A Tale of Two Cities Book the Second, Chapter 24 Summary and Analysis
by Charles Dickens

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Book the Second, Chapter 24 Summary and Analysis


Three years have passed, but the Revolution rages on. The nobility (collectively referred to as “Monseigneur”) has fled France. Jarvis Lorry and Charles Darnay are chatting in Tellson’s Bank in London. Lorry intends to visit Tellson’s Paris location because of “the peril in which our books and papers over yonder are involved.” Darnay objects, but Lorry assures him that, as an old Englishman, he will come to no harm, and he has resolved to bring Jerry Cruncher as his bodyguard. Someone approaches Lorry with a letter for “Monseigneur heretofore the Marquis St. Evrémonde” (the Marquis’s nephew, who, as only Dr. Manette knows, is Charles Darnay). The people in Tellson’s Bank denounce the Marquis’s nephew for abandoning his heritage and fleeing France. Darnay finally claims that he knows him. Stryver, who is among the group, expresses his sympathies, saying “there is contamination in such a scoundrel.” Darnay attempts to defend him, but Stryver is unconvinced. Darnay then agrees to deliver the letter to the young Marquis and, when alone, discovers that it is from Monsieur Gabelle. Gabelle has been imprisoned because he “acted for an emigrant” by helping Darnay leave the country. Darnay realizes that, rather than leaving abruptly, he should have made proper arrangements to withdraw his post as the Marquis’s heir. He decides to go to Paris to save Gabelle, reasoning that he will not be harmed because he was not personally responsible for the peasants’ oppression. He departs in secret, leaving two letters (for Lucie and her father) explaining that he is away on business.


Despite the passage of time, social reform seems to elude the revolutionaries; instead, there is only more bloodshed and unrest. Living conditions for peasants...

(The entire section is 436 words.)