Summary of The Invisible Man Written by H.G.Wells
The Strange Man’s Arrival
In the first chapter, when the novel begins, we find Griffin moving towards Iping, a small hill side village of London, from Bramble Hurst. He is covered from top to bottom wearing long over coat, having pink nose and blue goggles with side light. The author (H.G Wells) too, calls him a wrapped up mystery in this chapter. When the stranger reaches an inn owned by Mrs. Hall, he offers two golden sovereigns in exchange of a room and fireplace in it. Being an impeccable business woman, she makes the most of the situation and allots him a room without any due verification. The stranger tells him that his luggage is kept at Bramble Hurst railway station and he wants it to be brought upwards as soon as possible but Mrs. Hall makes an excuse of hefty snowfall and assures him to get it brought in a couple of days. She actually wants to make most of the situation and earn a good fortune. Besides, she responds with a good hospitality offering the stranger good food to eat such as ham, bacon and some eggs. She observes some strange and odd things in the stranger such as; he neither takes his serviette off while speaking nor his hat and coat off when she wants to do so for making them wet. When she tries to figure out the cause of that awkward look of the stranger, she finds the stranger laughing with hollow mouth. But she pays no attention to it.
Mr. Teddy Henfrey’s First Impressions
In the second chapter, a clock jobber namely Teddy Henfrey comes to Coach and Horses for a cup of coffee whence he is sent to stranger’s room by Mrs. Hall to keep an eye on him and his odd habits along with repairing the clock. He goes inside, stares at the stranger and tries to talk to him making and excuse of the weather but the stranger orders him to mind his own business and leave as soon as he is done with his work. Teddy gets hurt and irritated with his words and leaves Coach and Horses even after Mrs. Hall tries her level best to stop him & go to the root cause. Having left Coach and Horses, he meets Mr. Hall whom he incites and provokes against the stranger stating that latter’s wife has no sense of business. Teddy also talks ill of the stranger and his luggage that is supposed to reach soon. Mr. Hall, in order to show his supremacy, goes to Mrs. Hall to teach her a lesson of ‘how to do business’ but on the contrary, he is reprimanded and lambasted by Mrs. Hall. Mr. Hall leaves from there but it leaves a question mark in the mind of Mrs. Hall about the real identity of the stranger. She starts suspecting him.
The Thousand and One Bottles
In the third chapter, in the month of February, Mr. Fearenside brings stranger’s luggage which contains more than thousand bottle of different shapes, three fat books labelled as diary, dozen or more crates, boxes and cases packed in straw etc. When the excited stranger comes to receive his luggage, he is attacked by the dog of Mr. Fearenside. He rips his glove as well as the pants. Seeing this misadventure, many people gather there and start cursing Mr. Fearenside for keeping such a ferocious dog with him. Mrs. Hall, being a perfect business woman, even demands compensation from Mr. Fearenside for this cruel act. Meanwhile Griffin returns after changing his clothes and asks the carrier to bring his luggage upwards. Having received his luggage, he pays off Mr. Fearenside and starts opening his luggage one by one. While he is busy in his experiments, Mrs. Hall comes and observes that stranger’s eyes are as hollow as sockets. She objects to the litter created by the stranger in his room but the stranger advises her to add it to his bill. In this way, stranger gets rid of talkative and disturbing owner of Coach and Horses. At the end of this chapter, we find Mr. Fearenside & Teddy Henfrey giving their own theories about the stranger. Former thinks him as a piebald who has different nose and different body colour whereas Teddy Henfrey calls him a criminal who is hiding here and there in order to conceal his identity.
