Everything changes in Chapter 5 of the Great Gatsby.
Jay Gatsby has spent the past 5 years of his life working on earning enough wealth so that when he met Daisy again, she would feel comfortable and the pair could live happily ever after.
Everything comes to a head in this chapter as Jay Gatsby and Daisy Buchanan finally meet, courtesy of Gatsby’s neighbor and Daisy’s cousin, Nick Carraway.
This inspiring chapter is the feel-good portion of the novel as it appears that Gatsby is about to achieve his dream of having Daisy back in his life, and true love will triumph over all adversity.
Each character in this chapter has important quotes, as the reader will discover.
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Nick Carraway’s Best Quotes in Chapter 5
After his date with Jordan, Nick comes home to find what he first believes is a fire.
When I came home to West Egg that night I was afraid for a moment that my house was on fire. Two o’clock and the whole corner of the peninsula was blazing with light which fell unreal on the shrubbery and made thin elongating glints upon the roadside wires. Turning a corner I saw that it was Gatsby’s house, lit from tower to cellar.
Nick tells Gatsby:
“Your place looks like the World’s Fair.”
Gatsby asks Nick if he will invite Daisy to tea and Nick says yes, he will. Gatsby is so thrilled that he wants to repay Nick’s kindness with a side-job, but Nick refuses.
The Great Gatsby Chapter 5 Quotes about the Weather
The following morning, Nick calls Daisy to invite her to tea, telling her not to bring along Tom. On the day of their meeting, there are several quotes referring to the weather.
Just before Gatsby sends over a gardener, Nick recalls that:
The day agreed upon was pouring rain. At eleven o’clock a man in a raincoat, dragging a lawn-mower, tapped at my front door and said that Mr. Gatsby had sent him over to cut my grass.
At two in the afternoon, the flowers that Gatsby ordered arrives, and an hour later Gatsby hurries in wearing white flannel suit and eyes that had dark signs of sleeplessness in them.
When Nick remarks about the grass, Gatsby absent-mindedly looks out the window and seems concerned about the rain:
“What grass?” he inquired blankly. “Oh, the grass in the yard.” He looked out the window at it, but, judging from his expression, I don’t believe he saw a thing. “Looks very good,” he remarked vaguely. “One of the papers said they thought the rain would stop about four.
The rain weather improves a half hour before four, as Nick observes that:
The rain cooled about half-past three to a damp mist, through which occasional thin drops swam like dew.
Nick’s Quotes about Gatsby and Daisy Meeting at His House
Gatsby keeps glancing at the window, and at two minutes to four, he blurts that he’s going home because it’s too late and no one is coming.
Daisy finally arrives. Here’s a quote from Nick as he opens the door to let Gatsby in:
Gatsby, pale as death, with his hands plunged like weights in his coat pockets, was standing in a puddle of water glaring tragically into my eyes. With his hands still in his coat pockets he stalked by me into the hall, turned sharply as if he were on a wire, and disappeared into the living-room.
Then Nick hears Daisy’s reaction when she finally sees Gatsby:
For half a minute there wasn’t a sound. Then from the living room I heard a sort of choking murmur and part of a laugh, followed by Daisy’s voice on a clear artificial note: “I certainly am awfully glad to see you again.”
Nick enters his living room and describes the scene – Gatsby’s nervousness and Daisy’s surprise:
Gatsby, his hands still in his pockets, was reclining against the mantelpiece in a strained counterfeit of perfect ease, even of boredom. His head leaned back so far that it rested against the face of a defunct mantelpiece clock, and from this position his distraught eyes stared down at Daisy, who was sitting, frightened but graceful, on the edge of a stiff chair.
There are some awkward moments between the two, but everything works out well. The rain stops, and they all go to Gatsby’s house.
Daisy Goes to Gatsby’s House for the First Time
Nick notices the interaction between Gatsby and Daisy as she sees Gatsby’s mansion for the first time.
He hadn’t once ceased looking at Daisy and I think he revalued everything in his house according to the measure of response it drew from her well-loved eyes. Sometimes, too, he stared around at his possessions in a dazed way as though in her actual and astounding presence none of it was any longer real.
Everyone dances in the big empty house. As Daisy admires Gatsby’s shirts and realizes that she still loves the man, Gatsby points out the green light at the end of Daisy’s dock. Nick describes the scene and analyzes Gatsby’s thoughts at the moment:
Possibly it had occurred to him that the colossal significance of that light had now vanished forever. Compared to the great distance that had separated him from Daisy it had seemed very near to her, almost touching her. It had seemed as close as a star to the moon. Now it was again a green light on a dock. His count of enchanted objects had diminished by one.
Even Nick can see that, as Gatsby achieves his dream, the green light that gave him inspiration and hope was suddenly just a green light once more.
Jay Gatsby’s Best Quotes in Chapter 5
The reader can almost feel the gratitude Jay must feel for Nick once he agrees to make the proper “introduction.” Jay Gatsby must also be incredibly nervous. He wants everything to be perfect.
