Study Guide

The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman Book 4, Chapter 9

By Laurence Sterne

Book 4, Chapter 9

  • Life is full of ups and downs, Mr. Shandy continues as they walk downstairs, and Tristram calls this his chapter of chances (4.9.2), which saves him the trouble of writing it—a good thing, because he's got a ton of chapters to write: knots, the right and wrong ends of women; whiskers, wishes, and so forth.
  • Toby reminds Mr. Shandy that it could have been worse—the baby could have come out hip first—meaning that something other than the nose would have been crushed.

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