Download free eBooks of classic literature, books and novels at Planet Great Expectations . harming of you at the present moment, with great difficulty. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens Download this document as preckalohotchning.gq: File size: MB A fearful man, all in coarse grey, with a great iron on his leg. A. I liked/didn't like the story of Great Expectations because. Writing Great Expectations was one of Charles Dickens' later books. He published it in
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A classic work of Victorian literature, Great Expectations tells the story (from a first I run this site alone and spend an awful lot of time creating these books. Free download of Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. Available in PDF, ePub and site. Read, write reviews and Book Description HTML. Pip is a poor. Great Expectations Chapter 1 M y father's family name being Pirrip, and my The Electric Book Company Ltd. 20 Cambridge Drive, London SE12 8AJ, UK.
I am a-keeping that young man from harming of you at the present moment, with great difficulty. I find it wery hard to hold that young man off of your inside.
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
Now, what do you say? I said that I would get him the file, and I would get him what broken bits of food I could, and I would come to him at the Battery, early in the morning. I said so, and he took me down. Or a eel! At the same time, he hugged his shuddering body in both his arms - clasping himself, as if to hold himself together - and limped towards the low church wall.
As I saw him go, picking his way among the nettles, and among the brambles that bound the green mounds, he looked in my young eyes as if he were eluding the hands of the dead people, stretching up cautiously out of their graves, to get a twist upon his ankle and pull him in. When he came to the low church wall, he got over it, like a man whose legs were numbed and stiff, and then turned round to look for me. When I saw him turning, I set my face towards home, and made the best use of my legs.
But presently I looked over my shoulder, and saw him going on again towards the river, still hugging himself in both arms, and picking his way with his sore feet among the great stones dropped into the marshes here and there, for stepping-places when the rains were heavy, or the tide was in. The marshes were just a long black horizontal line then, as I stopped to look after him; and the river was just another horizontal line, not nearly so broad nor yet so black; and the sky was just a row of long angry red lines and dense black lines intermixed.
On the edge of the river I could faintly make out the only two black things in all the prospect that seemed to be standing upright; one of these was the beacon by which the sailors steered - like an unhooped cask upon a pole - an ugly thing when you were near it; the other a gibbet, with some chains hanging to it which had once held a pirate.
The man was limping on towards this latter, as if he were the pirate come to life, and come down, and going back to hook himself up again. It gave me a terrible turn when I thought so; and as I saw the cattle lifting their heads to gaze after him, I wondered whether they thought so too. I looked all round for the horrible young man, and could see no signs of him. But, now I was frightened again, and ran home without stopping. My sister, Mrs. Joe Gargery, was more than twenty years older than I, and had established a great reputation with herself and the neighbours because she had brought me up "by hand.
She was not a good-looking woman, my sister; and I had a general impression that she must have made Joe Gargery marry her by hand. Joe was a fair man, with curls of flaxen hair on each side of his smooth face, and with eyes of such a very undecided blue that they seemed to have somehow got mixed with their own whites.
He was a mild, good-natured, sweet-tempered, easy-going, foolish, dear fellow - a sort of Hercules in strength, and also in weakness. Joe, with black hair and eyes, had such a prevailing redness of skin that I sometimes used to wonder whether it was possible she washed herself with a nutmeg-grater instead of soap.
She was tall and bony, and almost always wore a coarse apron, fastened over her figure behind with two loops, and having a square impregnable bib in front, that was stuck full of pins and needles.
She made it a powerful merit in herself, and a strong reproach against Joe, that she wore this apron so much. Though I really see no reason why she should have worn it at all: Joe's forge adjoined our house, which was a wooden house, as many of the dwellings in our country were - most of them, at that time.
When I ran home from the churchyard, the forge was shut up, and Joe was sitting alone in the kitchen. Joe and I being fellow-sufferers, and having confidences as such, Joe imparted a confidence to me, the moment I raised the latch of the door and peeped in at him opposite to it, sitting in the chimney corner.
Joe has been out a dozen times, looking for you, Pip. And she's out now, making it a baker's dozen. At this dismal intelligence, I twisted the only button on my waistcoat round and round, and looked in great depression at the fire. Tickler was a wax-ended piece of cane, worn smooth by collision with my tickled frame. That's what she did," said Joe, slowly clearing the fire between the lower bars with the poker, and looking at it: She's a- coming! Get behind the door, old chap, and have the jack-towel betwixt you.
