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Unconscious of the new developments that have taken place at the lodge, Miss Pross and

Jerry Cruncher wind their way through narrow streets in search of food. They make a few purchases and turn into a wine shop. Miss Pross is startled to see her brother Solomon. Jerry Cruncher recognizes him as John Barsad, the police spy. Sydney Carton arrives in the shop and tells Miss Pross that John Barsad is now a spy among the prisoners. When Carton suggests that Barsad should accompany him to Mr. Lorrys house, the spy, knowing that Carton has too much information against him, relents.

Carton informs Mr. Lorry of the re-arrest of Darnay and states that the Doctors influence is not likely to save Darnay again. Carton, however, says he has made plans, which he refuses to divulge to anyone. He gives strict instructions that Dr. Manette, by using his influence, should procure papers for himself, Lucie, and the child. Barsad is at first unwilling to aid Darnays friends, but he is reminded that Carton has a great deal of information against him which could have him denounced as an enemy of the Republic and send him straight to the guillotine. As a result, Barsad agrees to help.

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Miss Pross recognizes her long lost brother Solomon, who has become the police spy John Barsad; he had been the sole mourner at Roger Clys mock funeral twelve years ago. Cruncher knows that Cly is alive, for he had opened the coffin and found it empty. There was a fake death and false rebirth, obviously for evil purposes. Both Barsad and Cly are typical spies, loyal to no one.

When Sydney Carton comes to know the identity of Barsad, he realizes that this man, being a prison spy, can help him in his plans. He blackmails Barsad in to helping him. Again, the chapter ends in suspense, for the reader is given no clues as to the plans of Sydney Carton.


Mr. Lorry is angry that Jerry Cruncher is using his job at Tellsons Bank as a cover for his body snatching and threatens to have him discharged. Cruncher informs him that a great deal of other respectable clients, like surgeons, undertakers, and sextons, will be implicated too. He also adds that losing his job at Tellsons Bank will only drive him further into body snatching. Mr. Lorry agrees to remain silent about Crunchers second job when the man promises to permanently give up his shady job.

Carton tells Mr. Lorry that, thanks to Barsads help, he has access to the prison in case things do not go well at Darnays trial. Mr. Lorry feels that having the access is not sufficient to save Darnays life. Carton is moved by his tears and tells Lorry not to despair. He also hints of his own death. Before leaving, Carton makes Mr. Lorry promise not to reveal his presence in Paris to Lucie. When he steps out onto the streets, Carton is mentally reciting the Biblical passage, I am the resurrection and the light. He stops at a chemists shop and buys something.. The next day Darnay is brought in front of the same unjust Tribunal. Lucie is also present at the trial. The President announces the names of the three who have denounced him; the Defarges and Dr. Manette. The Doctor looks pale and tries to explain himself, but he is hushed. Defarge is called, and he informs them of the Doctors imprisonment and how he later went to the very same cell and procured a letter that the Doctor had hidden in a hole in the chimney. He is asked to read the manuscript.


Carton does not want Lucie to know that he is in Paris and that he has access to Darnay through the prison spy, Barsad, since she may guess his plan and prevent him from carrying it out. The conversation between Mr. Lorry and Carton is tinged with sentimentality and also contains hints of what Carton plans to do. Carton praises Mr. Lorry for his long and useful life and speaks about his own remorse over his wasted life. Lorry sentimentally reminds him that he is a solitary,

old bachelor and that there will be no one to mourn him when he dies. Carton reminds him that Lucie will certainly weep. Both the men feel the shadow of death, the old man because of advanced age and the young one because he has already planned his own demise. When he leaves Lorry, he goes to the chemist and buys some drugs. He also mentally quotes from the Bible (John 11 5-6), verses that reinforce the resurrection theme. The Biblical quotation also foreshadows the fact that Carton will die in order to save Darnay and insure Lucies happiness.

It seems that Madame Defarge is about to get her final revenge. For years she has harbored an all consuming hatred for the Evremonde family, and now she has the power to destroy the last of them, Darnay. It appears she has real evidence against Darnay to be produced in his second trial; it should ensure his conviction.

CHAPTER TEN The Substance of the Shadow

One day in 1757, Dr. Manette walks down a street when he is stopped by a carriage.

