Study Guide

Tom Jones Book 1, Chapter 10

By Henry Fielding

Book 1, Chapter 10

The Hospitality of Allworthy; With a Short Sketch of the Characters of Two Brothers, a Doctor, and a Captain, Who Were Entertained By That Gentleman

  • Squire Allworthy loves having guests, especially guests who are also students and scholars.
  • Squire Allworthy also often financially supports people who are both smart and in need.
  • For example, he sponsors a guy named Dr. Blifil.
  • Dr. Blifil is rigidly religious (-seeming, at least), which Squire Allworthy likes.
  • Someone else who likes Dr. Blifil? Bridget Allworthy.
  • In fact, the two of them get along like a house on fire.
  • Dr. Blifil would like to marry Bridget but (sadly) he is already married—and Squire Allworthy knows it, so Dr. Blifil can't pretend his wife doesn't exist.
  • So Dr. Blifil decides to call in his brother, who can marry Bridget instead (and cash in on her money!).
  • The younger Blifil, a captain in the army, is a bully.
  • His father wanted him to be a priest, but that idea apparently did not appeal to younger Captain Blifil.
  • Now that Captain Blifil has been booted out of the army, he has returned to reading the Bible.
  • Dr. Blifil may not like his brother much, but he'd rather see his brother marry Bridget than anybody else.
  • So Dr. Blifil invites Captain Blifil to Squire Allworthy's house.
  • And Dr. Blifil also passes on some tips to his little brother about how to win Bridget's heart.