Salt to the Sea

Salt to the Sea


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A port city in the north of East Prussia (now modern day Poland) where much of the action of the second half of the novel takes place.

Gotenhafen Quotes in Salt to the Sea

The Salt to the Sea quotes below are all either spoken by Gotenhafen or refer to Gotenhafen. For each quote, you can also see the other terms and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Agency, Willpower, and Fate Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Penguin edition of Salt to the Sea published in 2016.
4. Alfred Quotes

Fear is a hunter.

But brave warriors, we brush away fear with a flick of the wrist. We laugh in the face of fear, kick it like a stone across the street. Yes, Hannelore, I compose these letters in my mind first, as I cannot abandon my men as often as I think of you.
You would be proud of your watchful companion, sailor Alfred Frick. Today I saved a young woman from falling into the sea. It was nothing really, but she was so grateful she clung to me, not wanting to let go.
“Thank you, sailor.” Her warm whisper lingered in my ear. She was quite pretty and smelled like fresh eggs, but there have been many grateful and pretty girls. Oh, do not be concerned. You and your red sweater are foremost in my thoughts. How fondly, how incessantly, I think of my Hannelore and red-sweater days.

I’m relived you are not here to see this. Your sugared heart could not bear the treacherous circumstances here in the port of Gotenhafen. At this very moment, I am guarding dangerous explosives. I am serving Germany well. Only seventeen, yet carrying more valor than those twice my years. There is talk of an honor ceremony but I’m too busy fighting for the Führer to accept honors. Honors are for the dead, I’ve told them. We must fight while we are alive!

Yes, Hannelore, I shall prove to all of Germany. There is indeed a hero inside of me.

Related Characters: Alfred Frick (speaker), Hannelore Jäger
Page Number: 7
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Salt to the Sea LitChart as a printable PDF.
Salt to the Sea PDF

Gotenhafen Term Timeline in Salt to the Sea

The timeline below shows where the term Gotenhafen appears in Salt to the Sea. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
10. Alfred
Storytelling and Fantasy  Theme Icon
Family and Community vs. Selfishness  Theme Icon
...forces as well as American and English troops have closed in on the city of Gotenhafen, and villagers from the whole region are traveling north to the sea to escape the... (full context)
60. Florian
Agency, Willpower, and Fate Theme Icon
...signed his papers and will be in Pillau. Florian says he is instead going to Gotenhafen, which is in the opposite direction. The soldier offers to take him in a boat. (full context)
62. Emilia
Memory and Survival  Theme Icon
...evacuate. Either way, they will have to walk for a long time to reach either Gotenhafen or Pillau. They wonder how best to transport their possessions, and decide to flag down... (full context)
63. Florian
Family and Community vs. Selfishness  Theme Icon running out. Although he’s managed to trick a few guards so far, he knows Gotenhafen will have higher security and more experienced soldiers. A soldier approaches and tells Florian his... (full context)
65. Joana
Family and Community vs. Selfishness  Theme Icon
Arriving in Gotenhafen is overwhelming. There is no organized lodging. There are lost animals in the streets, belongings... (full context)
85. Joana
Memory and Survival  Theme Icon
Family and Community vs. Selfishness  Theme Icon
The crowds in Gotenhafen have doubled over the course of the day. Joana’s stethoscope acts as a magnet for... (full context)