In this chapter, Pip has just come of age and has had a long and slightly confusing conversation with Mr. Jaggers about his expenditures and his possible benefactor, whose identity Mr. Jaggers, of course, refuses to disclose. However, Mr. Jaggers does tell Pip that he is to receive five hundred pounds a year until such time as this benefactor appears.
At the end of the chapter, then, armed with this new income, Pip asks Wemmick how he might go about helping out a friend who wants to start out in the business world but has no money. Wemmick asks if Pip means "with money down," and Pip confirms that, yes, he would like to give some money to this friend (obviously Herbert Pocket). Wemmick's response is that he may as well go to the bridge of his choice and pitch his money into the Thames, as it would have the same effect. He says that giving money to a friend is the best way not only of never seeing that money again, but also of losing the friend.