Clara Peggotty is David’s nanny and caretaker, referred to as “Peggotty” throughout the novel to distinguish her from David’s mother, also named Clara. Peggotty worked as a housekeeper for the Copperfields prior to the events of the text and she remains in her position after Clara marries Mr. Murdstone because of how devoted she is to Clara. Peggotty’s devotion to Clara can only be rivaled by her devotion to David. Peggotty acts as his second mother from the moment that David is born, and she is the only person who initially looks after him after his mother dies. David speaks of Peggotty with the highest praise and repeatedly expounds her innate goodness. For example, David recalls how Peggotty snuck out to see him before he was sent away to school, despite being forbidden to do so, because she knew that he was frightened. Peggotty’s love for David is symbolized by the Crocodile Book that David used to read to Peggotty when he was a young child to practice his letters. In the text’s final chapter, the reader learns that Peggotty has saved the book all these years as a “precious relic” and that she now reads the book with David’s own children. Peggotty’s warmth and her dedication to David (and children in general) are her defining characteristics. As a result, she serves as a literary foil to characters such as the Murdstones or Mr. Creakle, who repeatedly abuse and neglect children.