He tries to repay Nick in some way by offering him what is probably a sketchy job:
“I carry on a little business on the side, a sort of side line, you understand. And I thought that if you don’t make very much—You’re selling bonds, aren’t you, old sport?
It wouldn’t take up much of your time and you might pick up a nice bit of money. It happens to be a rather confidential sort of thing.”
Nick is smart enough to turn him down, but that doesn’t stop Gatsby from wanting things to be perfect for Daisy. He offers to have his gardener come over and cut the lawn.
What Is Gatsby’s Dialogue Like in Chapter 5?
Gatsby is so nervous, he can’t relax, even though his dream is about to be delivered into his hands. Feeling impatient and uncertain about Daisy coming over on a rainy afternoon, he seems to lose hope and declares:
“Nobody’s coming to tea. It’s too late!”
He keeps looking at his watch as if on a hurry and says:
“I can’t wait all day.”
To which, Nick reminds him that it’s just two minutes to four. Of course, Daisy shows up right on time, but Gatsby is so nervous. He even breaks a clock.
Nick leaves to take a walk, and when he returns, the two have reignited their love. As if on cue, the rain has stopped, the perfect timing for Gatsby to invite Daisy to his house.
How Does Gatsby Show Off His Wealth to Daisy in Chapter 5?
After his initial nervousness, Gatsby warms up and feels more comfortable showing off his wealth as you can see from the following quotes:
“My house looks well, doesn’t it? See how the whole front of it catches the light.”
Nick and Daisy can only agree. Gatsby goes on:
“It took me just three years to earn the money that bought it.”
Jay also throws his many shirts around the room.
Nick asks about the photograph of an elderly man in yachting costume and learns from Gatsby about Dan Cody.
“That’s Mr. Dan Cody, old sport.”
“He’s dead now. He used to be my best friend years ago.”
The trio dance as Klipspringer plays the piano, then Nick leaves the couple alone.
Daisy Buchanan’s Best Quotes from Chapter 5
It appears that Daisy Buchanan never had a clue when she accepted an invitation to tea from her cousin Nick.
Daisy Buchanan: A Socialite and Flapper Who Captured Gatsby’s Heart
She did seem to wonder why Nick told her not to bring Tom. When she arrived, she asked Nick:
“Is this absolutely where you live, my dearest one?”
Then she whispered:
“Are you in love with me… Or why did I have to come alone?”
How Does Daisy React Seeing Gatsby After So Many Years?
Gatsby may have been nervous, which is to be expected for a man who has planned this meeting for so many years.
But even the usually cool and calm Daisy is tongue-tied when she finally sees Gatsby again after a 5-year absence. Nick describes her Daisy’s reaction as “a sort of choking murmur and part of a laugh” as she says:
“I certainly am awfully glad to see you again.”
Daisy’s Quotes Upon Seeing Gatsby’s House
The rain stops, and Gatsby invites Daisy and Nick to his house. Daisy says something that makes Gatsby feel quite proud:
“That huge place there?” she cried pointing.
When Gatsby asks if she likes it, she replies:
“I love it, but I don’t see how you live there all alone.”
Daisy’s Reaction after Seeing Gatsby’s Shirts
The trio tour the house and Gatsby begins throwing his custom-made shirts around the room. Daisy is unable to put her exact feelings into words. She bends her head into the thick folds of shirts, sobs, and manages to say:
“They’re such beautiful shirts.”
“It makes me sad because I’ve never seen such—such beautiful shirts before.”
While Daisy may have used the word shirts, she meant so much more than the literal shirts. She wishes she had created a life with Gatsby instead of Tom and enjoyed ordering beautiful shirts (among many material things) for Gatsby.
Nick will leave Daisy with Gatsby in his house, and no more needs to be said.
While Nick claimed in Chapter 3 that he was the only honest person he knew, he certainly seems to be the most tolerant.
Nick says nothing when Tom drags him to meet his mistress and drink the night away. Nick, again, says nothing when he finds Tom in the secret speakeasy in New York.
Nick also says nothing about his concerns about Meyer Wolfsheim or that he has doubts about how true Gatsby’s story about his life really is.
Perhaps Nick will say nothing about Daisy and Gatsby’s affair because he can see that the two are truly in love.
Or could it be that Nick is more of a romantic at heart and wants to not only see Daisy happily in love but see Tom pay the price for his infidelity?
Chapter 5 contains some of the most important Great Gatsby Quotes. It sees the novel explode with love, tenderness, hope, and excessive wealth. Is this the American Dream? Has Gatsby obtained it?
Chapter 6 will see if Gatsby’s hard work pays off ( read The Great Gatsby Chapter 6 Quotes ) or if he will lose everything.
Written by Kerry Wisby – GatsbyFlapperGirl.com
Owner & Founder of GatsbyFlapperGirl.com
Kerry Wisby, a former teacher with a BA in English, is the founder of GatsbyFlapperGirl.com. With a passion for all things 1920s, including The Great Gatsby novel, her website is the ultimate source for Roaring Twenties fashion, history, and party ideas. Read more about Kerry here.