I took the advice. Joe, throwing the door wide open, and finding an obstruction behind it, immediately divined the cause, and applied Tickler to its further investigation. She concluded by throwing me - I often served as a connubial missile - at Joe, who, glad to get hold of me on any terms, passed me on into the chimney and quietly fenced me up there with his great leg.
Joe, stamping her foot. Who brought you up by hand? I know that. I may truly say I've never had this apron of mine off, since born you were. It's bad enough to be a blacksmith's wife and him a Gargery without being your mother. My thoughts strayed from that question as I looked disconsolately at the fire.
For, the fugitive out on the marshes with the ironed leg, the mysterious young man, the file, the food, and the dreadful pledge I was under to commit a larceny on those sheltering premises, rose before me in the avenging coals. Joe, restoring Tickler to his station. You may well say churchyard, you two. As she applied herself to set the tea-things, Joe peeped down at me over his leg, as if he were mentally casting me and himself up, and calculating what kind of pair we practically should make, under the grievous circumstances foreshadowed.
After that, he sat feeling his right-side flaxen curls and whisker, and following Mrs. Joe about with his blue eyes, as his manner always was at squally times. My sister had a trenchant way of cutting our bread-and-butter for us, that never varied. First, with her left hand she jammed the loaf hard and fast against her bib - where it sometimes got a pin into it, and sometimes a needle, which we afterwards got into our mouths.
Then she took some butter not too much on a knife and spread it on the loaf, in an apothecary kind of way, as if she were making a plaister - using both sides of the knife with a slapping dexterity, and trimming and moulding the butter off round the crust.
Then, she gave the knife a final smart wipe on the edge of the plaister, and then sawed a very thick round off the loaf: On the present occasion, though I was hungry, I dared not eat my slice. I felt that I must have something in reserve for my dreadful acquaintance, and his ally the still more dreadful young man. I knew Mrs.
Joe's housekeeping to be of the strictest kind, and that my larcenous researches might find nothing available in the safe. Therefore I resolved to put my hunk of bread-and-butter down the leg of my trousers. The effort of resolution necessary to the achievement of this purpose, I found to be quite awful. It was as if I had to make up my mind to leap from the top of a high house, or plunge into a great depth of water.
And it was made the more difficult by the unconscious Joe. In our already-mentioned freemasonry as fellow-sufferers, and in his good-natured companionship with me, it was our evening habit to compare the way we bit through our slices, by silently holding them up to each other's admiration now and then - which stimulated us to new exertions.
To-night, Joe several times invited me, by the display of his fast-diminishing slice, to enter upon our usual friendly competition; but he found me, each time, with my yellow mug of tea on one knee, and my untouched bread-and-butter on the other. At last, I desperately considered that the thing I contemplated must be done, and that it had best be done in the least improbable manner consistent with the circumstances. I took advantage of a moment when Joe had just looked at me, and got my bread-and-butter down my leg.
Joe was evidently made uncomfortable by what he supposed to be my loss of appetite, and took a thoughtful bite out of his slice, which he didn't seem to enjoy.
He turned it about in his mouth much longer than usual, pondering over it a good deal, and after all gulped it down like a pill. He was about to take another bite, and had just got his head on one side for a good download on it, when his eye fell on me, and he saw that my bread-and-butter was gone. The wonder and consternation with which Joe stopped on the threshold of his bite and stared at me, were too evident to escape my sister's observation.
You'll do yourself a mischief. It'll stick somewhere. You can't have chawed it, Pip. By this time, my sister was quite desperate, so she pounced on Joe, and, taking him by the two whiskers, knocked his head for a little while against the wall behind him: Joe looked at her in a helpless way; then took a helpless bite, and looked at me again. But such a--" he moved his chair and looked about the floor between us, and then again at me - "such a most oncommon Bolt as that!
Joe, with his bite still in his cheek, "I Bolted, myself, when I was your age - frequent - and as a boy I've been among a many Bolters; but I never see your Bolting equal yet, Pip, and it's a mercy you ain't Bolted dead.
