Morticia Addams

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Morticia Addams
The Addams Family character
Morticia adams origional.jpg
Carolyn Jones as Morticia Addams in the 1960s television series
Created byCharles Addams
Portrayed byCarolyn Jones (1964 series)
Anjelica Huston (1991 & 1993 films)
Daryl Hannah (Addams Family Reunion)
Ellie Harvie (The New Addams Family)
Bebe Neuwirth, Brooke Shields (2010 musical)
Voiced byJanet Waldo (1973 animated series)
Nancy Linari (1992 animated series)
Charlize Theron (2019 film)
In-universe information
FamilyWednesday Addams (daughter)
Pugsley Addams (son)
Pubert Addams (son) Uncle Fester (brother-in-law or uncle, depending on the version)
Grandmama Addams (mother or mother in law, depending on the version)
Ophelia Frump (sister)
Cousin Itt (cousin-in-law)
SpouseGomez Addams (husband)

Morticia Addams (née Frump) is a fictional character from The Addams Family television and film series. Created by cartoonist Charles Addams, she was based on his first wife, Barbara Jean Day.[1]


Morticia first appeared in Charles Addams' newspaper cartoons[2] as the stern, aloof matriarch of the family. She often appeared with the rest of the family, and was, along with Gomez and Grandmama, one of the few members to actually speak in the cartoons.


Morticia is the wife of Gomez Addams and mother of Wednesday, Pugsley and Pubert Addams. The character originated in the Charles Addams cartoons for The New Yorker magazine in the 1930s. In the cartoons, none of the family members had names. When the characters were adapted to the 1964 television series, Charles Addams' selection of her name was inspired by "mortician". Morticia's maiden name is "Frump" and she has an older sister named Ophelia (also played by Carolyn Jones). In the television series, her mother (Uncle Fester's sister) was named Hester Frump (played by Margaret Hamilton). Her mother-in-law is Grandmama Addams. In the 1990s Addams Family films, familial relationships are changed for the characters of Grandmama and Fester. Grandmama is actually Morticia's mother, not Gomez's, while Fester is Gomez's brother, not Morticia's uncle.

The real head of the family ... low-voiced, incisive and subtle, smiles are rare...ruined beauty ... contemptuous and original and with fierce family loyalty ... even in disposition, muted, witty, sometimes deadly ... given to low-keyed rhapsodies about her garden of deadly nightshade, henbane and dwarf’s hair ...[3]

— Charles Addams

Morticia is described as a witch; she is slim, with extremely pale skin and long flowing straight black hair. In one episode she is seen wearing a black pointed hat. She commonly wears black hobble dresses to match her hair, tightly form fitting, with a fringe of octopus-like cloth "tentacles" at the lower hem. According to Wednesday, Morticia applies baking powder to her face instead of actual makeup. In each episode, she easily allures her husband Gomez by speaking French (or any other foreign language for that matter). Morticia is musically inclined, and is often seen freely strumming a Japanese shamisen. She frequently enjoys cutting the buds off of roses, which she discards (keeping only the stems), likes cutting out paper dolls with three heads and making sweaters with three arms, collecting the mail from the hand-in-the-box Thing, and cooking unusual concoctions for her husband, including eye of newt. Her personal pet is Cleopatra, a fictitious breed of carnivorous plant called an African Strangler, to which she feeds hamburgers and other various meat.

Morticia's family tree can be traced back to Salem, Massachusetts, and witchcraft is also implied at times in the television series.[4] For example, Morticia likes to "smoke," an activity that does not involve cigarettes or cigars (such as her husband frequently enjoys), but smoke instead emanates from below her.[5]

In 2009, she was included in Yahoo!'s Top 10 TV Moms from Six Decades of Television for the time period 1964–1966.[6] AOL named her one of the 100 Most Memorable Female TV Characters.[7]

In other media[edit]

Anjelica Huston as Morticia in the 1991 film The Addams Family

Morticia was portrayed by Carolyn Jones in the television series of the 1960s and by Anjelica Huston in The Addams Family (1991) and its sequel Addams Family Values (1993). Huston's portrayal of Morticia was always illuminated by a ghostly glow around the eyes, which became most noticeable when she was standing or lying in dim light. Daryl Hannah played Morticia in the 1998 film Addams Family Reunion. Canadian actress Ellie Harvie played Morticia in the revival series, The New Addams Family. In the first animated series made in 1973, Morticia was voiced by Janet Waldo. Jones also voiced this character in an episode of The New Scooby-Doo Movies that featured the family. In the 1992 animated series, she was voiced by Nancy Linari. In the 2010 Broadway musical, Morticia was portrayed by Bebe Neuwirth. Brooke Shields replaced her in the role of Morticia on June 28, 2011.

Morticia was also one of the inspirations for the Walt Disney character Magica De Spell, first designed and drawn by Carl Barks.[8] Natasha Fatale, a villain from the Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons, was also based on Morticia's design.[9]

Morticia is voiced by Charlize Theron in the 2019 adaptation of The Addams Family.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Charles Addams Sketching Morticia
  2. ^ "Charles Addams". Retrieved 2018-07-16.
  3. ^ Charles Addams official website
  4. ^ Season 1: Episode 5, "The Addams Family Tree"
  5. ^ Season 1: Episode 9, "The New Neighbors meet the Addams"
  6. ^ Adair, Aly (February 27, 2009). "Top 10 Favorite TV Moms". Yahoo!. Archived from the original on October 21, 2012. Retrieved June 17, 2012.
  7. ^ Potts, Kim (March 2, 2011). "100 Most Memorable Female TV Characters". AOL TV. Retrieved July 16, 2012.
  8. ^
  9. ^ "Alex Anderson interview". Hogan's Alley. 26 October 2010. Archived from the original on 26 October 2010.

External links[edit]