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Henry Jones, Sr.
Background information
Feature films
Television programs
Video games
Park attractions
Portrayed by Sean Connery
Lloyd Owen
Alex Hyde-White
Performance model
Honors and awards
Character information
Full name
Other names
Occupation Archaeologist
Professor of Medieval Literature
Powers and abilities

Professor Henry Walton Jones, Sr. is a fictional character in the Indiana Jones franchise. He is the estranged father of Indiana Jones, who is captured by the Nazis while searching for the Holy Grail to act as bait for Indy.

The character was portrayed by the late Sean Connery in the 1989 film Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Alex Hyde-White cameoed as the younger Henry in the film's prologue (though his face was not seen, and Connery dubbed his voice). Lloyd Owen played Henry in The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles TV series. The character subsequently made appearances in novels and a comic book.


The father of renowned archaeologist Indiana Jones, Henry was born in the United Kingdom on December 12, 1872. He is Scottish, and a professor of medieval literature (he received his degree from the University of Oxford on June 5, 1899) who, according to his son, is "the one the students hope they don't get".[1]

A driven man, Henry was fascinated by his search for the Holy Grail, keeping all the clues he found regarding its whereabouts in his Grail diary. He is apparently a Christian (although his denomination is unclear). He does not tolerate his son using Jesus's name in vain, slapping the younger Henry across the face when he does so and telling him, "That's for blasphemy!"[1]

Seemingly finding parenting difficult, Henry did not bond with his son during his childhood; after the death of his wife Anna from scarlet fever, the gulf between father and son grew to the point where they rarely spoke. Henry claims that he taught his son "self reliance" this way, while Indiana felt that his father simply cared more about his intellectual pursuits than he did about his own son, saying "What you taught me, was that I was less important to you than some people who'd been dead for 500 years in another country." To Indiana's constant exasperation, Henry refers to his son only as "Junior" (ironically, Indiana does the same thing to his own son), until the end of The Last Crusade when he finally calls him "Indiana". As he was not a hands-on father, Indiana resented his father's aloof, distant nature, which may have influenced his own inability to settle down and start a family for much of his life, and also resented his father's lifelong pursuit of the quest for the Holy Grail. When Henry explains that the search for the Grail is "a race against evil", Indy lashes out at him: "This is an obsession, Dad! I never understood it! Never!" Because of aloofness as a father, Indy embraced his father's friend Marcus Brody as a father figure and role model.

Henry suffers from Musophobia (fear of rats), similar to his son's fear of snakes, and, apparently, also from acrophobia.[2] He also has a habit of saying "This is intolerable!" in particularly trying circumstances. When Indy punches a Nazi while on the tank, he shouts, "You call this archaeology?!" Throughout the film, Henry is shocked by his son's violent lifestyle, such as when he guns down a pair of Nazis, saying "Look what you did! I can't believe what you did!" He also is unimpressed when his son defeats their Nazi pursuers with only a pole during their escape on motorcycle. During the tank battle, though, he blows up a truck full of Nazis to Brody's horror, explaining "It's war!"

As revealed in the Indiana Jones Ultimate Guide, Henry Jones, Sr. died in 1951.


In Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, set in 1938, Walter Donovan finds a tablet that provides new clues to the Grail's location, he hires Henry to lead an expedition to locate the artifact. While on the expedition, he discovers that his colleague (Elsa Schneider, with whom Indy has a brief affair) is working for the Nazis. Henry mails his Grail diary, with its many vital clues, to his son for safekeeping — shortly afterwards he (while working in a Venetian library) is captured by Nazi officials and interned in Brunwald Castle on the Austrian border.

He is eventually rescued from the castle by his son, and they learn that Donovan is also working with the Nazis. Henry convinces Indiana that the Grail must not be taken by the Nazis and that they need to go to Berlin to reclaim his Grail diary to complete the quest. During the course of the adventure, Marcus is captured and when Indiana goes to battle the Nazis, Henry tries to rescue Marcus himself. During the course of the battle, Henry blows up a truck full of Nazis, saving Indiana's life. Eventually, working together, Marcus and Henry manage to escape the tank they're trapped in. When Indy nearly falls to his death off a cliff after fighting Nazis on a tank, Henry is horrified when he thinks his son has died, and is greatly relieved when Indy reveals himself to be alive and well. Henry is shot by Donovan in the film's climax, but Indiana finds the Grail in time and uses it to heal his wounds. Henry returns the favor by rescuing Indiana from a rift (created when Elsa crosses a seal with the Grail), imploring his son to let the Grail go, even calling him by his nickname "Indiana" for the first time and implying that he cares more about Indiana than the Grail.

