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Book Notes

Chapter 26: An Invitation to Dinner... Notes from Great Expectations

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Great Expectations Chapter 26: An Invitation to Dinner...

As Wemmick has predicted, Jaggers invites Pip--and his friends--for dinner. After the lawyer ceremoniously washes his hands (this is an obsessive habit of Jaggers', which Pip interprets as the lawyer's attempt to wash himself clean of his clients), the lawyer, Herbert, Startop, Bentley Drummle and Pip walk together to Jaggers' house. At dinner, Jaggers takes a surprising interest in Drummle, who Pip considers coarse and unpleasant--the worst of the crew. Drummle goes so far in his growling conversation as to make it very clear that he "despised...as asses" (250) all of his peers at the table.

The other interesting focus at dinner is Jaggers' housekeeper, Molly, for whom Wemmick advised Pip on which to keep an eye. Molly has a hesitant manner around her employer, a hesitance somewhat explained when, at one moment during conversation, Jaggers grabs her wrist and forces the boys to look at them. One of the wrists is horribly scarred, though no explanation is given as to why.

Just before the boys are to leave, Pip runs back to thank Jaggers. The lawyer reiterates that he likes Drummle, though he tells Pip to steer clear of him. It seems as if Jaggers is on the edge of saying something else, but he does not. Older Pip tells us that about a month after that, Drummle's time with Mr. Pocket was up and the unpleasant boy left his house for good.

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