Support the Monkey! Tell All your Friends and Teachers
HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE
THE QUIET LODGINGS of Doctor Manette were in a quiet street-
corner not far from Soho-square. On the afternoon of a certain fine
Sunday when the waves of four months had rolled over the trial
for treason, and carried it, as to the public interest and memory, far
out to sea, Mr. Jarvis Lorry walked along the sunny streets from
Clerkenwell where he lived, on his way to dine with the Doctor.
After several relapses into business-absorption, Mr. Lorry had
become the Doctor’s friend, and the quiet street-corner was the
sunny part of his life.
On this certain fine Sunday, Mr. Lorry walked towards Soho, early
in the afternoon, for three reasons of habit. Firstly, because, on fine
Sundays, he often walked out, before dinner, with the Doctor and
Lucie; secondly, because, on unfavourable Sundays, he was
accustomed to be with them as the family friend, talking, reading,
looking out of window, and generally getting through the day;
thirdly, because be happened to have his own little shrewd doubts
to solve, and knew how the ways of the Doctor’s household
pointed to that time as a likely time for solving them.
A quainter corner than the corner where the Doctor lived, was not
to be found in London. There was no way through it, and the front
windows of the Doctor’s lodgings commanded a pleasant little
vista of street that had a congenial air of re-tirement on it. There
were few buildings then, north of the Oxford-road, and forest-trees
flourished, and wild flowers grew, and the hawthorn blossomed,
in the now vanished fields. As a consequence, country airs
circulated in Soho with vigorous freedom, instead of languishing
into the parish like stray paupers without a settlement; and there
was many a good south wall, not far off, on which the peaches
ripened in their season.
The summer light struck into the corner brilliantly in the earlier
part of the day; but, when the streets grew hot, the corner was in
shadow, though not in shadow so remote but that you could see
beyond it into a glare of brightness. It was a cool spot, staid but
cheerful, a wonderful place for echoes, and a very harbour from
the raging streets.
There ought to have been a tranquil bark in such an anchorage, and
The Doctor occupied two floors of a large still house, where several
callings purported to be pursued by day, but whereof little was
audible any day, and which was shunned by all of them at night.