Chronicle of a Death Foretold

The Narrator Character Analysis

The Narrator is a good friend of Santiago Nasar, and also a local. Though he didn’t directly witness Santiago’s murder at the hands of Pedro and Pablo Vicario, he remains haunted by the crime for many years. Chronicle of a Death Foretold finds the Narrator returning to the town decades after the fateful morning of the murder, trying to make sense of all that transpired—in particular, how the townspeople, almost all of whom knew about the Vicario twins’ intentions, failed to prevent the crime. At the time of the murder the narrator is in love with María Alejendrina Cervantes, but eventually ends up marrying Mercedes Barcha. Beyond this the narrator reveals almost nothing about his own life.

The Narrator Quotes in Chronicle of a Death Foretold

The Chronicle of a Death Foretold quotes below are all either spoken by The Narrator or refer to The Narrator. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage Books edition of Chronicle of a Death Foretold published in 0.
Chapter 1 Quotes

She had watched him from the same hammock and in the same position in which I found her prostrated by the last lights of old age when I returned to this forgotten village, trying to put the broken mirror of memory back together from so many scattered shards. She could barely make out shapes in full light and had some medicinal leaves on her temples for the eternal headache that her son had left her the last time he went through the bedroom. She was on her side, clutching the cords at the head of the hammock as she tried to get up, and there in the half shadows was the baptistry smell that had startled me on the morning of the crime.
No sooner had I appeared on the threshold than she confused me with the memory of Santiago Nasar.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Santiago Nasar, Plácida Linero
Page Number: 7
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Unlock explanations and citation info for this and every other Chronicle of a Death Foretold quote.

Plus so much more...

Get LitCharts A+
Already a LitCharts A+ member? Sign in!

But she couldn't avoid a wave of fright as she remembered Santiago Nasar's horror when she pulled out the insides of a rabbit by the roots and threw the steaming guts to the dogs.
“Don't be a savage,” he told her. “Make believe it was a human being.”
Victoria Guzmán needed almost twenty years to understand that a man accustomed to killing defenseless animals could suddenly express such horror.

Related Characters: Santiago Nasar (speaker), The Narrator (speaker), Victoria Guzmán
Page Number: 10
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

No one could understand such fatal coincidences. The investigating judge who came from Riohacha must have sensed them without daring to admit it, for his impulse to give them a rational explanation was obvious in his report. The door to the square was cited several times with a dime-novel title: “The Fatal Door.”

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), The Visiting Magistrate
Page Number: 12
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui offi

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

What happened, according to her, was that the boat whistle let off a shower of compressed steam as it passed by the docks, and it soaked those who were closest to the edge. It was a fleeting illusion: the bishop began to make the sign of the cross in the air opposite the crowd on the pier, and he kept on doing it mechanically afterwards, without malice or inspiration, until the boat was lost from view and all that remained was the uproar of the roosters.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Margot
Related Symbols: The Bishop, Birds
Page Number: 17
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat no

Chapter 2 Quotes

I met him a short while after she did, when I came home for Christmas vacation, and I found him just as strange as they had said. He seemed attractive, certainly, but far from Magdalena Oliver's idyllic vision. He seemed more serious to me than his antics would have led one to believe, and with a hidden tension that was barely concealed by his excessive good manners.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Bayardo San Román
Page Number: 28
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

The parents' decisive argument was that a family dignified by modest means had no right to disdain that prize of destiny. Angela Vicario only dared hint at the inconvenience of a lack of love, but her mother demolished it with a single phrase:
“Love can be learned too.”

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Purísima del Carmen Vicario (Pura Vicario) (speaker), Angela Vicario
Page Number: 34
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

They insisted that even the most difficult of husbands resigned themselves to anything as long as nobody knew about it. They convinced her, finally, that most men came to their wedding night so frightened that they were incapable of doing anything without the woman's help, and at the moment of truth they couldn't answer for their own acts. “The only thing they believe is what they see on the sheet,” they told her. And they taught her old wives’ tricks to feign her lost possession, so that on her first morning as a newlywed she could display open under the sun in the courtyard of her house the linen sheet with the stain of honor.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Angela Vicario, Bayardo San Román
Page Number: 38
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

She only took the time necessary to say the name. She looked for it in the shadows, she found it at first sight among the many, many easily confused names from this world and the other, and she nailed it to the wall with her well-aimed dart, like a butterfly with no will whose sentence has always been written.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Santiago Nasar, Angela Vicario
Page Number: 47
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Chapter 3 Quotes

So he put the knife in his hand and dragged him off almost by force in search of their sister’s lost honor.
“There's no way out of this,” he told him. “It's as if it had already happened.”

