Kimberly Sears 9/25/11

The Phantom of the Opera Chapter Summaries

1. Prologue The author, Gaston Leroux, introduces the story. The setting is the Opera in Paris, France. The author has set out to prove the existence of the Opera ghost, who can be linked to the kidnapping of the young singer Christine Daae, the disappearance of Vicomte de Chagny, and the death of the Vicomte’s older brother, Count Philippe. Previously, the author visited the “Persian,” who gave him proof of the ghost. He tells the reader that workmen found a corpse in the substructure of the Opera and while he identified it as the ghost, the body was cast off as a victim of the Commune. He also thanks all the people who aided him in the investigation of the Opera ghost. 2. Chapter 1 – Is It the Ghost? Chapter 1 begins in the past, during a party at the Opera. La Sorelli, a principal dancer, is in her dressing room when a group of young ballet dancers run in after their performance. The entire group is terrified because they claim to have seen the ghost. They discuss the fear that the ghost instills in even the bravest people and the rumored appearance of the ghost. Joseph Buquet has told the best account of seeing the ghost. Another ballerina, Meg Giry, speaks up and tells the girls that the ghost has own private box at the Opera, of which her mother is in charge. A mother of one of the dancers comes into the dressing and announces that Joseph Buquet was found hanging in the third cellar under the stage. When men returned to retrieve Joseph Buquet, he was no longer hanging from his rope. A manager blames the missing rope on the young dancers but the author otherwise suggests that the Opera ghost is once again responsible. 3. Chapter 2 – The New Margarita In Chapter 2, the reader is introduced to Comte de Chagny and his brother, Viscount Raoul de Chagny. That evening, Christine Daae had made her debut at the party at the Singers’ Foyer at the Opera. Carlotta, the usual lead singer, had an unexcused absence and Christine was the surprising replacement. The comte and viscount were on their way to congratulate Christine Daae on her magnificent performance. Raoul goes to see Christine and wishes to speak to her alone, but she sends him away without acknowledging who he is. He told her that he was the boy who went into the sea to save her scarf, but she laughed like she did not know what he was saying. After he is sent away, he stays outside her dressing room. There, he hears her speaking to an unknown man in her dressing room. Raoul hides when Christine leaves her dressing room alone, but when he investigates the mysterious man, the man is nowhere to be found. 4. Chapter 3 – The Mysterious Reason At the party, Sorelli was about to give her speech when a young dancer points to a man and cries out that he is the Opera ghost. The man with death’s head, which is the popular description of the ghost, disappears from the Dancer’s Foyer. The managers, M.

Kimberly Sears 9/25/11

The Phantom of the Opera Chapter Summaries

Debienne and M. Poligny, see this man, assuming he is a guest of the new managers, M. Moncharmin and M. Firmin, while the new managers think he is a guest of the retiring managers’. His second appearance and the mention of Joseph Buquet’s death put the retiring managers on edge and force them to tell the incoming managers about the Opera ghost and the terror that he inflicts on the Opera. M. Poligny and M. Debienne are very serious and straightforward with M. Moncharmin and M. Firmin, but they do not believe the retiring managers, and think that they are playing a practical joke on them. 5. Chapter 4 – Box Five The new managers, M. Moncharmin and M. Firmin are properly introduced. They go on believing that the Opera ghost business is a joke. The Opera ghost sends them a letter but they persist in believing it is a farce. They speak to Mme. Giry, the box-keeper of Box Five. Box Five is the box that the ghost requests. The new managers think that the old managers want Box Five for themselves. They dismiss the box-keeper as mad when she defends the story of the Opera ghost. They decided that they must investigate Box Five on their own. 6. Chapter 5 – The Enchanted Violin This chapter gives the reader a deep look into Christine Daae’s life and the history of her relationship with Raoul de Chagny. As children, they spent time together in the countryside and fell in love. Also, the reader hears the story of the Angel of Music and comes to understand her deep emotional connection with this so-called Angel. Raoul receives a letter from Christine that says she is going out to Perros to mourn her father. They witness a moonlight violin performance by a hidden figure. Christine believes that this figure is the Angel of Music, or the angel of her deceased father. Raoul approaches this figure but does not fully see and ends up being left half-dead the next morning in the church next to the cemetery in Perros. 7. Chapter 6 – A Visit to Box Five The new opera managers decide to take a personal look at Box Five for themselves. There, they saw a figure, but could not make out what this figure was. It disappeared and realized that both must have been hallucinating because their figures were different. They examined the box and found nothing peculiar about it. 8. Chapter 7 – Faust and What Followed The Phantom declares war but offers a truce in a new letter to the managers. Instead of accepting, they do the exact opposite of what he demands. That night at Faust, Christine sings and brings Raoul to tears because it is clear that she is in a poor physical state. Carlotta is singing when suddenly, she croaked like a toad! Moncharmin and Firmin are sitting in Box Five and can feel the presence of another person in there. As Carlotta

