To Kill a Mockingbird Chapter Sumaries

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  • Created on: 29-10-18 19:14

Chapter 1 When it all began

1. The History of the Finch family, the town of Maycomb and the Radleys are described, and the main characters of Jem, Atticus and Calpurnia are introduced.

2. Jem is 10 and Scout is 6 when they meet their next-door neighbour Dill.

3. The children become very interested by Boo Radley, who hasnt left his house for 15 years.

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Chapter 2 - 3 An education begins

1. Scout and Jem begin school, Scout for the first time.

2. Scout's teacher, Miss Caroline Fisher, finds out Scout is clever and scolds her for her advanced learning.

3. Scout returns to school, where Miss Caroline if frightened by Burris Ewell's jumping "cootie" and other class members try to explain to her about the Ewell family. Scout stands up and explains and gets lightly hit with a ruler.

4. When Scout gets home Atticus encourages Scout to look at her experiences in a new light.

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Chapter 4 - 6 The fascination continues

1. Scout and Jem discover gifts hidden in an oak tree, and start to wonder who has left them there.

2. Scout rolls in a tyre, pushed by Jem, into the Radley steps.

3. The children take on character roles - Dill's "worst perfomance was Gothic" - in a Boo Radley play and are caught by Atticus but deny the Radley connection.

4. Scout spends time with Miss Maudie Atkinson, a kindly neighbour, who tells her more about the Radley family.

5. They go into the Radleys garden in the night but are seen, they run away and exit through under the fence, there is a gunshot and Jem loses his trousers.

6. The children leave Boo a note and Atticus catches them, asking them how they would feel if he entered their bedrooms without knocking.

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Chapter 7 - 8 Everyone to help

1. Jem and Scout find more things in the tree knot-hole

2. The children try to leave a thank-you letter, and discover Mr Nathan Radley, Boo's keeper, filling up the hole.

3. A cold winter brings heavy snow to Maycomb, as heavy as "appomattox" according to Mr Avery. Scout and Jem's snow man is "an absolute morphodite" - Miss Maudie.

4. Miss Maudies house catches fire. As Jem and Scout watch, Boo unnoticed by the children, places a blanket around Scout's shoulders.

5. Jem realises who has put it there and pours out to Atticus all the events concerning Boo. Initially, Scout does not understand why.

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Chapter 9 - 11 A sin to kill a mockingbird

1. Atticus has taken on a court-case and is defending a "*****" called Tom Robinson.

2. The children must learn self-control to accusations of their father for instance at school and at Finch's landing, where they are spending christmas with Aunt Alexandra and other family.

3. The children are all given air rifles for Christmas. Atticus says "Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can het 'em, but remember it's a sin to kill a mockingbird.

4. Jem knocks the heads of Mrs Duboses camellias after she has shouted vicious things about Atticus.

5. As a punishment from Atticus he is forced to read to Mrs Dubose every night.

6. Before her death she leaves a single white camellia for Jem. Scout and Jem learn that Mrs Dubose had been brave as she was fighting a morphine addiction.

7. Atticus tells the children that "I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand".

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Chapter 12 - 14 Gentle breeding

1. Calpurnia takes Jem and Scout to the black people's church, and we learn about Tom Robinson's family and that he is accused of ****.

2. Aunt Alexandra has come to stay. She persuades Atticus to try to make Jem and Scout appreciate that "you are not from run-of-the-mill people".

3. Aunt Alexandra and Atticus quarrel about Calpurnia's position in the household.

4. Dill turns up, having run away from his home in Mississipi

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Chapter 15 Calming the mob

1. Heck Tate, the sheriff, tells Atticus they are moving Tom Robinson to the local gaol and warns of trouble with "that old sarum bunch". Atticus disappears the next night and the children follow.

2. They find Atticus outside the gaol and a gang gathers around him.

3. Scout makes a speech directed towards Mr Cunningham about his "entailment" and about his son.

4. Mr Cunningham disperses the crowd and they leave.

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Chapter 16 - 17 The Trial begins

1. It is the day of the trial.

2. Atticus speaks to Scout about last night's proceedings, explaining that Mr Cunningham is a friend, but that he has faults like everyone else and that last night he was part of a mob.

3. People from all around Maycomb are arriving for the trial.

4. In the court-house the children cannot find anywhere to sit, until Reverend Sykes offers them seats in the "Coloured balcony"

5. The trial begins with Mr Heack Tate's testimony. He attests that Mayella's right eye was badly bruised.

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Chapter 18 - 19 Mayella vs Tom

1. Mayella Ewell is questioned by Mr Gilmer and then by Atticus - she has problems answering questions.

2. Atticus asks Mayella to be sure she has got the right man and she gets confused, before eventually bursting into tears for the second time and refusing to say more.