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Pablo Vicario
Page Number: 61
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate

Santiago Nasar had an almost magical talent for disguises, and his favorite sport was to confuse the identities of the mulatto girls. He would rifle the wardrobe of some to disguise the others, so that they all ended up feeling different from themselves and like the ones they weren't. On a certain occasion, one of them found herself repeated in another with such exactness that she had an attack of tears. “I felt like I'd stepped out of the mirror,” she said.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Santiago Nasar
Page Number: 65
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

“The truth is I didn't know what to do,” he told me. “My first thought was that it wasn't any business of mine but something for the civil authorities, but then I made up my mind to say something in passing to Plácida Linero.” Yet when he crossed the square, he’d forgotten completely. “You have to understand,” he told me, “that the bishop was coming on that unfortunate day.” At the moment of the crime he felt such despair and was so disgusted with himself that the only thing he could think of was to ring the fire alarm.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Father Carmen Amador (speaker), Plácida Linero
Related Symbols: The Bishop
Page Number: 65
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Chapter 4 Quotes

They gave us back a completely different body. Half of the cranium had been destroyed by the trepanation, and the lady-killer face that death had preserved ended up having lost its identity. Furthermore, the priest had pulled out the sliced-up intestines by the roots, but in the end he didn't know what to do with them, and he gave them an angry blessing and threw them into the garbage pail.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Santiago Nasar, Father Carmen Amador
Page Number: 76
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

For the immense majority of people there was only one victim: Bayardo San Román. They took it for granted that the other actors in the tragedy had been fulfilling with dignity, and even with a certain grandeur, their part of the destiny that life had assigned them.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Bayardo San Román
Page Number: 83
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

She became lucid, overbearing, mistress of her own free will, and she became a virgin again just for him, and she recognized no other authority than her own nor any other service than that of her obsession.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Angela Vicario
Page Number: 93
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Chapter 5 Quotes

For years we couldn't talk about anything else. Our daily conduct, dominated then by so many linear habits, had suddenly begun to spin around a single common anxiety. The cocks of dawn would catch us trying to give order to the chain of many chance events that had made absurdity possible, and it was obvious that we weren't doing it from an urge to clear up mysteries but because none of us could go on living without an exact knowledge of the place and the mission assigned to us by fate.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker)
Page Number: 96
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

He was so perplexed by the enigma that fate had touched him with, that he kept falling into lyrical distractions that ran contrary to the rigor of his profession. Most of all, he never thought it legitimate that life should make use of so many coincidences forbidden literature, so that there should be the untrammeled fulfillment of a death so clearly foretold.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), The Visiting Magistrate
Page Number: 99
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

They were sitting down to breakfast when they saw Santiago Nasar enter, soaked in blood and carrying the roots of his entrails in his hands. Poncho Lanao told me: “What I'll never forget was the terrible smell of shit.” But Argénida Lanao, the oldest daughter, said that Santiago Nasar walked with his usual good bearing, measuring his steps well, and that his Saracen face with its dashing ringlets was handsomer than ever. As he passed by the table he smiled at them and continued through the bedrooms to the rear door of the house.

Related Characters: The Narrator (speaker), Poncho Lanao (speaker), Santiago Nasar, Argénida Lanao
Page Number: 120
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Get the entire Death Foretold LitChart as a printable PDF.
Chronicle of a death foretold.pdf.medium

