Oliver Twist: Chapter 51 - Summary & Analysis

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Affording an Explanation of more Mysteries than one, and Comprehending a Proposal of Marriage with ho word of Settlement or Pin-money.


More certain Facts Discovered by Mr. Brownlow

      After two days Mr. Brownlow reached the workhouse where Oliver had taken birth. He was there with Oliver, Mrs. Maylie, Rose, Mrs. Bedwin and Dr. Losberne. He wanted to discover certain facts which were yet not revealed or expressed. He directed Monks to be present there when they arrived at workhouse. He wanted everybody to hear everything from Monks's own mouths. He questioned Monks and Monks had confessed all his misdeeds. Monks' confessions revealed another secret that Rose was the younger sister of Oliver's mother Agnes. This meant Rose was the aunt of Oliver and he was her nephew. Oliver felt too happy to get this news but decided to call her sister and not to alter his relationship because he was used to treating her as a brother. Agnes and Rose were sisters. They were the daughters of a naval officer. Agnes had died after giving birth to Oliver and Rose had been brought up by Mrs. Maylie because she had become an orphan. Thus everybody felt too delighted but sad also because certain relations had been lost with the death of people like Edwin and Agnes.

Rose, ultimately agreed to Marry Harry Maylie

      Now Harry Maylie appeared and told Rose that he was now very well acquainted with all the particulars about her birth and again he proposed her for marriage. Rose said that still she could not accept his proposal because she did not want to defame him in the eyes of his friends because she had no dowry to give. Harry said he had anticipated this and now had taken all the measures to overcome the objection. He told that he had abandoned the prosperous life of business and now secured the position of a clergyman in a village in one of the best counties of England. Thus it did not need much money to lead such kind of humble life. Now Rose had no objection in marrying him.

The Death of Dick

      When Oliver came to know that Dickens his boyhood friend had died, he could not stop his tears from flowing.

Critical Analysis

      In this chapter remaining questions are answered. Oliver's parentage and Monks' evil designs are exposed. Thus it continues the story of chapter 49 which ended with the interruption of Mr. Losberne. Dickens has tried his best not to leave any loose thread and this chapter is a convincing example of this achievement. Now, it becomes clear why Monks was so interested in transforming Oliver into a thief. It also came in light why Oliver's face resemble the face of portrait lady of Mr. Brownlow's house. That must be the portrait of Oliver's mother Agnes.

      It is just a coincidence that the benefactors of Oliver prove his kins. Mrs. Maylie is his mother's real aunt, Mr. Brownlow is the best friend of Oliver's late father, Rose Maylie is her mother's sister.

      This chapter is the interpretation of various complications. Here the novel appears to be finished but we do not forget Fagin who is yet to be hanged.

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