Oliver Twist: Chapter 33 - Summary & Analysis

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Wherein the Happiness of Oliver and his Friend Experiences a Sudden Check

Summary

Rose suddenly Attacked by Some Disease

      Likewise passed spring and summer approached. Still Oliver, Mrs. Maylie and Rose were living peacefully and happily. But now, there happened something which shook their pleasure. One day Rose suddenly fell ill. There had been no symptom of disease in her earlier but unexpectedly one day Mrs. Maylie found her in severe fever. Her condition was critical. It caused great distress to the inmates of the cottage. When morning approached Rose's condition become dangerous. Thereupon, Mrs. Maylie gave an urgent letter to Oliver and told him to go to the town inn named "The George". Oliver was instructed to deliver that letter to the landlord of the inn with this message that someone should be sent hurriedly to deliver the letter at the address written on that.

Oliver was Threatened by a Stranger

      Oliver was almost running to the inn "The George" in order to carry out the instructions of Mrs. Maylie. He gave that letter to the landlord of inn with essential instructions. When Oliver was on his way to return he encountered a man completely alien to him. The man started threatening Oliver. Oliver said sorry if he had any way harmed him but the man was very furious that time and he was about to attack Oliver when he himself fell down in a fit. Fortunately Oliver was saved from the violence of that man who was overtaken by a fit. Oliver could not know who this man was.

Rose, Started Improving

      When Oliver returned to the village, he found Rose’s condition too worse. Dr. Losberne arrived late at night and examined Rose's condition which was really very critical. She was close to death. But Dr. Losberne was optimistic about her condition that it would take a better turn. By the next day, Rose’s condition really improved and doctor declared that there was no more cause for anxiety.

Critical Analysis

      The episode of Rose’s illness first baffles the reader for what it is included unless and until we see Oliver going to an inn and caught by Monks.

      There are few personal causes why Dickens has introduced this episode of Rose's illness. Dickens was very much in love with his sister-in-law Mary Hogarth and her sudden death had terribly shaken his heart. She had died into the arms of Dickens and that time he was writing Oliver Twist. But he relaxed his emotions with a slight change in the case of Rose. He could not make Rose die.

      This incident, that is, the illness of Rose has very little bearing upon the development of the plot of the novel.

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