Mr. Cuss Interviews the Stranger
In this chapter, we get to read that Griffin has become quite popular in this small town of London. People have different opinions about him as some people think he is a detective whereas some consider him as a magician whose only purpose is to earn money. Some of the people suspect him as a criminal and some youngsters tease him as ‘Bogey Man’. Hearing a lot of him, Dr. Cuss who is a local practitioner, gets jealous of him and plans to expose him in front of the whole town. With this intention, he goes to Coach and Horses and enters Stranger’s room with an excuse of subscription for nurses. While talking to the stranger, he introduces himself as a local doctor who works for the welfare of the people. Besides, he starts putting up strange questions which infuriates the stranger ultimately. Stranger exhibits his invisibility keeping his sleeves up bit by bit. The more he rolls, the more invisible he becomes. Having made him feel his invisible body, he throws his subscription in the fireplace. He even pinches the nose of the stranger which makes him run like a tracer bullet. He narrates the whole incident to his best friend who forbids to believe in his story as well as in invisibility. In this way, once again people refuse to believe in the invisibility of the stranger.
The Burglary at the Vicarage
In this chapter, we get to know about the burglary that happened at Bunting’s home at midnight. The stranger, who has to make his payment to Mrs. Hall, enters Mr. Bunting’s home with an intension to steal. He breaks into his house and manages to steal a few golden coins kept in the drawer of Bunting’s home. Mrs. Bunting who hears a strange noise coming from her home, follows that noise but all in vain. The couple can see that somebody has lit a candle, somebody is opening the drawer again and again but unfortunately no one is visible. Ultimately, they conclude that the thievery has been committed by the Invisible Man who is putting up at Coach and Horses.
The Furniture that Went Mad
While the thievery was being committed at Mr. Bunting’s home, Mrs. Hall and Mr. Hall were going to dilute the beer in their cellar at the same time. But soon the couple realize that they have forgotten to bring the bottle of Sarsaparilla. In order to carry that bottle, Mrs. Hall sends Mr. Hall to bring that bottle down. While bringing the bottle down, Mr. Hall observes that the stranger’s room is ajar. He enters and finds that the stranger is not there. Soon, he calls Mrs. Hall upwards and they both get to see his clothes being scattered there. While they wonder about the stranger, they hear some strange noises of sneezing and coughing etc. Then the mess begins. The stranger starts disturbing the furniture, throwing things at the couple and scaring them. Ultimately, he lifts a four-legged chair and throw the couple out of the room. Mrs. Hall faints whereas Mr. Hall awakens Millie in order to call some of the neighbours. She goes out and brings Mr. Huxter (A General Dealer) & Sandy Wadgers (A Blacksmith). Mrs. Hall is given some restoratives to bring her back to her senses. Before they all could plan to raid the room of the stranger, latter himself comes, covered from top to bottom with his usual appearance, and hands in the bottle to Mr. Hall stating that he had forgotten his bottle inside.
The Unveiling of the Stranger
In the beginning of this chapter we get to read that Mrs. Hall has stopped the food supply of the stranger as he has not paid his bills for last five days. Stranger, who is extremely hungry who has been waiting for his food since morning, has rung the bell thrice but not responded by Mrs. Hall. Eventually, he comes out of room, calls one of the customers enjoying Whit Monday and asks him to call Mrs. Hall. She brings a plate having a bill on it and asks stranger to pay it if he really wants to have food else she’ll not give him anything to eat. Mrs. Hall. Besides, she puts up some questions, at the time of being given the money by the stranger, from the stranger which infuriate him completely. He starts taking his goggles, bandages and gloves off and becomes invisible. He runs to the kitchen and brings some food from there. On the other hand, Mr. Hall brings a local village constable namely Mr. Bobby Jaffers who shows Griffin a warrant and request him to accompany to police station for the probe. But, rather than supporting him, he starts beating him like hell and make him black and blue. Even after being beaten a lot, police constable does not give up and manages to get hold on the stranger. Stranger gives in and asks for the reason of his arrest. Griffin is told that he is accused of calling spirits and breaking in Mr. Bunting’s house. Griffin admits his fault and enacts as if he were ready to accompany him for the probe. But, taking the advantages, he unclothes himself and becomes invisible. Thereafter, he beats Mr. Bobby Jaffers, Mr. Hall, Sandy Wadgers and everyone else who comes on his way. Having beaten all of them, he runs from there but vows to come back again to take revenge.
