Short summary - The Mystery of Edwin Drood - Charles Dickens

British literature summaries -

Short summary - The Mystery of Edwin Drood
Charles Dickens

Micro retelling:Edwin Drood and Rosa Bud have been engaged to each other since childhood, but they are not in love, but only attached to each other. Edwin has an uncle a few years older, John Jasper, who is in love with Rosa, so he plans to kill his nephew. In addition, Jasper, who was a singer in the city’s cathedral, secretly smoked opium in some brothel in London with an old woman who for some reason hated him. The uncle in public in every possible way emphasizes his love for Edwin and is respected in the city. Brother and sister appear in the city - Neville and Elena Landles. Neville at first sight falls in love with Rosa and begins to quarrel with Edwin, because he believes that he carelessly treats his bride. Jasper, pretending to want to reconcile the young people, calls them out and drinks wine with some kind of drug. Then Edwin and Neville go for a walk on the river, this night Edwin disappears. Neville, accused of the murder of Edwin Drud, is detained, but subsequently, due to lack of evidence, is released. Six months later, a stranger appears in Klostergam with a huge, gray-haired head of hair. His name is Dick Daughter. He watches Jasper, meets an old woman who sold him opium. The goals of his arrival and his further actions in the city are not known. At this point, the novel breaks off.


The affair begins when John Jasper leaves the London opium stash. The following evening, Edwin Drood visits Jasper, who is the choirmaster at Cloysterham Cathedral. Edwin believes that he was mistaken about his engagement to Rosa Bad. The next day, Edwin visits Rosa in a monastic house, the guesthouse where she lives. Their quarrels are common when he visits her. Meanwhile, Jasper, who is interested in the crypt of the cathedral, is looking for companions for a man named Dardles, who knows more about the crypt than anyone else.

Neville Landless and his twin sister Helena are sent to study at Cloysterham. Neville studies with the younger canon by his Rev. Mr. Crisparkle; Helen will live in a monastic house with Rosa. Neville admits to Crisparkle that he hated his crazy stepfather, while Rosa claims Helen is afraid of her music teacher, Jasper. Neville immediately gives Rosa a slap in the face that wildly outrages Edwin. Edwin provokes him, and he replies rudely, which makes it possible for Jasper to dissolve the rumor about the reputation of Navill and his cruel character. Rev. Mr. Crisparkle is trying to reconcile Neville and Edwin. Neville agrees to forgive Edwin if he forgives him. It was agreed that they would have dinner together on this occasion on Christmas Eve in Jasper’s house.

Rosa's guardian Mr. Gruegius tells her that she is the main heir to her father's estate. When asked about any loss, if she did not marry Edwin, he replied that there would be nothing. Returning to his London office, Mr. Gruegius gives Edwin the ring that Rosa's father should have handed over to her mother on the condition that Edwin should not give it to Rosa, nor return it to him. Mr. Buzzard, the clerk of Mr. Gruegius, testifies to the completion of the transaction.

The next day, Rose and Edwin mutually terminate the engagement.

They decide to ask Mr. Gruegius to convey the news to Jasper and Edwin intends to return the ring to Mr. Gruegius. Meanwhile, the Dardles takes Jasper with him to the crypt of the cathedral. On the way there, he points to a mound of quicklime. Jasper hands Dardles a bottle of wine. The wine takes its toll and the Dardles soon faints, while Jasper, meanwhile, descends into the crypt. When they return from the crypt, they meet a boy named Deputy, and Jasper, thinking that he is spying on them, grabs him by the throat, but seeing that he can strangle him, he lets go. On Christmas Eve, Neville buys himself a heavy walking cane. He is going to spend Christmas strolling through the surrounding mountains. Meanwhile, Edwin visits a jeweler to fix his pocket watch; it is mentioned that the only jewel that was with him was the watch, chain and pin on the shirt. By chance, he meets a London woman who consumes opium. She is interested in the name of Drud and he calls him «Edwin», but she does not say Edwin, but «Ned», and this name is dangerous. He does not think about it, although the only one who calls him «Ned» is Jasper. Meanwhile, Jasper buys a black silk scarf for himself, which we will not see throughout the novel. The friendly dinner was successful, and at midnight Drood and Neville set off for the river to watch the storm that raged all night. Meanwhile, Jasper buys a black silk scarf for himself, which we will not see throughout the novel. The friendly dinner was successful, and at midnight Drood and Neville set off for the river to watch the storm that raged all night. Meanwhile, Jasper buys a black silk scarf for himself, which we will not see throughout the novel. The friendly dinner was successful, and at midnight Drood and Neville set off for the river to watch the storm that raged all night.

The next day, Edwin disappears, and Jasper spread the rumor that Neville killed our hero. Early in the morning of the next day, Neville sets off for a walk; the villagers intercept him along the road and bring him back to the city. Rev. Mr. Crisparkle saves him from prison, confirming that Neville did not go anywhere. That same night, Jasper is in deep sorrow when Mr. Gruegius reports that Edwin and Rosa terminated the engagement. He reacts to this more than the news of Edwin’s death. The next morning, Rev. Mr. Crisparkle sets off for the river dam and finds Edwin’s watch, his chain of brooches.

Six months pass. Neville lives in London near the office of Mr. Gruegius. A certain Mr. Tartar appears, who proposes to share the garden with Landless. Mr. Tartar's rooms are close to the Neville accommodation. A stranger calling himself Dick Datchery appears in Cloysterham. He rents a room above Jasper and overlooks everyone who lives in the area. For the first time, going to his rooms, he asks Deputi: how is he to get through. The boy does not want to go to that house, fearing that Jasper will again choke him. Jasper visits Rosa in a monastic house and declares that he loves her. Rose refuses him, but he insists, stating that if she does not leave him hope, he will destroy Neville, the brother of her friend Helen. Fearing Jasper, Rose is sent to Mr. Gruegius in London.

The next day, Rev. Mr. Crisparkle also sets off for Rose in London. When he meets with Mr. Gruegius and Rosa, Mr. Tartarus calls him up and asks if the reverend remembers him. Mr. Crispark remembers that person who once did not let him drown. They don’t want Rose to see Neville or Helen directly, fearing that Jasper might be watching her, but Mr. Tartar gives the go-ahead to meet Helen in his courtyard. Mr. Gruegius helps Rose to rent rooms with Mrs. Billikin and live with Miss Twinkelton, so she will be safe.

Jasper visits the London opium stash again for the first time since Edwin’s disappearance. When he leaves him at dawn, the woman from the brothel follows him, but loses him and swears to himself that this will not happen again. The next time she follows Jasper all the way to Cloysterham; there she meets Mr. Dutcher, gives the name of Mr. Jasper and announces that he will sing the next day in the cathedral. Dutcher discovers that the woman’s name is «Princess Tit». The next day, she visits the service and threatens Jasper with his fist from behind the column. This ends the novel due to the death of Dickens. The mystery of Edwin Drud remains unsolved.