occasion. Follow the links for further information:


The Kennedy Family

Dad

Mum

Brothers

Sisters

Cousins

Counselors

Fits

In the Navy

Miscellaneous Talents




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THE KENNEDY FAMILY

The general picture that emerges of the Kennedy clan is not an altogether happy one. In most stories they are described as nobility who had little use for Archie -- either on account of his fits or his cultural interests, or both, depending on which fic you read.


STORY
UPPER TIER NOBILITY
LESSER NOBILITY
UNSPEC. NOBILITY
HAPPY
UNHAPPY
TIED TO "OUR" KENNEDYS
A Day (Or So) in The Life
X
X
All for The Best
X
X
Archie & Edrington's Excellent Adventure
X
X
Archie's Journal
X
Castle out of Check
X
X
Christmas Memory: Archie
X
X
Circumstances of Birth
X
Connexions of Human Thoughts
X
X
Conversations
X
Dark Harbor
X
A Deep But Dazzling Darkness
X
X
El Ferrol
X
Good Friday
X
X
Holly and the Ivy
X
X
Hornblower and the Spanish Doctor
X
The Journal
X
Kitty Cobham and the Chamber of Secrets
X
X
Leaving the Past Behind
X
X
Letter from Hell - Archie's Reply (by Dutch)
X
X
Life Aboard Justinian
X
X
Life of Duty
X
X
Love, Duty, and Other Ties that Bind
X
Nightmare
X
Out from the Shadows
X
X
The Parole
X
X
Perfection in
My Eyes
X
X
"Perspectives" & "Passages" series
X
X
X
Ransom
X
Red Sky at Morning
X
X
Scars
X
Season's Greetings
X
X
See Paris and Live
X
Ship of the Damned
X
X
Simple Gifts
X
A Skerry Story
X
Tidings of Comfort and Joy
X
X
Travels through Time
X
X
X
The Weather Eye
X


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DAD

Either Papa Kennedy was one cold old SOB, or he is suffering from the worst case of bad PR in the entire 18th century. With a few notable exceptions, he is usually described as having no fatherly feelings for Archie whatsoever.


STORY
NAME
GOOD
BAD
DISTANT,
BUT LATER RECONCILED
A Day (Or So) in The Life & Ship of The Damned
Viscount Aylseford
X
X
All for The Best
Viscount Aylseford
X
Another Way
to Serve
(unspec.)
X
Archie & Edrington's Excellent Adventure
Lord Kennedy, Baronet
X
Archie's Journal

(unspec.)
? - hard to call
The Carpenter's Walk
(unspec.)
X
Castle out of Check
(unspec.)
X
Christmas Memory: Archie
(unspec.)
X (implied)
Circumstances of Birth
Lord Kennedy
X (basically)
Connexions of Human Thoughts
(unspec.)
X
Dark Harbor
Lord Whelan Kennedy
X
A Deep But Dazzling Darkness
Lord Kennedy
X
A Final Act of Kindness
(unspec.)
X
Good Friday
(unspec.)
X
Leaving the Past Behind
Right Sir Honorable Kennedy
X
Letter from Hell - Archie's Reply (by Dutch)
(unspec.)
X
Life Aboard Justinian
Lord Bridgeleigh
? - hard to call
Life of Duty
Earl Kennedy
X
Lightning Flashes of Memory
Lord Kennedy of Oxford
X
Memoriam
(unspec.)
X
Out from The Shadows
Lord Andrew Kennedy
X
The Parole
Viscount Aylesford
X
Peace on Earth and Mercy Mild
(unspec.)
X (implied)
Perfection in
My Eyes
Sir Henry Kennedy
X
"Perspectives" and "Passages" series
Lord Bridgeleigh
X
X
Ransom
Earl Grenbrook
X
(sort of)
Red Sky at Morning
(unspec.)
X
Season's Greetings
(unspec.)
? - hard to call
Simple Gifts
(unspec.)
X
A Skerry Story
(unspec.)
Tidings of Comfort and Joy
(unspec.)
X
Travels through Time
Earl Kennedy
X
Uncharted Course
(unspec.)
X
The Visit
Lord James Kennedy
X


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MUM

In contrast to the forbidding Papa Kennedy, Mama Kennedy is usually described as a kind, loving soul. Unfortunately for Archie, she's also usually described as dead.


