Book 5 Chapter 5 of Tom Jones.

This is part of an ongoing project in which I will record and post one chapter per week of Henry Fielding's Tom Jones over the course of four years.

Well, here's an end to Tom's conflicting affections for Molly Seagrim and Sophia Western! It turns out that while Tom's been recovering from his broken arm, Molly has been seeking the affections of another man. And not just any other man, but the hypocrite Square! Turns out that back when Molly was being attacked at the Church, Mr. Square got a good look at her and decided he liked what he saw, and has been seeing her ever since.

Tom is thrilled that he no longer has to worry about Molly, since she's already found someone new (and it seems that Mrs. Seagrim has been pimping her out). Now, pay attention to the timeline here: Molly was already visibly pregnant in the church graveyard scene, so it's still heavily implied that Tom is the baby's father. But, somehow, Molly's affair with Square excuses Tom from any responsibility.

 

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AuthorMark Turetsky