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The Monkey's Paw

The Monkey's Paw


by W.W. Jacobs

The Monkey's Paw Chapter 3 Summary

  • The Whites bury Herbert in a cemetery two miles from their house. Their home is now a dark and lonely place.
  • The Whites feel like they are waiting for something to happen to help them with their sadness.
  • One night, about a week later, Mrs. White remembers the monkey's paw.
  • She wants Mr. White to wish Herbert back to life. Mr. White, who isn't sure whether Herbert's death has anything to do with the paw, is totally against this idea.
  • But Mrs. White won't take no for an answer, so Mr. White, against his own judgment, wishes Herbert back to life.
  • Nothing happens.
  • They go back to bed. Mr. White is relieved. Herbert has been dead ten days and his body looked really horrible ten days ago. (Fatal factory accidents do that to a body.) Mr. White has no desire to see the undead version of his son.
  • After a while, the Whites hear someone – or something – banging on the front door.
  • Mrs. White decides that it just took Herbert a little while to get home, because the graveyard where he was buried is two miles away. She runs downstairs to welcome home undead Herbert.
  • Mr. White is scared. He wants nothing to do with undead Herbert.
  • He quickly makes his third wish. The story doesn't say what this wish is, but the knocking stops just as Mrs. White gets the door open.
  • When she steps outside, nobody there and the road is empty. She screams because Herbert isn't there.
  • Mr. White goes outside and comforts her.
  • Want to talk about the ending? Hurry over to "What's Up With the Ending?"

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