Study Guide

Our Mutual Friend Book 1, Part 3, Chapter 9

By Charles Dickens

Book 1, Part 3, Chapter 9

Mr. And Mrs. Boffin in Consultation

  • Mr. and Mrs. Boffin ride in a carriage, and Mrs. Boffin tells her husband about how she plans on becoming part of high society now that she's rich.
  • They decide that they're going to move into a mansion and hire someone to housesit for their current place, since they don't want to give it up.
  • Mrs. Boffin mentions that she feels horrible about how Bella Wilfer had the rug pulled out from under her when John Harmon died. She thinks that she and Mr. Boffin should do something nice for Bella, like take her under their wing.
  • They also decide to adopt a young boy and to raise him as a gentleman, giving him the name of John. Now they just need to figure out how they'll go about finding a suitable orphan.
  • Before you know it, Mr. and Mrs. Boffin are visiting the Reverend Milvey, who agrees to help find them an orphan to bestow all their love and money on. Finding a good orphan turns out to be harder than it sounds, though. Milvey says he'll have a good think on it.
  • The Boffins head from the Milveys' to the Wilfers' house to see Bella. The Wilfers intentionally make the Boffins wait because they (the Wilfers) are super snooty. The meeting doesn't last long. Mr. and Mrs. Boffin tell Bella that they want to give her the rich life she deserves, according to the will of Old Man Harmon.
  • Bella accepts and the Boffins leave. On their way out, they run into John Rokesmith. It's only a passing moment, though, and Mr. Boffin doesn't give Rokesmith an answer about the secretary job.