Kimberly Sears 9/25/11

The Phantom of the Opera Chapter Summaries

continues to croak, the grand chandelier of the Opera comes crashing down and kills a woman. 9. Chapter 8 – The Mysterious Brougham Christine Daae disappeared after the catastrophic night of the chandelier collapse. She was gone for two weeks before Raoul learns that she was whisked away by her so-called Angel of Music. Then, in a park, Raoul sees Christine riding in a carriage romantically with a shadowy male figure. 10. Chapter 9 – At The Masked Ball The Opera house hosts an annual masquerade. Christine attends with a fellow dressed as the Red Death. Raoul and Christine sneak away but end up having their first real argument. Raoul also has a close encounter with the Red Death, who is assumed by the author to be the Opera ghost. After the masquerade, Christine disappears again. Also, Raoul learns the name of the Opera ghost – Erik. 11. Chapter 10 – Forget the Name of the Man’s Voice Christine returns from the clutches of her Angel of Music but she refuses to answer the demanding questions of Raoul and her dear old benefactress. Raoul notices that she is wearing a plain gold ring on her left ring finger. 12. Chapter 11 – Above the Trap-Doors Raoul wants Christine to leave with him in a month for the North Pole. She refuses, but she still loves him. Thinking nothing will come of it, they promise to have a month long secret engagement. Still, Raoul is jealous of Erik because Christine will go to live with him forever when Raoul leaves. 13. Chapter 12 – Apollo’s Lyre The fiancées travel to the roof of the Opera building so as to get as far away from Erik as possible. They meet some obstacles, like running into the mysterious Persian, but manage to make it up there. Christine tells Raoul what happened during her disappearances and her relationship with Erik. She explains her feelings toward Erik and Raoul and begs him to help her leave the Phantom. What they do not notice on the roof are the blazing eyes that seemed to cling to the string of the Apollo’s lyre statue. 14. Chapter 13 – A Master-Stroke of the Trap-Door Lover Christine is afraid that Erik heard her confessions to Raoul. She also realizes that the gold ring that Erik gave her has gone missing. Raoul sees a curious pair of blazing eyes in his bedroom and he shoots at it. His brother, the Comte de Chagny, argues with him about

Kimberly Sears 9/25/11

The Phantom of the Opera Chapter Summaries

his intentions with Christine and his “silly” ghost stories. The next evening, Christine disappears for good during a performance of Faust. 15. Chapter 14 – The Singular Attitude of a Safety-Pin The managers know nothing about Christine’s disappearance. They have locked themselves in their office and refuse to see anyone, only asking for a safety pin. Three other important members of the Opera staff are trying to solve the mystery of Christine’s disappearance but are having difficulty. 16. Chapter 15 – Christine! Christine! Raoul knows that he must do whatever he can to find Christine because they had made plans to escape together that night. He runs into the Persian who invites him to come with him to hunt down Erik and save Christine. 17. Chapter 16 – Mme. Giry’s Astounding Revelations as to Her Personal Relations with the Opera Ghost The managers invite Mme. Giry to their office and she explains her personal relations with the Opera ghost, as the title suggests. She tells them how the Phantom receives his allowance. They accuse her of being an accomplice to the Phantom and that they are stealing the 20 thousand francs. 18. Chapter 17 – The Safety-Pin Again In this chapter, the evening of the managers is explained. They were trying to figure out how the Opera ghost managed to get his allowance out of M. Firmin’s pocket. They use the safety pin to jab M. Firmin if the envelope with the money is removed from his pocket. However, the money goes missing and M. Firmin does not feel a jab anytime of the night. The two managers start to accuse each other of stealing the money. 19. Chapter 18 – The Commissary, the Viscount and the Persian Finally, the managers learn about Christine’s abduction. The commissary of the police sends Raoul after his brother because the Comte’s carriage left suddenly and they believe that the Comte tried to take her away for some reason. However, there is no reason for them to believe that the Comte is guilty. 20. Chapter 19 – The Viscount and the Persian The Persian tells Raoul everything he knows about Christine and Erik and how Erik managed to take Christine away. They follow the traces of Erik’s secrets and mechanics of the Opera house in search of Christine. He gives Raoul a gun and tells him to keep it held at a specific angle. Though he does not tell Raoul this, the angle would save Raoul from being strangled by Erik’s Punjab lasso.

