Chapters 6-8 Summary

The next morning, Mr. Pecksniff receives a letter summoning him to London on business. At breakfast, he explains to Martin that he had promised his daughters to take them the next time he went to the city. They will be gone for a week, so he suggests that Martin practice his architecture by drawing plans for a grammar school. (Pecksniff is in the habit of taking his students’ drawings, adding insignificant details to them, claiming them as his own, and selling them.) After the Pecksniffs leave, Tom Pinch notices that Martin is depressed. Martin explains that Pecksniff informed him that his grandfather had been in the village recently. Martin’s parents died when he was young and so does not miss them, but Tom commiserates with him anyway, having lost his own parents early. Martin was raised by his grandfather but has since been disinherited. Martin fell in love with a young woman who is dissatisfactory in Mr. Chuzzlewit’s eyes. In fact, Martin tells Tom, she is the girl with the pretty face that Tom had seen in the church as he was playing the organ. Tom takes this news silently, but he is secretly heartbroken. He tries to cheer Martin up as much as he can, consenting to read Martin to sleep at his request.

Martin begins work on the drawings for the grammar school when he and Tom are interrupted by Montague Tigg, who announces that he is the agent for Chevy Slyme, a relative of Chuzzlewit’s. He says that he and Chevy are in need of funds to pay their tavern bill at the Blue Dragon. Martin takes Tom aside and tells him that Chevy is a disreputable cousin of his, and they should pay the bill to get rid of him. Neither he nor Tom has the three pounds necessary, so Tom suggests that they approach Mrs. Lupin and promise her that the bill will be taken care of. Mark Tapley, who has “escorted” Tigg to Pecksniff’s, says he believes this will be acceptable. Tom and Martin speak to Mrs. Lupin, who is agreeable to anything as long as the two leave. They are introduced to Chevy, who is horrified at the thought that a person of such excellence as he must submit to having his tavern bill paid by strangers. On the way out, Tom talks to Mark, who announces that he is leaving for London the next day. Mark says good-bye to Mrs. Lupin, whom he asks what would happen if they were to be married. Mrs. Lupin brushes him off, and the next day, Mark departs.

On the coach to London, Mr. Pecksniff and his daughters are joined by their cousins, Anthony Chuzzlewit and his son, Jonas. Charity and Mercy are the objects of flirtation from Jonas, but they try to avoid him. In London, the Pecksniffs stay at Mrs. Todgers’ Commercial Boarding House, Mrs. Todgers being an old acquaintance of Mr. Pecksniff.