Characters in A Tale of Two Cities

Characters In A Tale of Two Cities

This list of characters from A Tale of Two Cities is presented in alphabetical order.

Note: Includes spoilers!

Carton, Sydney – Sydney is a lawyer with a fondness for strong drink.  He meets the love of his life in Lucie (Manette) Darnay. He also bears a strong resemblance her husband, Charles.

Sydney Carton from A Tale of Two Cities

Sydney Carton, illustration by Frederick Barnard

Sadly, sadly, the sun rose; it rose upon no sadder sight than the man of good abilities and good emotions, incapable of their directed exercise, incapable of his own help and his own happiness, sensible of the blight on him, and resigning him-self to let it eat him away.  – narration about Sydney Carton

“It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done;  it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.” – Sydney Carton

Darnay, Charles  – Charles is a French exile living England.  He marries Lucie Darnay.  Later he returns to France to make amends for his family’s crimes.  He is imprisoned and eventually sentenced to death.  He is saved from death by Sydney Carton.

Charles Darnay seemed to stand in a company of the dead. Ghosts all! The ghost of beauty, the ghost of stateliness, the ghost of elegance, the ghost of pride, the ghost of frivolity, the ghost of wit, the ghost of youth, the ghost of age, all waiting their dismissal from the desolate shore, all turning on him eyes that were changed by the death they had died in coming there.  – Charles Darnay’s thoughts about his fellow prisoners

Cruncher, Jeremy (Jerry) – Jerry is the porter at Tellson’s Bank.  On the side he makes money as a grave robber.  He beats his wife for praying or as he calls it “flopping.”

Jerry Cruncher and his son

Jerry Cruncher and his son outside Tellson Bank – illustration by Fred Barnard

“I go so far as to say, miss, morehover,” proceeded Mr. Cruncher, with a most alarming tendency to hold forth as from a pulpit–“and let my words be took down and took to Mrs. Cruncher through yourself–that wot my opinions respectin’ flopping has undergone a change, and that wot I only hope with all my heart as Mrs. Cruncher may be a flopping at the present time.”  – Jerry Cruncher

Darnay, Lucie – See Lucie Manette

Defarge, Ernest – A wine shop owner and a leader in the French Revolution.  He is the husband of Therese Defarge.

Defarge, Therese – The wife of Ernest Defarge and an eager partner in the French Revolution.  She records the names of her enemies with her knitting.

” . . . tell Wind and Fire where to stop,” returned madame; “but don’t tell me.”  – Therese Defarge

Lorry, Jarvis – Jarvis Lorry is an agent of Tellson’s Bank.   He becomes a friend of the Manettes.

Manette, Doctor Alexandre – Doctor Manette was imprisoned at the Bastille for eighteen years.  He is the father of Lucie Manette.  During the long years of his imprisonment he made shoes.

A Tale of Two Cities

Dr Manette in the Bastille

Manette, Lucie  – Lucie is the beautiful daughter of Doctor Manette.  While her father was imprisoned she believed herself to be an orphan.  She marries Charles Darnay.  She is also loved by Sydney Carton.

A Tale Of Two Cities - Lucie Manette and Miss Pross

Lucie Manette and her governess, Miss Pross – illustration by Fred Barnard

Pross, Miss – Lucie Manette’s nurse and companion.

“You might, from your appearance, be the wife of Lucifer. Nevertheless, you shall not get the better of me. I am an Englishwoman.”  – Miss Pross

Stryver, C. J. – Sydney Carton’s employer.

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A Tale of Two Cities

A Tale of Two Cities

A play, The Frozen Deep, was the inspiration for A Tale of Two Cities. In 1857 Dickens acted in the play. Not only did it give him the idea for A Tale of Two Cities, the play brought about lasting changes to Dickens's life in the form of Ellen Ternan...