3. Jem notices that Tom has a withered left hand at the of a crippled left arm.

4. Tom Robinson takes the stand and Atticus questions him on his version of events, after which Mr Gilmer questions him.

5. Mr Link Deas, who used to employ Tom, speaks for his defence out of turn and is sent out of the room, adding to the courtroom drama.

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Chapter 20 - 21 The verdict

1. Scout has left the court-house with Dill, as he is feeling unwell. They meet and talk to Dolphus Raymond.

2. dill and Scout return to the court-room to hear Atticus conclude his defence of Tom Robinson. He appeals to the jury, "This case is as simple as black and white".

3. Several hours later, the jury presents the verdict: Tom Robinson is guilty.

4. The black people stand as Atticus files out the court-room.

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Chapter 22 - 23 Following the trial

1. Jem is very upset by the trial result, Aunt Alexandra is wondering if it was a good idea to let the children go. Atticus believes that they must get used to the society in which they live.

2. Atticus, very tired, wakes up to find that many black people have left him gifts of food and his is moved to tears.

3. Miss Maudie tries to offer support to the children and discusses the trial with them. She has only made to little cakes instead of her usual three for Jem, Scout and Dill. Scout realises why when Miss Maudie cuts a slice from the big cake for Jem.

4. Chapter 23 is concluded when Jem tells Scout that he has been thinking that there are four types of people in the world, whereas Scout disagrees, saying that there is only one.

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Chapter 24 -25 Tom's death

1. Aunt Alexandra is entertaining the Maycomb Missionary Society and they have an interesting discussion about race, which Miss Maudie angrily brings to an end.

2. Atticus comes home with the news that Tom Robinson is dead and he asks Calpurnia to accompany him to go and tell Helen, Tom's wife.

3. Mr Underwood reports the death in the Maycomb Tribune, likening it to "the senseless slaughter of song birds".

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Chapter 26 - 27 A score to settle

1. The school year begins and Scout is suprised when Miss Gates, her teacher, talks about Hitler's persecution of the Jews, contrasting it to the non-prejudiced United States.

2. Scout cannot understand Miss gates as she heard her putting downg black people to Miss Stephanie, as she came out of the court-house.

3. Jem shouts at Scout not to talk about the court-house again, and Atticus later explains to the puzzeled Scout that Jem needs to forget about the trial incident for a while.

4. Bob Ewell has not forgottern that he has a score to settle. At the Welfare Office he complains, quite unreasonably, of Atticus stealing his job.

5. Judge Taylor's house is broken into, probably by Bob Ewell, and Helen Robinson is threatened by Bob Ewell.

6. Mr Link Deas, who has given Helen work, has to warn Ewell to leave her alone.

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Chapter 28 - 29 Attacked in the dark

1. Jem and Scout walk to the pagent in the dark and Ceicil Jacobs, from Scout's class, jumps out on them. Scout falls asleep waiting for her line in the pagent, causing her so much embarrassment that she decides to stay inside her costume until she gets home.

2. Jem leads Scout back in the dark, and they hear noises behind them. They think it must be Cecil following them at first, until the supposed prank carries on too long.

3. Somebody attacks Scout, there is a big scuffle and she hears strange noises from beneath her costume. Shea hears a "crunching sound" and Jem screams.

4. As Scout reels from a blow she hears a man wheeze then cough and stagger away groaning. Scout then finds a man on the ground who smells of whisky and a man carries Jem back to the Finch home.

5. Heck Tate arrives and says that he has found Bob Ewell dead under the Radleys' tree, whith a knife in his ribs. Heck Tate asks Scout to tell him what happened.

6. At then end of her story she points to the man who rescued them. She realises he is Boo.

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Chapter 30 - 31 A private trial

1. Doctor Reynolds arrives and asks everyone to leave the room while he examines Jem.

2. Atticus, Heck Tate, Arthur (Boo) Radley and Scout go out onto the porch. Scout leads Boo into a seat in a shadow as she senses he will be more comfortable there.

3. Atticus discusses the incident with Heck Tate. Atticus does not understand why Heck is insisting that Bob Ewell fell on his knife and believes that the incident must come to the court, even though it would be difficult for Jem.

4. He eventually understands that Heck is trying to protect Boo Radley's privacy.

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Chapter 30 - 31 Continued

5. Scout takes Boo Radley in to see Jem who is asleep, and then, at Boo's request, walks him home, the last she will see of him.

6. As Scout walks home she looks back at the incidents that have happened from Boo's viewpoint and contemplates Atticus's moral of seeing things as if standing in another's shoes.

7. Scout joins Atticus beside the sleeping Jem and very soon after Atticus begins to read her "The GRey Ghost", she has fallen asleep.

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