Griffin escapes from Coach and Horses in search of someone who can help him out in arranging food, clothes and basic facilities. On the way, he runs across Mr. Gibbons who is an amateur as well as naturalist. Griffin tries to get closer to him, but soon Mr. Gibbons gets to hear a strange noise of his sneezing and coughing. Understanding the gravity of the situation & seeing the danger around him, he runs from there and rushes to his home.
Mr. Thomas Marvel
Having failed to talk to Mr. Gibbons, Griffin moves towards Adder dean where he comes across a drunkard namely Mr. Thomas Marvel who is confused between a pair of shoes, which one to wear which one not to. Griffin speaks from his back and advises him to put either pair. Hearing the voice, Thomas Marvel turns up but fails to see anyone there. Griffin tries his level best to convince about his invisibility but Thomas Marvel forbids to do so. Finally, Griffin picks up some flints and throws at the drunkard man. One of the flints hits Thomas Marvel on his toe, thereafter he gets ready to everything being said by Griffin. Marvel requests him not to throw any more stone at him. He gets ready to work for him when convinced by the stranger.
Mr. Marvel’s Visit to Iping
Having been convinced by Griffin, Thomas Marvel goes to Coach and Horses to get back the luggage which includes former’s clothes, diary etc. He tries to sneak into stranger’s room but abrupt by Mr. Hall who tells him about the privacy of the room. Thomas Marvel comes out of the inn and wait for something to happen. Soon he receives a big bundle kind of thing which he gets through the window and runs down the hill. Mr. Huxter who had been keeping an eye on him since his arrival, tries to get hold of him, gets beaten by Griffin who also saves Marvel from the hands of Iping’s local folk.
In the Coach & Horses
In this chapter, readers get to know how the thievery at Coach and Hoses takes place. It is actually committed by Griffin who enters his hired room and finds Mr. Cuss and Mr. Bunting sitting inside. He threatens them not to utter a single word and steals his diary, cheque book and other important things. Griffin makes a bundle of it with the help of a table cloth and hands over the entire bundle to Mr. Thomas Marvel waiting outside the inn in the backyard. Thomas Marvel runs with the bundle.
The Invisible Man Loses His Temper
In the pursuit of Thomas Marvel, People collide with Griffin and one of the men hits him unknowingly. Griffin, who is already short tempered, loses his cool and starts beating the people of Iping. He breaks a street light and scares the people of Iping as much as he can. He creates ruckus everywhere and generates a fear in the minds of people of Iping once again.
Mr. Marvel Discusses His Resignation
Thomas Marvel and Griffin manage to escape from Iping with latter’s luggage. He gets too tired to carry such a weight on his shoulder. Besides, he has to move on with the money Griffin has robbed from the people of Iping and other areas. Having been so tired, he offers his resignation to Griffin regretting his inability to run and walk as his job requires. At first, Griffin accuses him of giving him a slip and later refuses to accept his resignation. In short, Griffin makes it very clear to him that Marvel can’t resign until he succeeds in his mission.
At Port Stowe
Griffin and Marvel keep on moving towards Bramblehurst. On the way, Griffin gives some relaxation to tired Thomas Marvel & asks him to eat something at Port Stowe. While Thomas Marvel is sitting on a bench outside an inn, a mariner comes and starts suspecting the former. Besides, he tells him about the news published in a local newspaper about ruckus created by The Invisible Man in the surrounding areas when promised by Thomas Marvel to disclose some more things about the invisible man. As soon as Marvel starts telling him about the Invisible Man, he is hit from the back by an invisible power. Griffin pushes him and takes him down the hill. On the other hand, other mariner comes and tells the former one about the money which was seen flying in the air. He also adds that he was hit by one of the invisible power.
The Man Who Was Running
In this chapter, we get to read about Dr. Kemp who is a scientist and preparing for Royal Society Fellowship Exam. He is one who always remains engaged in studying. When he gets bored or whenever he gets time to relax, he opens his window and looks out. On that day, he gets to see a short and fat man walking down the hill but he turns a blind eye considering him a fool. He has no idea that the man is Thomas Marvel who has cheated on Griffin and escaped.
