One Hundred Years of Solitude

by

Gabriel García Márquez

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A gypsy who comes through Macondo to introduce different scientific and magical objects. He dies and comes back to life many times throughout the novel, providing guidance to each generation of Buendías. His manuscript, though not deciphered until the end of the book, prophecies the entire future of the Buendía family.

Melquíades Quotes in One Hundred Years of Solitude

The One Hundred Years of Solitude quotes below are all either spoken by Melquíades or refer to Melquíades. 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:
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the HarperCollins edition of One Hundred Years of Solitude published in 1970.
Chapter 3  Quotes

In the meantime, Melquíades had printed on his plates everything that was printable in Macondo, and he left the daguerreotype laboratory to the fantasies of José Arcadio Buendía, who had resolved to use it to obtain scientific proof of the existence of God. Through a complicated process of superimposed exposures taken in different parts of the house, he was sure that sooner or later he would get a daguerreotype of God, if He existed, or put an end once and for all to the supposition of His existence.

Related Characters: José Arcadio Buendía, Melquíades
Page Number: 53
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 20 Quotes

And then he saw the child. It was a dry and bloated bag of skin that all the ants in the world were dragging toward their holes along the stone path in the garden. Aureliano could not move. Not because he was paralyzed by horror but because at that prodigious instant Melquíades’ final keys were revealed to him and he saw the epigraph of the parchments perfectly placed in the order of man’s time and space: The first of the line is tied to a tree and the last is being eaten by the ants.

Related Characters: Melquíades, Aureliano
Page Number: 415
Explanation and Analysis:
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One Hundred Years of Solitude PDF

Melquíades Character Timeline in One Hundred Years of Solitude

The timeline below shows where the character Melquíades appears in One Hundred Years of Solitude. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1 
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...Only a band of gypsies visits every year to display their inventions. A gypsy named Melquíades displays an incredibly strong magnet. José Arcadio Buendía trades livestock for two of the magnets,... (full context)
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
Melquíades, when he learns of José Arcadio Buendía’s failed experiments, refunds his gold and also gives... (full context)
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...only able to melt them down, fusing them to other metals. When the gypsies return, Melquíades again looks youthful and healthy, but it’s only his false teeth that are giving this... (full context)
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...machine that makes people forget bad memories and treatment that causes time to be lost. Melquíades is revealed to have died. José Arcadio Buendía takes the children into a large tent... (full context)
Chapter 3 
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...Buendía a drink that revives his memory and José Arcadio Buendía realizes the man is Melquíades, back from the dead because he could not bear the solitude. (full context)
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Propriety, Sexuality, and Incest Theme Icon
Melquíades has brought with him the technology to produce daguerreotypes. He takes a photo of José... (full context)
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Propriety, Sexuality, and Incest Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...to use the daguerreotype laboratory to take a picture of God to prove He exists. Melquíades believes he sees the future of Macondo in his interpretation of Nostradamus, but José Arcadio... (full context)
Chapter 4 
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Propriety, Sexuality, and Incest Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
Melquíades dies again after suffering from a rapid process of aging that left him in a... (full context)
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Propriety, Sexuality, and Incest Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...encased the bones in a wall. They dig them out and bury them next to Melquíades. Pilar Ternera begins to visit the house again and tells Aureliano that he will be... (full context)
Chapter 10 
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
Aureliano Segundo shuts himself up on Melquíades’ laboratory, reading a book of the fantastic stories he told, and Úrsula confirms that they... (full context)
Chapter 13 
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Propriety, Sexuality, and Incest Theme Icon
...leave, the house is left in tatters. Fernanda stores the excess of chamber pots in Melquíades’ old room. (full context)
Chapter 15 
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...the Buendía house, having been trapped there by the rain. He visits his brother in Melquíades’s old room, but also distrusts José Arcadio Segundo’s version of events. A proclamation had claimed... (full context)
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...to the Buendía house to search for him, but when they open the padlock on Melquíades’s old room, it is so perfectly in its ancient order that they fail to thoroughly... (full context)
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
...Sofia de la Piedad remembers that he remains inside. He peruses the inscrutable manuscripts of Melquíades. Six months later, as the rain continues, Aureliano Segundo unlocks the door, looking for someone... (full context)
Chapter 17
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...is wrong with her body. When she finds José Arcadio Segundo still locked up with Melquíades’ parchments, she insults him for living like a pig and he repeats one of her... (full context)
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
...to read and write, and shows him what he’s figured out in the parchments of Melquíades. (full context)
Chapter 18
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
Aureliano doesn’t leave Melquíades’s laboratory for a long time. Santa Sofia de la Piedad sees to his care and... (full context)
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...they are doing so well. Aureliano has worked for three years translating the Sanskrit of Melquíades’ prophecy. Fernanda continues to dress up in the moth-eaten Queen of Madagascar dress  from time... (full context)
Chapter 20
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Propriety, Sexuality, and Incest Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...the garden, being eaten by the aunts. In his mind, he remembers the epigraph from Melquíades’ parchments: “The first of the line is tied to a tree and the last is... (full context)
The Circularity of Time Theme Icon
Solitude Theme Icon
Progress and Civilization Theme Icon
Propriety, Sexuality, and Incest Theme Icon
Magic vs. Reality Theme Icon
...read it clearly; it is the history of Buendía family written 100 years in advance. Melquíades had written it all as though it had happened in a single instant instead of... (full context)