Alexander Randall was the younger brother of Jonathan Randall. In 1744 he began an affair with Mary Hawkins, who bore him a son, Denys. His dying wish was for his brother to marry Miss Hawkins and protect her and his son.
Alexander was the third son of Sir Denys Randall and Jessica Wolverton. His father was knighted in the late 17th century, and was awarded a baronetcy by King George I. His eldest brother, Edward Randall, inherited the family estate in Sussex, while the second brother, Jonathan, became a captain of dragoons in His Majesty's Army. In 1744, Alexander served as secretary and chaplain to the Duke of Sandringham.
Events of the Novels
Alexander is briefly mentioned as the third Randall son.
Dragonfly in Amber
In 1744, Alexander arrives in France with the Duke of Sandringham who is his employer. Both Jamie and Claire mistake him for Jonathan Randall – killed, or so they thought, at Wentworth Prison – at first glance but luckily Claire faints which prevents Jamie from killing Alex before he realizes the truth.
Alex Randall arrives in the alleyway just after Murtagh, Claire and Mary Hawkins have been attacked, and accompanies them back to their house in the Rue Tremoulins. Jamie and Claire are hosting an important dinner party that evening which cannot be canceled without a good explanation, and they must keep Mary's rape a secret to save her reputation. They take Mary back to Jared's house, dose her with poppy syrup and put her to sleep in an upstairs bedroom while they attend to their guests. Alex confesses he is in love with Mary and is left to stand guard over her. Mary wakes in a drugged stupor and hallucinates that she is being raped. She runs screaming out onto the upper landing with her bruises showing clearly through her torn nightshift, with Alex running after her trying to restrain her. Mary's screams disrupt the dinner party, and to the guests below, it looks like Alex is attacking Mary. Jamie is forced to punch Alex out to stop the situation turning into a complete melee. When Alex comes to he is taken to the Guard's Headquarters in the Bastille with Jamie to explain what has happened. After the scandal of the dinner party, Alex is dismissed from the Duke of Sandringham's employ.
Because of his poor health, Alex is unable to find new employment and turns to his brothers for help. His elder brother Edward sends some money but will not have Alex home, as his wife holds extreme religious opinions. Jack, however, finds him rooms in Edinburgh near the castle in Ladywalk Wynd, but cannot visit easily once Charles Stuart's army occupies the city in 1745. The cold weather, poor diet and squalid conditions contribute to the deterioration of Alex's health, to the point that Jack is forced to seek Claire's help.
Claire comes to see Alex and tells him he has tuberculosis and congestive heart failure, and likely less than a year to live. Alex asks Claire not to tell Jack. He then tells Claire that he knows about Jack, but it doesn't matter because he is his brother. Alex knows he is dying and he writes to Mary to tell her around October. She comes to Edinburgh to stay with her aunt and visits Alex each day. Mary brings Claire to see Alex and thereafter Claire visits every morning and gives him something to help him sleep. In gratitude, Alex summons Jack to give Claire information about the English troop movements.
In early 1746, when Mary is taken to her godfather's house to meet a potential suitor, Alex thinks he will never see her again, but prays that he will. After a number of weeks, when he is close to death, Mary returns and comes to visit him immediately with Claire. Alex asks Claire to return the next day with Jamie. When Jamie and Claire arrive, Alex tells them he is waiting for one more person. That person turns out to be his brother, Jack. Alex asks Jack to do one last thing for him, and Claire realizes that Mary is pregnant and Alex wants Jack to marry her. Alex performs the ceremony himself with the last of his strength, with Claire and Jamie as witnesses. He then fades away with Mary by his side.
Alexander Randall was seen as a very pleasant man. His character could have been described as thoughtful, considerate, and overall very well-mannered. Despite his deep infatuation with Mary Hawkins, he suggests that his brother, Jack Randall, marry her so that his child has a father.
Alex is also seen to be the opposite of his brother, Jack. Alex is a very kind person, but Jack Randall is ruthless and sadistic. These character dynamics make it to where it is almost hard for some of the characters to believe their related at all upon first meeting Alex.
- Alexander is the Latinized form of the Greek name Αλεξανδρος (Alexandros), which meant "defending men".
- Randall derives from the given name Randel, which is a medieval diminutive form of names (e.g. Randolf) beginning with the Germanic element rand meaning "rim (of a shield)".
English actor Laurence Dobiesz portrays Alexander Randall in the Outlander television series.
- It is unclear from the text exactly which month Alex Randall died. However, given that the Jacobite army began their retreat north towards Inverness by February 1, and Jamie is anxious to follow after them, Alex probably died in February, or March at the latest.
- In chapter 40 of Outlander, Randall's parents are given as Joseph and Mary Randall, and his elder brother as William. The elder brother is also given as William in Dragonfly in Amber, chapter 38. In The Outlandish Companion, the Randall family tree chart lists Denys Randall and Jessica Wolverton as parents, and Edward as the eldest brother. Confusingly, in the Companion's alphabetical list of characters, there is only William listed as the "eldest of the three Randall brothers", and no Edward. Diana Gabaldon's response to the naming confusion of the elder brother has been briefly, though not definitively, covered in this thread in her folder on the Compuserve forum. For what it's worth, "Denys", "Edward", and "Wolverton" each recur for other subsequent members of the Randall family, in both the family chart in the Companion and in the six books after Dragonfly: the son of Alex and Mary is called Denys; Brianna inherits Randall family silver in Drums of Autumn, originally purchased by an Edward K. Randall; and Frank's middle name is Wolverton.
- The Outlandish Companion, page 208.
- Behind the Name: Alexander – accessed 8 April 2015.
- Behind the Name: Randel – accessed 28 September 2014.