A Tale of Two Cities

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Hannah Howard
Ms. Freel
English II
4/25/13
A Tale of Two Cities
Throughout the book A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens portrays several themes using specific characters. An example of this is Sydney Carton and how he is used to represent redemption. Carton’s character demonstrates redemption through specific events that show how he is redeemed. Through the book Carton’s redemption is shown using Lucie’s child, Carton’s replacing Charles Darnay in jail, and finally dying in Darnay’s place.

The first example of Dickens using Sydney Carton to show redemption is through Lucie Manette’s child. As Carton is about to be executed he sees a vision of what his death will bring and how it is beneficial and the right thing to do in order to bring him a second chance. H sees Lucie having a child with her beloved husband Charles Darnay, who Carton preplaced. Their child is seen to be given Carton’s name, representing him having a new life and another chance to make his name great, instead of being known as a drunk. Carton sees the child doing this specifically by becoming a lawyer and pursuing his dreams with full potential, unlike Carton did himself (372). This brings him redemption because, since the child is acting like a new life/chance for Carton, it is giving his name the opportunity to rise in the honor that he never gave it himself by pursuing his dreams.

He did do one good thing for his name though. That pertains to the fact that he took the place of Charles Darnay. Even though Carton was completely innocent, he practiced selflessness and replaced Darnay, so he could be with Lucie while leaving Carton with the punishment of execution (372). Through this action he became the sacrifice needed to save Charles Darnay. This situation is similar, in many aspects, to the story of Jesus. Although there is one essential difference, Carton did not live a perfect life; which is another reason he took Darnay’s place. Through this selflessness Carton felt as though he...
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