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Oliver Twist

Oliver Twist

by Charles Dickens

Oliver Twist Chapter 34 Summary

"Contains some Introductory Particulars Relative to a Young Gentleman who now Arrives upon the Scene, and a New Adventure which Happened to Oliver"

  • Oliver can hardly believe that Rose will get better, so he goes for a walk and cries about it in private.
  • He comes back with an armful of flowers for Rose’s room just as night is falling.
  • A post-chaise (the carriage that carried mail from city to city would also take on passengers) passes him on the road at full gallop.
  • The passengers see him, and call for the driver to stop.
  • One of the passengers is Mr. Giles, who immediately asks Oliver how Rose is doing.
  • Oliver says that she’s better, and the second man jumps out of the carriage and asks Oliver if he’s quite sure about it. He seems to care an awful lot.
  • Oliver’s sure.
  • The gentleman turns away and sobs with relief. Mr. Giles does the same.
  • They all walk back to the house together (they send the driver ahead with the luggage).
  • Oliver notices that the young gentleman is about twenty-five years old, and looks a lot like Mrs. Maylie, so Oliver assumes he’s her son.
  • When they arrive at the house, Harry (that’s the new guy’s name) asks his mother why she didn’t write sooner, because if Rose had died and he hadn’t been there, he would have been miserable forever.
  • Then they get in a debate about whether or not he should marry Rose – he wants to, and says he’s been in love with her since forever (which is kind of icky if you remember that she’s only about seventeen, and he’s twenty-five).
  • But Mrs. Maylie says that Rose will say no, because she has a blight on her name (she’s an orphan, as we already know, and she was illegitimate) and she would be afraid of dragging him down socially.
  • Harry says he doesn’t care; his heart is set on Rose. And he says he’ll talk to Rose about it before he leaves again.
  • Mrs. Maylie says fine, go ahead and talk to her, but she doesn’t think Rose will say yes – Rose wouldn’t want to keep Harry back professionally or socially, so even though she loves him, Mrs. Maylie predicts that she’ll say no.
  • Mrs. Maylie leaves to go check on Rose, and Mr. Losberne comes over to say hi to Harry and to Mr. Giles.
  • Mr. Losberne tells Mr. Giles something in a whisper, which Mr. Giles goes down to the kitchen to repeat to all of the servants, with great importance.
  • Because of his "gallantry" on the night of the attempted robbery, Mrs. Maylie has given him a gift of twenty-five pounds (quite a lot of money, especially back then). The other servants are appropriately impressed.
  • Meanwhile, Mr. Losberne, Harry, and Oliver are chatting away upstairs, and don’t go to bed until late.
  • Oliver wakes up in a better mood, and, because he can’t go on long walks without Rose, he spends more time on his schoolwork.
  • He’s sitting in his little study at the back of the house with the window open, and he falls asleep over his work (that’s never happened to us).
  • He has a bad dream that he’s back in Fagin’s house, and shut up there again.
  • He half wakes up because he feels like he’s being watched.
  • And sure enough, he is – by Fagin, and the man who had gotten all crazy at the inn. They’re standing by the open window and staring at him.
  • Oliver is understandably creeped out.
  • Just as they realize that Oliver sees them, the second guy was saying that he’d recognize Oliver anywhere.
  • Oliver sees all this in a flash, and then runs, calling for help from the rest of the house.

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