Inside are two men, apparently twins, who need his service. They do not disclose who

they are and merely reveal that they are of high birth. The Doctor is taken by them to a solitary house in the countryside. Upstairs he finds a delirious woman in her twenties; she is rambling on about her family who has been killed. Her arms are bound to her sides with sashes. The doctor notices a

fringed scarf with the crest of nobility and the initial E. After Dr. Manette sedates her, he is led to another patient. He is a young, handsome, peasant boy dying from a fatal would. The Doctor finds out that he has been stabbed by one of the brothers. The boy tells the Doctor that the woman is his sister, and they are tenants of one of the brothers. He informs the Doctor about his sisters abduction by the other brother and how he was stabbed when he tried to rescue her. He discloses that the youngest sister managed to sneak away safely. Both the boy and his sister die shortly afterward. The doctor is commanded not to reveal what he has seen. The noblemen offer him money, which he refuses to take. The next morning another attempt is made to bribe him. He, however, decides to notify the Minister of this ghastly incident. Later he is visited by the Marquis St. Evremondes wife and comes to know the identity of the brothers. She has found out the facts about the two deaths and wishes to help the surviving sister, if the Doctor will reveal her name and whereabouts. She wishes to make amends for the sake of

her three-year-old son, Charles, who has accompanied her. The Doctor then adds the

Evremonde name to the letter. However, the wicked brothers capture him, burn the letter, and imprison him in the Bastille. After the manuscript about this incident has been read, a terrible sound erupts from the crowd. They want vengeance. The jury then unanimously votes that Darnay is to be executed within twenty-four hours.


The story of the manuscript and the cruel imprisonment of the Doctor have all the sensational elements of a Gothic novel. Dickens, however, tells Dr. Manettes story in clear and vigorous prose style that holds the reader spellbound. The final pieces of the puzzle finally fall into place when the connection of Dr. Manette to the Evremondes is revealed. It is no wonder he was shocked and upset when he learned that his son-in-law was an Evremonde. Dickens is a master storyteller and builds up his plot in a methodical, interesting, and captivating manner. No incident in the novel is irrelevant to his complex plot, and as the novel rushes to a conclusion, Dickens tries to tie up all the loose ends. The reader now understands that part of the reason for Darnays trips to France were to search for the surviving sister, as his mother obviously commanded him to do.

Dickens use of coincidence and fate becomes very important in this chapter. It is ironic that Dr. Manettes hatred of the Evremondes has turned in to a love for one of them, his son-in law Darnay. It is also ironic that Dr. Manettes manuscript is to be the evidence that pronounces the death knell for that same Evremonde. It appears that the innocent Darnay will have to pay with his life for the sins of his fathers; there is no escape from his family history. Dickens seems to be


Lucie is completely shocked by the guilty verdict; but she nobly lifts herself out of her stupor because she knows she has to stand by Darnay in his misery rather than augment it. She pleads with his jailer to let her embrace her husband for the last time. Barsad allows her to do so. Darnay blesses his wife and assures her that they will meet again one day. He also sends a parting blessing to little Lucie. As the couple tear themselves apart, Lucie tearfully informs her husband that they will not be parted for long as she is sure to die of a broken heart. Darnay prevents the Doctor from kneeling before him and comforts him. He realizes now the full extent of the struggle the Doctor has endured. He is also grateful for his efforts to release him. The Doctors only response is to run his hands through his hair and utter an anguished cry. After Darnay is led out, Lucie collapses at her fathers feet.

Carton, who has unobtrusively observed this scene, comes forward and carries the

senseless woman to the coach. On reaching the house, Carton carries her again and lays her on the couch. Little Lucie and Miss Pross weep over her. Carton does not want Lucie to be revived. It would be better for her to sleep through her misery. Little Lucie is overjoyed to see Carton and knows that he will do something to help her mother and save her father. He promises her that she will again see her father. He kisses Lucie and whispers in her ear, A life you love. This is overheard by little Lucie. He urges Dr. Manette to use his influence, once again, to save Darnays life, even though he knows that it is hopeless. He explains to Mr. Lorry that he encouraged Dr. Manette only because it might console Lucie one day. Carton then leaves.


