Watership Down

by

Richard Adams

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Enemies of rabbits, or things which pose a danger to rabbits.

Elil Quotes in Watership Down

The Watership Down quotes below are all either spoken by Elil or refer to Elil. 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:
The Epic Journey  Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Scribner edition of Watership Down published in 1972.
Chapter 17 Quotes

“One day the farmer thought, ‘I could increase those rabbits: make them part of my farm—their meat, their skins. […] He began to shoot all elil—lendri, homba, stoat, owl. He put out food for the rabbits, but not too near the warren. For his purpose they had to become accustomed to going about in the fields and the wood. And then he snared them—not too many: as many as he wanted and not as many as would frighten them all away or destroy the warren. They grew big and strong and healthy, for he saw to it that they had all of the best, particularly in winter, and nothing to fear—except the running knot in the hedge gap and the wood path. So they lived as he wanted them to live and all the time there were a few who disappeared. The rabbits became strange in many ways, different from other rabbits. They knew well enough what was happening. But even to themselves they pretended that all was well, for the food was good, they were protected, they had nothing to fear but the one fear; and that struck here and there, never enough at a time to drive them away.”

Related Characters: Fiver (speaker), Cowslip, Strawberry
Page Number: 115-116
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Watership Down LitChart as a printable PDF.
Watership Down PDF

Elil Term Timeline in Watership Down

The timeline below shows where the term Elil appears in Watership Down. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 12: The Stranger in the Field
The Epic Journey  Theme Icon
...around the surrounding fields to get a better lay of the land and check for elil(full context)
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...reports that though there are signs of men traversing the area, there are no other elil—and, he reasons, the humans’ presence will keep predators at bay. The rabbits agree they’d rather... (full context)
Violence and Power Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...Hazel’s group the lay of the land so that they don’t act foolishly and attract elil. Fiver suggests they have nothing at all to do with Cowslip and instead leave this... (full context)
Chapter 13: Hospitality
Violence and Power Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...Chief—every rabbit is in charge of his own destiny. Hazel asks what they do about elil, but the other rabbit replies that elil rarely come around because a man who comes... (full context)
Chapter 14: “Like Trees in November”
The Epic Journey  Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...to look around, Cowslip tells him that there’s no need to worry about foes or elil. Hazel heads out to the field, where he learns that flayrah—which rabbits usually must steal... (full context)
Chapter 17: The Shining Wire
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...the warren and, because it is dark out, pause to try to sense any nearby elil. They hear the hoot of an owl, but Hazel wants to go out and look... (full context)
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Authoritarianism vs. Democracy Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...man who lives nearby—this explains why the rabbits are so well-fed, why there are no elil nearby, why the rabbits live in fear of Frith’s will, and why there are so... (full context)
Chapter 18: Watership Down
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Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...reach the top of Watership Down. They can see far in every direction—any man or elil which approaches their new home will be spotted in an instant. Dandelion is overjoyed, and... (full context)
Chapter 22: The Story of the Trial of El-ahrairah
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...by a jury of animals, and Prince Rainbow consented. Rainbow began assembling a jury of elil, knowing a jury of rabbits would acquit El-ahrairah. (full context)
Chapter 23: Kehaar
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...to leave, but Hazel urges it to stay and rest, warning it of the many elil surrounding the hill. Silver expresses doubts that their group will ever be able to make... (full context)
Chapter 25: The Raid
The Epic Journey  Theme Icon
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...brave that he’ll be “disappointed” if they don’t run into a cat or some other elil on their journey. They decide to set off around sunset so that they can get... (full context)
Chapter 27: “You Can’t Imagine It Unless You’ve Been There”
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Authoritarianism vs. Democracy Theme Icon
...to Efrafa, or be killed, for fear he will draw the attention of men or elil to the warren. (full context)
Chapter 32: Across the Iron Road
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The rest of the night’s journey is uneventful, and they group encounters no elil or Wide Patrol rabbits. As dawn begins to rise, they near the iron road. They... (full context)
Chapter 33: The Great River
The Epic Journey  Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...the banks together, though, and soon discern that there is no danger to the place—no elil are present and though it’s a strange environment indeed, “not all strange things are bad.”... (full context)
Chapter 34: General Woundwort
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...after killing the previous chief—Woundwort was, and is, terrifying in combat. He will fight any elil, even puppies, weasels, and stoats.  (full context)
Chapter 43: The Great Patrol
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Authoritarianism vs. Democracy Theme Icon
...journey to Watership Down and take back the does. Though their journey was beset by elil and other obstacles, Woundwort forced his troops onward, and they soon arrived at the foot... (full context)
Chapter 49: Hazel Comes Home
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Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...group. As they make their way back to their warren, they are set upon by elil, and lose many of their numbers, including Vervain, to foxes and stoats. (full context)
Chapter 50: And Last
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Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...down and come upon Bigwig—captain of Watership Down’s “free-and-easy Owsla”—teaching some young bucks about various elil. The young kits ask Bigwig to tell them tales of his grand adventures. Hazel, Holly,... (full context)