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General Woundwort

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General Woundwort


Place of Origin:Efrafa
Death: Unknown
Appears in: Watership Down (book)
Film appearances
Appears in: Watership Down (film)
PandyaAdded by Pandya

General Woundwort is the primary antagonist of the novel, Watership Down. He is the Chief Rabbit of Efrafa.


He is described as a rabbit almost as large as a hare. He is depicted with a savage look, complete with pale eyes, and fur color of undecided thought. Woundwort is orphaned at a young age when his mother is killed by a weasel. He is then taken into the care by a man in a cottage who owns a cat. Once Woundwort is grown, he attempts to kill his first of "the thousand": the cat he lived with. After severely maiming the cat, Woundwort then escapes, and finds his way to his first warren. He quickly usurps leadership, killing the lead rabbit and a rival named Fiorin. He then begins his militarian rule and conquers several other warrens, killing off their leaders personally. Thus Efrafa is born. 

Soon General Woundwort's Efrafa is too large to be maintained as warrens should be, and is transformed into a secretive, strictly-militaristic one, where all rabbits are given over to a strict code for when to silflay. Woundwort is a master schemer, and his strict code stops Efrafa from becoming plagued with disease, or being discovered by the thousand, or by humans. The Owsla becomes the great goal for many of the bucks, with patrols that spread out far and wide, tracking the whereabouts of the thousand, and of various humans. However, many of the does are discontent, because they are unable to breed properly due to overcrowding.

When Bigwig infiltrates the warren, he earns the General's respect due to his size and strength. When it turns out Bigwig only arrives to liberate a number of does and Blackavar, General Woundwort becomes obsessed with revenge against the former Sandleford rabbit. He holds a hatred for Bigwig for the remainder of the book, swearing to kill him personally.

Woundwort loses the respect of Efrafa after the escape of Bigwig, Blackavar and the other nine does, along with the escape of the warren of Watership Down. In order to redeem what he sees as a personal failure, Woundwort takes the best of his legendary Owsla, along with some new bucks, to destroy Bigwig and his warren. On the journey to Watership Down, he drives away his first stoat, defeating another of "the thousand".

The Efrafan Owsla reaches Watership Down, and once the warren is found, the General himself enters and fights Bigwig. Bigwig, in a last minute scheme to get one better at Woundwort, digs himself under a thin layer of dirt, then when Woundwort passes over him, jumps up and injures the General's foreleg so severely that Woundwort is forced to hobble on three legs. Despite being severely wounded, Woundwort puts up a savage fight against Bigwig. Woundwort faces his first defeat, Bigiwg driving the General back out of the warren. Bigwig further tricks Woundwort, saying that he's not the chief rabbit. This elicits to Woundwort that there is an even bigger and stronger rabbit than Bigiwig, not realising that the lead rabbit is the small but clever Hazel, who is already off on a scheme which will end Woundwort's reign forever.

When the General leads Efrafa into the Battle of Watership Down, Hazel leads Dandelion and Blackberry to Nuthanger Farm, to release the black laborador, Bob, and lure him to the Efrafans. Thanks to the speed of Dandelion and Blackberry, as well as the gnawing of the rope by Hazel, the dog is unleashed on the Efrafan Owsla. General Woundwort is the only rabbit of Efrafa to hold his ground against the dog; the rest flee. Woundwort faces the black laborador, and his body is never found. Campion becomes the new chief rabbit in Woundwort's absence, and makes an alliance with Hazel's warren. Later, Bob is found by Professor Adams, panting, with a gash on one of his front legs, which suggests that Woundwort may have actually escaped. In any case, he lives on in Rabbit folklore as "the cousin of the Black Rabbit of Inlé" used by rabbit mothers to frighten disobedient kittens.


In the film, Woundwort is depicted as ugly and blind in one eye, a detail not in the novel. He is the only rabbit with extra teeth. He shares the other characteristics of the other movie Efrafans including a darker color, a more ragged appearance, prominent claws, and dark circles under his eyes. 

General Woundwort TV series
General Woundwort in the TV series
HurkelAdded by Hurkel

TV SeriesEdit

Woundwort serves as the primary antagonist of the television series. A brutal and tyrannical leader who sees himself as the one doing everything for the best of his warren, Woundwort strives to destroy Hazel and his 'outsiders' because of the hope for free life they represent for his own subjects. He has black, ragged fur and is blind in his left eye. He deeply respects Campion, even after his betrayal by him, and he often punishes and threatens Vervain, but still values him as an adviser and loyal subject despite this. He shows a soft side briefly after Pipkin tells him that his parents were killed by a weasel (a fate that Woundwort himself went through), and for a brief moment before Efrafa's destruction sees himself for what he is and what he has brought Efrafa to. After the destruction of Efrafa, Woundwort becomes obsessed with seeking his destiny of destruction, which leads him to the warren he was born in: Darkhaven. In the end, Woundwort pays the ultimate price for his actions and as punishment, he and his Darkhaven minions are taken away to the Shadowlands.


Fall of Efrafa - Woundwort:

The British Post-hardcore/Neo-crust band Fall of Efrafa is a concept band who has recorded a trilogy of albums based loosely around the mythology of Watership Down. This trilogy is known as The Warren of Snares and consists of the albums Owsla (2006), Elil (2007) and Inlé (2009)


Woundwort is a evil, sadistic, and a mad Cheif rabbit, that will eliminate anyone that gets in his way. He belives that all his decisions are for the good of the warren, and will kill anyone who opposes him. Woundwort is cold and tyrannical, and has barely shown any fear. At a young age, he willingly engaged in a fight with a cat, severely hurting it. Even when Bob attacked his soldiers at the battle for Watership Down, Woundowrt didn't back down, instead he lunged fearlessly at Bob. The only Elil Woundowrt fears is man, due to Woundwort witnessing his fathers death by the hands of one, and also because he was held "prisoner" by a man for some time. Realising he couldn't possibly take down man, Woundowrt focused his attention on protecting his warren from man instead.

General Woundworth fighting Bigwig in the Battle of Watership Down
PandyaAdded by Pandya


  • Woundwort's father is named Hemlock.
  • Woundwort is a name of a herb.
  • Woundwort's mother is Laurel.
  • Woundwort was born in Darkhaven and he's also known as the Dark One.
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