Chapter 41 Summary

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Last Updated on May 5, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 435

The Butcher

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While he is in London, Jack sees many problems that could be prevented by a bit of common sense. Horses do not mind hard work if they are treated reasonably, and being owned by a good-tempered poor man is better than being ill-treated by a lord or a lady. He is most saddened by how poorly some ponies are being treated; he often sees them struggling to pull heavy loads or being whipped by cruel young boys.

Butchers’ horses are forced to move at great speeds, something Jack does not understand until he spent some time waiting on the street near a butcher’s shop. The driver of the butcher’s cart pulls up in front of the shop, and it is clear the horse is exhausted after being driven too hard. The butcher comes out to the cart and scolds the driver, his son, for treating the horse in such a way after many warnings not to drive so recklessly.

His son interrupts his father’s scolding and tells him angrily that none of it is his fault, for every time he has to make a delivery he is told by his father to “be quick” and “look sharp.” Every delivery seems to be an emergency of some sort, due to poor planning, unexpected company, or other so-called crises. In every case, his father wants him to hurry—so he does. The butcher agrees that it is his customers’ problems which cause the need to rush and he wishes things were different. He would even be a better butcher if his customers planned ahead better and did not make such last-minute decisions....

(The entire section contains 435 words.)

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