Lucas

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Lucas is Gilbert Norrell's senior manservant, second only to John Childermass. By 1817 he has been in Mr. Norrell's service for at least fifteen years[63]. His exact position in the house though is difficult to define, for it seems to be an odd blend of footman, valet and even butler. For example, it certainly appears part of his duties to help his master undress, as he has charge of putting away Mr. Norrell's wig[18] and coat[66]: but at another point he is described as a footman [6]. Yet again it also seems to be part of his duties to wind Hurtfew's many clocks[63], and when after the great crisis of Mr. Norrell's disappearance the servants consider their best course of action, it is Lucas who by common consent largely assumes command. This however is in the absence of John Childermass, to whom Lucas is always deferential[46] - indeed the vagueness as to Lucas's exact standing in the household is perhaps a result of the even greater doubt about the position of Childermass[30]. (It may strike the reader as strange that Mr. Norrell, so precise and so conventional in every other way, should be a little eccentric in his domestic arrangements: but we must remember he is a bachelor.)

Lucas is a robust, loyal and courageous servant, for he not only comes promptly to his master's aid when an intruder breaks into his study[13] but does so again when he sees him menaced by a pistol wielded by Lady Pole[46]. That Lucas is also a decent, kindly man we may be assured by the practical sympathy he shows to Childermass after Mr. Norrell dismisses him[63], and by his thoughtfulness concerning the dumb creatures caught up in the Eternal Darkness. On quitting Hurtfew it is after all only natural he should carry away with him his own cat; but it is evidence of real sensibility to arrange for the dispersal of Mr. Norrell's coach-horses - for it would in Lucas's opinion be " a wicked cruelty to leave any creature in this Perpetual Darkness"[64].)