The French Revolution was a movement from 1789 to 1799 that brought an end to the monarchy, including many lives. Although A Tale of Two Cities was published in 1859, it was set before and during the French Revolution and had over 200 million copies sold. The author, Charles Dickens, is known for being an excellent writer and displays several themes in his writings. Sacrifice is an offering of an animal or human life or material possession to another person. Dickens develops the theme of sacrifice throughout the story by the events that occurred involving Dr. Manette, Mr. Defarge, and Sydney Carton.
Sacrificing yourself for another person shows how courageous and good-hearted a person must be, and Dr. Manette did just that when he risked his life for Charles Darnay by attempting to get him out of jail. Mr. Lorry explained to Dr. Manette, “They are murdering the prisoners. If you are sure of what you say; if you really have the power you think you have- as I believe you have- make yourself known to these devils, and get taken to La Force.” (Dickens 203). Dr. Manette has power within the people of France because they see him as a hero since he was imprisoned for 18 years and they would respect him for that, and because he’s a well-known doctor, they would listen to what he has to say. He would want to make himself known to the “devils” to validate a point and to show that he’s not afraid of them. They devils he is speaking of refer to the aristocrats. Mr. Lorry was explaining to him that they need his help and his exceptional communication skills to help save the prisoners no matter the consequences. This is an example of sacrifice because by Dr. Manette standing up to the aristocrats, he is putting his life on the line and could al…
…bles the Manette and Darnay family’s happiness, but he also enables his spiritual rebirth, and although he’s getting killed, he had never felt so peaceful and fulfilled in his life.
The theme of sacrifice is portrayed in A Tale of Two Cities in several ways through the actions of Dr. Manette, Mr. Defarge, and Sydney Carton, but all acts of sacrifice display audacity and show how much love and compassion there must be for that person. Giving up something or risking your life for another person or name is one of the hardest and bravest acts a person can do. Dr. Manette, Mr. Defarge, and Sydney Carton’s actions showed just how much they love Lucie Manette and their acts of sacrifice showed how they would do anything to please her. Sacrificing yourself or your name for someone not only lets you achieve inner happiness, but shows how courageous a person must be to do so.