Dracula Chapters 5 and 6 Summary

In this chapter, the setting changes abruptly from Transylvania to England. Mina is worried about Jonathan because there has not been correspondence, and when she does receive a letter she says it does not sound like him even though it is in his handwriting. Lucy writes to Mina to tell her about her three recent marriage proposals (which she received all in one day). One man is a doctor who runs the lunatic asylum next to the property Dracula has purchased. His name is Dr. Seward. She also gets a proposal from an American named Quincy Morris. Lucy chooses to marry a man named Arthur Holmwood. The men in the novel treat the woman as though they are children calling them things like "little girl." Stoker sets up a contrast of the women's' innocence with the evil Dracula brings.

At the end of the fifth chapter Dr. Seward tells of his curiosity involving a patient named R. M. Renfield. Seward says he has great physical strength and is "morbidly excitable" and potentially dangerous.

Mina's journal begins chapter six as she describes a town located in England called Whitby. She gives a vivid description of the seacoast and even mentions a legend about a "white lady." She also tells of an old man she befriends named Mr. Swales. This old man is skeptical and reluctantly tells the women of a legend, which holds that many of graves on the hill they are looking down on are actually empty.

Next the novel jumps to Seward's diary, which describes Renfield's condition. Dr. Seward describes the patient eating flies, becoming obsessed with spiders, and, lastly, birds. He feeds the flies to the spiders and the spiders to the sparrows. He also keeps an accounting book of sorts; it seems he is keeping track of the number of lives consumed. Renfield begs for a kitten and becomes violent when refused. Seward labels him a homicidal maniac. Seward checks on him and is surprised to find the room clear of birds, however he notices a bit of blood and a feather on his pillow. One evening a hospital attendant finds Renfield very ill due to vomiting up feathers. Seward then labels him a "zoophagous [life eating] maniac." He is eager to make a name for himself and become famous for his work. This story of Renfield also serves to foreshadow the social disruption and mental anguish, which will accompany Dracula to England. Dracula is a satanic figure; Stoker uses this to pervert Christian mythology throughout the novel.

Once again the novel shifts to Mina's diary entry on July 26th. She is concerned about not hearing from Jonathan even though she received a letter from Dracula's castle saying he was on his way home. She is also worrying over Lucy's sleep walking. Mr. Swales says he senses impending doom in the coming storm. Mina sees a ship and the old man tells her it is Russian. Lucy begins to sleepwalk at about the same time Dracula crosses into Western civilization. On August 3rd Mina writes that she got a letter from Jonathan but "it does not read like him."

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