The Adventures of Tom Sawyer | Study Guide

Mark Twain

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Course Hero, "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer Study Guide," May 17, 2017, accessed November 13, 2018, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Adventures-of-Tom-Sawyer/.

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer | Chapter 29 | Summary

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Summary

On Friday the Thatcher family returns, and Becky's mother agrees to a long-promised picnic. Because it will be a late day, Becky's mother suggests she stay with a friend. The group—including Tom and Becky—departs for the ferryboat, and they all go to McDougal's cave.

At the same time, Huck continues his watch. He is beginning to doubt that it's worth it, but that night, he sees two figures slip out. He follows them as they go to the edge of the Widow Douglas's house. There Injun Joe and his companion discuss doing her extreme harm because her late husband had Joe horsewhipped. Huck slips away and runs to the home of a neighbor, the Welchman (Mr. Jones). He reveals that the Widow Douglas is in danger, and he begs that he not be named as the one who told. The Welchman and his sons go to investigate the threat.

Analysis

The is another situation drawn from Twain's life. He notes that a raid on the "Welshman's house" was proposed by a drunk emigrant one night. The only people present were "a poor but quite respectable widow and her young and blameless daughter." In Twain's notes on the story in his autobiography, the widow defended herself with a musket and slugs.

In this chapter part of the narration is immersed in Huck's perspective, and it is clear that Huck's view of the world is much more pragmatic than Tom's. Like Tom's choice to testify for Potter, Huck's actions here are proof that he considers things other than his own safety. However, in contrast to Tom's actions, Huck acts in such a way that his own safety is taken into account. Potter, a drunk like Huck's father, does not motivate Huck to risk himself. The widow does. Huck notes that she's been "kind to him more than once," and he takes action to see to her safety.

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