Study Guide

The Mill on the Floss Book 3, Chapter 6

By George Eliot

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Book 3, Chapter 6

Tending to Refute the Popular Prejudice against the Present of a Pocket-Knife

  • Mr. Tulliver’s condition has gotten worse and the doctor, Mr. Turnbull, is concerned.
  • The sale of the Tulliver’s furniture occurs and Mr. Tulliver is insensible during it. The family stay upstairs during the sale.
  • The maid then comes to get Tom, since he has a visitor downstairs.
  • The visitor is Bob Jakin, who Tom doesn’t recognize at first.
  • Tom is sad to see all the family belongings gone, except for the family Bible and a few pieces of furniture.
  • Bob is a little chatterbox and he rambles on about how he liked Tom a bunch when they were kids and still considers him a friend.
  • Maggie comes downstairs now and is dismayed to see all the family belongings gone. She is particularly upset to see that most of the books were sold.
  • Bob rambles on some more and explains that he heard about the Tulliver’s troubles and decided to come to help them. Bob works as a packman, which is basically a traveling salesman. He recently earned a good bit of money and he tries to give the Tullivers some of it.
  • Tom and Maggie are deeply touched, but they tell Bob that they really can’t take his money.
  • Bob is disappointed, but says that he’ll always be their friend and to let him know if they need anything.

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