Study Guide

Little Dorrit Book 1, Chapter 30

By Charles Dickens

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Book 1, Chapter 30

The Word of a Gentleman

  • Blandois recognizes Flintwinch and is floored to see him.
  • Flintwinch has no idea what's going on and starts choking Affery.
  • After a little while, Blandois interrupts and kind of laughs off the domestic abuse, basically saying that Flintwinch puts the fun in dysfunctional.
  • In any case, Blandois has a letter of introduction from a company in Paris that's well known to Clennam & Co. This is basically how international banking was done back in the day. Now Blandois can withdraw money from Clennam & Co. with the understanding that the Paris bank will pay them back.
  • Blandois asks for an inn to go freshen up in before meeting Mrs. Clennam.
  • Flintwinch is sort of at a loss, since Blandois seems to be a gentleman and there are no fancy places anywhere in the neighborhood, but Blandois says he's fine anywhere.
  • He eats alone and does a weird self-talk to psych himself up.
  • After dinner Blandois comes back and goes upstairs.
  • Mrs. Clennam is waiting for him with some tea. They are clearly thinking he's some kind of reasonably important customer or client.
  • There's some small talk. Blandois is charming and terrifying at the same time. Mrs. Clennam is her usual half-catatonic self.
  • Suddenly Blandois notices the watch that Mr. Clennam left Mrs. Clennam. It turns out the watch is engraved "D.N.F." which stands for "Do Not Forget," according to Mrs. Clennam.
  • She goes off on a tirade about how she will never forget and how she lives her life just waiting to die and get to heaven. She thinks she's a shoo-in.
  • Finally Blandois is ready to go, but first he asks for a tour of the house.
  • This is bizarre, since it's just an old dump, but Flintwinch takes him around.
  • It turns out, though, that Blandois is mostly just looking at Flintwinch and not the house itself.
  • After the tour, Blandois invites Flintwinch for a drink, but as drunk as the two get, it's impossible to get any information out of Flintwinch.
  • Finally Blandois says good night and promises that he'll be back. Terminator-style.

Little Dorrit Book 1, Chapter 30 Study Group

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