Old Man And The Sea Summary Essay examples

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The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway (1899 - 1961)

Type of Work:
Symbolic drama

North Coast of Cuba; early twentieth century

Principal Characters
Santiago, an old, weathered fisherman Manolin , a boy, Santiago's young fishing companion The Marlin, a gigantic fish

Story Overveiw

Eighty-four days had passed since Santiago, the old fisherman, had caught a fish, and he was forced to suffer not only the ridicule of younger fishermen, but near-starvation as well. Moreover, Santiago had lost his young companion, a boy named Manolin, whose father had ordered him to leave Santiago in order to work with more successful seamen. But the devoted child still loved Santiago, and each day brought food and bait
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At noon he felt a bite. Testing his line, he guessed that it must be a marlin nibbling at the tuna bait. "He must be huge," the old man thought, and waited anxiously for a strike. Suddenly, the fish took the bait entirely and began to swim furiously out to sea, dragging the boat behind him. The fish was so powerful that
Santiago was helpless to stop him; he could only brace himself against the weight placed on the taut line that cut across his shoulders and hold on until the fish exhausted its strength. Darkness fell, and still the fish swam steadily out to sea. The seaman spent a grueling night with the line looped painfully round his back. Though he was weak, old and all alone, Santiago knew many tricks, and possessed skills the young men yet lacked. Besides, he loved the sea with a passion and had faith that she would handle him with reverent, though bitter, kindness. Once, when the fish gave a sudden tug, the line slashed Santiago's cheek. "Fish," the old man vowed softly, "I'll stay with you until I am dead."

Then he began to pity the great fish that he had hooked. He is wonderful and strange and u)ho knows how old he is, he thought ... Perhaps he is too wise to jump. He could ruin me by jumping or by a wild rush. But perhaps he has been hooked many times before and he knows that this is how he

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