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Jonathan Harker
Dracula character
Created by Bram Stoker
Portrayed by Gustav von Wangenheim (Nosferatu)
David Manners (Dracula)
Bruno Ganz (Nosferatu the Vampyre)
Keanu Reeves (Bram Stoker's Dracula)
Steven Weber (Dracula: Dead and Loving It)
Information
Gender Male
Age 30's
Occupation solicitor, vampire hunter
Spouse(s) Mina Harker
Children Quincey Harker
Relatives Mina Harker,
Quincey Harker
Address England
Religion Anglican
Nationality English

Jonathan Harker is a fictional character and the protagonist in the 1897 horror novel Dracula by Bram Stoker (though other productions show Van Helsing as the central character/protagonist). However, in the book, most of how they find Count Dracula is through the combined efforts of Harker, John Seward, Quincey Morris, Arthur Holmwood, and Abraham Van Helsing, using Harker's many diary entries as a way to somehow predict Dracula's course of action.

In the novel

Harker is a recently certified solicitor from Exeter, who is sent by his employer, Mr. Hawkins, to Transylvania in order to consult a client on a property transaction. This client is a mysterious count who lives in a castle in the Carpathian Mountains and is planning to move to England where he plans to reside at (among other locations) Carfax Abbey. Soon after Harker's arrival at the castle, he is made a prisoner by this Count Dracula, who is revealed as a vampire. Harker also has a dangerous encounter with the seductive Brides of Dracula, and if he weren't saved by Dracula, probably would have ended up a vampire himself.

Later, he manages to escape, finding refuge at a convent. He has a mental breakdown upon arriving at the convent because of his encounters with Dracula; his fiancée, Mina Murray, comes to nurse him back to health with the nuns' help and marries him there. He returns home to England and later sees Dracula in London. After learning Dracula killed Lucy, he joins Van Helsing, Seward, Holmwood, and Morris. His clerical skills prove very useful for collecting information and for tracking down Dracula's London lairs by means of paperwork. He vows to destroy Dracula and, if he could, to send "his soul forever and ever to burning to hell[..]!" even if it be at the cost of own soul. When confronted with Mina's curse, however, he is unsure how to react; Mina asks the others in the group to kill her if the need comes. While Harker says he would, in the privacy of his journal says that if it is necessary, that he would become a vampire himself out of his love for her. However, Harker manages to avoid that because along with Van Helsing and the others he manages to destroy Dracula. At the book's climax, he prises open Dracula's coffin mere moments before sunset and slashes open Dracula's throat with a kukri knife while Quincey Morris stabs him in the heart with a Bowie knife.

In a note following the end of the novel, it is revealed that several years have passed. He and Mina have a son whom they have named Quincy, after Quincy Morris. Noting Quincy Harker's birthday is the day Quincy Morris died fighting Dracula, Mina likes to think that some of Morris spirit is in their son. Jonathan Harker eventually visits Dracula's castle along with his wife and son and their surviving friends to reminisce. He returns home with his wife and son and is told by Van Helsing that one day his son will learn the whole story.

One interesting thing to note is Harker's religious orientation. While he, along with all the other main characters, is a Christian determined to serve Jesus by destroying the demonic Dracula, he, unlike the devout Van Helsing, is not a Catholic. Early in the book, he describes himself as an "English Churchman", that is to say a member of the state-sponsored Church of England, an Anglican. He is at first suspicious when an old woman gives him her own crucifix when he says he is going to go to Castle Dracula. (With how "beads" are mentioned, it may in fact be a rosary.) Privately thinking that such things are idolatrous, he is apparently a low church Anglican. Yet when he is trapped in Castle Dracula and is protected by the cross' power his allegiance shifts.

Portrayals in media

A major character in the novel and most of its film adaptations, Harker has been portrayed to date in film, theatre, and television by many actors, including:

A few of the adaptions have Harker succumbing to vampirism (either from Dracula or the brides) and having to be killed.

In the Dracula, the Musical, Jonathan was played by Rob Evan. In the St. Gallen Switzerland and Graz, Austria productions, Jonathan was played by the Swedish musical theater actor, Jesper Tydén.

Others

  • A video game for Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii was announced that would revolve around Jonathan Harker. The game was called Harker and was being developed by The Collective but was eventually cancelled.
  • The band Schoolyard Heroes has a song called Sincerely Yours, Jonathan Harker.
  • The uruguayan musician, humorist and writer Leo Masliah has a song called Jonathan Harker.
  • Jonathan Harker is a character in Dean Koontz's Frankenstein.
  • In a Supernatural episode, which is a montage of the horror movies, Dean Winchester's role is similar to that of Jonathan Harker, as the main obstacle in Dracula's way to claiming who he thinks is "Mina".
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