My sister made a dive at me, and fished me up by the hair: Some medical beast had revived Tar-water in those days as a fine medicine, and Mrs. Joe always kept a supply of it in the cupboard; having a belief in its virtues correspondent to its nastiness. At the best of times, so much of this elixir was administered to me as a choice restorative, that I was conscious of going about, smelling like a new fence. On this particular evening the urgency of my case demanded a pint of this mixture, which was poured down my throat, for my greater comfort, while Mrs.
Joe held my head under her arm, as a boot would be held in a boot-jack. Joe got off with half a pint; but was made to swallow that much to his disturbance, as he sat slowly munching and meditating before the fire , "because he had had a turn. Conscience is a dreadful thing when it accuses man or boy; but when, in the case of a boy, that secret burden co-operates with another secret burden down the leg of his trousers, it is as I can testify a great punishment. The guilty knowledge that I was going to rob Mrs.
Joe - I never thought I was going to rob Joe, for I never thought of any of the housekeeping property as his - united to the necessity of always keeping one hand on my bread-and-butter as I sat, or when I was ordered about the kitchen on any small errand, almost drove me out of my mind.
Then, as the marsh winds made the fire glow and flare, I thought I heard the voice outside, of the man with the iron on his leg who had sworn me to secrecy, declaring that he couldn't and wouldn't starve until to-morrow, but must be fed now. At other times, I thought, What if the young man who was with so much difficulty restrained from imbruing his hands in me, should yield to a constitutional impatience, or should mistake the time, and should think himself accredited to my heart and liver to-night, instead of to-morrow!
If ever anybody's hair stood on end with terror, mine must have done so then. But, perhaps, nobody's ever did? It was Christmas Eve, and I had to stir the pudding for next day, with a copper-stick, from seven to eight by the Dutch clock. I tried it with the load upon my leg and that made me think afresh of the man with the load on his leg , and found the tendency of exercise to bring the bread-and-butter out at my ankle, quite unmanageable.
Happily, I slipped away, and deposited that part of my conscience in my garret bedroom. Joe, who always took explanations upon herself, said, snappishly, "Escaped. While Mrs. Joe sat with her head bending over her needlework, I put my mouth into the forms of saying to Joe, "What's a convict? And they fired warning of him. And now, it appears they're firing warning of another.
Ask no questions, and you'll be told no lies. It was not very polite to herself, I thought, to imply that I should be told lies by her, even if I did ask questions. But she never was polite, unless there was company. At this point, Joe greatly augmented my curiosity by taking the utmost pains to open his mouth very wide, and to put it into the form of a word that looked to me like "sulks.
Joe, and put my mouth into the form of saying "her? But I could make nothing of the word. Joe," said I, as a last resort, "I should like to know - if you wouldn't much mind - where the firing comes from? Joe gave a reproachful cough, as much as to say, "Well, I told you so. Hulks are prison-ships, right 'cross th' meshes.
It was too much for Mrs. Joe, who immediately rose. It would be blame to me, and not praise, if I had. People are put in the Hulks because they murder, and because they rob, and forge, and do all sorts of bad; and they always begin by asking questions.
Now, you get along to bed! I was never allowed a candle to light me to bed, and, as I went upstairs in the dark, with my head tingling - from Mrs. Joe's thimble having played the tambourine upon it, to accompany her last words - I felt fearfully sensible of the great convenience that the Hulks were handy for me. I was clearly on my way there. I had begun by asking questions, and I was going to rob Mrs.
Since that time, which is far enough away now, I have often thought that few people know what secrecy there is in the young, under terror. No matter how unreasonable the terror, so that it be terror. I was in mortal terror of the young man who wanted my heart and liver; I was in mortal terror of my interlocutor with the ironed leg; I was in mortal terror of myself, from whom an awful promise had been extracted; I had no hope of deliverance through my all-powerful sister, who repulsed me at every turn; I am afraid to think of what I might have done, on requirement, in the secrecy of my terror.
If I slept at all that night, it was only to imagine myself drifting down the river on a strong spring-tide, to the Hulks; a ghostly pirate calling out to me through a speaking-trumpet, as I passed the gibbet-station, that I had better come ashore and be hanged there at once, and not put it off.
I was afraid to sleep, even if I had been inclined, for I knew that at the first faint dawn of morning I must rob the pantry. There was no doing it in the night, for there was no getting a light by easy friction then; to have got one, I must have struck it out of flint and steel, and have made a noise like the very pirate himself rattling his chains. As soon as the great black velvet pall outside my little window was shot with grey, I got up and went down stairs; every board upon the way, and every crack in every board, calling after me, "Stop thief!
