Chapter I

The narrator disagrees with "Moral Writers" who believe that virtue leads to happiness and vice to grief.

Chapter II

Lord Fellamar, a nobleman who brought Sophia home from the play, is a frequent visitor at Lady Bellaston's house. He has fallen in love with Sophia. One morning he visits Sophia for two hours before realizing that he has stayed too long. Lady Bellaston is pleased with Fellamar's lengthy visit—she is hoping to deflect Sophia from Tom through Fellamar. Lady Bellaston advertises Sophia to Fellamar by telling him about her great fortune. She complains, however, that Sophia is in love with "one of the lowest Fellows in the World … a Beggar, a Bastard, a Foundling." She invites Fellamar to dine with them the following day so that she can prove to him that Sophia is attached to such a man.

Chapter III

Lady Bellaston is a member of the "Little World," a high-class club. She devises a plan for the dinner that night with Fellamar and calls on the assistance of Edwards, another member of the club. Specifically, Edwards has to say that a certain Colonel Wilcox was killed by Tom Jones in a duel. Sophia faints on hearing the news, proving to Fellamar that Lady Bellaston was correct in her assertions about Sophia's love for Tom. Lady Bellaston contrives to have Fellamar and Sophia meet at seven the following evening. She has secretly been encouraging Fellamar to rape Sophia so that Sophia will be obliged to marry him. Fellamar is tortured by the thought of the crime, and resolves that his "Honour" will subdue his "Appetite." The following day Sophia begs Lady Bellaston not to admit Fellamar. Her aunt chastises her, and snides that country girls think every man who is courteous to them intends to make love to them.

Chapter IV

Lady Bellaston distorts literary examples of rape to try to convince Fellamar to ravish Sophia. It is ultimately for Sophia's good, she argues, since Fellamar will be a fine husband for her. Fellamar agrees to carry through with Lady Bellaston's plan, extolling Sophia's beauty and fortune.

Chapter V

Lord Fellamar enters Sophia's room and throws himself at her feet, offering her the world. She rejects him in harsh terms. He grabs hold of her and she screams out, but Lady Bellaston has removed everyone from earshot. At this moment Sophia hears her father's voice as he thunders up the stairs. She calls out to her father, and Fellamar releases her. Squire Western explodes into the room, drunk and verbally abusive. Western orders Sophia to marry Blifil. Fellamar thinks that Western is speaking of him, and thanks him for the honor of considering him as his son-in-law. Western curses Fellamar, who departs as quickly as possible. Lady Bellaston chastises Western for his rudeness to so great a man. Western declares that he wants a country man, not a city fop, for Sophia. He violently drags his daughter down to his coach, swearing to lock her up.

Chapter VI

Mrs. Fitzpatrick is the one who betrayed Sophia's whereabouts to Squire Western and Mrs. Western. The narrator presents her fawning, obsequient letter to Mrs. Western.