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Book 2, Chapter 6:“Hundreds of People” Title meaning: Miss Prost tells Mr. Lorry that she constantly has to attend to the "hundreds" of visitors dropping by to ask about or visit with Lucie. Lorry notices several times throughout the chapter that the “hundreds of people” have not yet arrived.
Plot Summary: • Mr. Lorry drops in for a visit with Dr. Manette and Lucie in the doctor's quaint lodgings on a quiet corner in Soho. • He chats with Miss Pross, the red-haired woman who rushed to Lucie's aid in the hotel five years ago. Miss Pross tells him she constantly has to attend to the "hundreds" of visitors dropping by to ask about or visit with Lucie • Dr. Manette and Lucie arrive, and they all sit down to dinner. After the meal, they retire to the back yard to sit under the plane tree, and Darnay and Carton drop by to visit. • Mr. Lorry notes to himself with amusement that the "hundreds of people" Miss Pross promised were nowhere to be found. • It starts raining and they notice the sound of footsteps as people outside begin to rush toward shelter. The sounds spark a philosophical discussionabout people coming in and out of their lives. • They sit, listening to the rain and thunderstorm, and contemplate Lucie's thought. After a time, Mr. Lorry leaves, escorted by Jerry. He remarks to Jerry, "'What a night it has been! Almost a night, Jerry, to bring the dead out of their graves.‘ • Darnaywonders if such a night will ever occur again.
Literary Devices: Repetition:Dickens has Lorry repeat several times throughout this chapter the observation that the hundreds of visitors Miss Pross spoke of have not yet arrived: “Still, the Hundreds of people did not present themselves” (101).“ Tea-time, and Miss Pross making tea, with another fit of the jerks upon her, and yet no Hundreds of people” (102). Paradox: Dickens uses paradox, a statement that leads to a contradiction or a situation which (if true) defies logic or reason, when Darnay says: “‘Amultitude of people, and yet a solitude!’”(103). Foreshadowing: We see a hint of future events when Carton says: “‘There is a great crowd coming one day into our lives, if that be so,’ Sydney Carton struck in, in his moody way" (103).
Essential Quote “I have sometimes sat alone here of an evening, listening, until I have made the echoes out to be the echoes of all the footsteps that are coming by and by into our lives."(103).