I had no time for verification, no time for selection, no time for anything, for I had no time to spare. I stole some bread, some rind of cheese, about half a jar of mincemeat which I tied up in my pocket-handkerchief with my last night's slice , some brandy from a stone bottle which I decanted into a glass bottle I had secretly used for making that intoxicating fluid, Spanish-liquorice-water, up in my room: I was nearly going away without the pie, but I was tempted to mount upon a shelf, to look what it was that was put away so carefully in a covered earthen ware dish in a corner, and I found it was the pie, and I took it, in the hope that it was not intended for early use, and would not be missed for some time.
There was a door in the kitchen, communicating with the forge; I unlocked and unbolted that door, and got a file from among Joe's tools. Then, I put the fastenings as I had found them, opened the door at which I had entered when I ran home last night, shut it, and ran for the misty marshes.
It was a rimy morning, and very damp.
I had seen the damp lying on the outside of my little window, as if some goblin had been crying there all night, and using the window for a pocket-handkerchief. Now, I saw the damp lying on the bare hedges and spare grass, like a coarser sort of spiders' webs; hanging itself from twig to twig and blade to blade. On every rail and gate, wet lay clammy; and the marsh-mist was so thick, that the wooden finger on the post directing people to our village - a direction which they never accepted, for they never came there - was invisible to me until I was quite close under it.
Then, as I looked up at it, while it dripped, it seemed to my oppressed conscience like a phantom devoting me to the Hulks. The mist was heavier yet when I got out upon the marshes, so that instead of my running at everything, everything seemed to run at me.
This was very disagreeable to a guilty mind. The gates and dykes and banks came bursting at me through the mist, as if they cried as plainly as could be, "A boy with Somebody-else's pork pie!
Stop him! It wasn't for myself I took it!
All this time, I was getting on towards the river; but however fast I went, I couldn't warm my feet, to which the damp cold seemed riveted, as the iron was riveted to the leg of the man I was running to meet. I knew my way to the Battery, pretty straight, for I had been down there on a Sunday with Joe, and Joe, sitting on an old gun, had told me that when I was 'prentice to him regularly bound, we would have such Larks there!
However, in the confusion of the mist, I found myself at last too far to the right, and consequently had to try back along the river-side, on the bank of loose stones above the mud and the stakes that staked the tide out.
Making my way along here with all despatch, I had just crossed a ditch which I knew to be very near the Battery, and had just scrambled up the mound beyond the ditch, when I saw the man sitting before me. His back was towards me, and he had his arms folded, and was nodding forward, heavy with sleep. I thought he would be more glad if I came upon him with his breakfast, in that unexpected manner, so I went forward softly and touched him on the shoulder.
He instantly jumped up, and it was not the same man, but another man! And yet this man was dressed in coarse grey, too, and had a great iron on his leg, and was lame, and hoarse, and cold, and was everything that the other man was; except that he had not the same face, and had a flat broad-brimmed low-crowned felt that on.
All this, I saw in a moment, for I had only a moment to see it in: I dare say I should have felt a pain in my liver, too, if I had known where it was. I was soon at the Battery, after that, and there was the right man-hugging himself and limping to and fro, as if he had never all night left off hugging and limping - waiting for me. He was awfully cold, to be sure.
I half expected to see him drop down before my face and die of deadly cold. His eyes looked so awfully hungry, too, that when I handed him the file and he laid it down on the grass, it occurred to me he would have tried to eat it, if he had not seen my bundle.
He did not turn me upside down, this time, to get at what I had, but left me right side upwards while I opened the bundle and emptied my pockets. He was already handing mincemeat down his throat in the most curious manner - more like a man who was putting it away somewhere in a violent hurry, than a man who was eating it - but he left off to take some of the liquor.
He shivered all the while, so violently, that it was quite as much as he could do to keep the neck of the bottle between his teeth, without biting it off.
Rheumatic too. I'll beat the shivers so far, I'll bet you. He was gobbling mincemeat, meatbone, bread, cheese, and pork pie, all at once: Some real or fancied sound, some clink upon the river or breathing of beast upon the marsh, now gave him a start, and he said, suddenly:. You brought no one with you? You'd be but a fierce young hound indeed, if at your time of life you could help to hunt a wretched warmint, hunted as near death and dunghill as this poor wretched warmint is!
