Dr Jekyl and Mr Hyde - Chapter Summary

Topics: Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Fictional scientists Pages: 6 (2679 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Chapter 1The story begins with a description of Mr. Utterson, a lawyer in London. Mr. Utterson is a reserved, conservative man who does not reveal his true, vibrant personality. He tolerates the strangeness and faults of other. Early in his life, he watched as his brother fell to ruin, and it is noted that he is often the last respectable person that men who are turning to evil or ruin have to talk to. This foreshadows Utterson's involvement with upcoming evil.Mr. Utterson is friends with Richard Enfield, although the two are totally different from one another. They always took walks with each other on Sundays no matter what else they might have to do. As they walk down a lane on Sunday that would usually be crowded with merchants and children during the week, Enfield points out an old building without many windows, and only a basement door.Enfield tells a story of how, one night at about 3:00 am, he saw a strange, deformed man round the corner and bump into a young girl. The strange man did not stop but simply walked right over the young girl, who cried out in terror. Enfield rushed over and attended the girl along with her family. Still, the strange man carried on, so Enfield chased him down and urged him back. A doctor was called and Enfield and the doctor felt an odd hatred of the man, warning the man that they would discredit him in every way possible unless he compensated the girl. The strange man agreed to offer 100 British pounds.Enfield notes that the man is like Satan in the way he seems emotionally cold to the situation. The strange man presented a cheque signed by an important person, which they together cashed the next morning. Enfield states that he refers to the building as Black Mail House. Utterson asks Enfield if he ever asked who lived in the building, but Enfield explains that he doesn't ask questions about strange things:"the more it looks like Queer Street, the less I ask."The building appears lived in, and the two men carry on their walk. Enfield continues that the strange man he saw that night looked deformed, though he could explain how. Utterson assures Enfield that his story has caught his interest. The two agree never to talk about the story again.Chapter 2The same evening, Utterson came home. Instead of reading until sleep at midnight, he poured over the will of his friend Henry Jekyll, a doctor and very educated man. The will stated that Jekyll's possessions and position should be handed over to Mr. Hyde, a friend that Utterson had never heard nor met. Utterson went to the house of Dr. Lanyon, an old school and college friend of Utterson's and Jekyll's, and asked him about Hyde, but Lanyon had never heard of him. Lanyon uses several evil references when talking about Jekyll, such as "devilish", and "gone wrong", foreboding evil relations between Jekyll and Hyde. Utterson knows something is wrong between the two. Utterson can't sleep for the rest of the night.Utterson considers how the strange man Enfield spoke of could trample a child and care nothing for it. Utterson staked out the door of the strange building looking for the strange man, whom he also believed was Mr. Hyde. One night, he found him. He confronts him as he is about to go inside the strange door, and finds the strange man is indeed Mr. Hyde. Hyde is unpleasant, cool, defiant, and confident. Utterson convinces Hyde to show his face, and Hyde suggests Utterson should know his address, implying that he knows of Jekyll's will. Utterson refers to Hyde to himself as "troglodytic", meaning a primitive human being, detestable and unpleasant. Utterson decides to try and visit Jekyll at the late hour.At Jekyll's home, he learns from the servants that Hyde never east dinner at Jekyll's house, but is always there in the laboratory, with his own key. The servants rarely see him, but they have orders to obey him. Utterson leaves, and reflects upon his own...
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