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MonkeyNotes-The Last of the Mohicans by James Fenimore Cooper
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Chapter 6

Summary

Major Heyward and his female companions, made suspicious by Magua's treachery, look at Hawkeye and the Mohicans with doubt. Gamut sits alone sighing at the loss of his colt. A sudden light flashes, revealing a narrow, deep cavern in the rock. A narrow deep cavern in the rock is said to be the hiding place. As the group enters the hiding place, they look at Uncas' calm, fearless bearing and all their doubts are erased.

Hawkeye makes the cavern habitable and offers everybody refreshments. Major Heyward asks him whether the cavern is safe. Chingachgook, to reassure him, shows that the cavern has two outlets, one leading to another cavern. Reassured about the security of the place, they settle down to eat. Chingachgook sits in front of the fire and falls asleep. The scout is alert, though he too eats and drinks. Uncas attends the sisters, amusing Duncan, who knows that Indians do not normally serve women. He does not notice that Uncas seems to pay more attention to Cora, however. David Gamut introduces himself to Hawkeye and explains his profession, and Hawkeye is amused at this man who seems to have no practical skills. After dinner, however, when David leads the party in a hymn, Hawkeye is touched. Suddenly a loud cry is heard and the group, especially Alice, is scared. Uncas goes outside to see what caused the sound but finds nothing, and the party prepares for bed. As Duncan tries to comfort the sisters and talk to them about their father, another cry rents the air.


Notes

This chapter establishes Hawkeye's and the Mohicans' ability to gauge the land. They lead the party to a hiding place near Glenn's Falls. Again there is a vivid description of the beauty of the wilderness. There is also a hint of a budding romance between Uncas and Cora.

David is still saddened by the loss of the colt, and the group tries to cheer him up. That he goes by the biblical name David is seemingly incongruous, because in this novel David Gamut is a tall ungainly man, all limbs and no muscles. But in one of the last few chapters, David will live up to his name, going into battle with a slingshot.

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