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Summary Chapter 4



Pip expects to find the constable in his kitchen, but he isn’t there. His sister has not discovered that the pie is missing. She has put her husband out of the house to keep him from being underfoot while she prepares for the festivities.

Mrs. Joe asks Pip where he has been. Pip says he went to hear the Carols. Mrs. Joe complains that she never gets to hear the Carols, and probably it is because she wants to. She is practically a slave who always has to work. Joe gestures to Pip that Mrs. Joe is crosser than usual.

Mrs. Joe tidies up the house, making it more uncomfortable in its cleanliness. Pip gets anxious whenever his sister goes to the pantry. Joe and Pip go to church in clothes that don’t fit them. Pip’s conscience is bothering him, and yet he fears the church won’t protect him from the convict.

They return from church. Mrs. Joe is dressed up, ready for the guests. She is more gracious when there is company. Though Pip is not allowed to talk, the company often makes comments about him, which embarrasses and makes him uncomfortable. They are talking about what an ingrate he is for not appreciating that his sister took him in and raised him. Joe keeps giving Pip gravy to comfort him. Mrs. Joe complains about the illnesses, colic, and injuries that Pip suffered.

Pip becomes anxious when Mrs. Joe serves the brandy, which he had filled with water to hide the fact that he took some. He expects for the uncle to complain it is weak, but the uncle chokes and claims it is tar water.

He becomes tense again when later Mrs. Joe goes to serve the pie he stoled. He goes to flee when he hears the soldiers come. 

Charles Dickens