Analyze the behavior of the Marquis toward the peasant child in A Tale of Two Cities. Is the Marquis' death considered an act of revenge?

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pearlepratt | Teacher | (Level 2) Assistant Educator

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The carriage of the Marquis travels the streets of the city recklessly. When the carriage runs over the little child, the child is killed. The Marquis has no pity or concern for the loss of life.  In fact, he refers to Gaspard’s (the child’s father) anguished cries as “abominable noise.” He further blames the residents of area for failing to avoid the swiftly-moving carriage. He complains that the poor people have no control over their children and that striking the child may have harmed his horses.

After throwing a coin to the ground in supposed compensation for the child’s life, he insults Monsieur Defarge and begins to drive away.  The gold coin is thrown back into his carriage and the Defarges comfort Gaspard.

Later, the Marquis is found dead under the watchful eyes of the stone statues that survey his estate. There is a note attached to his dead body and it reads, “Drive him fast to his tomb. This, from Jacques.” Of course the assembly of men in the wine shop all referred to one another as Jacques. Therefore, it is reasonable to infer that the murderer is from that section of the city or is affiliated with the men who frequent Defarge’s wine shop. In addition, the mender of roads saw a tall man, covered with dust, under the carriage of the Marquis.  Although the identity of the man is not definitively identified, the description is similar to the previous depictions of Gaspard, the child’s father. It is reasonable to conclude that the Marquis was killed in revenge for the murder and his haughtiness following the death of the child.

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