Students can also check the English Summary to revise with them during exam preparation.
The Cop and the Anthem Summary Analysis and Explanation By O. Henry
About the author O. Henry
|11 September 1862, Greensboro, North Carolina, United States
|5 June 1910, New York, New York, United States
|William Sydney Porter
|The Gift of the Magi, The Last Leaf
The Cop and the Anthem Introduction
The story is a humorous one. Soapy, the vagabond was looking for a shelter in winters. He was young but did not work. He wanted to be arrested for three months of the winter season. So he tried every effort to be jailed but when he decided to live a dignified life, he was arrested. Not for the harm he does, but for arguing with a cop.
The Cop and the Anthem Summary of the Lesson
Soapy was a homeless and jobless man. He was restless because of approaching winters. Birds moved to the south, leaves fell from trees, men wanted new warm clothes.
These signals intimidated him of winters. He wanted a shelter and he could think of Blackwell’s Island prison. Instead of choosing southern skies or Bay of Naples, he chooses prison where he could have food and shelter.
He kept himself warm by covering and wrapping himself with newspaper. Soapy could keep his body and soul together by begging but he might be asked to do in return to the favor.
Thinking about all the pros and cons, he assured himself that he would be on the wrong side of the law. So that the count might punish him and sent him to jail.
Soapy went out of Madison Square to the great street. He went into a restaurant after checking his looks and appearance. But he was stopped by the head waiter.
The next idea that struck his mind was to break a glass window with a stone. Seeing a policeman arriving at the scene, he stopped. But his second idea had failed as the cop thought that wrong does would run away from the crime scene.
Then, he entered a restaurant where he ordered food of his choice but refused to make payments. Rather than handing him over to police, they threw him out. A policeman was present on the scene but laughed away.
He tried his luck again; in front of the theatre, he started shouting and acting like a drunk man. Yet the cop spared him by saying that they were instructed not to arrest college students.
When he saw the umbrella of a man who was buying a newspaper, he decided to steal it. He dared to confront the man so that he would be arrested. The man, however, was humble enough and admitted it was his mistake.
Depressed he walked south toward Madison Square. He stopped at an old childhood home. He became nostalgic and mesmerized by the soft music, he stopped there. He remembered the days when there were friends, beautiful thoughts that turned into hopeless days.
He heard his conscience and reassert as to pull his strength to become a man of dignity. As he was young, he could change his life. He pulled up his socks to live his life with honor.
By then, a cop enquired about his intention at as Soapy just turned into a confident man argued and tried to justify his presence. Yet in contrast to his supposition, he was sent to jail.