<img class="aligncenter" src="http://www.hcnewton.com/irrreader/fri_foundling.png" alt="Fridays with the Foundling" />


<a style="float:left;padding-right:20px;" href="https://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/6593" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><img src="http://www.hcnewton.com/irrreader/TomJonesTitlepg.png" alt="Tom Jones Original Cover" border="0" /></a>So our friendly and fairly educated barber, Benjamin, comes back to chat with Tom—he's heard some gossip about him and would like to confirm it. Tom tells his side of the events, and sure, he reflexively tells the story in a way to make him look better—as people do—but isn't really dishonest about any of it (although he instinctively withholds Sophia's name for a bit). The two get a little more chummy, ad Benjamin offers to loan Tom some books during his convalescence (proving that he's a gentleman of great value, even of the discussion of books goes nowhere).


Tom calls him back the next day, because he needs a little blood-letting, after the firing of the surgeon. While he comes back, Benjamin reveals to Tom that he's the man who was suspected to be his father. He swears he wasn't, but as followed the news about Tom and is quite impressed with him. Tom wants to make things up to him for all the trouble his hack of parentage has caused Benjamin. The barber says that's not necessary, he'd just like to be a traveling companion for Tom and his adventures.


We're told by the narrator, that Benjamin has an ulterior motive—he wants to patch things up between Tom and Allworthy, and to do so in a way that Allworthy is so overcome with gratitude that he reintroduces him to society.


The two begin their travels and eventually come across the home of someone they learn is called The Man of the Hill, one night while in need of a warm place to say. Tom saves him from a mugging and the two are given some shelter for the night.


This section is filled with interesting characters, odd conversations, and Tom getting the wool pulled over his eyes (even if it's sort of for his benefit). It's not the best this book has given, but it's an interesting read, so I'm not going to complain. We seem to have more of the same in the wings, so that should be good reading for the foreseeable future.

Source: http://irresponsiblereader.com/2020/06/27/the-history-of-tom-jones-a-foundling-by-henry-fielding-book-viii-v-x