STORY
NAME
GOOD
BAD
DEAD
A Day (Or So) in The Life
Lady Kennedy
X
All for The Best
(unspec.)
X
X
Another Way
to Serve
(unspec.)
X
X
Archie & Edrington's Excellent Adventure
(unspec.)
X
Archie's Journal
(unspec.)
X
Archie's Journal: Christmas in Spain
(unspec.)
X
The Best Christmas
(unspec.)
X
X
The Carpenter's Walk
(unspec.)
X
X
Castle out of Check
*unpec.)
X
Christmas Memory: Archie
(unspec.)
X
X
Circumstances of Birth
Bridgid, Lady Kennedy
X
(I guess)
Connexions of Human Thoughts
(unspec.)
X
X
Dark Harbor
Lady Gwendolyn Kennedy
X
A Deep But Dazzling Darkness
(unspec.)
X
X
Fidus Achates
(unspec.)
X
X
Gibraltar Interlude
(unspec.)
X
X
Good Friday
(unspec.)
X
Hornblower and The Spanish Doctor
(unspec.)
X
X
Leaving the Past Behind
(unspec.)
X
X
Letter from Hell - Archie's Reply (by Dutch)
(unspec.)
X
Life Aboard Justinian
Lady Bridgeleigh
X
X
Life of Duty
Lady Kennedy
X
Lightning Flashes of Memory
(unspec.)
X
X
Memoriam
(unspec.)
X
The Parole
(unspec.)
X
X
Peace on Earth and Mercy Mild
(unspec.)
X
(I guess)
Perfection in
My Eyes
(unspec.)
X
X
"Perspectives" and "Passages" series
Lady Bridgeleigh
X
X
Ransom
(unspec.)
X
Red Sky at Morning
(unspec.)
X
X
Season's Greetings
(unspec.)
X
Simple Gifts
(unspec.)
X
X
Tidings of Comfort and Joy
(unspec.)
X
X
To Hear The Angels Sing
(unspec.)
X
X
The Visit
Isabelle
X
X


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BROTHERS

Although it is in a sense "canon" (not mentioned in the series but in the companion book The Making of Hornblower) that Archie is the third son of a lord, his fanfic brothers vary widely in their portrayals.



STORY
NAME
OLDER
GOOD
BAD
A Day (Or So) in The Life & Ship of The Damned
Richard
X
X
A Day (Or So) in The Life & Ship of The Damned
Charles
X
X
Another Way
to Serve
yes - unspec. names and #
X
Archie & Edrington's Excellent Adventure
Edward
X
X
The Carpenter's Walk
yes - unspec. names and #
X
Connexions of Human Thoughts
yes - unspec. names and #
X
X
Conversations
two;
unspec names
X
A Deep But Dazzling Darkness
two; unspec. names
X
X
Hornblower and The Spanish Doctor
yes - unspec. names and #
X
Leaving the Past Behind
two; unspec. names
X
X
Letter from Hell - Archie's Reply (by Dutch)
two; unspec. names
X
Life Aboard Justinian
Bobby
X
X
Life Aboard Justinian
Joe
X
X
Life of Duty
Edward and one unspec.
X
X
Lightning Flashes of Memory
Gerold
X
X
Lightning Flashes of Memory
Biron
X
X
Memoriam
Ronald
X
Memoriam
Arthur
X
Missing Scene from D&D
yes - unspec. names and #
X
Nightmare
yes - unspec. names and #
The Parole
two; unspec. names
X
"Perspectives" and "Passages" series
William
X
X
"Perspectives" and "Passages" series
David
X
X
Peace on Earth and Mercy Mild
(unspec. name or age)
Perfection in
My Eyes
Edwin
X
X
Perfection in
My Eyes
Jacob
X
X
Ransom
Arthur
X
X
Ransom
Ronald
X
X
Red Sky at Morning
yes - unspec. names and #
X
X
Simple Gifts
Malcolm
X
Simple Gifts
Duncan
X
To Hear The Angels Sing
yes - unspec. names and #
X
X
Travels through Time
Joseph P.
X
X
Travels through Time
Bobby
X
X
The Visit
yes - unspec. names and #
X
X
The Weather Eye
two; unspec. names
X


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SISTERS

Much less has been made of Archie's sisters, but by now he's acquired enough for me to finally give them a table!


STORY
NAME
OLDER
YOUNGER
Another Way to Serve
Abigail McKenzie
X
Archie and Edrington's Excellent Adventure
Mary
X
Archie and Edrington's Excellent Adventure
Lizzie
X
Archie and Edrington's Excellent Adventure
Margaret
X
Castle out of Check
several (unspec. names or ages)
Dark Harbor
Catherine
A Day (or So)
in The Life
Mary
X
A Drury Lane Evening
one (unspec. name or age)
A Final Act of Kindness
Abigail MacKenzie
Hornblower and the Bad Hair Day
Alice
Lightning Flashes
of Memory
Auriar
X
Memoriam
Eleanor
Peace on Earth and Mercy Mild
one (unspec. name; a twin)
Perfection in
My Eyes
Annalise
X
Perfection in
My Eyes
Avery
X
Perfection in
My Eyes
Evelyn
X
Ransom
Mary Elizabeth
X
Ransom
Anne
X
Ransom
Eleanor
X
Ransom
Elizabeth
X
Season's Greetings
several (unspec. names or ages)
Simple Gifts
Margaret
Simple Gifts
Alice
A Skerry Story
Margaret
X
A Skerry Story
(unspec. name or age)
Uncharted Course
Auriar
The Visit

