The opening of the novel suggests that Pip is alone. He is in the graveyard looking at his parent’s gravestone. This is shown by Pip thinking about what his parents looked like. ‘As I never saw my father or mother’, this comment shows that Pip is not only physically alone but also spiritually alone as he had never really known his parents. The fact that Pip is alone ties in with the beginning of Chapter Thirty-nine when he is alone also. ‘I was alone, and had a dull sense of being alone’.
This shows that Pip is still even years after he had become a gentleman and had lived this lavish lifestyle, was still physically and emotionally alone. He needs someone or something to make him feel less lonely. In Chapter One and Chapter Thirty-nine, Pip’s world is turned upside down by Magwitch’s appearance. In Chapter Thirty-nine Pip’s world was literally turned upside down, ‘I was the steeple under my feet’. Yet in Chapter Thirty-nine Pip’s world is metaphorically turned upside down by Magwitch, when he reveals that he has been Pip’s benefactor for all these years.
‘It’s disappointments, dangers, disgraces, consequences of all kinds. ‘ This is how Pip sees Magwitch’s donation to him, as a disappointment, purely because he believed that Mrs Haversham was funding his lavish lifestyle so that he could become a gentleman worthy of marrying Estella. Pip now has the decision of whether he should keep on living the lifestyle he has become accustomed to or whether he should help his true friend escape England before he is discovered. He cannot continue being a gentleman and help Magwitch because his social status would be ruined if anyone found out that he was associated with an ex convict.
Pip was scared of Magwitch in Chapter One and Chapter Thirty-nine. In Chapter One he shows he is scared by telling the reader that he, ‘pleaded with terror’, whilst replying to Magwitch, the then strange man in the Churchyard. He was then scared again in Chapter Thirty-nine when he realises that the man who has come to visit is Magwitch, the same escaped convict he had helped all those years ago. He said that he ‘recoiled a little from him’ as he realises who this stranger is. Pip’s reaction to Magwitch is different in each chapter.
In Chapter One Pip is scared of this unusual man in the churchyard, he said he had to ‘keep himself from crying’. Yet in Chapter Thirty-nine when these two characters are reunited Pip is unsure of how to react. He is shocked and unsure how to feel about Magwitch finding him to get in contact again and doesn’t understand why he has decided to come looking for him again. Yet he is still scared, but not like Chapter One, he is not scared of Magwitch himself, he is scared of what Magwitch has come to tell him, ‘It was only now that I began to tremble’.
Magwitch has a completely different react ion the first time he meets Pip to the second. The first time he meets Pip in Chapter One, he wants Pip to feel scared and intimidated of him so he says things and gestures at Pip in a frightening manner. For example as he says something to Pip he scares Pip with a, ‘threatening shake of his head’. In Chapter Thirty-nine Magwitch is extremely pleased to see Pip again as he has news to tell him. He is courteous to Pip and is not scary and threatening like he was in the churchyard.
Yes, he replied, “I wish to come in, master”‘, Magwitch says to Pip when he arrives at Pip’s door. The return of Magwitch in Chapter Thirty-nine will shock the reader but will also keep the suspense of the story going. The reader will not expect Magwitch to return and will most certainly be wondering how Magwitch is going to bed involved in the story further. Morally Dickens was trying to teach Pip and everyone reading the book that it is only right to help someone who has helped you even if it costs you as much as your livelihood.