Something clicked in his throat, as if he had works in him like a clock, and was going to strike. And he smeared his ragged rough sleeve over his eyes. Pitying his desolation, and watching him as he gradually settled down upon the pie, I made bold to say, "I am glad you enjoy it. I had often watched a large dog of ours eating his food; and I now noticed a decided similarity between the dog's way of eating, and the man's.
The man took strong sharp sudden bites, just like the dog. He swallowed, or rather snapped up, every mouthful, too soon and too fast; and he looked sideways here and there while he ate, as if he thought there was danger in every direction, of somebody's coming to take the pie away. He was altogether too unsettled in his mind over it, to appreciate it comfortably, I thought, or to have anybody to dine with him, without making a chop with his jaws at the visitor.
In all of which particulars he was very like the dog. Who's him? That you spoke of. That was hid with you. Yes, yes! He don't want no wittles. The man stopped eating, and regarded me with the keenest scrutiny and the greatest surprise. He held me by the collar and stared at me so, that I began to think his first idea about cutting my throat had revived. Didn't you hear the cannon last night? He sees the soldiers, with their red coats lighted up by the torches carried afore, closing in round him.
Hears his number called, hears himself challenged, hears the rattle of the muskets, hears the orders 'Make ready! Cover him steady, men! Why, if I see one pursuing party last night - coming up in order, Damn 'em, with their tramp, tramp - I see a hundred.
And as to firing! Why, I see the mist shake with the cannon, arter it was broad day - But this man;" he had said all the rest, as if he had forgotten my being there; "did you notice anything in him? I'll pull him down, like a bloodhound. Curse this iron on my sore leg! Give us hold of the file, boy.
I indicated in what direction the mist had shrouded the other man, and he looked up at it for an instant. But he was down on the rank wet grass, filing at his iron like a madman, and not minding me or minding his own leg, which had an old chafe upon it and was bloody, but which he handled as roughly as if it had no more feeling in it than the file.
I was very much afraid of him again, now that he had worked himself into this fierce hurry, and I was likewise very much afraid of keeping away from home any longer. I told him I must go, but he took no notice, so I thought the best thing I could do was to slip off. The last I saw of him, his head was bent over his knee and he was working hard at his fetter, muttering impatient imprecations at it and at his leg. The last I heard of him, I stopped in the mist to listen, and the file was still going.
I fully expected to find a Constable in the kitchen, waiting to take me up. But not only was there no Constable there, but no discovery had yet been made of the robbery. Joe was prodigiously busy in getting the house ready for the festivities of the day, and Joe had been put upon the kitchen door-step to keep him out of the dust-pan - an article into which his destiny always led him sooner or later, when my sister was vigorously reaping the floors of her establishment.
Joe's Christmas salutation, when I and my conscience showed ourselves. I said I had been down to hear the Carols. Joe, who had ventured into the kitchen after me as the dust-pan had retired before us, drew the back of his hand across his nose with a conciliatory air when Mrs. Joe darted a look at him, and, when her eyes were withdrawn, secretly crossed his two forefingers, and exhibited them to me, as our token that Mrs.
Joe was in a cross temper. This was so much her normal state, that Joe and I would often, for weeks together, be, as to our fingers, like monumental Crusaders as to their legs. We were to have a superb dinner, consisting of a leg of pickled pork and greens, and a pair of roast stuffed fowls. A handsome mince-pie had been made yesterday morning which accounted for the mincemeat not being missed , and the pudding was already on the boil.
These extensive arrangements occasioned us to be cut off unceremoniously in respect of breakfast; "for I an't," said Mrs. Joe, "I an't a-going to have no formal cramming and busting and washing up now, with what I've got before me, I promise you! So, we had our slices served out, as if we were two thousand troops on a forced march instead of a man and boy at home; and we took gulps of milk and water, with apologetic countenances, from a jug on the dresser.
In the meantime, Mrs. Joe put clean white curtains up, and tacked a new flowered-flounce across the wide chimney to replace the old one, and uncovered the little state parlour across the passage, which was never uncovered at any other time, but passed the rest of the year in a cool haze of silver paper, which even extended to the four little white crockery poodles on the mantelshelf, each with a black nose and a basket of flowers in his mouth, and each the counterpart of the other.
