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Summary Chapter 24


The messenger returns to the dying woman’s room. Mrs. Corney follows and is greeted by the apothecary’s apprentice. He tells Mrs. Corney the woman won’t last long.

Martha, the messenger, asks another woman named Anny if the patient had been able to drink the wine. Anny responds in the negative, but said it didn’t go to waste. She drank it, and it did her good. The old woman who is dying, like her caretakers, used to nurse the ill and prepare the dead. She was known to enjoy her wine too. They reminisce on what a happy person she was.

Mrs. Corney is annoyed that they summoned her. It isn’t her duty to watch over deathbeds. She is about to leave when the dying woman is roused from her sleep. Sally, the dying woman, asks to be left alone with Mrs. Corney, which offends her two friends.

Sally tells Mrs. Corney that she nursed Oliver’s mother. She admits that she stoled a gold locket from the woman. Though she could have pawned it for warmer clothing and food that might have saved her life, the locket had been too dear to Oliver's mother to sell it. The woman had asked Sally to keep it safe. She remarks on how like Oliver was to his mother. She had been such a gentle creature.

The mother had told her that Oliver would have no reason to be ashamed of her, and there were friends out there who would give him shelter. Before Sally can reveal anymore, particularly about the locket—which interests Mrs. Corney—she dies. 

Charles Dickens