Character Analysis of Snowball

Noah Freedman, Annmarie Vincenzo

Who is Snowball? Why is He Important to Animal Farm?

Snowball, a passionate pig, leads Animal Farm through his persuasive speeches and dedicated nature. He provides a nice contrast to the harsh nature that the other pig, Napoleon, posesses. He relies heavily on his own logic and rhetoric skill, which is his downfall against Napoleon.

He is important to Animal Farm, because he provides a positive image of how to maintain power and persuade others in an effective, not harmful, way.

Character Traits of Snowball

Dedicated (Especially in Battle)

  • "They all they had seen Snowball charging ahead of them at the Battle of the Cowshed, how he had rallied and encouraged them at every turn, and how he had not paused for an instant even when the pellets from Jones's gun had wounded his back." (Orwell 79-80)
  • "Snowball fought bravely..." (Orwell 80)

Snowball was a dedicated leader and fighter. He put others and his principles before his own body and was willing to do whatever it took in order to defend them.


  • "Then Snowball (for it was Snowball who was best at writing) took a brush between the two knuckles of his trotter, painted out MANOR FARM from the top bar of the gate and in its place painted ANIMAL FARM." (Orwell 32)
  • "He talked learnedly about...a complicated scheme for all the save the labor of cartage." (Orwell 53)

Snowball valued his education highly and used it to his advantage as a leader. He believed that he could persuade people to follow the principles of Animal Farm through the knowledge he had obtained through books and other sources.


  • "Snowball often won over the majority by his brilliant speeches." (Orwell 53)
  • "Snowball's eloquence had carried them away." (Orwell 57)

Snowball's persuasive nature was one of his biggest advantages as a leader. He used his persuasive speeches to set passion into the other animals, though not in a negative way.


  • "...he would move rapidly to and fro, drawing in line after line and uttering little whimpers of excitement." (Orwell 54)
  • "...Snowball sprang to his feet, and shouting down to the sheep, who had begun bleating again, broke into a passionate appeal in favour of the windmill." (Orwell 57)

Everything that Snowball did, he did it with passion. This was one of his greates strengths, but also turned out to cause his demise.

Discussion Questions

  1. Is an educated, literate person (or animal) more persuasive than an uneducated, illiterate person/animal?
  2. How can someone's passion be dangerous to others?
  3. How does Snowball continue to play an influential role on Animal Farm even though he is not there?
  4. How is Snowball similar to Napoleon?
  5. What critical qualities does a leader need to possess that Snowball did not have?