The bronze war monument visible from the hotel room that the American wife shares with her husband George symbolizes the violence and destruction of the First World War (1914-1918). Given that the story is set shortly after the War, Hemingway uses the monument to draw the reader’s attention to that recent history of bloodshed and destruction. The narrator’s comment that Italian sightseers come from afar to look at it further reinforces the significance of the monument as a token of that recent devastation—to the Italians, it is a reminder of the loss and sacrifice that resulted from the conflict.
The War Monument Quotes in Cat in the Rain
Italians came from a long way off to look up at the war monument. It was made of bronze and glistened in the rain. It was raining. The rain dripped from the palm trees. Water stood in pools on the gravel paths…The motor cars were gone from the square by the war monument.