From 11:00PM PDT on Friday, July 1 until 5:00AM PDT on Saturday, July 2, the Shmoop engineering elves will be making tweaks and improvements to the site. That means Shmoop will be unavailable for use during that time. Thanks for your patience!
We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
To Kill a Mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird


by Harper Lee

To Kill a Mockingbird Chapter 7 Summary

  • After his adventures at the Radley Place, Jem is in a bad mood for a week.
  • Scout starts second grade. It's just as bad as first grade.
  • Jem finally tells Scout what happened when he went back to the Radley House: his pants were folded up on top of the fence, and the tear in them had been sloppily mended.
  • Passing by the knothole tree, they see a ball of twine resting inside it.
  • Scout wants to take it, but Jem thinks it might be someone's hiding spot.
  • When the twine is still there after a few days, Jem takes it, and from then on there are no more qualms about taking things found in the knothole.
  • A few months later, the knothole holds their best find yet: two figures carved out of soap that bear a striking resemblance to Scout and Jem.
  • Scout throws them on the ground, thinking about voodoo dolls, but Jem rescues them.
  • Who could have made them?
  • The knothole haul keeps getting better and better: a whole pack of chewing gum, a spelling bee medal, and a broken pocket watch (which Jem tries but fails to fix).
  • Scout and Jem decide to write a letter to their secret benefactor.
  • But the next day, they find that the knothole has been filled with cement.
  • Jem stakes out Mr. Nathan and asks why.
  • Mr. Nathan says that the tree's sick and the cement is an attempt to cure it.
  • Jem asks Atticus if that's true. Atticus says it looks healthy to him, but Mr. Radley should know his own trees.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...