Great Expectations

Great Expectations

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Great Expectations Book 3, Chapter 53 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
That night Pip walks out onto the marshes where he is ambushed by Orlick and tied up. Orlick gloats that he lured Pip out on the marshes in order to kill him as revenge for costing him his job as Miss Havisham's porter and for coming between him and Biddy. He adds that it was Pip who's to blame for Mrs. Joe getting clubbed, because it was Pip being treated as a favorite at the forge that caused Orlick to club her. He tells Pip he has long plotted to kill Pip out of resentment. He plans to dissolve Pip's corpse in the nearby limekiln so as to leave no trace. Pip is consumed by thoughts of friends and family he will not get to say goodbye to or to ask forgiveness of.
The intensity of Orlick's resentment for Pip comes as a surprise. Pip had no idea Orlick had been plotting his revenge on Pip for so long nor that his violence towards Mrs. Joe was done to hurt Pip. Orlick is filled with a kind of hatred and resentment that mirrors Miss Havisham's, but as a man Orlick expresses that hatred through violence.
Themes
Justice Theme Icon
Orlick tells Pip that he now works for Compeyson, who is going to make sure to get rid of Provis. The stranger in the dark hall outside Pip's apartment was Orlick. Spying on Pip to plot his own revenge, Orlick overheard Provis' story and reported it to Compeyson.
Now that Orlick has fallen into a criminal career, his malicious work matches his malicious personality.
Themes
Justice Theme Icon
As Orlick readies his stone hammer to strike, Pip screams and Trabb's Boy, Herbert, and Startop rush in to tackle Orlick and rescue Pip. Orlick disappears into the night. Pip passes out and, when he comes round, Herbert explains how he had found Orlick's note in their apartment in London where Pip had accidentally left it. Disturbed by its tone, Herbert and Startop had followed Pip to the village and had Trabb's Boy lead them out to the limekiln where they'd come to the rescue as soon as they heard screams.
Herbert and Startop continue to prove their virtue as generous and compassionate friends.
Themes
Generosity Theme Icon
When Pip recounts Orlick's story, Herbert wants to go immediately to the magistrate and get out a warrant for him. But Pip is anxious to get back to London to prepare for Provis' escape on Wednesday, and they decide to delay pursuing Orlick till later. Pip pays Trabb's Boy and apologizes for having thought ill of him (Trabb's Boy ignores the apology and takes the money). They return to London where Pip spends Tuesday recovering from the ordeal. His burned arm is still in pain but, by Wednesday morning, he feels stronger and ready to carry out their plan.
Two examples of incomplete attempts at serving justice: the boys neglect to report Orlick to the police and Trabb's Boy seems unable to appreciate Pip's attempt to do justice by him.
Themes
Justice Theme Icon
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