The Great Gatsby

by

F. Scott Fitzgerald

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Gatsby's Mansion Symbol Analysis

Gatsby's Mansion Symbol Icon
Gatsby's mansion symbolizes two broader themes of the novel. First, it represents the grandness and emptiness of the 1920s boom: Gatsby justifies living in it all alone by filling the house weekly with "celebrated people." Second, the house is the physical symbol of Gatsby's love for Daisy. Gatsby used his "new money" to create a place that he thought rivaled the houses of the "old money" that had taken her away.

Gatsby's Mansion Quotes in The Great Gatsby

The The Great Gatsby quotes below all refer to the symbol of Gatsby's Mansion. 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 Roaring Twenties Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Scribner edition of The Great Gatsby published in 2004.
Chapter 3 Quotes
On buffet tables, garnished with glistening hors d’oeuvre, spiced baked hams crowded against salads of harlequin designs and pastry pigs and turkeys bewitched to a dark gold. In the main hall a bar with a real brass rail was set up, and stocked with gins and liquors and with cordials so long forgotten that most of his female guests were too young to know one from another.
Related Characters: Nick Carraway (speaker), Jay Gatsby
Related Symbols: Gatsby's Mansion
Page Number: 40
Explanation and Analysis:
On a chance we tried an important-looking door, and walked into a high Gothic library, panelled with carved English oak, and probably transported complete from some ruin overseas. A stout, middle-aged man with enormous owl-eyed spectacles was sitting somewhat drunk on the edge of a great table, staring with unsteady concentration at the shelves of books. As we entered he wheeled excitedly around […].

“[…] They’re real.”

“The books?”

He nodded.

“Absolutely real—have pages and everything. I thought they’d be a nice durable cardboard. Matter of fact, they’re absolutely real. Pages and—Here! Lemme show you.”

[…]

“See!” he cried triumphantly. “It’s a bona fide piece of printed matter. It fooled me. This fella’s a regular Belasco. It’s a triumph. What thoroughness! What realism!”
Related Characters: Nick Carraway (speaker), Owl Eyes (speaker), Jay Gatsby, Jordan Baker
Related Symbols: Gatsby's Mansion
Page Number: 45-46
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 4 Quotes
“Why didn’t he ask you to arrange a meeting?”

“He wants her to see his house,” she explained. “And your house is right next door.”

“Oh!”
Related Characters: Nick Carraway (speaker), Jordan Baker (speaker), Jay Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan
Related Symbols: Gatsby's Mansion
Page Number: 79
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 5 Quotes
"It makes me sad because I've never seen such — such beautiful shirts before."
Related Characters: Daisy Buchanan (speaker), Jay Gatsby
Related Symbols: Gatsby's Mansion
Page Number: 92
Explanation and Analysis:
“That huge place THERE?” she cried pointing.

“Do you like it?”

“I love it, but I don’t see how you live there all alone.”

“I keep it always full of interesting people, night and day. People who do interesting things. Celebrated people.”
Related Characters: Jay Gatsby (speaker), Daisy Buchanan (speaker), Nick Carraway
Related Symbols: Gatsby's Mansion
Page Number: 90
Explanation and Analysis:
We went upstairs, through period bedrooms swathed in rose and lavender silk and vivid with new flowers, through dressing rooms and poolrooms, and bathrooms with sunken baths—intruding into one chamber where a dishevelled man in pajamas was doing liver exercises on the floor.
Related Characters: Nick Carraway (speaker), Jay Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan, Ewing Klipspringer
Related Symbols: Gatsby's Mansion
Page Number: 91
Explanation and Analysis:
He hadn’t once ceased looking at Daisy and I think he revalued everything in his house according to the measure of response it drew from her well-loved eyes. Sometimes, too, he stared around at his possessions in a dazed way as though in her actual and astounding presence none of it was any longer real. Once he nearly toppled down a flight of stairs.
Related Characters: Nick Carraway (speaker), Jay Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan
Related Symbols: Gatsby's Mansion
Page Number: 91
Explanation and Analysis:
“If it wasn’t for the mist we could see your home across the bay,” said Gatsby. “You always have a green light that burns all night at the end of your dock.”

