In this picture, we can address two symbols. The first one is the black box which represents oncoming death and doom. Whenever someone draws from the box, and they receive the black dot, they get stoned. The second symbol is Old Man Warner and he represents tradition. He doesn't want the lottery to stop continuing each year. He is also 77 years old and the number 7 symbolizes luck and he survived through all 77 lotteries so he is lucky.
Tone and theme
"The morning of June 27th was clear and sunny, with the fresh warmth of a full-summer day; the flowers were blossoming profusely and the grass was richly green." This shows an image of a peaceful, beautiful town when in reality it is the opposite. Instead of peaceful, they are brutal and savages. Yes, the town may be beautiful on the outside, but one you see what they are truly capable of, it turns ugly.
At the beginning it says, "Bobby Martain had already stuffed his pockets full of stones, and the other boys soon followed his example...." The children are preparing for what the lottery is about to bring: death. The kids having pockets full of stones foreshadows that something bad is about to happen. At the end we find out that the adults as well as with the kids stone the person who chose the black dot to death. Even the children aren't innocent in this story.
The tone of this story was dark and cynical. At the end of the story, it didn't even phase them that Tessie was begging and screaming for her life, and even her kids didn't seem to have any emotional attachment to her and joined in. This leads to the theme that long-lasting tradition could have serious impacts on a community. They couldn't let the tradition of drawing from the black box go because of how long they were doing it, even though people were dying in the process.