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In The Devil and Tom Walker, what bargain does Tom strike with the devil, and what...

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jmilton91 | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 23, 2008 at 11:39 AM via web

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In The Devil and Tom Walker, what bargain does Tom strike with the devil, and what does he do when he begins to regret his bargain?

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dymatsuoka | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 23, 2008 at 3:10 PM (Answer #1)

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Tom Walker sells his soul to the devil in exchange for great wealth in the form of buried treasure.  As part of the deal he must be employed in his lifetime in the devil's service, and to do this he chooses to become a money-lender, "cheating people out of their money and charging them outrageous interest".  As Tom grows old, he begins to worry about the terms of the agreement he has made, and tries to cheat the devil out of taking his soul.  In order to do this he suddenly becomes an avid church-goer who reads the Bible "obsessively" and prays loudly in church so that everyone can hear.  His efforts are to no avail, however, and the devil comes one day and takes Tom away on a black horse.  He is never seen again.

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amy-lepore | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 23, 2008 at 10:07 PM (Answer #2)

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Tom also carries his Bible with him everywhere in hopes that having it will thwart the Devil's ability to wisk Tom away and fulfill the contract they made together.  Unfortunately for Tom, the Devil calls on Tom when he is without his Bible. 

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melissa1106 | TA , Grade 11 | Honors

Posted June 29, 2014 at 12:12 AM (Answer #3)

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In the Devil and Tom Walker, Tom sells his soul to the devil in order to obtain the riches the devil had. The devil makes him work as basically a loan shark and scams people out of a lot of money. When he starts to regret his decision, he gets avidly involved in religion and carries a bible with him.

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