Outlander Season 8: Who is Elspeth Cunningham in the Outlander books?

Elspeth Cunningham shows up in Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone. What can we expect to see of her in Outlander Season 8?
Outlander Season 7 Marketing Photography 10/21/22-10/22/22
Outlander Season 7 Marketing Photography 10/21/22-10/22/22 /

Frances Tomelty will take on the role of Elspeth Cunningham in Outlander Season 8. Let’s take a look at her storyline from the books to see what to expect.

Elspeth appears in Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone. She immediately dislikes Claire Fraser—both for being a “witch” and for being a Catholic. However, the two women do come to an understanding of each other, and it leads to an unlikely bond.

This is important when Elspeth’s son, Charles Cunningham, causes problems at the Ridge.

Elspeth Cunningham eventually turns to Claire for help in Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone

We don’t get to know much about Elspeth until it comes to Amy Higgins’s death. Elspeth is there to help Claire take care of the body and handle some of the arrangements. There’s this beautiful moment between the two women, as they find similarities in their lives and an understanding of where the two come from.

After this, Elspeth turns to Claire for help after dislocating her shoulder. She walks two miles to get to Claire knowing she can help, and I love the chapter where this happens. Diana Gabaldon has a copy of the section on her site.

The two know that while they can understand and respect each other, they could never really be friends. Claire’s husband, Jamie, and Elspeth’s son, Charles, are on opposite sides of the Revolutionary War, and they may have to attempt to kill each other.

Elspeth will likely leave with her son in Outlander Season 8

Sure enough, Charles does end up trying to kill Jamie. It’s more of an attempt to capture him and turn him over to the Crown at first, but it turns into a bit of a battle on the Ridge. Jamie and his men end up winning, but it’s not without severe consequences.

Aaron Cloudtree is able to warn Jamie of Cunningham’s attack. Claire and many of the women wait at the house for the events of the night, and Elspeth comes to Claire. They may be on opposite sides, but that doesn’t mean they are true enemies. They will be there to help whoever comes through the doors.

Cunningham is brought in after being shot in the back. Elspeth is there with Claire as Claire works on saving Cunningham’s life. She is honest with Elspeth about the chances of Cunningham walking again. You would think Elspeth would blame Claire and try to claim that it is witchcraft, but she doesn’t. Despite being wary of Claire at first and on the opposite side of a war, she does know that Claire helps everyone she can. She didn’t have to save Charles’s life, but she does, and Elspeth knows that this is all Claire can do.

In the end, Elspeth takes her son to England, where they will live out the rest of their days; whatever that looks like.

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