Tars Tarkas

Tars Tarkas is a fictional character in Edgar Rice Burroughs' Barsoom series. A great warrior and leader among his people (the brutal and mirthless Tharks), he possesses a sense of compassion and empathy uncharacteristic of his race. In the first novel, A Princess of Mars, with the help of the newly arrived Earth man John Carter, he becomes Jeddak (king) of the Tharks.

Tars Tarkas is the first Barsoomian John Carter encounters when he appears on Mars. When Tars Tarkas discovers Carter inspecting the Tharks' incubator (in which the tribe's eggs are sealed for up to five years prior to hatching), he attempts to kill Carter. The attempt fails, and Tars Tarkas instead takes Carter prisoner and transports him back to the nearby dead city, in which a group of Tharks have taken up temporary residence. When Carter kills one of the Tharks in combat, Tars Tarkas informs him he has gained his opponent's rank and possessions.

Over the course of the next weeks, Carter comes to respect Tars Tarkas for his abilities as a warrior and statesman. Carter also discovers that Tars Tarkas has a secret: long ago he fell in love and had a child (egg) with his lover, Gozava, two actions punishable by death in the Tharks' culture. Tars Tarkas and Gozava hid the egg and incubated it in secret. Tars Tarkas was ordered away on a long military expedition, and when the child finally hatched, Gozava managed to mingle her child with the newborn children from the communal incubator. Gozava's maternity (although not the child's identity) was discovered, and she was tortured and killed by the Tharkian chieftain Tal Hajus for the crime of childbearing. However, even under torture she refused to reveal the name of the child's father. The daughter's name is Sola, and she befriends Carter and tells him the story of her birth and the identity of her father.

When he learns this, Carter's sympathy and admiration for Tars Tarkas increases, and he resolves to do all he can to help. Over time, the two become friends, and Carter, after escaping the Tharks in the course of his pursuit of Dejah Thoris, returns to them and helps engineer a duel between Tars Tarkas and Tal Hajus, the Jeddak of Thark. Tars Tarkas wins the duel, and according to Tharkian law becomes Jeddak. In exchange for Carter's help, Tars Tarkas becomes one of Carter's closest allies. He appears in a number of the other novels in the series.

Read more about Tars TarkasFilm, Tributes

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Tars Tarkas - Tributes
... The Finnish filmmaker Aarne Tarkas (originally Aarne Saastamoinen) was an aficionado of the John Carter books and took his name from Tars Tarkas ... Barsoom Characters Earthmen John Carter Ulysses Paxton Martians Dejah Thoris Tars Tarkas Thuvia of Ptarth Ras Thavas Tan Hadron Vor Daj Gahan of Gathol ...
The Gods Of Mars - Plot Summary
... The lone survivor is his friend Tars Tarkas, the Jeddak of Thark, who has taken the pilgrimage to the Valley Dor to find Carter ... Having saved their own lives, Carter and Tars Tarkas discover that the Therns, a white-skinned race of self-proclaimed gods, have for eons deceived the ... Carter and Tars Tarkas rescue Thuvia, a slave girl, and attempt to escape, capitalizing on the confusion caused by an attack by the Black Pirates of Barsoom upon the Therns ...
A Princess Of Mars - Characters
... Tars Tarkas A fierce Green Martian warrior from the tribe of Thark, he is unusual among his race for his ability to experience tender emotions such as friendship and love ... Tars Tarkas more than once displays an ironic sense of humor he mocks John Carter's perception of himself as "a cruel green warrior" while fighting beside him, and in The ... Sola Daughter of Tars Tarkas and a friend of John Carter, she teaches him the Barsoomian language and the history of her race, as well as the secret of ...