Why does Scout quiz Atticus about his visit to the Radley house in To Kill a Mockingbird? How much does Atticus tell her?

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At the beginning of chapter eight, Scout mentions that Mrs. Radley passed away that winter, and Atticus visited the Radley home to pay his respects. Scout and Jem are still very much intrigued by their reclusive neighbor and initially believe that Boo finally ended his mother's life; however, they are disappointed to discover that she died from natural causes. When Atticus arrives home from visiting the Radley house, Jem encourages Scout to ask their father if he saw or interacted with Boo Radley. When Scout asks Atticus if he saw him, Atticus simply replies, "I did not" (Lee, 65). Jem then makes Scout refrain from asking any further questions about Boo Radley because he suspects that Atticus knows about their nighttime raid the previous summer and does not want to provoke him. Overall, Scout quizzes her father about his visit to the Radley home because she and Jem are still very much interested in and intrigued by Boo Radley. Atticus remains silent about his visit because he does not want to encourage his children to continue snooping around the Radley home or disturbing their reclusive neighbors.

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In Chapter 8 of To Kill a Mockingbird, Mrs. Radley, Boo’s mother, dies. Atticus goes to pay his respects to the family since they are his neighbors.  Scout and Jem can’t wait to hear all about his visit because they are still obsessed with Boo Radley and the rumors that surround his life. Scout and Jem immediately assume that Boo somehow caused his mother’s death, but Atticus tells them that she died of natural causes.  This is disappointing for the children who yearn for another juicy tidbit about the mysterious Boo Radley.  Scout also asks Atticus if he saw Mr. Arthur (Boo).  Atticus tells Scout that he didn’t.  Again, it's another disappoint for Scout and Jem who want so desperately to meet and know Boo Radley.  As usual, Atticus is pretty closed-mouth about the Radley family in order to protect their privacy and to discourage any more antics from Scout and Jem who are trying to see Boo.

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