Nancy risked, and lost her life to save him, recognizing the purity of the child's character.
He showed strength in defending his mother's good name, fighting Claypole and arguing with Bumble, before receiving yet another beating "He called my mother names." (Chap. 7). Although terrified by Fagin's threats of hanging, "Little Oliver's blood ran cold" (Chap. 18), he was brave enough to confront him at the end of the story and say "I am not afraid" and "Let me say a prayer, only one", (Chap. 52), evidence of his courage and charitable forgiveness.
Oliver received no moral or religious instruction, had no role models in early life from the adults in charge of his destiny. But he made a friend in Dick, and from him, received the only blessing he had ever had, when he ran away in Chapter 7: "the first that Oliver had ever had invoked upon his head." He recognized good people and valued their friendship and kindness always, as well as recognizing and recoiling from evil.
The events portrayed were like a conspiracy to prevent a child from living life as a valued person. But Oliver maintained his integrity and pure spirit, against the odds of a society where capitalism, hypocrisy and disregard for the poor and less fortunate would have destroyed someone of less strength of character, and did in fact. He met each set of circumstances with honesty and realism, trying to keep to a code of doing his best. This helped him to finally find his true identity and a family to belong to, to realize his potential and to be a child and grow. "his nature developed itself, and showed the thriving seeds of all he [Mr. Brownlow] wished him to become" (Chap. 53).
Oliver's Moral Life: As a little boy suffering under institutional cruelty and the uncaring attitudes of Victorian society, leading a moral life was a big challenge for Oliver. But he did this, from asking for more food for not only himself, defending his mother's good name, to seeking to repay friendship with love and loyalty, and to sharing his fortune with his enemy, Monks. Despite all the wrongs done to him, he stayed basically good and offered forgiveness to those who had tried to destroy him. He tried to give and receive love, bore no grudges nor did he look for vengeance, all of which meant he led a moral life.
In every situation, he did his best, getting little credit in return from most people. He understood injustice, and running away in Chapter 7 was evidence of this. He recognized the immorality of greed and thieving, when in Chapter 10 he watched the pickpockets at work. "Oliver's horror and alarmto see the Dodger plunge his hand into the old gentleman's pocket." . He realized the value and importance of a good name and reputation, fighting Claypole to protect his mother's. When locked up by Fagin in Chapter 18, his "own thoughtswere sad indeed" regarding "his kind friends, and the opinion they must long ago have formed of him" He showed a depth of understanding of others, yet did not lay blame, but stayed charitable to all.
This human kindness was evidence of how Oliver led a moral life, with no desire to hurt or revenge himself. Given that he was only a child, with no advantages in that society, he succeeded in holding on to his integrity