Farder Coram van Texel was an important member of the Gyptians. He took the role of second-in-command or adviser for the Gyptian King John Faa. His dæmon, Sophonax, was a larger than average, 'autumn-coloured' cat.
Relationship with Serafina Pekkala
In the 1950s, Coram saved Serafina Pekkala from drowning in a lake. The witch was being attacked by a large red bird, which Coram shot before he realised it was another witch's dæmon. Serafina told him he could call on her any time he needed her. This bond was reinforced later in Coram's life when he was shot by a Skraeling and Pekkala healed him. The two later had a son, however the young boy fell victim to an epidemic and died.
Rescue mission to Bolvangar
Coram accompanied Lyra Silvertongue, John Faa, Iorek Byrnison, Lee Scoresby and 170 gyptians to Bolvangar, where they rescued the children who had been kidnapped by the General Oblation Board. During the journey, Farder Coram taught Lyra to read the alethiometer.
Coram's dæmon was a large autumn-coloured queen cat named Sophonax, affectionately referred by him as Sophie.
Personality and appearance
Sophonax exhibited a courage akin to that of her human, for example being ready to fight when Coram first met Gerard Bonneville. She aided Coram in catching the Spy Fly that was sent by Marisa Coulter to find Lyra prior to their journey North.
At first meeting, Lyra was amazed by the colour of Sophonax's fur, which varied from golden brown to the colour of autumn leaves. She was very large and strong for a cat, despite Coram's frailty.
Behind the Scenes
- In the Golden Compass, Coram is portrayed by classical and Shakespearean actor Tom Courtenay, and Sophonax was shown as a caracal.
- Coram's surname, van Texel, refers to the Dutch province of Texel and is pronounced 'van Tessel'.
- In La Belle Sauvage, Coram is described as being 'brown-skinned'.