One of the few characters who are not members of the Bundren family. He even narrates in several chapters in the book. He is portrayed as powerless in the face of Addie’s illness and simply watches her die during her last hours. He himself doesn’t look healthy – he is overweight and his speech doesn’t radiate joy or good feelings. The author keeps this character towards the end of the book, allowing him to heal Cash’s leg and provide an external evaluation of the family.
Peabody in the Essays