Click here to Download To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book by Harper Lee English having PDF Size 1.4 MB and No of Pages 416.
When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow. When it healed, and Jem’s fears of never being able to play football were assuaged, he was seldom self-conscious about his injury. His left arm was somewhat shorter than his right; when he stood or walked, the back of his hand was at right angles to his body, his thumb parallel to his thigh.
To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book by Harper Lee
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He couldn’t have cared less, so long as he could pass and punt. When enough years had gone by to enable us to look back on them, we sometimes discussed the events leading to his accident. I maintain that the Ewells started it all, but Jem, who was four years my senior, said it started long before that. He said it began the summer Dill came to us, when Dill first gave us the idea of making Boo Radley come out.
I said if he wanted to take a broad view of the thing, it really began with Andrew Jackson. If General Jackson hadn’t run the Creeks up the creek, Simon Finch would never have paddled up the Alabama, and where would we be if he hadn’t? We were far too old to settle an argument with a fist-fight, so we consulted Atticus.
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Our father said we were both right. Being Southerners, it was a source of shame to some members of the family that we had no recorded ancestors on either side of the Battle of Hastings. All we had was Simon Finch, a fur-trapping apothecary from Cornwall whose piety was exceeded only by his stinginess.
In England, Simon was irritated by the persecution of those who called themselves Methodists at the hands of their more liberal brethren, and as Simon called himself a Methodist, he worked his way across the Atlantic to Philadelphia, thence to Jamaica, thence to Mobile, and up the Saint Stephens. Mindful of John Wesley’s strictures on the use of many words in buying and selling.
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Simon made a pile practicing medicine, but in this pursuit he was unhappy lest he be tempted into doing what he knew was not for the glory of God, as the putting on of gold and costly apparel. So Simon, having forgotten his teacher’s dictum on the possession of human chattels, bought three slaves and with their aid established a homestead on the banks of the Alabama River some forty miles above Saint Stephens.
He returned to Saint Stephens only once, to find a wife, and with her established a line that ran high to daughters. Simon lived to an impressive age and died rich. It was customary for the men in the family to remain on Simon’s homestead, Finch’s Landing, and make their living from cotton.
The place was self-sufficient: modest in comparison with the empires around it, the Landing nevertheless produced everything required to sustain life except ice, wheat flour, and articles of clothing, supplied by river-boats from Mobile. Simon would have regarded with impotent fury the disturbance between the North and the South, as it left his descendants stripped of everything but their land. To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book
Yet the tradition of living on the land remained unbroken until well into the twentieth century, when my father, Atticus Finch, went to Montgomery to read law, and his younger brother went to Boston to study medicine. Their sister Alexandra was the Finch who remained at the Landing: she married a taciturn man who spent most of his time lying in a hammock by the river wondering if his trot-lines were full.
“Not exactly. The Cunninghams are country folks, farmers, and the crash hit them hardest.” Atticus said professional people were poor because the farmers were poor. As Maycomb County was farm country, nickels and dimes were hard to come by for doctors and dentists and lawyers. Entailment was only a part of Mr. Cunningham’s vexations.
The acres not entailed were mortgaged to the hilt, and the little cash he made went to interest. If he held his mouth right, Mr. Cunningham could get a WPA job, but his land would go to ruin if he left it, and he was willing to go hungry to keep his land and vote as he pleased. Mr. Cunningham, said Atticus, came from a set breed of men. To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book
As the Cunninghams had no money to pay a lawyer, they simply paid us with what they had. “Did you know,” said Atticus, “that Dr. Reynolds works the same way? He charges some folks a bushel of potatoes for delivery of a baby. Miss Scout, if you give me your attention I’ll tell you what entailment is. Jem’s definitions are very nearly accurate sometimes.”
If I could have explained these things to Miss Caroline, I would have saved myself some inconvenience and Miss Caroline subsequent mortification, but it was beyond my ability to explain things as well as Atticus, so I said, “You’re shamin’ him, Miss Caroline. Walter hasn’t got a quarter at home to bring you, and you can’t use any stovewood.”
Miss Caroline stood stock still, then grabbed me by the collar and hauled me back to her desk. “Jean Louise, I’ve had about enough of you this morning,” she said. “You’re starting off on the wrong foot in every way, my dear. Hold out your hand.” I ran to the back yard and pulled an old car tire from under the house. I slapped it up to the front yard. “I’m first,” I said. To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book
Dill said he ought to be first, he just got here. Jem arbitrated, awarded me first push with an extra time for Dill, and I folded myself inside the tire. Until it happened I did not realize that Jem was offended by my contradicting him on Hot Steams, and that he was patiently awaiting an opportunity to reward me. He did, by pushing the tire down the sidewalk with all the force in his body.
Ground, sky and houses melted into a mad palette, my ears throbbed, I was suffocating. I could not put out my hands to stop, they were wedged between my chest and knees. I could only hope that Jem would outrun the tire and me, or that I would be stopped by a bump in the sidewalk. I heard him behind me, chasing and shouting.
