For whom does the bell toll

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for whom does the bell toll

For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway

Librarians note: An alternate cover edition can be found here

In 1937 Ernest Hemingway traveled to Spain to cover the civil war there for the North American Newspaper Alliance. Three years later he completed the greatest novel to emerge from the good fight, For Whom the Bell Tolls.

The story of Robert Jordan, a young American in the International Brigades attached to an antifascist guerilla unit in the mountains of Spain, it tells of loyalty and courage, love and defeat, and the tragic death of an ideal. In his portrayal of Jordans love for the beautiful Maria and his superb account of El Sordos last stand, in his brilliant travesty of La Pasionaria and his unwillingness to believe in blind faith, Hemingway surpasses his achievement in The Sun Also Rises and A Farewell to Arms to create a work at once rare and beautiful, strong and brutal, compassionate, moving and wise.

If the function of a writer is to reveal reality, Maxwell Perkins wrote to Hemingway after reading the manuscript, no one ever so completely performed it. Greater in power, broader in scope, and more intensely emotional than any of the authors previous works, it stands as one of the best war novels of all time.

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Published 15.03.2019

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For Whom the Bell Tolls Who does the Bell Toll for'

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What's the meaning of the phrase 'For whom the bell tolls'?

No man is an island , entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend's or of thine own were: any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bells tolls; it tolls for thee. Donne lived in Tudor and Stewart England, and at that time the tolling of church bells to mark various events was an important feature of daily life. The tolling referred to in the quotation is, of course, that of funeral bells. Donne's view, which has, oddly for a 17th century Christian, much in common with 21st century eastern religions, was that all people are socially and spiritually interconnected; for example, the contemporary Buddhist view is demonstrated by the reply given by the Dalai Lama, when asked during a visit to Northern Ireland how the warring Protestants and Catholics could co-exist: "Remember we are all one - all the same".

5 thoughts on “For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway

  1. For Whom the Bell Tolls is a novel by Ernest Hemingway published in It tells the story of . 'There are many who do not know they are fascists but will find it out when the time comes.'” In the same conversation Robert Jordan is having.

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