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Biographical Information

Fire-raiser (formerly)

Physical Description

Deceased[citation needed]



Hair colour



Capricorn (formerly)
Adderhead (formerly)

Behind the Scenes
Portrayed by

Jamie Foreman



Basta was Capricorn's old knife wielder and most loyal henchmen from the Inkworld.


He used to be infatuated with Roxane, Dustfinger's wife, but she preferred Dustfinger to him, so he got his revenge by cutting three lines onto Dustfinger's face, which were healed by fairies but would remain for years as three pale scars.[citation needed]

It was said that his past before he met Capricorn was sad and he was an "unhappy" child; he felt useless and terrible, because other people called him so. He decides to go with Capricorn at an early age (said to be even younger than Meggie when she was told this) and looks up to him as a father-figure since then.[citation needed]

Basta was read out of Inkheart by Mortimer Folchart, along with Dustfinger and his master, Capricorn. He, along with Cockerell and Flatnose, were the ones who raid Elinor Loredan's library and burned her most prized books. He repeatedly threatened people with his knife, which was also stolen repeatedly by Dustfinger. Basta was revealed to be extremely supersitious, and afraid of fire, despite having been Capricorn's chief fire-raiser for many years. It is also revealed that Basta is the one who gave Dustfinger the three scars on his face, as retrobution for Dustfinger not giving Basta his wife, a woman named Roxane.[citation needed] Basta was imprisioned by Capricorn to be killed by the Shadow, but somehow survived and escapes to live another day.[1]

Basta killed Cloud-Dancer and Farid and was later stabbed and killed by Mo.[2]

It was revealed that after Basta's death, he returned to the Inkworld as a Night-Mare, the very same Night-Mare from Jacopo's book which was read by Orpheus. When Dustfinger faced the Night-Mare, he noticed that it retreated from his fire, just as Basta would. Dustfinger called Basta's name and the Night-Mare was destroyed.[3]

Physical attributesEdit

Basta is described as being in his late twenties or early thirties, with a rasping voice and greasy black hair. Throughout the first novel, he is shown to be wearing a black jacket like the rest of Capricorn's men, and wearing a white shirt underneath it. However, in the second book, he abandons the jacket for the Adderhead's silver cloak. He always chews peppermint leaves, after being told by a girl he fancied that he had bad breath.


Basta is known to be extremely superstitious. He is also afraid of fire, after being burned up to the shoulders when he burned down the house of a man who dared to refuse his daughter to Capricorn. He is described as ruthless and cunning, although he cannot read but only write his name. Basta is bloodthirsty and adores his knife. He is also extremely persistent. 

It is often mentioned in Inkheart that Basta was very loyal towards Capricorn and would do anything for him. An example of this is when Mortola takes away his keys, and it is said that he will do anything at that point to please Capricorn. Even though Capricorn is just using him, he can't think that. He was with Capricorn when he was younger than Meggie, and Capricorn was like a father to him. That's why he adores him so much.

After being stabbed by Mortimer Folchart, Basta returned as a Night-Mare in the third book, before finally being "named" by Dustfinger near the end of Inkdeath.



Basta always carries either a small knife or a dagger, which he used to cut Dustfinger's face. Though, when Basta first came into the real world, he also carried a sword.

Whenever Basta's knife/dagger is stolen, he quickly replaces it.


Whenever Basta falls in love with a woman, the woman would sooner or later make Basta mad or insult him. So, eventually Basta would be single, yet again....

Basta also loved Roxane, but Roxane preferred Dustfinger than him. In despise, he cut the 3 scars in Dustfinger's face.


  • Basta can only write his name, shown in Inkheart, on a dresser after kidnapping Meggie and Fenoglio. He wrote it like 'BASTA'.


Basta: (talking about Elinor) "Ha you hear that, Flatnose? This one's fiery."

Basta: (to Meggie) "You aren't going anywhere, Princess."


  1. Inkheart
  2. Inkspell
  3. Inkdeath

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