Joe was a very clean housekeeper, but had an exquisite art of making her cleanliness more uncomfortable and unacceptable than dirt itself. Cleanliness is next to Godliness, and some people do the same by their religion.
My sister having so much to do, was going to church vicariously; that is to say, Joe and I were going. In his working clothes, Joe was a well-knit characteristic-looking blacksmith; in his holiday clothes, he was more like a scarecrow in good circumstances, than anything else.
Nothing that he wore then, fitted him or seemed to belong to him; and everything that he wore then, grazed him. On the present festive occasion he emerged from his room, when the blithe bells were going, the picture of misery, in a full suit of Sunday penitentials. As to me, I think my sister must have had some general idea that I was a young offender whom an Accoucheur Policemen had taken up on my birthday and delivered over to her, to be dealt with according to the outraged majesty of the law.
I was always treated as if I had insisted on being born, in opposition to the dictates of reason, religion, and morality, and against the dissuading arguments of my best friends. Even when I was taken to have a new suit of clothes, the tailor had orders to make them like a kind of Reformatory, and on no account to let me have the free use of my limbs.
Joe and I going to church, therefore, must have been a moving spectacle for compassionate minds. Yet, what I suffered outside, was nothing to what I underwent within. The terrors that had assailed me whenever Mrs. Joe had gone near the pantry, or out of the room, were only to be equalled by the remorse with which my mind dwelt on what my hands had done.
Under the weight of my wicked secret, I pondered whether the Church would be powerful enough to shield me from the vengeance of the terrible young man, if I divulged to that establishment. I conceived the idea that the time when the banns were read and when the clergyman said, "Ye are now to declare it! I am far from being sure that I might not have astonished our small congregation by resorting to this extreme measure, but for its being Christmas Day and no Sunday. Wopsle, the clerk at church, was to dine with us; and Mr.
Hubble the wheelwright and Mrs. Hubble; and Uncle Pumblechook Joe's uncle, but Mrs. Joe appropriated him , who was a well-to-do corn-chandler in the nearest town, and drove his own chaise-cart. The dinner hour was half-past one. When Joe and I got home, we found the table laid, and Mrs.
Joe dressed, and the dinner dressing, and the front door unlocked it never was at any other time for the company to enter by, and everything most splendid. And still, not a word of the robbery.
The time came, without bringing with it any relief to my feelings, and the company came. Wopsle, united to a Roman nose and a large shining bald forehead, had a deep voice which he was uncommonly proud of; indeed it was understood among his acquaintance that if you could only give him his head, he would read the clergyman into fits; he himself confessed that if the Church was "thrown open," meaning to competition, he would not despair of making his mark in it.
The Church not being "thrown open," he was, as I have said, our clerk. But he punished the Amens tremendously; and when he gave out the psalm - always giving the whole verse - he looked all round the congregation first, as much as to say, "You have heard my friend overhead; oblige me with your opinion of this style! I opened the door to the company - making believe that it was a habit of ours to open that door - and I opened it first to Mr.
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Wopsle, next to Mr. Hubble, and last of all to Uncle Pumblechook. Joe," said Uncle Pumblechook: Every Christmas Day he presented himself, as a profound novelty, with exactly the same words, and carrying the two bottles like dumb-bells. Every Christmas Day, Mrs. Joe replied, as she now replied, "Oh, Un - cle Pum - ble - chook! This IS kind! And now are you all bobbish, and how's Sixpennorth of halfpence? We dined on these occasions in the kitchen, and adjourned, for the nuts and oranges and apples, to the parlour; which was a change very like Joe's change from his working clothes to his Sunday dress.
My sister was uncommonly lively on the present occasion, and indeed was generally more gracious in the society of Mrs. Hubble than in other company. I remember Mrs. Hubble as a little curly sharp-edged person in sky-blue, who held a conventionally juvenile position, because she had married Mr.
Hubble - I don't know at what remote period - when she was much younger than he. I remember Mr Hubble as a tough high-shouldered stooping old man, of a sawdusty fragrance, with his legs extraordinarily wide apart: Among this good company I should have felt myself, even if I hadn't robbed the pantry, in a false position.
