in Old Man's Love

Chapter 04 – Mary Lawrie Accepts Mr. Whittlestaff

making Mr. Whittlestaff a god

Both Mary and Mrs. Baggett metaphorically apotheosize Mr. Whittlestaff by prioritizing his wishes and happiness. In Classical mythology we have the case of Heracles/Hercules, a mortal who is promoted to divine status upon death, and in Hellenistic and Roman history there are many examples of human rulers who are worshipped as gods. The “deification” of Mr. Whittlestaff underscores not only the power he has over other members of his household but also their willingness to support and maintain that power. [RR 2018]