The Old Man and the Sea

What premonitions of Santiago's death are there

pertaining to the old man and the sea

Asked by
Last updated by erin m #244427
Answers 8
Add Yours

The first sentence of the book, marking the precise time (as in chronicles), is followed by a premonition of Santiago Nasar’s death: “He dreamed that he was going through a grove of timber trees where a gentle drizzle was falling, but when he awoke he felt completely spattered with bird ****”. Premonitions invoke an interpretation on the part of the reader and are of great importance in the novel, as we shall see. For now, let us discuss their meaning.

The fragment of Santiago Nasar’s dream cannot be interpreted by his mother, or by the reader, unless the other dreams are linked into a whole; that is, we must read all the dreams together in order to understand them. Just as Santiago’s mother cannot manage it since, being a careless reader, she misses part of the whole, the reader will not understand the entire novel unless he puts together one by one the fragments given him by the narrator. The premonitions are presented in this manner, like a metaphor of reading. The fragments of Santiago Nasar’s dream continue on pages 2 and 4, and when they are interpreted after the events of his death we see that they foretell the drama. His mother understands this too late, when she recalls the facts in an interview with the chronicler twenty-seven years later. It should be noted that the mother’s statements appear in quotation marks to increase their credibility. The woman describes to the journalist-narrator the dream Nasar had the week before his death. In spite of being a “great interpreter of other people’s dreams provided they were told while fasting,” she had not noticed any omen.24 Santiago’s mother is thus the first person “guilty” of his death: she does not interpret his dream correctly.


Okay I'm really sorry. I got this mixed up with the Alchemist. I'll get back to you in a few minutes with Old Man and the Sea.

Okay I think first we need to consider Santiago as a Christ Figure. The wounds on his hand and his immense love for this fish attest to that. Physically Santiago is weak. He also feels that, at times, his luck has run out. When Manolin sees the old man's condition, he runs out of the shack and cries. SAntiago also complains about his chest as he spits.

Santiago’s insists that he will sail out farther than ever before; this act foreshadows his destruction; the marlin is linked to Santiago, and the marlin’s death foreshadows Santiago’s own.

"I know how to care for them. In the night I spat something strange and felt something in my chest was broken." (5.44)

Does Santiago really die? In the book it says "the old man was sleeping again. He was still sleeping on his face and the boy was sitting by him watching him". Did I miss something???

No he's just sleeping and dreaming of youth and lions and such!

Ohhh! Ok just making sure! Thank you for clearing this up for me!