Atticus is the textbook definition of a fair and courageous man. His arch throughout To Kill a Mockingbird is one that shows he not only teaches his children equality, but does whatever he can to set an example as well.

Atticus is easily the bravest character in the whole book, he took on a losing case to show his kids what true courage is. Throughout the entire book, he guides both Scout and Jem to stay away from prejudice.

Throughout the entire novel, Atticus proves himself to not just present himself as a patient, empathetic, and smart man, but to live it out in his every action.

Atticus is a fair man. That is made abundantly clear toward the end of chapter two. We learn Atticus aided Mr. Cunningham with legal affairs when he couldn’t pay right away. Atticus accepted Mr. Cunningham’s request and was patient.

Over the course of a year, Atticus got paid back. He had grace and patience with Mr. Cunningham and it paid off. Atticus indirectly taught Jem about patience through Mrs. Dubose.

The context behind this conversation is Jem discussing his punishment with Atticus after he had gone and destroyed her bushes. Jem said “Yes sir. She wants me to come every afternoon after school and Saturdays and read to her out loud for two hours. Atticus, do I have to?” Atticus replied “Certainly.” Jem complained, “But she wants me to do it for a month.”

Atticus responded, “Then you’ll do it for a month.” This was only one example of Atticus teaching Jem about patience. Even though it wasn’t a direct example, Jem was still taught a valuable lesson about patience thanks to Atticus.

Atticus shows and teaches empathy to both Scout and Jem. A great example is Mrs. Dubose. Atticus tells Jem several times that she’s an old lady and to be a gentleman. Perhaps the most famous quote in To Kill a Mockingbird is about empathy.

At the end of chapter 2, Atticus says to Scout, “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view … until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”.

Atticus is easily the smartest man in the entire book. He’s smart enough to not fall astray due to prejudice. He makes a compelling case to show that Tom Robinson is innocent. He makes it known that it was physically impossible for Tom Robinson to have r*ped Mayella Ewell.

This quote that took place in the courtroom perfectly illustrated that. It is Atticus’ response to Bob Ewell’s false accusation. “Which, gentlemen, we know is in itself a lie as black as Tom Robinson’s skin, a lie I do not have to point out to you. You know the truth, and the truth is this: some Negroes lie, some Negroes are immoral, some Negro men are not to be trusted around women—black or white.

But this is a truth that applies to the human race and to no particular race of men. There is not a person in this courtroom who has never told a lie, who has never done an immoral thing, and there is no man living who has never looked upon a woman without desire.”.

The quote shows just how smart Atticus is. He has every single quality to be a great hero.

Atticus is easily the hero of To Kill a Mockingbird. He may not have accomplished the impossible and saved Tom from life in jail, but he did touch the lives of many people.

He taught his kids several important life lessons, about avoiding racial prejudice, learning to be patient, and practicing equality. Atticus is a courageous and kind man who teaches his lessons through example.

When saying that to Jem, and Scout he risked the chance of them not listening to him. Lastly, it is courageous of him standing up to the individuals at the jailhouse. Atticus risked the chance of the individuals getting him, and Tom, and killing, or hurting them physically.

Through all these examples, of courage, and risk we can see how extremely courageous Atticus was during this novel.

author avatar
William Anderson (Schoolworkhelper Editorial Team)
William completed his Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts in 2013. He current serves as a lecturer, tutor and freelance writer. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, walking his dog and parasailing. Article last reviewed: 2022 | St. Rosemary Institution © 2010-2024 | Creative Commons 4.0

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