In chapter 27, what happened at Judge Taylor's house in To Kill a Mockingbird?

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litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Judge Taylor was home alone on a Sunday night and heard a noise outside.

Bob Ewell begins to make his mark after being dissatisfied with the trial.  For one thing, he spits in Atticus’s face and threatens him.  He also follows Mrs. Robinson and seems to prowl around Judge Taylor’s house at night.

One Sunday night, lost in fruity metaphors and florid diction, Judge Taylor's attention was wrenched from the page by an irritating scratching noise. (Ch. 27)

All he sees is a shadow, but since Mrs. Robinson is also being followed and it was well known that he lost his job with the WPA almost as soon as he got it, everyone assumes it was Bob Ewell prowling around Judge Taylor’s house to get revenge.

These incidents demonstrate Bob Ewell’s downward spiral and the people he blames for it.  They also foreshadow his later altercation with Boo Radley when he tries to attach the Finch children.  Ewell is nothing but a coward, but he can’t accept what happened at the trial.  He blames Atticus and Judge Taylor for having a fair trial, even though Tom Robinson was actually convicted.  The fact that the jury even deliberated showed that they didn’t believe Bob Ewell, and that angered and haunted him.


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