The Adventures of Tom Sawyer

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Becky Thatcher Character Analysis

Tom develops a crush on Becky as the new blond in town, and the novel charts the development of their relationship into a mature affection for one another after much tit-for-tat pettiness. As the daughter of Judge Thatcher, Becky is a privileged girl, prissy and slightly spoiled—a worthy challenger to Tom when it comes to conniving to get her way.

Becky Thatcher Quotes in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer

The The Adventures of Tom Sawyer quotes below are all either spoken by Becky Thatcher or refer to Becky Thatcher. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Boyhood Rebellion and Growing Up Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Vintage Classics edition of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer published in 2010.
Chapter 20 Quotes
Tom stood a moment, to gather his dismembered faculties; and when he stepped forward to go to his punishment the surprise, the gratitude, the adoration that shone upon him out of poor Becky's eyes seemed pay enough for a hundred floggings.
Related Characters: Tom Sawyer, Becky Thatcher
Page Number: 140
Explanation and Analysis:

In this passage, Tom takes a beating on behalf of his crush, Becky. Becky accidentally ripped a page from the schoolteacher's prized anatomy book--and instead of ratting Becky out, Tom claims that it was he who ripped the book. Tom is happy to take a beating from the schoolteacher, since he knows that his act has impressed Becky--she thinks he's really brave (or so Tom thinks, at least, in his exaggerated perception of her "adoration").

Tom is so used to being whipped for his misdeeds that he barely minds an extra whipping. More valuable to him than pain is the admiration of his peers, especially Becky. And while Tom doesn't seem to mind his beating, he also wants to save Becky from the shame of having to fess up to her crime in front of the class--he's observant and empathetic enough to want to help Becky save face.

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Becky Thatcher Character Timeline in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer

The timeline below shows where the character Becky Thatcher appears in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 7
Sentimentality and Realism Theme Icon
When the students are let off at noon, Tom arranges with Becky to meet back at the school room. There they flirt further, and after Tom helps... (full context)
Chapter 10
Boyhood Rebellion and Growing Up Theme Icon
...grief is worsened when he finds his brass andiron knob on his desk, returned by Becky. (full context)
Chapter 12
Sentimentality and Realism Theme Icon
Tom's preoccupation with the murder is replaced by worry about Becky's absence from school. When he learns she's ill, he fears she'll die. (full context)
Chapter 17
The Hypocrisy of Adult Society Theme Icon
Sentimentality and Realism Theme Icon
...boys, each one of them trying to tell the story that captures the boys best. Becky regrets that she returned the brass andiron that Tom had given to her. On Sunday,... (full context)
Chapter 20
Boyhood Rebellion and Growing Up Theme Icon
Tom, now happy, walks back to school. On the way, he runs into Becky and apologizes for his behavior to her earlier. But she refuses to speak to him... (full context)
Chapter 22
Boyhood Rebellion and Growing Up Theme Icon
He also misses Becky, who is with her parents in Constantinople. (full context)
Chapter 29
Boyhood Rebellion and Growing Up Theme Icon
Tom is delighted on Friday morning to learn that Becky has returned to town. That same day they get together with their friends and play,... (full context)
Chapter 31
Boyhood Rebellion and Growing Up Theme Icon
Showing Off Theme Icon
Sentimentality and Realism Theme Icon
...to Saturday afternoon in order to tell the story of what happened to Tom and Becky. They're playing in the cave along with their friends. They split off to explore a... (full context)
Chapter 32
Showing Off Theme Icon
By Tuesday the villagers are mourning Tom and Becky. But by nightfall there is jubilation, because the children are found. (full context)
Chapter 35
Boyhood Rebellion and Growing Up Theme Icon
The Hypocrisy of Adult Society Theme Icon
Showing Off Theme Icon
Judge Thatcher thinks highly of Tom for having rescued Becky from the cave. Becky has even told him about how Tom took her punishment at... (full context)