In the Jolly Cricketers
Thomas Marvel who has cheated on Griffin, has escaped and managed to enter an inn called ‘The Jolly Cricketers’. On reaching there, he begs an American, who is drinking in that inn, and a policeman. He tells them that he is being chased by the invisible man who wants to kill him. The American assures him that he needs not worry as he has got a gun and he’ll kill him. But the Invisible Man enters somehow from the back door & starts hitting Thomas Marvel. American, on hearing the noise, fires at Griffin with all the bullets he had. He asks other people to look for Griffin’s dead body but all in vain. Griffin gets hit but somehow manages to escape from there. Afterwards, Thomas Marvel surrenders to police with all his luggage and money stolen from the people.
Dr. Kemp’s Visitor
Having escaped from there, Griffin manages to enter Dr. Kemp’s house. When Dr. Kemp reaches downstairs, he finds some blood stains on the ground. He thinks it might be the maid who had cut her hand with something, therefore he moves on. When he reaches his room’s door, he finds the knob stained with blood. Yet, he enters and finds his bed-sheet torn. Even, he finds some bandages flying in the air. Before he can understand anything, he is startle by a voice ”Good Heavens Dr. Kemp”. Then, he gets to know about the invisible man. Stranger tells him about his past that they both used to study in the same college. He further adds that his name is Griffin, he is an albino, a 6 feet tall man & he used to be topper of Chemistry in University College London. Having heard him whole-heartedly and believed everything about him, Dr. Kemp yet refuses to believe in his invisibility. After taking a couple of blows from Griffin, Dr. Kemp believes in him and gets ready to follow his orders.
The Invisible Man Sleeps
After Giving Griffin some food to eat, alcohol to drink and cigarettes to smoke, Dr. Kemp gets stuck in a dilemma. He fails to decide whether to support a former mate or humanity which seems to be missing from Griffin, Having thought for a while and read about Griffin, he writes a letter to Colonel Adye (Chief of Police, Burdock) and tells him everything from the scratch. He requests the colonel to come to his home and arrest Griffin as soon as possible.
Certain First Principles
In this chapter, Griffin tells Dr. Kemp about his past that how successfully he had started his career. One day he meets Professor Oliver in his college who draws his attention towards Physics and invisibility. Professor Oliver tells him about pigments and seeks for his support in making the formula of invisibility. Griffin loses his interest in Chemistry and starts working on the tunes of the Professor. They both work together for a long time but soon have tussle with each other over credit-taking issue of invisibility. Soon they part each and other and Griffin decides to work single handedly on the formula of invisibility.
At the House in Great Portland Street
Griffin goes to the Great Portland Street and hires a room. He continues his research until he lacks in money. To arrange some money, he breaks into his father’s home and steals his money which he had borrowed from someone. His father commits suicide but Griffin does not shed a single tear. He continues he research and almost succeeds in that when he manages to make his neighbour’s cat invisible. He even fights with his landlord. Out of compulsion, he applies the formula of invisibility on himself and becomes invisible. After being invisible, he sets fire to his landlord’s home and escapes from there.
In Oxford Street
Now, Griffin goes to Oxford Street one of the most crowded and engaged place in England where he gets to know the flaws of being invisible. He realizes that for being invisible, he has to naked throughout the day however the weather is. Besides, he can’t eat anything, he can see people but people can’t and he can be perceived by the dogs by his smell. On the very first day of invisibility, he realizes that visibility is much better than invisibility. He continues telling his all the shortcomings to Dr. Kemp in the form of a story.
In the Emporium
Having left Oxford Street, in order to protect himself from the falling snow and biting cold, Griffin decides to hide himself in an inn called ‘Omniums’ where he manages to enter stealthily. He gets to eat a lot from there, gets to wear some clothes and gets to sleep in some quilts. That night, he has few nightmares which don’t let him sleep, he remembers his father for the first time and hold himself responsible for his father’s death. When he wakes up in the morning, he finds himself being seized by the employees of that emporium. But somehow, he manages to escape from there taking the advantage of his invisibility. On this day too, Griffin realizes that visibility is much better than invisibility.
