Mrs. Silence Whybrew is a wet nurse brought into the London Pack house to care for children.
Mrs. Whybrew is a widow. Her husband died after getting inebriated after the birth of their first child, Gracie, and fell. After his death, she was forced into the workhouse to provide for herself and her daughter.
Mrs. Whybrew and her infant are said to both have cornflower blue eyes, wide faces, and honey hair. She is described as "a buxom young lady who was all smiles", but also as being older than she looks.
She is talkative and has little tact, saying that even her mother told her that she, "couldna stop my mouth with anything short of a dirigible, it was tha' big."
Though she speaks lightheartedly of losing her husband and going to the workhouse because of it, she cries in gratitude at the generous compensation she receives from the pack for her work. Even when distracted and embarrassed, she never stops taking great care of the children in her charge, and she seems to be quite good with them, as they settle quickly down under her care.
In the Books Edit
Mrs. Whybrew was working at a nearby work house when the first child was dropped at the London Pack's doorstep. Rafe found her and brought her back to help since the first child was so young and not yet weened. She stays on when they manage to return all but one of the children.
- "Mrs. Silence Whybrew was a widow, her husband's overenthusiastic celebration of their own blessed event having occasioned a drunken tumble over an ill-placed whitebait stall directly in front of the music hall. The resulting pinwheeling collapse was thought to be a modern interpretive dance-commentary on the current state of dockside fish-trading facilities. He was thus left to expire and did so, with no one the wiser until he began to smell worse than the whitebait."
- "She continued to defy her moniker. 'You're a fine lot of muffins, aren't you?'"