In The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, following the publication of a successful book on chivalry in 1909, Jones is invited to speak at a number of schools and universities around the world. He took his wife and son along with him, hiring his former tutor, Helen Seymour (portrayed by Margaret Tyzack) to tutor his son.

In Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Henry is hinted to have died prior to the events of the film. A framed photograph of him is seen on Indy's desk at one point in the film. Near the end of the movie, Indy addresses Mutt as "Junior". In the James Rollins novelization of the movie, it is said that Henry Jones Sr had died roughly two years before, making his year of death between 1955 and 1956. However, in the James Luceno DK book, Indiana Jones the Ultimate Guide, it lists his death as 1951.[3]

According to a video on the official website for the video game, Indiana Jones and the Staff of Kings, Henry will be a playable character in a storyline specially created for co-op mode, which follows Henry Sr. and Henry Jr. as they travel to South America to prevent priceless artifacts from falling into the hands of the Germans.

Henry Sr. and Henry Jr. make very brief unplayable cameos in the video game "LEGO Star Wars III: The Clone Wars". Their appearance pays tribute to a scene from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.


Steven Spielberg chose to introduce Indiana's father in the third film, as he found the Holy Grail an unspectacular plot device. Sean Connery was the obvious choice to play the role for him, as James Bond was an inspiration for Indiana.[4] George Lucas and Harrison Ford were surprised, though. Ford explained Connery (born in 1930), was only twelve years older than he was.[5] Connery enhanced the character, who was conceived as more bookish. He came up with the line "She talks in her sleep" while filming, which caused the crew to ruin the take as they found it so funny.[4]

To prepare for the role in The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, Lloyd Owen prepared by watching numerous Connery films and studied his accent. Owen shared the character's love of medieval history, having studied Geoffrey Chaucer's The Knight's Tale. Owen considered the character "a good father. I think that's obvious by the way Indy has turned out. He even said in the film that he's not the kind of father that says, 'Eat your food, go to bed, brush your teeth!' He's not that kind of guy at all. He's a very liberal parent for the 1900s."[6]

Connery turned down a cameo appearance in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008), as he was enjoying retirement too much. In a statement, he provided one last piece of advice for "Junior" – keep the cliffs low, the monsters CGI and the whip close at hand to fend off the stunt coordinator.[7] George Lucas said in hindsight that it was good Connery did not appear, as it would disappoint the audience when his character did not join the film's adventure.[8] Ford joked, "I'm old enough to play my own father."[9]


Sean Connery received a Golden Globe nomination for his performance.[10]

Horizon released a vinyl model kit of Henry in 1993, which the buyer could assemble.[11] The Japanese company Kotobukiya released a vinyl kit in 2008.[12] That same year, Hasbro released a 3 ¾-inch action figure that comes with his suitcase, umbrella and the Holy Grail; a die-cast model of him and Indiana in the motorcycle;[13] and a Might Mugg (caricature) toy.[14] Lego also made a Henry figure for its playset based on the motorcycle chase and the airplane fight.[15]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)
  2. The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, American Broadcasting Company, "Athens, 1910", 1996-06-16
  3. James Luceno (2008). Indiana Jones the Ultimate Guide. DK Publishing. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 The Last Crusade: An Oral History. Empire Online. Retrieved on May 14, 2008.
  5. Gregory Peck was also considered for the role of Jones Sr.Template:Cite video
  6. Young Indy Time Capsule Interview: Lloyd Owen. (2007-10-05). Archived from the original on May 11, 2008. Retrieved on May 14, 2008.
  7. Script error: No such module "citation/CS1".
  8. Script error: No such module "citation/CS1".
  9. Script error: No such module "citation/CS1".
  10. Script error: No such module "citation/CS1".
  11. Indiana Jones vinyl figure kits. Retrieved on May 15, 2008.
  12. Script error: No such module "citation/CS1".
  13. Script error: No such module "citation/CS1".
  14. Photo Archive: Hasbro – Indiana Jones. Cool Toy Review. Retrieved on May 15, 2008.
  15. Motorcycle Chase. Cool Toy Review. Retrieved on May 15, 2008.

External links[]

  • Template:Imdb character
This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at Henry Jones, Sr.. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Lucasfilm Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.