In the Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown, Sophie embarks on a journey to not only to find the Holy Grail but also the truth about her family. Sophie’s character changed a lot throughout the story, she became a lot more aware about what is goes on in the world and how one’s past and history can have a big impact in life. She had to learn and grow as a person because of how much pressure she was on while figuring out the answers to all of the secret messages her grandfather left her. She also had to face a lot of difficulties due to the fact that she had so many people standing in the way and trying to hurt her and reveal the secret. Sophie Neveu is the granddaughter of the Grand Master of the Priory of Sion, Jacques Sauniere, the only real background we have of her is that her grandfather raised her from a very early age, after her parents were killed in a car accident (82). We find out that Sauniere trained her to solve complicated word puzzles as a young girl and that it was these puzzles and riddles that sparked her interest in solving them (218).
The fact that she was exposed to puzzles and riddles when she was a child is likely the reason why she ended up working in a field that revolved around that topic. One of the things that give us some insight into Sophie’s personality is when we are told about a day when she accidentally discovered a strange key in her grandfather’s room inscribed with the initials “P.S.” (118). This isn’t until much deeper into the book but it really defines who Sophie Neveu is because it shows how she struggled to find the truth about her family’s history from a very young age and that Sauniere was keeping secrets from her. This caused her to get even more curious about her past and is one of the main reasons why she becomes so dedicated to finding the Grail. Something that is really interesting about Sophie is the fact that her name’s meaning is that of the ancient goddess of wisdom, the icon of the divine feminine, Sophia; which means wisdom, this is very interesting because she does display wisdom at many points throughout the novel and out-shinning Robert most of the time.
Throughout the book Sophie learns the reasons behind her grandfathers strange behavior and why he kept so many things hidden from her. At the beginning of the story we are told that she had stopped all forms of communication from her grandfather because of an estrange ritual she saw him be a part of and we are told that she had not spoken or seen him until the night of his murder (76-77). This shows that at a very young age Sophie had to deal with a very traumatic experience that shaped her personality and made her become a strong woman and caused her to not show much emotion. Sophie is a cryptologist working for the Parisian police and therefore a very intelligent woman. She shows she’s intelligent because she realizes that the message “P.S: Find Robert Langdon” is meant for her; She delivers a message to Robert Langdon letting him know that Officer Fache finds him as the prime suspect of Sauniere’s death. She reveals to Langdon that she is Sauniere’s granddaughter and tells Langdon that she was sure of it because her grandfather used to call her Princess Sophie as a child. (76-77).
Sophie’s talk to Langdon in the bathroom of the Louvre sets up the plot for the entire novel as well as give us some very important background information about Sophie, not only do we become aware of how intelligent she is but we also realize that she is brave enough to go against Fache and the Parisian police if it means finding out the truth about her past and family. Sophie doesn’t tell anybody else about the message her grandfather left her because she realizes that if her grandfather didn’t want anyone else to know what had happened. Being the only one that knows that Sauniere was hiding something important causes Sophie to act impulsively and helps Langdon escape from the police. It isn’t until farther into the book that we are told that her grandfather raised her from a after her parents were killed in a car accident and that he then proceeded to train her to solve complicated word puzzles and even made a cryptex for her (216).
We are given brief flashbacks of her life, which prove that she was curious and hungry for knowledge from an early age. An example of this is that we are told that she accidentally discovered a strange key in her grandfather’s room inscribed with the initials “P.S.” and that she tried looking for information about her family but anytime she tried Sauniere would get mad and tell her to forget about them. (118). This has a lot to do with her personality as an adult and being part of the Parisian police as a cryptographer, the fact that she spends her days at work figuring out puzzles and hidden messages shows that living with Sauniere made her become good at unscrambling and finding out the truth, the way she was brought up by Sauniere shaped her personality to be that of a person who doesn’t fully trust people and that is worthy of knowing important information such as the location of the Holy Grail.
Sophie finds out at the end of the book that she is a descendant of the Merovingians, a living descendant of Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene and that she is; literally, what her grandfather nicknamed her when she was a child: “Princess Sophie.” She also finds out that Sauniere wasn’t really her grandfather but that since he was the Grand Master of the Priory of Sion she would be safer with him. He chose to protect her and prepare her for what he knew was coming.
The rest of the Priory then welcomes Sophie and tell her that they will protect her. At the beginning Sophie is brave and intelligent, she exhibits confidence and knowledge about her job and surroundings, but thought-out the novel and as she starts to unravel more of the secret and the Holy Grail she seems to leave that confidence behind and start questioning he past and who Sauniere really was. She starts showing more emotion throughout the novel and the closer we get to the end. Sophie is a strong woman who got a bit confused because of the uncertainty of her past and not knowing that she could trust.
Brown, Dan. The De Vinci Code, NY: Anchor, 2003. Print.