Little Dorrit

Catch up on what has happened in the sprawling world of Little Dorrit. Watch a short video recap for episode 1 or read the full synopsis below.

Amy "Little" Dorrit lives in the Marshalsea Prison for Debt caring for her father William Dorrit. To aid her family, Amy works for stern shut-in Mrs. Clennam. Son Arthur Clennam returns from China after his father's death, haunted by his father's final, mysterious words. Is there a long-buried family secret and does it somehow involve Amy and her family?

Settling back into English life, Arthur gets reacquainted with former sweetheart Flora Finching, although true affections are saved for Pet Meagles. Meanwhile, in Paris, sinister murderer Rigaud considers coming to England.

Having now befriended Amy and her family, Arthur makes a financial offering to help one member of the Dorrits. Amy's appreciation and affection for Arthur grows as John Chivery, a turnkey at the Marshalsea who has a longtime love for Amy, watches heartbroken.

To probe more deeply into the Dorrit mystery, Arthur enlists rent collector Mr. Pancks for help, leaving Arthur free to visit the Meagleses. While there, Arthur becomes troubled by Tattycoram (who lives with the Meagleses), and her mysterious connection to Miss Wade.

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Warning: Contains significant plot spoilers

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Warning: Contains significant plot spoilers

Amy Dorrit lives in the Marshalsea Prison for Debt with her father, William Dorrit, who has been an inmate there for many years. Although born and bred in the prison, she has grown up to be an enterprising young woman. Amy finds employment as a seamstress at the House of Clennam, working for the stern Mrs. Clennam, who is paralyzed and has been confined to her room for many years.

Son Arthur Clennam returns from China with news that his father has died. Arthur is convinced that his father died with some secret on his conscience, but Mrs. Clennam adamantly dismisses any such suspicion. Arthur questions the presence of Amy Dorrit in the house given the presence of two faithful servants, Flintwinch and Affery.

Arthur becomes suspicious that his father's secret involves Amy and the Dorrits, so he sets out to inquire more deeply. He follows Amy to the Marshalsea and meets the whole Dorrit family: Amy's father and the head of the family, William Dorrit, her eccentric uncle, Frederick, her idle brother, Tip, and her sister, the dancer, Fanny.

Arthur strikes up a tentative friendship with Amy, resolving to help her in any way he can.

Settling back into English life, Arthur becomes reacquainted with his childhood sweetheart, Flora Finching. He harbors true desire for Pet Meagles, whom he met on his journey back to England. Mr. and Mrs. Meagles, delighted with his interest, invite him to Twickenham. Meanwhile, in France, the sinister murderer Rigaud becomes reacquainted with his old cellmate, Cavalletto. Cavalleto unwittingly plants in Rigaud the idea of coming to England.

Arthur pays for Tip Dorrit's release from the Marshalsea, leaving Amy flush with gratitude. She embarks with her friend Maggy to thank him in person, while John Chivery, the son of the turnkey at the Marshalsea, watches longingly given his longstanding romantic interest in Amy. Now even more determined to resolve the mystery surrounding the Dorrit's relationship to his own family, Arthur enlists rent collector and part-time sleuth Pancks to help.

Visiting the Meagleses in Twickenham, Arthur finds Pet is as sweet natured as he remembered, but her servant and companion, Tattycoram, is increasingly troubled. She seems to have a mysterious connection to the aloof Miss Wade whom they all encountered in Marseilles.

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