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Summary Chapter 20

 

CHAPTER 20

Pip is rather frightened of London. He has unpatriotic thoughts of how dirty and ugly it is. Another coachman picks him up at the coach office and takes him to the office of Mr. Jaggers. The coachman seems intimidated by the lawyer’s reputation.

Mr. Wemmick, the lawyer’s main clerk, tells Pip to wait in Mr. Jaggers’ room. The lawyer is at court at the moment. Mr. Wemmick doesn’t know how long Pip will have to wait, but Jaggers never takes any more time than necessary to do things. He throws out a man that is waiting in the office already and ushers Pip inside.

Mr. Jaggers doesn’t have many papers, which Pip expects a lawyer to have. The lawyer does have an odd collection of weapons, death masks, and other curious items. Pip can see the outlines of shoulders pressed against the wall opposite of Mr. Jaggers’ desk.

Unable to handle the oppressive office, Pip goes out for some air. He comes upon a prison. People gather to see the trials, the hangings, and whippings. Pip finds it all sickening. He returns to the office, but Mr. Jaggers still has not returned.

Pip goes out and explores some more. He becomes aware that there are other people waiting for the lawyer. They all have great confidence in Mr. Jaggers, which increases Pip’s admiration of him.

When Mr. Jaggers comes, he is surrounded by the group of people waiting for him. He grabs Pip’s shoulder and has him walk besides him while he addresses the other people. He essentially makes sure they have paid his clerk, and then he tells each the same thing: let him handle it and don’t bug him, or he’ll drop the case to the detriment of their loved one.

Mike, the man that had been waiting in Mr. Jaggers’ office before the clerk had thrown him out, greets the lawyer as he enters. He presents his witness, a despicable looking character dressed as an honest pieman. The witness is not convincing, and Mr. Jaggers’ dismisses him.

Jaggers’ gets his lunch out and immediately tells Pip the arrangements without any ceremony. Pip is to stay with Mr. Matthew Pocket’s son at the Barnard’s Inn. On Monday, the son will take Pip to his father’s house so Pip can begin his education. Jaggers’ tells him his allowance and refers him to tradesmen who can provide him with what he needs. He expects Pip will go wrong in his finances, but it isn’t his concern.

Mr. Wemmick takes Pip to his destination. He tells the people waiting outside of Mr. Jaggers’ office to go away, for the lawyer will not see them. 

Charles Dickens