In Drury Lane
Having gone from the emporium, Griffin reaches Drury lane where he enters a costume shop. The moment Griffin tries to move, Hunchback, who is the owner of that shop comes down as he is a keen observer and can even listen a needle’s falling noise. He suspects somebody’s presence over there. But soon, he is attacked by Griffin with a stool on his head. He faints over there and Griffin manages to get his clothes, pink nose, blue goggles with side light and many more things. Besides, he steals Hunchback’s money and moves towards a small hillside village called Iping.
The Plan That Failed
Griffin is narrating his entire past to Dr. Kemp but latter who is peeping out of window, gets to see Colonel Adye coming with some policemen. Dr.Kemp tries to corner Griffin but latter gets to see the policemen coming. Griffin understands the gravity of the situation and takes his clothes off. After being invisible, he beats Dr. Kemp, Jumps on the policemen and manages to get away from there. He threatens Dr. Kemp that he will come back and kill him. In this way, we can say that the plan made by Dr. Kemp and Colonel Adye goes in vain.
The Hunting of the Hunter
When Griffin manages to escape from Dr. Kemp’s home, Dr. Kemp and Colonel Adye make plans to arrest Griffin. Dr. Kemp suggests Colonel Adye some ways to arrest Griffin. He advises the chief of the police to use Glass powder, dogs’ help and to shut all the food shops, public transport, schools and colleges. Having heard his plans, Colonel Adye accedes to some of his requests and makes all arrangement to nab Griffin lest he should easily get away from the trap of him. They both seem desperate and feared as well in this chapter especially Dr. Kemp.
The Wicksteed Murder
While they are in search of Griffin with the help of glass powder and dogs, a news shocks the entire town that Mr. Wicksteed, a steward of Lord Burdock, has been murdered by an unknown. When Dr. Kemp and Colonel Adye get to know about this, they have a fair enough idea that Wicksteed could have been murdered by Griffin. Whey witnesses come forward with their explanation, they get sure that he has been murdered by Griffin only. In this way, Griffin manages to terrorise the people of Port Burdock.
The Sieze of Kemp’s House
Earlier in this chapter, Dr. Kemp receives a death threatening letter from Griffin. He, immediately, sends his maid to Colonel Adye but in vain. Griffin, who was already there, reprimands his maid and comes to Dr. Kemp’s house with an axe. He starts breaking his windows with that axe. Soon comes, Colonel Adye who tries to kill Griffin but the reverse happens. Griffin kills him brutally and continues breaking the windows of Dr. Kemp. On the other hand, maid is accompanied by two policemen who warn Griffin to surrender. But, rather than surrendering he, attacks those policemen. One of the policemen breaks his hand which makes him run away from there. Unfortunately, he runs through the same door whence Dr. Kemp runs where the former chases the latter with all his might.
The Hunter Hunted
Now Griffin chases Dr. Kemp which makes him run to each and every house and beg for his life. On the way, Kemp reaches his close associate’s home, Mr. Heelas, who turns down his request to let him enter the former’s home. Dr. Kemp somehow reaches to some rural people whom he requests to save his life from the king of terror. Meanwhile Griffin comes and loses his hands on the doctor brutally. Understanding the gravity of the situation one of the masons hits Griffin with a shovel which forces him to lose his grip from Dr. Kemp’s neck. They all, together, jumped over Griffin and kill by suffocating him. In the end, the reign of terror ends and people take a sigh of relief.
In the end, when Griffin dies, we get to read that Mr. Thomas Marvel has been released by local police in the absence of witnesses for his misdeeds. Therefore, his lawyers manage to get him the money that he had stolen with Griffin as his accomplice. With that money, he opens an inn in Port Stowe by the name of ‘The Invisible Man’ where he mints a lot of money alluring the visitors and tourist with the real stories of Griffin. He has grown rich all of a sudden. In that in, he has his secret chamber where he goes every night when everyone else has fallen asleep. He opens a secret drawer & takes three fat books out and read on daily basis. He is somewhere able to read some of the content written in mathematical calculations. Now his only dream is to become invisible and create the reign of terror as Griffin did.
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