Not because I was squeezed in at an acute angle of the table-cloth, with the table in my chest, and the Pumblechookian elbow in my eye, nor because I was not allowed to speak I didn't want to speak , nor because I was regaled with the scaly tips of the drumsticks of the fowls, and with those obscure corners of pork of which the pig, when living, had had the least reason to be vain.
No; I should not have minded that, if they would only have left me alone. But they wouldn't leave me alone. They seemed to think the opportunity lost, if they failed to point the conversation at me, every now and then, and stick the point into me. I might have been an unfortunate little bull in a Spanish arena, I got so smartingly touched up by these moral goads. It began the moment we sat down to dinner.
Wopsle said grace with theatrical declamation - as it now appears to me, something like a religious cross of the Ghost in Hamlet with Richard the Third - and ended with the very proper aspiration that we might be truly grateful.
Upon which my sister fixed me with her eye, and said, in a low reproachful voice, "Do you hear that? Be grateful. Pumblechook, "be grateful, boy, to them which brought you up by hand. Hubble shook her head, and contemplating me with a mournful presentiment that I should come to no good, asked, "Why is it that the young are never grateful? Hubble tersely solved it by saying, "Naterally wicious. Joe's station and influence were something feebler if possible when there was company, than when there was none.
But he always aided and comforted me when he could, in some way of his own, and he always did so at dinner-time by giving me gravy, if there were any. There being plenty of gravy to-day, Joe spooned into my plate, at this point, about half a pint. A little later on in the dinner, Mr. Wopsle reviewed the sermon with some severity, and intimated - in the usual hypothetical case of the Church being "thrown open" - what kind of sermon he would have given them.
After favouring them with some heads of that discourse, he remarked that he considered the subject of the day's homily, ill-chosen; which was the less excusable, he added, when there were so many subjects "going about. Plenty of subjects going about, for them that know how to put salt upon their tails.
That's what's wanted. A man needn't go far to find a subject, if he's ready with his salt-box. Pumblechook added, after a short interval of reflection, "Look at Pork alone.
There's a subject! If you want a subject, look at Pork! Many a moral for the young," returned Mr. Wopsle; and I knew he was going to lug me in, before he said it; "might be deduced from that text. Joe gave me some more gravy. Wopsle, in his deepest voice, and pointing his fork at my blushes, as if he were mentioning my Christian name; "Swine were the companions of the prodigal.
The gluttony of Swine is put before us, as an example to the young. Hubble," assented Mr. Wopsle, rather irritably, "but there is no girl present. Pumblechook, turning sharp on me, "think what you've got to be grateful for.
If you'd been born a Squeaker--". Not you--". Wopsle, nodding towards the dish. Pumblechook, who had an objection to being interrupted; "I mean, enjoying himself with his elders and betters, and improving himself with their conversation, and rolling in the lap of luxury. Would he have been doing that? No, he wouldn't. And what would have been your destination? No bringing up by hand then.
Not a bit of it! Joe offered me more gravy, which I was afraid to take. Hubble, commiserating my sister. I think the Romans must have aggravated one another very much, with their noses. Perhaps, they became the restless people they were, in consequence. Anyhow, Mr. Wopsle's Roman nose so aggravated me, during the recital of my misdemeanours, that I should have liked to pull it until he howled. But, all I had endured up to this time, was nothing in comparison with the awful feelings that took possession of me when the pause was broken which ensued upon my sister's recital, and in which pause everybody had looked at me as I felt painfully conscious with indignation and abhorrence.
Pumblechook, leading the company gently back to the theme from which they had strayed, "Pork - regarded as biled - is rich, too; ain't it? O Heavens, it had come at last! He would find it was weak, he would say it was weak, and I was lost! I held tight to the leg of the table under the cloth, with both hands, and awaited my fate. My sister went for the stone bottle, came back with the stone bottle, and poured his brandy out: The wretched man trifled with his glass - took it up, looked at it through the light, put it down - prolonged my misery.
All this time, Mrs. Joe and Joe were briskly clearing the table for the pie and pudding. I couldn't keep my eyes off him. Always holding tight by the leg of the table with my hands and feet, I saw the miserable creature finger his glass playfully, take it up, smile, throw his head back, and drink the brandy off. Instantly afterwards, the company were seized with unspeakable consternation, owing to his springing to his feet, turning round several times in an appalling spasmodic whooping-cough dance, and rushing out at the door; he then became visible through the window, violently plunging and expectorating, making the most hideous faces, and apparently out of his mind.