Abigail MacKenzie
X
The Weather Eye
several
(unspec. names or ages)


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COUSINS

In To See Paris and Live, Castle out of Check, Reprieve, Trick or Treat , The Weather Eye, The Visit, and Players on the Stage, Archie is ingeniously presented as a cousin of Lord Tony Dewhurst of the Pimpernel League. I say "ingeniously" because Jamie Bamber played both Archie and Lord Tony -- in Hornblower and The Scarlet Pimpernel, respectively.

There's also a cousin named Alexander in Dark Harbor, by the way.


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COUNSELORS

Sometimes you just need somebody to talk to ... although in Archie's case, it usually takes a lot of persuading to get him to open up. Fanfic writers have provided him with several sympathetic ears and sources of positive encouragement: you might say, the 18th century equivalent of counselors. Here they are, in alphabetical order. I haven't included Horatio, for he and Archie often perform the same service for each other in countless stories.


(NOTE: Except for Kitty Cobham and Dr. Hornblower -- and Catherine,
I guess -- these characters are the original creations of the authors)


* BRIDGET
WHO: A golden-hearted lady of the night who gives Archie some hard but sound advice at the beginning of his naval career.
WHERE: Life Aboard Justinian

* CATHERINE THE GREAT
WHO: Yes, that one.
WHERE: The Connexions of Human Thoughts

* COBHAM, KITTY
WHO: Everyone's favorite Duchess.
WHERE: Lightning Flashes of Memory

* HORNBLOWER, DR. JULIUS
WHO: Horatio's dad, a kindly country doctor.
WHERE: Good Friday, Healing Hands, The Holly and The Ivy, A Life of Duty, Tidings of Comfort and Joy

* PIERRE
WHO: A rather boring Frenchman, who, when he stops yacking about Voltaire for two seconds, does make a pretty good listener.
WHERE: All for the Best

* RILEY, KATHLEEN
WHO: Yet another golden-hearted lady of the night who helps see Archie through a right royal bender.  And no, I am not going to comment on Our Boy's evident susceptibility to compassionate doxies!
WHERE: Another Way to Serve

* ROSE
WHO: A golden-hearted lady of the night who helps see Archie through his darkest fanfic adventure.
WHERE: Red Sky at Morning

* SEBASTIAN, DR. LUIS   
WHO: A devout and compassionate British-educated Spaniard who, in the fanfic universe, replaces the decidedly unsympathetic Dr. Hepplewhite as the ship's surgeon.
WHERE: An American Encounter, An American Encounter: Part 2, The Carpenter's Walk, A Deep But Dazzling Darkness,Healing Hands, Hearts of Oak, Hornblower and the Spanish Doctor, A Life of Duty, The Life Laid Down, Passages: 1799, The Price of Honour, Scars, Simple Gifts, To Hear the Angels Sing


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FITS

Did Archie start having fits before he joined the navy or after? I started to make a chart for this, but virtually all the stories that specifically address the issue have the affliction preceding his enlistment -- in fact, it's often a cause of his enlistment.


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IN THE NAVY

Was Archie's enlistment at his family's behest or at his own? How old was he when he joined?


STORY
VOLUNTARY
INVOLUNTARY
AGE
A Day (Or So) in The Life & Ship of The Damned
X
15
All for The Best
X
(unspec.)
Archie & Edrington's Excellent Adventure
X
16
Archie's Reply 2
X
(unspec.)
The Carpenter's Walk
12
Connexions of Human Thoughts
X
(unspec.)
Good Friday
X
(unspec.)
Holly and The Ivy
X
10
Letter from Hell - Archie's Reply (by Dutch)
X
(unspec.)
Life Aboard Justinian
X
15
"Perspectives" and "Passages" series
X
12
Ransom
X
16
Red Sky at Morning
X
12
Travels through Time
X
(unspec.)


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MISCELLANEOUS TALENTS

Archie's love of Shakespeare is well represented in many stories, but he sometimes also shows talent of his own in other areas:


* ACTING
All The World's A Stage
Castle out of Check
From Here to Profanity [humor]
Players on the Stage
The Weather Eye [humor]

* DRAWING
A Skerry Story

* FOOTBALL (AMERICAN)
Super Bowles XXXV [humor]

* MUSIC
Christmas Memory: Archie
Hornblower and The Passenger
Lightning Flashes of Memory
Simple Gifts
A Skerry Story
The Weather Eye [humor]

* TENNIS
The Indefatigable Open [humor]

* WRITING
Misery
The Price of Honour
The Weather Eye [humor]




This page last updated 6/3/02.


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