Family dinner, new house of the family Buddenbrook, bought by the old man, his son and wife live on a lower floor. Seems to be about 5 stories, with a granary on the lower level—a horse and cart can drive through the archway and pull into the back yard. Exporting grain seems to be the business, with financing from Hamburg(I think). The old man receives a threatening letter from a stepson (his oldest; he also has a stepdaughter) anent a forthcoming inheritance he believes due. Good imagery, especially around the food served at the dinner. Lots of guests of a political and prestige bend. The children are introduced early and then set aside.
Jean seems to have his 5th child (can’t keep count). Old Johann is happy. Jean consults an old commonplace book and seems embarrassed by it. Teen Tony vacations with her grandparents—where everything is nicer—and rebuffs a boy who tries to kiss her; she’s a handful. The Tom and Christian duality is further set up; Tom is studious, Christian a prankster, looking for a laugh and attention. This can’t end well for Christian.