While doing some errands yesterday, I tuned into the local NPR station. I found myself in the midst of a discussion of Charles Dickens’ “A Tale of Two Cities.”
One of the discussion participants read the paragraph which begins, “It was the best of times.” As I listened to the list of items contrasted to each other, I was reminded of a Biblical passage from Ecclesiastes 3 where the writer lists a bunch of things like “a time for birth and a time for death.” I don’t know if Dickens deliberately patterned his paragraph on this passage. No one on the discussion panel mentioned it.
As I continued to listen, a caller asked about the knitting which takes place. That led to a brief discussion of Madame Defarge putting the names of the victims into her knitting. At that point, my mind went veering off.
How did she knit the names … did she use purl stitches on a stockinette background? Did she use intarsia for the names? Did she knit them in stranded knitting?
I don’t suppose we’ll ever know. Which method she used would depend on how obvious she wanted the names to be, how could she make them stand out so they could be easily read, and how much and what kind of yarn she had.
Another issue would be how she could knit them without a pattern. For any of the methods I’ve imagined, I’d need a chart. I doubt she had one.
If you were going to knit names into something, how would you do it?