I held on tight, while Mrs. Joe and Joe ran to him. I didn't know how I had done it, but I had no doubt I had murdered him somehow. In my dreadful situation, it was a relief when he was brought back, and, surveying the company all round as if they had disagreed with him, sank down into his chair with the one significant gasp, "Tar!
I had filled up the bottle from the tar-water jug. I knew he would be worse by-and-by. I moved the table, like a Medium of the present day, by the vigour of my unseen hold upon it.
But, Uncle Pumblechook, who was omnipotent in that kitchen, wouldn't hear the word, wouldn't hear of the subject, imperiously waved it all away with his hand, and asked for hot gin-and-water. My sister, who had begun to be alarmingly meditative, had to employ herself actively in getting the gin, the hot water, the sugar, and the lemon-peel, and mixing them.
For the time being at least, I was saved. I still held on to the leg of the table, but clutched it now with the fervour of gratitude. By degrees, I became calm enough to release my grasp and partake of pudding. Pumblechook partook of pudding. All partook of pudding. The course terminated, and Mr. Pumblechook had begun to beam under the genial influence of gin-and-water.
I began to think I should get over the day, when my sister said to Joe, "Clean plates - cold. I clutched the leg of the table again immediately, and pressed it to my bosom as if it had been the companion of my youth and friend of my soul.
I foresaw what was coming, and I felt that this time I really was gone. Must they! Let them not hope to taste it! The company murmured their compliments. Uncle Pumblechook, sensible of having deserved well of his fellow-creatures, said - quite vivaciously, all things considered - "Well, Mrs. Joe, we'll do our best endeavours; let us have a cut at this same pie. My sister went out to get it.
I heard her steps proceed to the pantry. I saw Mr. Pumblechook balance his knife. I saw re-awakening appetite in the Roman nostrils of Mr. Ours was the marsh country, down by the river, within, as the river wound, twenty miles of the sea.
My first most vivid and broad impression of the identity of things seems to me to have been gained on a memorable raw afternoon towards evening.
At such a time I found out for certain that this bleak place overgrown with nettles was the churchyard; and that Philip Pirrip, late of this parish, and also Georgiana wife of the above, were dead and buried; and that Alexander, Bartholomew, Abraham, Tobias, and Roger, infant children of the aforesaid, were also dead and buried; and that the dark flat wilderness beyond the churchyard, intersected with dikes and mounds and gates, with scattered cattle feeding on it, was the marshes; and that the low leaden line beyond was the river; and that the distant savage lair from which the wind was rushing was the sea; and that the small bundle of shivers growing afraid of it all and beginning to cry, was Pip.
A man with no hat, and with broken shoes, and with an old rag tied round his head. A man who had been soaked in water, and smothered in mud, and lamed by stones, and cut by flints, and stung by nettles, and torn by briars; who limped, and shivered, and glared, and growled; and whose teeth chattered in his head as he seized me by the chin.
Don't cut my throat, sir," I pleaded in terror. Pip, sir. The man, after looking at me for a moment, turned me upside down, and emptied my pockets.
There was nothing in them but a piece of bread. When the church came to itself,—for he was so sudden and strong that he made it go head over heels before me, and I saw the steeple under my feet,—when the church came to itself, I say, I was seated on a high tombstone, trembling while he ate the bread ravenously. He started, made a short run, and stopped and looked over his shoulder. That's my mother.
Joe Gargery,—wife of Joe Gargery, the blacksmith, sir. And looked down at his leg. Download Links for 'Great Expectations': Categories All ebooks.Then she took some butter not too much on a knife and spread it on the loaf, in an apothecary kind of way, as if she were making a plaister - using both sides of the knife with a slapping dexterity, and trimming and moulding the butter off round the crust.
There, we were stopped a few minutes by a signal from the sergeant's hand, while two or three of his men dispersed themselves among the graves, and also examined the porch.
As I was saying, Pip, it were my intentions to have had it cut over him; but poetry costs money, cut it how you will, small or large, and it were not done.
Look at his face; ain't it written there? As I never saw my father or my mother, and never saw any likeness of either of them for their days were long before the days of photographs , my first fancies regarding what they were like were unreasonably derived from their tombstones. And the man came on.
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