A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens - Book 2, Chapter 7
A Tale of Two Cities
Book 2 Chapter 8. Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4. Original Text Modern Text The valet had put her away from the door, the carriage had broken into a brisk trot, the postilions had quickened the pace, she was left far behind, and Monseigneur, again escorted by the Furies, was rapidly diminishing the league or two of distance that remained between him and his chateau. The valet moved her away from the door, and the carriage drove away quickly. The horsemen sped up, and she was left far behind.
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When his carriage stops in a village near his home, the Marquis questions a road-mender who claims he saw a man riding under the carriage, but the man is no longer there. Having alerted the village official, Gabelle, to be on the lookout for the mystery man, the Marquis drives on. Before he can reach his estate, however, a grief-stricken woman stops him at the graveyard and begs him for a marker for the grave of her dead husband. Ignoring her pleas, the Marquis continues on to his chateau. When he arrives, he asks if "Monsieur Charles"has arrived from England yet. The bleak setting through which the Marquis rides testifies that the irresponsible habits of the ruling class starve the land as much as they starve the common people.
Book 2 Chapter 8. Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4., Monseigneur, whose full name is Monsieur the Marquis, is riding through the countryside in his traveling carriage. The village he is passing through is obviously poor; there are few children, no dogs, and very little food.
All rights reserved. As he drives, our narrator gives us a description of the land. All the crops that can be wrung out of the land have been grown and are slowly dying—like the poor people who farm them. Heading into the village, the carriage pauses. Our narrator takes this time to explain why the village looks so crummy, as well. See, the Marquis has been taxing his villagers within an inch of their lives. In the village, the Marquis pulls aside a man whom he passed on the road.