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Madame Defarge, from which one might have
predicated that she did not often make mistakes
against herself in any of the reckonings over
which she presided. Madame Defarge being
sensitive to cold, was wrapped in fur, and had a
quantity of bright shawl twined about her head,
though not to the concealment of her large
earrings. Her knitting was before her, but she had
laid it down to pick her teeth with a toothpick.
Thus engaged, with her right elbow supported by
her left hand, Madame Defarge said nothing
when her lord came in, but coughed just one
grain of cough. This, in combination with the
lifting of her darkly defined eyebrows over her
toothpick by the breadth of a line, suggested to
her husband that he would do well to look round
the shop among the customers, for any new
customer who had dropped in while he stepped over
the way.

The wine-shop keeper accordingly rolled his
eyes about, until they rested upon an elderly
gentleman and a young lady, who were seated in
a corner. Other company were there: two playing
cards, two playing dominoes, three standing by
the counter lengthening out a short supply of
wine. As he passed behind the counter, he took
notice that the elderly gentleman said in a look
to the young lady, "This is our man."

"What the devil do you do in that galley
there!" said Monsieur Defarge to himself; "I
don't know you."

But, he feigned not to notice the two strangers,
and fell into discourse with the triumvirate of
customers who were drinking at the counter.

"How goes it, Jacques?" said one of these
three to Monsieur Defarge. "Is all the spilt
wine swallowed?"

"Every drop, Jacques," answered Monsieur

When this interchange of Christian name was
effected, Madame Defarge, picking her teeth with
her toothpick, coughed another grain of cough,
and raised her eyebrows by the breadth of another

"It is not often," said the second of the three,
addressing Monsieur Defarge, "that many of these
miserable beasts know the taste of wine, or of
anything but black bread and death. Is it not
so, Jacques?"

"It is so, Jacques," Monsieur Defarge

At this second interchange of the Christian
name, Madame Defarge, still using her
toothpick with profound composure, coughed
another grain of cough, and raised her eyebrows
by the breadth of another line.

The last of the three now said his say, as he
put down his empty drinking vessel and smacked
his lips.

"Ah! So much the worse! A bitter taste
it is that such poor cattle always have in their
mouths, and hard lives they live, Jacques. Am I
right, Jacques?"

"You are right, Jacques," was the response
of Monsieur Defarge.

This third interchange of the Christian name
was completed at the moment when Madame
Defarge put her toothpick by, kept her eyebrows
up, and slightly rustled in her seat.

"Hold then! True!" muttered her husband.
"Gentlemenmy wife!"

The three customers pulled off their hats to
Madame Defarge, with three flourishes. She
acknowledged their homage by bending her head,
and giving them a quick look. Then she
glanced in a casual manner round the wine-shop,
took up her knitting with great apparent calmness
and repose of spirit, and became absorbed
in it.

"Gentlemen," said her husband, who had kept
his bright eye observantly upon her, "good day.
The chamber, furnished bachelor-fashion, that
you wished to see, and were inquiring for when
I stepped out, is on the fifth floor. The doorway
of the staircase gives on the little courtyard
close to the left here," pointing with his
hand, "near to the window of my establishment.
But, now that I remember, one of you has already
been there, and can show the way. Gentlemen,

They paid for their wine, and left the place.
The eyes of Monsieur Defarge were studying his
wife at her knitting, when the elderly gentleman
advanced from his corner, and begged the favour
of a word.

"Willingly, sir," said Monsieur Defarge, and
quietly stepped with him to the door.

Their conference was very short, but very
decided. Almost at the first word, Monsieur
Defarge started and became deeply attentive. It
had not lasted a minute, when he nodded and
went out. The gentleman then beckoned to
the young lady, and they, too, went out.
Madame Defarge knitted with nimble fingers and
steady eyebrows, and saw nothing.

Mr. Jarvis Lorry and Miss Manette, emerging
from the wine-shop thus, joined Monsieur
Defarge in the doorway to which he had directed
his other company just before. It opened from
a stinking little black court-yard, and was the
general public entrance to a great pile of houses,
inhabited by a great number of people. In the
gloomy tile-paved entry to the gloomy tile-
paved staircase, Monsieur Defarge bent down on
one knee to the child of his old master, and put
her hand to his lips. It was a gentle action,
but not at all gently done; a very remarkable
transformation had come over him in a few
seconds. He had no good-humour in his face,
nor any openness of aspect left, but had become
a secret, angry, dangerous man.

"It is very high; it is a little difficult.
Better to begin slowly." Thus, Monsieur
Defarge, in a stern voice, to Mr. Lorry, as they
began ascending the stairs.

"Is he alone?" the latter whispered.

"Alone! God help him who should be with
him!" said the other, in the same low voice.

"Is he always alone, then?"


"Of his own desire?"

"Of his own necessity. As he was, when I
first saw him after they found me and
demanded to know if I would take him, and, at