Study Guide

Little Dorrit Book 2, Chapter 22

By Charles Dickens

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Book 2, Chapter 22

Who Passes by this Road so late?

  • Forget you, Circumlocution Office, Doyce is taking himself and his engineering awesomeness elsewhere. Namely, to Russia, where they apparently appreciate people who invent useful things.
  • All his things are packed, and Doyce is ready.
  • He leaves Arthur in charge of the money stuff and says that he trusts him completely. The only thing Doyce doesn't want to happen is for Arthur to invest (speculate) in the stock market. At which point Arthur says this:
  • "My dear Doyce, it is the soundest sense [...] I was saying the same thing to Pancks, who looked in here. We both agreed that to travel out of safe investments is one of the most dangerous, as it is one of the most common, of those follies which often deserve the name of vices."
  • (2.22.10-12)
  • And there you have it, folks. Check out how Arthur switches from "speculation" – that totally bad thing that no one should do – to "safe investments." What is a "safe" investment? How is it really all that different from speculation? Yeah, exactly our point.
  • But Doyce is totally in agreement, and they both also agree that Pancks is a trustworthy and no-nonsense kind of guy.
  • Doyce then asks Arthur to give up trying to get the invention dealt with by the Circumlocution Office, but Arthur declines. Aw.
  • The factory workers give Doyce a farewell cheer, and he's off.
  • Back in his room, Arthur starts to think about Blandois again and starts humming a song that Blandois is always singing.
  • Mr. Baptist comes in and overhears him, and they realize they've both heard the same evil man sing this song, though Mr. Baptist has only ever known him as Rigaud and Lagnier.
  • Mr. Baptist tells Arthur about being in prison with the guy, and that he's a murderer. Arthur freaks out – what kind of business is this murderer doing with his mother?
  • Then he asks Mr. Baptist to do his best to find out where Blandois may be. Mr. Baptist owes a lot to Arthur, so he agrees.

Little Dorrit Book 2, Chapter 22 Study Group

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