Book 3, Chapter 8 Summary

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Last Updated January 12, 2023.

Mr. Gradgrind pleads with Bitzer for compassion, but Bitzer has been trained by reason alone. He will act to his own advantage and self-interest and plans to deliver Tom to Mr. Bounderby at once. Mr. Gradgrind even offers Bitzer money, but Bitzer has more in mind. He wants position.

Mr. Sleary pretends to withdraw his help but signals otherwise to Sissy. He has a plan to get Tom away using a dancing horse and a barking dog. His plan works perfectly, and Tom escapes from Bitzer and heads toward Liverpool. Mr. Gradgrind shows his thanks with plenty of rewards to the circus folk and animals.

Mr. Sleary reveals to Mr. Gradgrind that a while back another dog returned to the circus. It was Merrylegs, and the animal was looking for Sissy before he died. Mr. Sleary realizes that for the dog to return without Sissy’s father, the latter must be dead. He does not want to tell Sissy.

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