Key plot details

A timeline of the major events in the plot of An Inspector Calls
  1. An inspector arrives at the Birling house. He tells them how a girl called Eva Smith has killed herself by drinking disinfectant - he wants to ask them some questions.
  2. The Inspector reveals that the girl used to work in Arthur Birling's factory and he had her sacked for going on strike. Mr Birling refuses to accept any responsibility for her death.
  3. The Inspector then reveals that Sheila thought that Eva had made fun of her, complained and got her sacked. Sheila is deeply ashamed and feels responsible for the girl’s death.
  4. The Inspector forces Gerald to confess to an affair he had with Eva. Sheila respects Gerald’s honesty but returns the engagement ring he gave her.
  5. It is revealed that Sybil Birling had refused to help the pregnant Eva.
  6. It turns out that it was Eric who got Eva pregnant, and stole money from his father to help her.
  7. The Inspector leaves. The family ring the infirmary and there is no record of a girl dying from drinking disinfectant.
  8. Suddenly the phone rings, Mr Birling answers it, to his horror the phone call reveals that a young woman has just died from drinking disinfectant and the police are on their way to question them about it. The curtain falls and the play ends.
An Inspector Calls revolves around the apparent suicide of a young woman called Eva Smith and the investigation into the Birling family. Could they be responsible?