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Foreshadowing is a technique that prepares a reader for an event that is soon to come. An author that uses foreshadowing is Charles Dickens. Charles Dickens writes many famous novels. A famous novel of his is A Tale of Two Cities. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens is a novel that reveals many future events through the use of foreshadowing.
The French Revolution is the main event described by the use of foreshadowing. Dickens uses the phrase â€œone tall joker so besmirched . . . scrawl[s] upon a wall with his finger dipped in muddy-lees â€“ BLOODâ€? to forecast the spilt wine as future blood shed during the French Revolution (37-38). Dickens also subtly states â€œthe one woman [Madame Defarge] who [stands] conspicuous, knitting, still knit[s] on with the steadfastness of Fateâ€? and he is foreshadowing the French Revolution by comparing Madame Defarge to Fate (117). Both Madame Defarge and Fate mark people who are destined to die which leads further into the French Revolution. Lastly, Dickens presents the statement â€œthey their very selves [are] closing in around a structure yet unbuilt, where they [are] to sit knitting, knitting, counting dropping headsâ€? to show that in the future, Madame Defarge and her women knit while counting the heads being severed by La Guillotine (187).
Another instance of foreshadowing is the revenge of the poor people against the aristocrats. When Dickens writes, â€œthere [is] a flutter in the air that fan[s] Saint Antoine and his devouring hunger far awayâ€? he is referring to the poor people in Saint Antoine such as the Defarges and their death craving towards the aristocrats (113). The poor that crave the aristocratsâ€™ deaths have such a strong aura that they are a part of a living Saint Antoine, and for a moment, their death craving is delayed until a later time. Dickens also states in this novel â€œthe knife [strikes] home, the faces [change], from faces of pride to faces of anger and pain; also that when that dangling figure [is] hauled . . . they [change] again, and [bear] a cruel look of being avengedâ€? which shows the poor switching from their pride to revenge against the aristocrats and the aristocracy (177). Madame Defarge makes the statement â€œ[v]engeance and retribution require a long timeâ€? to her husband during his time of impatience to seek revenge against the aristocrats, and it implies that Monsieur Defargeâ€™s revenge happens later in the future (179).
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The mention of footsteps and echoes is another example of foreshadowing into Lucieâ€™s future. When Dickens writes â€œI [make] the echoes out to be the echoes of all the footsteps that are coming by and by into our livesâ€? the real meaning under that statement is to foreshadow people of the French Revolution such as the Defarges and the revolutionaries coming into Lucieâ€™s as well as her friendsâ€™ and familyâ€™s lives (108). Miss Pross says, â€œI donâ€™t want dozens of people who are not at all worthy of Ladybird [Lucie], to come here looking after her,â€? to Mr. Lorry when he is looking for Lucie (101). Miss Pross is actually referring to several future incidents where Madame Defarge is looking for Lucie when she flees France. Darnay and Stryver are also looking for her hand in marriage, and Carton states his love for her. Dickens mentions in his novel â€œLucie hear[s] in the echoes of years none but friendly and soothing soundsâ€? and heâ€™s referring to Lucieâ€™s future where everything is calm and pleasant (209).
The use of foreshadowing reveals many future events in the novel A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens. Foreshadowing reveals the French Revolution many times. The revenge of the poor people against the aristocracy is shown through foreshadowing. Lucieâ€™s future is foreshadowed through the footstep and echoes in the novel.