The plot moves rapidly to the grand finale. It is dominated by the actions of Sydney Carton who from a dissipated and irresolute lawyer has emerged as a clear-headed and meticulous planner. This is not really a metamorphosis, for the sharpness of his mind has been observed in his work for Mr. Stryver. After the tearful and heartbreaking separation from Darnay, Lucie faints. It is significant that Carton comes to her rescue and carries her to home and safety. As Lucie lies unconscious, he assures little Lucie that she will soon see her father. His parting kiss and whispering in his beloved Lucies ear is very touching, for he alone knows that he will never see her again. He plans for the family to escape and gets ready to visit Darnay in the prison; he will switch places with him there. It is an act of pure love for Lucie. He is to become the Christ figure who is willing to die for the sins of Darnays ancestors.


Sydney Carton enters the wine-shop of the Defarges and deliberately speaks in bad, broken French. They notice his resemblance to Darnay and assume that he cannot understand them. They continue their argument. Madame Defarge wants the Doctor, Lucie, and the child to be guillotined. Defarge, however, draws the line with Darnay. She tells the Vengeance and Jacques

Three how on the day that the Bastille fell, Defarge discovered the letter in Dr. Manettes cell. She had then revealed to her husband that the family mentioned in the letter is her own and that she is the surviving sister. She wants revenge and has doomed in her register the entire Evremonde family. She is not to be stopped. From this conversation and from what the spy Barsad tells him, Carton realizes that Madame Defarge will not stop until she kills Lucie and her child. Since she has seen Lucie signaling to Darnay in prison, she will use this as evidence of a plot to rescue her husband. Furthermore, Lucie will surely mourn for her husband and it is a capital offense for anyone to mourn for or sympathize with a victim of the guillotine.

Carton relates his fears to Mr. Lorry and asks him to keep in his possession all their passports including his. He plans to visit Darnay and explains that he should not carry his papers as it would be dangerous. He instructs Mr. Lorry to make arrangements for the homeward journey and to have the carriage waiting for him at Tellsons Bank until two oclock.

In the meantime, the Doctor has tried, in vain, to save his son-in-law. He returns home demented and asks for his shoemakers bench.


All of Cartons actions reflect the thorough way in which he has laid his plan to save Darnay. The visit to the wine-shop, the broken French, and the deliberate manner in which he draws attention to himself and his resemblance to Darnay is important. He is far-sighted and realizes that if the revolutionaries have seen him they will not suspect a thing when Darnay escapes, for he will be carrying Cartons papers. He gives very specific instructions to Mr. Lorry about the escape plan for Lucie and her family. He tells Mr. Lorry to hold the carriage at Tellsons Bank until he returns and takes his place inside. No one but Carton knows that Darnay will be the one to fill the place in the carriage.

Dickens uses coincidence when he has Carton overhear Madame Defarges plot to kill Darnays family. Defarges attempts to stop his wife are in vain. His voice of reason is drowned by the clamor of his wife, the Vengeance, and Jacques Three. The reason for Madames extreme hatred of the Evremondes is finally revealed. She is the lost sister that Darnay has never been able to locate. As a result, her desire for revenge cannot be quenched until the last Evremonde, including little Lucie, has been killed.


In the black prison of the Conciergerie, fifty-two prisoners await their doom. Among

them is a former general of seventy and a young seamstress of twenty. Darnay spends his last evening reconciling himself to his fate and writing letters to Lucie, Dr. Manette, and Mr. Lorry. He does not think of Carton even once. He goes to bed and dreams of his wonderful life in Soho. In the morning, he paces up and down his cell as the hours tick by and the time of execution draws nearer. The executions are set for three oclock, and since the tumbrels move slowly through the streets, the prisoners will leave at two.

At one oclock Darnay hears footsteps outside. The door opens, and Sydney Carton stands before him with a slight smile. He is the last person Darnay has expected to see. At first he thinks that Carton is a prisoner like himself, but Carton quickly assures him that he is not and that he brings a request from Lucie. He does not tell Darnay what the request is. Carton then forces Darnay to exchange clothes with him. Suddenly Darnay realizes that Carton is planning to rescue him. He feels that his attempt will put both their lives in peril. Carton instructs Darnay to write a note to

Lucie. As the prisoner bends over the paper, Carton drugs him and dresses himself in Darnays clothes. Barsad, with the help of other unsuspecting guards, carry the inert body of Darnay out of the prison to the waiting carriage. Cartons plan has succeeded.

