A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

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Book the Second, Chapter 21 Summary and Analysis


Time passes. Lucie and Darnay have two children, a “little Lucie” and a boy, who dies young. Lucie listens to the echoes of Soho Square as the years go by. Though the echoes are sometimes sorrowful, they are mostly “friendly and soothing sounds.” There are, however, increasingly menacing echoes coming from France, and they “rumbled menacingly in the [street] corner all through this space of time.”

The French Revolution begins in Saint Antoine. Ernest Defarge and his wife are at the front of the mob, leading the peasants in their revolt. They descend upon the Bastille, whose prisoners are released. The prison guards are slaughtered, their heads mounted on pikes. Monsieur Defarge and “Jacques Three” demand to be taken to “One Hundred and Five, North Tower,” the cell where Dr. Manette had been held. They find his initials in the wall: “A.M.” for “Alexandre Manette.” Jacques Three and Monsieur Defarge burn everything in the cell. Meanwhile, the governor is killed, and...

(The entire section is 316 words.)