Study Guide

The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-Pooh Winnie-the-Pooh: Chapter 5

By A. A. Milne

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Winnie-the-Pooh: Chapter 5

In Which Piglet Meets a Heffalump

  • Hey, remember the Heffalump that the narrator mentions in the introduction?This is that Heffalump.
  • The adventure starts with Christopher Robin (the character) having a picnic with Pooh and Piglet.
  • He tells the animals that he saw a Heffalump today, just jumping around in the woods.
  • Piglet claims to have seen one too, er, perhaps. Maybe not.
  • Pooh also pretends to have seen one once, though inside he's wondering what a Heffalump is.
  • You know what one is, right? You've seen one. Who hasn't? We here at Shmoop see Heffalumps all the time. With their, uh...and the, um...with the whatcha—okay, fine. We haven't seen a Heffalump before. Let's get on with the story and find out what it is...
  • The discussion trails off, and the picnic ends. Pooh and Piglet wander home together and after the long journey Pooh brings up the Heffalumps.
  • He's decided to catch one.
  • Uncharacteristically, Piglet isn't afraid or worried about the idea, but instead wishes he had thought of it first.
  • Pooh decides to dig a very deep pit for the Heffalump to fall into.
  • The friends realize that they need some way to make the Heffalump fall in, as it's unlikely it will jump in voluntarily, or even stumble in while looking up at the clouds wondering if it looks like rain, especially if it's raining already, and what if—well, you get the point. There's a lot to consider when trying to catch a Heffalump.
  • Next, Pooh does something remarkable. He puts himself in the Heffalump's shoes. What kind of trap would he fall for if he were a Heffalump?
  • Honey, duh, answers Piglet.
  • So Piglet agrees to dig the pit if Pooh goes to fetch some of his honey.
  • Pooh finds a jar marked HUNNY, but just to be sure he looks inside. Looks like honey, but of course you never know for sure until you taste it, so he tries a little bit.
  • Sure enough, the top part is definitely honey. But you never know. Pooh suspects that someone may have hidden something else at the bottom of the jar. One can't be too careful.
  • We here at Shmoop don't blame him one bit. If we had a nickel for every time we reached into our jar of sour cream and onion Pringles, only to discover that someone had smeared Nutella all over it, well, sadly, we actually would have a nickel. What can we say? It happens.
  • Lucky for Pooh, his roommate is not a vicious prankster. Rather, he doesn't have a roommate. So his honey is actually honey, clear down to the bottom of the jar. He makes sure of it.
  • Pooh brings the now empty jar of honey to Piglet, who is busy digging a very deep pit.
  • They place the jar in the pit, and walk back home, agreeing to meet in the morning to check out their trap. And don't forget the string. You need string to lead the Heffalumps home.
  • In the middle of the night, Pooh gets a rumbling in his stuffed little tummy—hunger.
  • He goes to get his full jar of "HUNNY" but it's not there! He's confused and even makes up a song about not knowing where his honey has gone. Pooh's not the sharpest font in the drop-down menu.
  • Then he remembers that he put it in the Heffalump trap, and tries to go back to sleep.
  • After visions of Heffalumps gorging themselves on his honey, Pooh can stand it no longer and marches over to the very deep pit to get his midnight snack.
  • He's so hungry that he sticks his whole head inside of the jar to get the dregs at the bottom...
  • With this, the narrator shifts back to Piglet, who's just waking up.
  • It's before the allotted hour to meet Pooh, but he's so worried about the Heffalumps being fierce that he decides to go early and peek at the trap.
  • If there's really a Heffalump, he'll go back to bed and play hooky. If there's no Heffalump, he'll act all brave and meet Pooh as planned.
  • Worrying himself silly, Piglet arrives at the trap only to find Pooh twisting and turning, moaning and groaning, trying to get his head out of that honey pot.
  • But Piglet doesn't recognize the thing in the very deep pit as a Pooh Bear. No, he only sees a Heffalump.
  • Piglet tears off and runs to get Christopher Robin, and the two go back to the trap together.
  • Piglet is still scared as they approach Pooh, but CR realizes right away what's going on, and he does what any sensible caretaker would do—he laughs hysterically.
  • As CR is ROFLing, Pooh finally is able to break the jar against a tree root and escapes. OMG that was a close one.
  • Piglet suddenly feels embarrassed and ashamed and runs home with a "headache."
  • And the story ends with CR telling Pooh how much he loves him. 

The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-Pooh Winnie-the-Pooh: Chapter 5 Study Group

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