Free Study Guide for Great Expectations by Charles Dickens-Book Summary
Although Pip’s ambition of becoming a gentleman is about to be fulfilled, he feels guilty about leaving Joe and Biddy. This guilt leads to a struggle in Pip’s mind. He realizes that Mr. Jaggers, the lawyer, is the same man whom he had seen in Miss Havisham’s house and he had heard about Matthew Pocket from a relative of Miss Havisham. He deduces that his patron is none other than the old lady and is honored by the thought. As well, he thinks it is a sign that his dreams of being with Estella will be fulfilled. Joe and Biddy despair that they are losing Pip; but they are kind-hearted and generous to a fault and would never deny Pip the opportunity to become uncommon.
Joe and Biddy prepare themselves for the heartbreaking day of Pip’s departure. He promises to write often and to help out as much as he can. Then he busies himself shopping for clothes, shoes, hosiery, hats and so on. Before leaving for London he pays a visit to Miss Havisham, who already knows about his good fortune. Joe and Biddy bid him a tearful good-bye.
The attitudes of people toward Pip begin to change once they learn of his grand inheritance. Even Mr. Pumblechook, who has always commented on Pip as a burden, waxes eloquent on his good fortune and prime position in life. For the first time, Pip tastes the power and respect of money. He is confident he can finally meet Estella’s expectations, and indebted to Miss Havisham, whom he believes is his benefactor
This chapter represents a turning point for young Pip. His fate changes course, but the irony is in which direction it turns.
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. 09 May 2017