Kimberly Sears 9/25/11

The Phantom of the Opera Chapter Summaries

21. Chapter 20 – In the Cellars of the Opera Raoul and the Persian go to the cellars of the Opera house to find an entrance to Erik’s house on the lake. However, they get led off track and run into some dark figures and even get trampled by rats in the cellars. They take the entrance that the Persian assumes Joseph Buquet took. Unfortunately, this entrance leads them to the Torture Chamber. 22. Chapter 21 – Interesting and Instructive Vicissitudes of a Persian in the Cellars of the Opera The reader learns about the Persian and his background in this chapter. He is very knowledgeable about Erik. The Persian talked to Erik previously on the lake. Erik had spared his life because the Persian reminded Erik that he saved his life during the rosy days of Mazenderan. Erik calls the Persian “daroga” because that was the term for policeman in their old country. Because of their previous acquaintance, the Persian knows many of Erik’s tricks. 23. Chapter 22 – In the Torture-Chamber The Persian and Raoul listen through the wall of the Torture Chamber. They hear Christine and Erik talking. Erik tells Christine how much she loves him and then he tells her that she must choose to hold a wedding mass or a requiem mass. Erik leaves the room and the Persian and Raoul are able to speak to Christine. Erik unfastens Christine’s bonds but then she tries to steal his key that would let the Persian and Raoul out. 24. Chapter 23 – The Tortures Begin She tries to help them but when she does, Erik discovers her. She gets in trouble with him and accidentally gives away the presence of the Persian and Raoul in the Torture Chamber. Erik is gradually becoming maniacal. He “turns on” the torture chamber. It becomes a hot forest. Raoul begins to go crazy from the heat and Erik laughs like a madman. 25. Chapter 24 – “Barrels! … Barrels! …Any Barrels to Sell?: The Persian explains what he knows about the torture chamber. Erik designed it for the sultana during the rosy days of Mazenderan. He knows that there is a door, if only he can find the spring and bear the tortures of the chamber. The Persian manages to set them free into the Opera cellars. They were among a number of barrels. They were parched from the heat and opened a barrel to get some wine. They hear a voice, which turns out to be an act of Erik’s ventriloquism, saying “Barrels! … Barrels! … Any barrels to sell?” a saying that echoes the streets of Paris. When they open the barrel, they discover that it does not contain wine but instead gun powder.

Kimberly Sears 9/25/11

The Phantom of the Opera Chapter Summaries

26. Chapter 25 – The Scorpion or the Grasshopper: Which? Christine is left with the most difficult decision of her life: to marry the Phantom or to die with him and the entire Opera house. It seems to her that nothing good will come of this decision, no matter what happens. Erik instructed her to turn a small scorpion statue that means yes, she will marry him, or to turn a small grasshopper statue that means no. He also says that the grasshopper doesn’t turn but it also hops. The Persian assumes that the grasshopper will trigger an explosion to destroy the inhabitants of the Opera house. However, he thinks that the scorpion may be a trap and that it will kill everyone. She turns the scorpion and the room begins to fill with water. They struggle to stay above the rising water and hear “Barrels! Barrels! Any barrels to sell?” 27. Chapter 26 – The End of the Ghost’s Love-Story The Comte de Chagny was found dead at the shore of the lake that the Opera ghost lived on. Fortunately, the Persian, Raoul, and Christine escaped the rising water. Erik is broken-hearted and asks them to bury him with the gold ring when he died. When the advertisement is published that “Erik is dead,” they make sure that Erik is buried next the lake. 28. Epilogue The author claims the truth of the existence of Erik. He tells that Christine and Raoul eloped to the Scandinavia. He also says that they found a skeleton under the Opera house, a skeleton which he attributes to the Opera ghost.

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