A character sketch of Tellson's Bank in A Tale of Two Cities

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Alice Tapsikova

A Character sketch of Tellson's Bank

In A Tale of Two Cities Dickens describes Tellson's Bank using the

humor and satire. The Tellson's Bank, a type, which actually existed

in 1780, is described by Dickens as "an old fashioned, boastful, small, dark

and ugly place with musty odour"(p.51). His derogation with this bank is

obvious through the whole description even when he relates staff as "the

oldest men carried on bussines gravely" and when he directly says that

young men taken to the tellson's bank were "kept unseen like a cheese

until they had the full Tellson's flavour and blue-mould upon them"(p.53),

he clearly shows his negative opinion toward this convective institution.

His disagreement with circumstances in the bank is reinforced by

strong Satire, which makes the Bank with the staff appear ridiculous in

order to show how foolish, wicked and incompetent they are. He uses

ironical even the satirical accounts as for example " Tellson's wanted no

elbow room, Tellson's wanted no light, Tellson's wanted no embellishment.

Noakes and Co's might, or Snook Brother's might; but Tellson's, thank

Heaven." (p.51) or when he says " Thus it had come to pass, that Tellson's

was the triumphant perfection of inconvenience." (p.51) to support his

critical ideas against the ignorance of a progress.

Using satire Dicken's relieved otherwise hard and very serious

story by propagation of new 'revolutionary' thinking. He actually calls

people to the acceptation of progress by humor and sarcastic criticism of

convective principles of synchronic society.