Study Guide

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer Chapter 7

By Mark Twain

Chapter 7

  • Stuck inside on a beautiful, sunny day, Tom's mind wanders aimlessly as he waits for recess to come.
  • He takes another bug, this one a tick, out of a box he has stashed in his pocket. He watches it wander around on the desk he shares with his best buddy Joe Harper. Since both Joe and Tom want to play with the bug, they draw a line on a slate and come up with a system: when the bug is on Tom's side, Tom gets to play with it, and vice versa.
  • Needless to say, Tom gets annoyed when the tick spends most of his time on Joe's side and the two boys argue until they start getting whacked by the schoolmaster, who has caught them by surprise.
  • When the kids get out for recess, Tom runs back over to Becky, and starts chatting her up, bringing up such wonderful topics as dead rats, and the joys of swinging them above one's head, chewing gum, circuses, and marriage.
  • Tom gets Becky to tell him she loves him, and then to kiss him. Then he gets her to tell him she'll never love another, and he tells her the same.
  • Tom makes the mistake of bringing up his previous love, Amy Lawrence, which causes Becky to cry. Smooth as he is, Tom fails to rectify the situation; when he tries to give her his prized brass andiron – in short, a piece from a thing that supports wood in a fireplace – she throws it down in anger.
  • Tom runs away, and by the time Becky starts to reconsider her actions, he's nowhere to be found.