Explain what it means.
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The marlin is a majestic fish. Santiago not only considers the fish a worthy opponent, he considers it his brother, "Never have I seen a greater, or more beautiful, or a calmer or nobler thing than you, brother..." One of the larger themes in this story is Santiago's connection with nature. The marlin, in particular, represents Santiago's former self when he too was strong, noble and majestic. Santiago apologises for killing the fish and at one time considers sacrificing himself to the marlin. In the end Santiago does slay the fish but really only because he loves it enough to fight so hard. The slave work isSantiago's penance of love binding the fish's dead body to the little skiff.