Was justice done to the family of Mr. James Jones? Explain.
Why does the trial of Jones seem to be unfair?
Justice was not done to Mr. Jones and his family. The magistrate refused to take Mr. Jones' statement seriously. From the beginning of the trial to the end Mr. James Jones kept the stance that he took the box because jack Barthwick allowed him to; however his evidence was not taken into account and he was punished. Mrs. Jones lost her job, and thus her children were deprived of their only means of subsistence. On the other hand, James who had committed the same crime was let free. So the trial seems to be unfair. It would have been fair if both were treated equally.
How did the silver box which was missing from Mr. Barthwick's house reach Mrs. Jones house?
Mr. Jones, husband of Mrs. Jones, happened to pass by Mr. Bathwick's house after midnight on Monday. He saw the young Mr. Barthwick who was quite drunk trying to open the door of his house. Mr. Jones helped him put the key into the key-hole to open the door. To pay him back for his help, the young Mr. Barthwick invited him into the house and offered him wine and smoke and told him to take whatever he wanted. Mr. Jones who himself was quite drunk had some whisky and then without realizing the gravity of his act, took the silver-box and left. So Mrs. Jones who was a char-woman at the house of Mr. Barthwick had nothing to do with the missing of the box. She came to know about the box being at her house only when she returned home and found the box while putting away her husband's clothes.
What was Jack Barthwick's crime and why was it hushed up?
Jack Barthwick, Mr. Barthwick's son, had taken a red silk purse from a lady, which Mr. Jones took home along with the silver-box. When the trial was held in the court, Mr. Barthwick instructed his lawyer not to mention the lady's purse. Because if it was mentioned, his son's wrong-doing would be revealed. The revelation would blemish his good name in society. Being a member of parliament and influential person, he used his influence to hush up his son's crime.
"Call this justice?" explain this speech of Jones with reference to the play Act III of The Silver Box.
Jones said these words when the magistrate punished him with a month of hard labour in prison. These words point to the fact that two systems of justice prevailed in the British society. Jones was sentenced for a month in prison for stealing; whereas, Jack Barthwick who had committed the same crime was not punished due to his money and status in the society. John Galsworthy reveals the double standards that prevail in the British legal system by putting up the above question. The story shows that justice is not blind; it sides with those who have money and power.
What system is criticized by the author in the lesson Act III of the Silver Box?
In the Silver Box, John Galsworthy criticizes the British society especially the British legal system. Two persons commit the same crime in a state of drunkenness, but Jack, the son of a rich and influential man, gets away with the crime; whereas Jones a poor man is punished by the court of law. John Galsworthy, a distinguished novelist and playwright, presents a criticism of British Society, particularly the values of well-to-do professional class.