The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Chapter 27 Summary

Instructor: Molly Richards

Molly has ten years of middle school teaching experience and two master's degrees in teaching.

In chapter 27 of ~'~'The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn~'~', Huck makes a fast decision to hide the stolen money in an unlikely place. But is his hiding spot too good?


At this point, after taking the money from where the King and the Duke have hidden it, Huck has snuck back to his cubby and waits until everyone is asleep. But he knows he needs to find a better hiding place, so when he thinks it is safe, he sneaks downstairs.

The Casket

Upon reaching the kitchen door, Huck finds that it's locked, and of course right then he hears footsteps. With nowhere to go and no where to hide the money, Huck looks into the parlor room where Peter Wilks is lying in his coffin. With the lid partially open, Huck tucks the money bag into the coffin and then runs behind the door. He then sees that the footsteps belonged to Mary Jane; she was coming down to kneel beside her father. Huck sees an opportunity and creeps back up to his cubby without being noticed.

Back in his cubby, Huck worries about his hiding place. Will he be able to write to Mary Jane and tell her where the money is? Or will the money be found when they go to secure the lid on the coffin? He also thinks of going back down to move the money, but can't afford to get caught with $6,000.

The Funeral

Later in the day, the undertaker arrives and begins preparations for Peter Wilks' funeral. Chairs are set up and people begin arriving. The sisters sit in front, and people pass by to offer their condolences for their late father. Once everyone has arrived, the undertaker is ready to begin. A woman begins to play a melodeum or small organ and everyone sings along, though according to Huck ''Peter was the only one that had a good thing'', because it was all so bad.

Revered Hobson stands up to begin the eulogy in memory of Peter Wilks, and right in the middle of it a dog starts barking in the cellar below. The barking won't stop, and finally the undertaker goes down to take care of the matter. Everyone upstairs hears a loud bang and howl from the dog. The undertaker comes back upstairs and calmly explains that the dog caught a rat. Then the preacher continues.

When the eulogy ends, the undertaker goes to secure the lid on the coffin. Huck, sweating, wonders whether the money is in the coffin or not. He also struggles with whether or not he should say something to Mary Jane, which he does not. Peter Wilks is buried that day, and Huck is left to wonder.

For Sale

The King wants to get out of town as fast as he can, so he makes it sound like his congregation is missing him. He tells everyone it is probably best that they sell the estate and slaves as soon as possible so he can return to England. Once again everyone falls for it. The girls are especially in favor of the idea, which makes Huck squirm, as he doesn't want to see these poor sisters getting the wool pulled over their eyes anymore than they already have.

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