The Narrator Character Timeline in Chronicle of a Death Foretold

The timeline below shows where the character The Narrator appears in Chronicle of a Death Foretold. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
...bird shit.” His mother, Plácida Linero, a skilled interpreter of dreams, later recalls to the Narrator that she saw nothing ominous about the dream. The Narrator adds that the people who... (full context)
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
In recounting Santiago’s final encounter with Plácida Linero, the Narrator tells of his own encounter with her, decades after Santiago’s murder, when he decides to... (full context)
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
The Narrator returns to the day of Santiago’s death. In the kitchen, Victoria Guzmán, the cook, and... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
...his breakfast, walks to the front door of the house, accompanied by Divina Flor. The Narrator describes the house: it is a huge, converted warehouse, originally bought by Santiago’s father, Ibrahim... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
As it turns out, the Narrator explains, both Victoria Guzmán and Divina Flor know that Santiago Nasar is about to die—earlier,... (full context)
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
...to the loads of wood and helped pick out the best roosters. However, Margot, the Narrator’s sister, recalls finding Santiago in a good mood when she ran into him at the... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
The Narrator admits it strange that Margot didn’t knowSantiago was in danger, as so many townspeople knew... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Back home, Margot sees that the Narrator’s Mother has set an extra place at the breakfast table for Santiago Nasar. Margot, confused... (full context)
Chapter 2
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
The Narrator begins by recounting the arrival of Bayardo San Román, the man who marries Angela Vicario.... (full context)
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
The Narrator describes the Vicario family. They are poor and extremely conservative—the matriarch Purísima del Carmen “looks... (full context)
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
...with tears of rage, he agrees to sell the house. Dr. Dionisio Iguarán tells the Narrator that the episode was so upsetting for poor Xius that it eventually killed him. (full context)
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
...Bayardo’s family, accompanied by many people of note, arrive by boat, bearing lavish gifts. The Narrator, Santiago Nasar, and Cristo Bedoya attend together. Santiago Nasar obsessively tries to calculate the cost... (full context)
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Here things get hazy for the Narrator. He remembers only flashes: his sister the nun drunkenly dancing, Dr. Dionisio Iguarán escaping on... (full context)
Chapter 3
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
The Narrator begins the chapter by explaining that when Pablo and Pedro Vicario were eventually tried for... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
While Pedro and Pablo have never demonstrated any remorse for the murder, the Narrator explains that, in reconstructing the facts of the case, it has become clear to him... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
The Narrator now picks up where he left off at the last chapter. “There had never been... (full context)
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
As an aside, the Narrator explains that, in trying to reconstruct the events of that night, he ended up asking... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
...and they tell her that they’re going to kill Santiago Nasar. Clotilde later tells the Narrator that they looked like children. This worries her: children are capable of anything. More than... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
The Narrator explains that, back at their home, Pedro and Pablo Vicario had their first disagreement of... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
The Narrator explains that Santiago didn’t turn his light on when he eventually came home, at four... (full context)
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
...just before the beggar woman comes to warn Victoria Guzmán of the impending murder. The Narrator returns to María Alejandrina Cervantes’ bed. Luis Enrique goes to Clotilde Amarante’s store. There the... (full context)
Chapter 4
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
The Narrator jumps forward to the days following Santiago’s murder. Santiago’s body, which is ravaged and quickly... (full context)
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
The Narrator, grieving, finds solace in María Alejandrina Cervantes’ bed. He finds her feasting—this is her way... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
...mother show up, and they all make a huge show of grieving for Bayardo’s misfortune—the Narrator can’t help but think they’re covering up “greater shames.” They drag off Bayardo, who seems... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
The Narrator now focuses on recounting Angela Vicario’s life after the murder. Many years later, the Narrator... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
The Sacred and the Profane Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
Ritual Theme Icon
She goes on to tell the Narrator that, on her fateful wedding night, she couldn’t bring herself to try the tricks her... (full context)
Chapter 5
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
...school, and perhaps a bit too enamored of literature. In his brief—part of which the Narrator is able to dig up, many years later—he is prone to “lyrical distractions,” and admits... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
The Narrator admits that it is his personal impression that Santiago died without understanding his own death.... (full context)
Fate vs. Free Will Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
Cristo, thinking that Santiago has perhaps gone to the Narrator’s house for breakfast, runs along the river bank. He is waylaid by Próspera Arango: she... (full context)
Fact, Fiction, and Memory Theme Icon
Gender, Class, and Social Restrictions Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Community Theme Icon
The Narrator explains that, while Cristo was looking for him, Santiago had gone into his fiancée Flora... (full context)