In Chapter 22 Herbert reveals to Pip (and to us) the story of Miss Havisham and the events that have created the womam that Pip has met. When Miss Havisham was a young, rich heiress, she was jilted on her wedding day by a suitor, who, aided by her half-brother, took much of her money. Her reaction to this tragic event was to attempt to stop time and live as a hermit. Estella has been brought up by Miss Havisham to take her revenge on the male sex.
This chapter is important for the plot as it provides through Herbert crucial information that Pip could not know himself (as in Chapters 42, 50-51). We are also given more warnings regarding Estella and any attachment that Pip might hope to form with her.