William Bankes is a friend of Mr. Ramsay; he stays on the Island of Skye as he was invited. William is a botanist by profession. This character is a widower at the age of sixty. Mrs. Ramsay tries to find a woman for him and wants him to marry Lily Briscoe. However, they remain close friends and maintain warm relations. He knew Mr. Ramsay from youth when he was unmarried and did not have a family of eight children. That is why he is especially valuable for Mr. Ramsay. He is very gentle and intelligent man, being able to conduct conversations on various topics. He is calm and well mannered.
William Bankes in the Essays