Bleak House: “More Old Soldiers Than One”

Chapter 27: “More Old Soldiers Than One”

Summary: Mr. George and Smallweed go to Tulkinghorn’s, but once there Mr. George decides he doesn’t want to share his handwriting sample because Tulkinghorn won’t tell him what it’s for. The confrontation “suffocates” him, and he decides to go ask an army buddy for advice. He goes to see the Bagnet family in their musical instrument shop, has lunch/dinner and listens to Mrs. Bagnet’s advice not to hand over the letter. When he tells Tulkinghorn, the lawyer goes all creepy and tells him not to come back.

Reaction: I like that Mr. George the wanderer, and I liked the Bagnets too. Their family, for once, was not an example of some dysfunction or made into a satirical example–they were genuinely happy together. Mr. Bagnet clearly loved and respected his wife (he even counts on her to make his decisions) but he is not “unmanned,” as he claimed he never would express his feelings. It seems like a fair trade.

Prediction: I hope the Bagnets reappear like most of the characters we meet.

Why This Book Is a Classic: Classical instruments. What’s better with classic literature than a good classical music?

Our Lesson: You can have a happy family and exist in a work of literature–at least for one chapter.

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