The tire bumped on gravel, skeetered across the road, crashed into a barrier and popped me like a cork onto pavement. Dizzy and nauseated, I lay on the cement and shook my head still, pounded my ears to silence, and heard Jem’s voice: “Scout, get away from there, come on!” I raised my head and stared at the Radley Place steps in front of me. To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book
I froze. “Come on, Scout, don’t just lie there!” Jem was screaming. “Get up, can’tcha?” I got to my feet, trembling as I thawed. “Get the tire!” Jem hollered. “Bring it with you! Ain’t you got any sense at all?” When I was able to navigate, I ran back to them as fast as my shaking knees would carry me.
Jem stayed moody and silent for a week. As Atticus had once advised me to do, I tried to climb into Jem’s skin and walk around in it: if I had gone alone to the Radley Place at two in the morning, my funeral would have been held the next afternoon. So I left Jem alone and tried not to bother him. School started.
The second grade was as bad as the first, only worse- they still flashed cards at you and wouldn’t let you read or write. Miss Caroline’s progress next door could be estimated by the frequency of laughter; however, the usual crew had flunked the first grade again, and were helpful in keeping order. To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book Download
The only thing good about the second grade was that this year I had to stay as late as Jem, and we usually walked home together at three o’clock. One afternoon when we were crossing the schoolyard toward home, Jem suddenly said: “There’s something I didn’t tell you.” As this was his first complete sentence in several days, I encouraged him: “About what?” “About that night.”
“You’ve never told me anything about that night,” I said. Jem waved my words away as if fanning gnats. He was silent for a while, then he said, “When I went back for my breeches- they were all in a tangle when I was gettin’ out of ’em, I couldn’t get ’em loose. When I went back-” Jem took a deep breath. “When I went back, they were folded across the fence… like they were expectin’ me.”
“Across-” “And something else-” Jem’s voice was flat. “Show you when we get home. They’d been sewed up. Not like a lady sewed ’em, like somethin’ I’d try to do. All crooked. It’s almost like-” “-somebody knew you were comin’ back for ’em.” Jem shuddered. “Like somebody was readin’ my mind… like somebody could tell what I was gonna do. To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book Download
Can’t anybody tell what I’m gonna do lest they know me, can they, Scout?” Jem’s question was an appeal. I reassured him: “Can’t anybody tell what you’re gonna do lest they live in the house with you, and even I can’t tell sometimes.” We were walking past our tree. In its knot-hole rested a ball of gray twine.
“Then why did Cecil say you defended niggers? He made it sound like you were runnin’ a still.” Atticus sighed. “I’m simply defending a Negro- his name’s Tom Robinson. He lives in that little settlement beyond the town dump. He’s a member of Calpurnia’s church, and Cal knows his family well. She says they’re clean-living folks.
Scout, you aren’t old enough to understand some things yet, but there’s been some high talk around town to the effect that I shouldn’t do much about defending this man. It’s a peculiar case- it won’t come to trial until summer session. John Taylor was kind enough to give us a postponement…” “If you shouldn’t be defendin’ him, then why are you doin’ it?” To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book Download
“For a number of reasons,” said Atticus. “The main one is, if I didn’t I couldn’t hold up my head in town, I couldn’t represent this county in the legislature, I couldn’t even tell you or Jem not to do something again.” “You mean if you didn’t defend that man, Jem and me wouldn’t have to mind you any more?” “That’s about right.” “Why?”
“Because I could never ask you to mind me again. Scout, simply by the nature of the work, every lawyer gets at least one case in his lifetime that affects him personally. This one’s mine, I guess. You might hear some ugly talk about it at school, but do one thing for me if you will: you just hold your head high and keep those fists down.
No matter what anybody says to you, don’t you let ’em get your goat. Try fighting with your head for a change… it’s a good one, even if it does resist learning.” “Atticus, are we going to win it?” “No, honey.” “Then why-” “Simply because we were licked a hundred years before we started is no reason for us not to try to win,” Atticus said. To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book Free
“You sound like Cousin Ike Finch,” I said. Cousin Ike Finch was Maycomb County’s sole surviving Confederate veteran. He wore a General Hood type beard of which he was inordinately vain. At least once a year Atticus, Jem and I called on him, and I would have to kiss him. It was horrible. Jem and I would listen respectfully to Atticus and Cousin Ike rehash the war.
“Tell you, Atticus,” Cousin Ike would say, “the Missouri Compromise was what licked us, but if I had to go through it agin I’d walk every step of the way there an’ every step back jist like I did before an’ furthermore we’d whip ’em this time… now in 1864, when Stonewall Jackson came around by- I beg your pardon, young folks. Ol’ Blue Light was in heaven then, God rest his saintly brow….”
I didn’t look any more than I had to. Jem reopened Ivanhoe and began reading. I tried to keep up with him, but he read too fast. When Jem came to a word he didn’t know, he skipped it, but Mrs. Dubose would catch him and make him spell it out. Jem read for perhaps twenty minutes, during which time I looked at the soot-stained mantelpiece, out the window, anywhere to keep from looking at her. To Kill a Mockingbird PDF Book Free
As he read along, I noticed that Mrs. Dubose’s corrections grew fewer and farther between, that Jem had even left one sentence dangling in mid-air. She was not listening.