The Little Prince

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Baobab Trees Symbol Analysis

Baobab Trees Symbol Icon
Baobab trees are a dangerous menace in The Little Prince. They resemble rosebushes at first, but if they aren't carefully monitored, their roots may destroy a small planet like the little prince's. Symbolically, the trees may represent any sort of bad habit that isn't taken care of early—the tippler's drinking habit, for example, or the businessman's obsession with sums. They could also be interpreted as having some historical significance, with the menace of the trees representing a problem like anti-Semitism or a person like Hitler—whose danger didn't become obvious until it was too late, prompting the German invasion of France that caused Saint-Exupéry to flee to New York.
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Baobab Trees Symbol Timeline in The Little Prince

The timeline below shows where the symbol Baobab Trees appears in The Little Prince. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 5
The True and the Essential Theme Icon
Exploration vs. Narrowmindedness Theme Icon
The little prince asks whether sheep eat baobabs, and the pilot replies that even a whole herd of elephants could not eat a... (full context)
The True and the Essential Theme Icon
The pilot realizes that baobab trees pose a great danger on the little prince's tiny planet. Although they resemble rosebushes... (full context)
The True and the Essential Theme Icon
The pilot discusses his drawing of the baobab trees, which he displays in the book, explaining that they are the most magnificent drawings... (full context)
Chapter 9
Relationships Theme Icon
The True and the Essential Theme Icon
Exploration vs. Narrowmindedness Theme Icon
Innocence Theme Icon
...planet. Before he goes, he cleans the three volcanoes on his planet, pulls the last baobab shoots, and waters his rose. He feels sad, believing that he'll never return. As he's... (full context)