At two oclock the door of Darnays cell is opened, and he is instructed to follow the jailer. The seamstress, taking him to be Darnay, asks him to hold her hand in the tumbrel. When she looks up at his face, she realizes that he is not Darnay, but does not reveal this to anyone. She is astonished that this noble man is willing to give his life for another man. In the meantime, the carriage containing Dr. Manette, Lucie, little Lucie, Mr. Lorry, and a drugged, sluggish Darnay, makes its way through the barriers and speeds out of Paris.


Dickens describes the oppression rampant during the revolution as a disease. He comments that if a physical disease can contaminate a large number of people disregarding age and status, moral

diseases borne of unspeakable suffering and heartless indifference do the same. No one is spared. The rich farmer and the poor seamstress were convicted on the flimsiest of evidence that they were not patriots. The revolutionaries have a diabolical thirst for more heads to roll. Dickens also gives the reader a graphic and dramatic picture of a prisoner on Death Row. Darnay realizes that no one can save him now, so he collects his strength to face death with dignity. He wants his loved ones to carry a picture of him as a strong and courageous man. He also realizes that there is no disgrace in his fate, for he is guilty of nothing. One section of his letter to Lucie is of particular interest. Darnay does not want her to try and find out if her father had remembered that he had buried the letter in his cell. She was not to ask him whether he had recalled it when he was told the story of the tower. He argues that even if the Doctor knew about the evidence, he

would have believed it to be lost when the Bastille was destroyed. Dickens portrays Darnay as a noble soul who harbors no ill feelings whatsoever. His attitude of forgiveness and understanding is exactly the opposite of that of Madame Defarge.

Carton appears before Darnay to become his savior. It is ironic that this man has never entered Darnays thoughts in prison and is really the last person Darnay expected to see. Darnay, however, has masterminded a perfect escape plan for Darnay, covering every detail so there is no room for error. Cartons ruse to make Darnay write a letter to Lucie is a clever one. Carton uses the opportunity to attack and drug Darnay. He has Barsad standing by to carry the lifeless Darnay to the waiting carriage. His plan is perfectly executed, and Carton prepares to face his own death. In the tumbrel, the seamstress looks into Cartons face and realizes he is not really Darnay; but she does not utter a word about it. She cannot believe that anyone is so noble as to sacrifice their own life for another. It is the ultimate irony that in death, Carton, known for excessive drinking and uselessness, is finding what he never had in life - a meaning and a purpose.


While Darnay is being rescued, Madame Defarge sits in conference with The Vengeance and Jacques Three in the wood-sawyers shop. She has decided to go ahead with the prosecution of Darnays family without her husbands knowledge. She declares her intention of strengthening her case against Lucie by visiting her immediately. She is sure to catch Lucie mourning over her husbands execution; she may even get Lucie to denounce the Republic in her miserable and vulnerable state. Madame Defarge can then uses her words to convict her. Madame Defarge

instructs The Vengeance to take her knitting and wait for her at the guillotine.

Miss Pross and Jerry Cruncher have been left behind and plan to leave by the three oclock coach. They have seen the carriage with Darnay in it speed safely away and are making the final preparations for their own departure. Miss Pross instructs Jerry Cruncher to go and get the carriage and wait for her outside Notre Dame Cathedral. Madame Defarge arrives ten minutes after Jerrys departure. She demands to know where Lucie is. Miss Pross places herself in front of the door to Lucies chamber and attempts some explanation. Neither woman understands the other, for they speak in their own language. Miss Pross, however, clearly senses Madame Defarges evil intentions. Madame Defarge, realizing that the other rooms are vacant, suspects that the family has escaped. She attempts to open the door behind Miss Pross to have proof of her suspicions. Miss Pross knows that the longer she keeps Madame Defarge from discovering that the room is empty, the greater the chance for the fugitives to escape. As a result, she struggles with Madame Defarge, who reaches for her knife. Miss Pross arms encircle Defarges waist and do not allow her access to the knife. She then reaches for the gun hidden in her blouse, but Miss Pross hits it away. The gun goes off with a crash and instantly kills Madame Defarge. The sound of the gunfire deafens Miss Pross for life.


