IMPORTANCE OF SANTIAGO’S DREAMS OF LIONS (The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway)


Q. What dreams does the old man dream when he is in sleep? OR What is the significance of the old man’s dream? ORWhat do the dreams of lions indicate? Discuss the symbolic significance of dreams of lions.

Answer: In the novel, dreams of the old man have been given great significance. There are three references to the dreams about lions. First reference has been made in the night before he departed on his crowning adventure. He fell asleep and dreamed of Africa and the lions on the beach.

Secondly, during his struggle he slept on the boat for a while and dreamed of lions.

Thirdly, after losing the battle, he fell asleep and again dreamed of the lions. The novel ends with Santiago again dreaming: “In his shack, the old man was dreaming about the lions.”

One thing is very obvious here. We can easily note that these dreams came to him when he was in trouble. These lions were a source of energy and strength for him. With the help of these dreams, Santiago was better able to give himself confidence for the great trial he was engaged in.                                                            (Words: 152)