Daisy put her arm through his abruptly but he seemed absorbed in what he had just said. Possibly it had occurred to him that the colossal significance of that light had now vanished forever. Compared to the great distance that had separated him from Daisy it had seemed very near to her, almost touching her. It had seemed as close as a star to the moon. Now it was again a green light on a dock. His count of enchanted objects had diminished by one.
Related Characters: Jay Gatsby (speaker), Nick Carraway (speaker), Daisy Buchanan
Page Number: 93
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 6 Quotes
"I wouldn't ask too much of her," I ventured. "You can't repeat the past."
"Can't repeat the past?" he cried incredulously. "Why of course you can!"
He looked around him wildly, as if the past were lurking here in the shadow of his house, just out of reach of his hand.
Related Characters: Jay Gatsby (speaker), Nick Carraway (speaker), Daisy Buchanan
Related Symbols: Gatsby's Mansion
Page Number: 110
Explanation and Analysis:
“I wonder where in the devil he met Daisy. By God, I may be old-fashioned in my ideas, but women run around too much these days to suit me. They meet all kinds of crazy fish.”

[…]

Tom was evidently perturbed at Daisy’s running around alone, for on the following Saturday night he came with her to Gatsby’s party. Perhaps his presence gave the evening its peculiar quality of oppressiveness—it stands out in my memory from Gatsby’s other parties that summer. There were the same people, or at least the same sort of people, the same profusion of champagne, the same many-colored, many-keyed commotion, but I felt an unpleasantness in the air, a pervading harshness that hadn’t been there before.
Related Characters: Nick Carraway (speaker), Tom Buchanan (speaker), Jay Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan
Related Symbols: Gatsby's Mansion
Page Number: 103
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 7 Quotes
It was when curiosity about Gatsby was at its highest that the lights in his house failed to go on one Saturday night—and, as obscurely as it had begun, his career as Trimalchio was over.
Related Characters: Nick Carraway (speaker), Jay Gatsby
Related Symbols: Gatsby's Mansion
Page Number: 113
Explanation and Analysis:
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Gatsby's Mansion Symbol Timeline in The Great Gatsby

The timeline below shows where the symbol Gatsby's Mansion appears in The Great Gatsby. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 3
The Roaring Twenties Theme Icon
The American Dream Theme Icon
Class (Old Money, New Money, No Money) Theme Icon
Every Saturday night, Gatsby throws incredibly luxurious parties at his mansion. Nick eventually receives an invitation. At the party, he feels out of place, and notes... (full context)
Chapter 4
The Roaring Twenties Theme Icon
The American Dream Theme Icon
Class (Old Money, New Money, No Money) Theme Icon
Past and Future Theme Icon
...Park. She says Gatsby never fell out of love with Daisy and bought his giant mansion in West Egg to be across the bay from her. He had hoped that the... (full context)
Chapter 5
The American Dream Theme Icon
Class (Old Money, New Money, No Money) Theme Icon
...he returns they are blissfully happy. Gatsby then takes them on a tour of his mansion. In Gatsby's bedroom, as he tells Daisy about staring at the green light on her... (full context)
Chapter 9
The Roaring Twenties Theme Icon
...Gatsby's relationship with Myrtle and Wilson swirl, and reporters and other gossips prowl around the mansion looking for stories. (full context)
The Roaring Twenties Theme Icon
The American Dream Theme Icon
Past and Future Theme Icon
...telegram arrives from his father, Henry C. Gatz. Mr. Gatz arrives in person at Gatsby's mansion a few days later. He appears old, dressed in cheap clothing, and is devastated by... (full context)