Chapter 52 (Volume 3, Chapter 13) (Instalment 31):

A letter from Wemmick

Synopsis of Chapter 52 (Volume 3, Chapter 13) (Instalment 31)

Pip rapidly completes his secret plan for Herbert. Clarriker tells him that Herbert, now a director, will go out East to establish a new branch. Pip feels very lonely at the imminent loss of his friend but is encouraged by Herbert's excitement at the prospect of marriage to Clara and travel abroad.

Pip's injuries are still not healed when Wemmick sends a message saying that Magwitch is to be moved abroad very soon. They will wait in the Thames estuary for a steamer to take Magwitch to safety, accompanied by Pip. Startop is recruited to row in Pip's place.

Pip receives an anonymous note mentioning Magwitch and asking him to meet the author on the marshes near his home village. He sets off immediately, pretending that he is going to see Miss Havisham. When he arrives at the rendezvous, he cannot find the anonymous note that he has been told to take with him.

Commentary on Chapter 52 (Volume 3, Chapter 13) (Instalment 31)

It was the only good thing … my great expectations Pip is clear about his moral position, and about the effects of his great expectations.

And now indeed … winds and waves Note Dickens' use of the anchor image, adding to the sense of Pip's life as a journey.

Take Startop Startop's reappearance is a good example of how Dickens makes every detail of the story play a part in the plot

I had never been struck … the nobler Joe This sums up very clearly how Pumblechook and Joe are set up as moral opposites

Investigating Chapter 52 (Volume 3, Chapter 13) (Instalment 31)
  • Look for evidence as to how, at the end of this chapter, Pip has become anonymous and isolated
  • After the anxious bustle of the morning he cannot think straight
    • How does Dickens' present Pip's frame of mind?
  • What plans has Pip made to deal with any crisis?


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