Madame Defarge meets her end in this chapter, and the reader is made to feel that Dickens is almost too kind to her in the end, for she dies without pain or punishment. The fight between Miss Pross and Madame Defarge can be described as the clash of Titans. Both women are very strong and determined to get their way. Ironically, they fight over Lucie; but Miss Pross fights out of love for Lucie, and Madame Defarge fights out of hatred for her. When Miss Pross identifies her enemy as the wife of Lucifer, she is close to correct.

Dickens faith in divine providence and the goodness of life is exemplified in the outcome of this struggle. In the end, love triumphs in the battle, and hatred is put to death in the figure of Madame Defarge. The outcome of this fight is parallel to the escape of Darnay. Because of Cartons love of Lucie and his willingness to sacrifice himself to make her happy, love again triumphs over the hatred of the revolutionaries.

The pace in this penultimate chapter of the book is frenetic, and the atmosphere is charged with great apprehension. Up until the preceding chapter, evil has reigned supreme, with no victories for the innocents. In addition, the reader has been made to fear Madame Defarge throughout the novel. She comes to Lucies lodging with hatred in her heart and death on her mind; she is armed with a knife and a gun. It would seem that Miss Pross has little hope to succeed against this demon. The only way for Dickens to handle the struggle positively is to end it with irony. It is Madame Defarges own gun, used to kill many innocents, that accidentally goes off and leads to her sudden and melodramatic death.

CHAPTER FIFTEEN The Footsteps Die Out Forever

The fifty-two prisoners are carried in six tumbrels that grind through the cobbled streets of Paris. Carton stands at the back of the third tumbrel with his head bent down, trying to ignore the roar of the crowd. He talks to the young and frightened seamstress while holding her hand. He notices that in front of the guillotine, seated in chairs, are a large number of women knitting. One of the most noticeable women is The Vengeance; she looks frantically around in search of Madame Defarge.

The first tumbrels arrive, and the guillotine starts crashing. The women count each head as it is held up. The third tumbrel arrives, and Carton steps down, holding the hand of the seamstress. He places her with her back to the guillotine; she looks bravely into his face and thanks him for his kindness. Carton kisses her as she heads for the guillotine. He then follows in a calm and victorious mood. As he goes to his death, Carton has a vision that all the revolutionaries will follow him to the guillotine. He also envisions the Darnay family living happily, making the sacrifice of his wasted life very worthwhile. Carton is also pleased to think that he will always be remembered and honored by the Darnays. His last thought comes to full fruition when Lucie and Darnay name their son in honor Carton.


The title of the last chapter is significant. The echoing footsteps, symbolic of fear and heard throughout the novel by Lucie and Lorry, now die out forever. With the death of Madame Defarge, the Darnay family can now live in peace and freedom. Darnay no longer has to search for the lost sister; Dr. Manette no longer has to fear the Evremondes or his own revenge; and Lucy does not have to fear losing her husband. It is a happy ending for them, but it is bought with great tragedy.

Cartons sacrifice and Madame Defarges death are victories of the innocents over the

revolutionaries. They are prophetic signs that the Reign of Terror cannot last forever; the patriots can be defeated and a better society will emerge. Lucie and Darnays son, named after Carton, is a symbol of hope for the future.

The final scene of Carton holding the hand of the seamstress as they ride and depart the tumbrel is quite touching, almost too sentimental. But it is the fitting visual end for Carton. He has made the ultimate sacrifice, laying down his own life, because of his love for Lucie. It is, therefore, quite appropriate that he comforts another young woman as he goes to his death. He has become

the symbol of the kind Savior. Through him, Dickens implies that love is immortal because it comes from God. Cartons resurrection, therefore, can be seen both in religious and secular terms. He will literally, in name, be reborn through the son of Lucie and Darnay. He will also go to eternal rest because of his ultimate sacrifice; he has redeemed his wasted life. Appropriately, Cartons last words end the novel It is a far, far, better thing that I do than I have ever done; it is a far, far, better rest that I go to than I have ever known.

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