Study Guide

Joseph Andrews Book 2, Chapter 10-11

By Henry Fielding

Book 2, Chapter 10-11

  • As Adams and the anonymous woman stroll along, they encounter a group of young men.
  • These particular young men are "bird-batting" for entertainment. It's exactly what it sounds likeā€”batting birds for fun.
  • When Adams tries to tell these guys what happened, the villain pops up again.
  • This time, the crafty villain concocts a story about being robbed by Adams and the woman.
  • The bird-batters totally believe him, so they arrest Adams and the woman and escort them back to the village.
  • See, they all want the eighty-pound reward that comes with arresting the bad guys.
  • Adams just so happens to mention to the mysterious woman that he's buds with Joseph Andrews.
  • Joseph Andrews, she says. Why, she's Fanny Goodwill, Joseph's sweetheart.
  • The story is that when Fanny heard that Joseph was in trouble, she bailed on the cow she was milking to get to him lickety-split.
  • While Adams and Fanny are waiting for justice to be served, they get thrown in a stable.
  • The Justice of Peace is kind of a joke. He's just been out hunting for foxes.
  • Anyway, he doesn't care a whit for Fanny and Adams. He makes fun of them, to the amusement of the whole crowd.
  • Someone in the crowd spots Adams's cassock, and then the fun really begins.
  • The stranger yells at him in Latin, so Adams yells back.
  • The clerk collects evidence from Adams's pockets, like his copy of Aeschylus.
  • After all, no one can read the book. It might be a plot to overthrow the government, for all anyone can tell.
  • Finally, someone in the crowd happens to recognize Adams as an associate of Lady Booby's.
  • Well, that changes things. The justice easily acquits the pair of any wrongdoing.
  • The real villain, meanwhile, has escaped into the night.
  • Fanny and Adams see that a young man is about to set out for the inn where Joseph is holed up, so they accompany him.

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