Another example of foreshadowing, if not of the specific ending then at least of some sense of the danger ahead, is when the narrator describes the men of the village as they gather in the square. The narrator says that
They stood together, away from the pile of stones in the corner, and their jokes were quiet and they smiled rather than laughed.
The fact that the men try to avoid the stones which the boys are piling up already might make us wonder why they would. Stones are only stones, unless they are used for something unpleasant. Further, their jokes are quiet and they do not laugh aloud, only smiling at most. Something is clearly dampening their spirits and it seems to be connected with the reason for the gathering.
Later, when Mr. Summers arrives with the black box and three-legged stool on which to put it, "there was a murmur . . . among the villagers" as though the sight of him or the ceremony over which he is to preside is somehow disturbing to them. Then, the narrator tells...
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