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    The Name of the Rose Essay Paper

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    Kristopher Rodriguez August 1, 2009 English 3 1. The Rules of St. Benedict are basically 73 rules monks used when they lived in an abbey under an abbot. In this particular novel, the Rule is referring to Cenobites, which are monks living in a monastery under an abbot. Some of the monks follow the Rule, but some of the other monks sometimes break the Rule. For example, in the Rule of St. Benedict, it says that monks are not to act violent towards other monks. Malachi the librarian broke this because the book says, “And Malachi has struck him with the armillary sphere because it was the only thing he found handy,” (Eco 470).

    He broke one of the rules, which was not a good thing. The cellarer also broke one of the rules as well, the book says, “That he didn’t want the cellarer, who was powerful, or me, young and handsome, to enjoy the love of the village girls anymore,” (Eco 308). What that quote is saying is that the cellarer slept with the women from the village and that is against what the monks believe in. The abbot of the abbey was basically the only one out of the three mentioned who followed the Rule. He was never going against the rule, all he wanted was for the abbey to maintain wealthy and safe.

    The monks justified them altering for a very obvious reason. They did not want people to think badly about them and they didn’t want to be humiliated by what they did. They altered the rules so that it would be better for them and they wouldn’t get in trouble with anyone. These flaws in the important people of the abbey basically led to the abbey’s destruction. These were the people that the monks looked up to and they were flawed in bad ways. The whole abbey burned to the ground because of a lot of ruckus these people caused the abbey. 2.

    When William and Adso come upon Nicholas, the master glazier, William and Nicholas engage in a conversation about job stereotypes and of William’s glasses. The metaphor, “knowing is seeing” is basically saying that when you know more of something, you see things more clearly and you are more aware of the things that surround you. The occupation of the master glazier in this abbey is to fix the windows of the buildings as they get damaged over time. Obviously, to become master glazier, you must know how to work with glass pretty well. Nicholas believes that when you are a glazier, all you should be doing is fixing windows or making new ones.

    William then says, “It is not written that master glaziers must go on making windows,” (Eco 86). To us, a mirror is something we use daily to look at our personal appearances. In the novel, the mirror is used in a different way. As Adso is exploring the library, he comes upon a “ghost” and screams out that it’s a devil. William laughs and says, “And now you are frightened by your own image. A mirror that reflects your image enlarged and distorted,” (Eco 172). Have you ever been to one of those fun houses where all the mirrors make you look fat and weird?

    This is exactly what Adso was experiencing, but to him it was a new and scary thing because he had never encountered it. The creators of the library used the mirrors to scare people while they are inside. Knowledge is how much of something you know, and in reference to the mirrors, Adso knows nothing. Most of the time reality is whatever is right in front of you. Sometimes, there are things that make you see things that are not really there, and in that case reality is not what you are seeing right in front of you. Perception is when you become aware of anything using your senses, especially sight and hearing.

    Perception and reality are related in a major way, because without one, you can’t really have the other. Perception is always related to reality because; you use your senses to see if something that you’re looking at is real and not a figment of your imagination. All of this is completely related to metaphysics because metaphysics is the philosophical study of knowing and being. William knew what the mirror was and he got that from studying and going from place to place. Since he knew what it was, his senses were already accustomed to it and he did not react in the same way Adso did when he saw his reflection in the distorted mirror. . There were some metaphorical qualities surrounding the death of Venantius. When the monks were doing their prayers before dawn, Adso says, “And I felt the warmth of renewed faith,” (Eco 102). What he is comparing here is warmth to faith and he is saying that when he does anything to do with his faith he feels warm. Another metaphor that Adso said while the monks were in prayer is, “All bowed toward the altar in a moment of meditation whose sweetness no one can comprehend,” (Eco 102). What he is comparing in this metaphor is his editation to sweetness, because when Adso meditates, he feels peaceful inside his body and that to him is sweet. Another metaphor was when dawn was approaching, it says, “It was as if the daystar in all its splendor were invading the temple,” (Eco 103). What this metaphor is saying is that the sun is invading the temple. The last metaphor I found was when they found Venantius and were studying the snow, it says, “Snow, dear Adso, is an admirable parchment on which men’s bodies leave very legible writing,” (Eco 105).

    This metaphor is comparing the snow to parchment because when you walk on snow you leave footprints and that is what William and Adso were looking for when they were investigating. The monks think that all these deaths are leading up to their doom because Alianardo keeps talking about the trumpets and how more people are going to died and eventually all their deaths do lead to their doom because all the deaths were the reason that the abbey burn to the ground. If none of the deaths had ever happened, the abbey would have never burnt down and nothing that bad would have ever happened in the abbey.

    Authors include allusions for many different reasons. One of the main reasons authors include allusions in their stories is because a lot of times the reader does not get something and they use allusions to help the reader better understand what they are reading. They try and use allusions of things that most people know and they use the allusions to relate to whatever they are talking about. 4. When you are in the abbey and you talk about laughter, it is not a good thing. To the monks, especially Jorge, laughter is seen as a bad thing. There were a total of three debates with Jorge about laughter.

    The first debate happened when the monks were eating It all started off when Jorge said that Christ did not laugh. William then says, “Because laughter, as the theologians teach, is proper to man,” (Eco 95). This angered Jorge and he said that the son of man had the chance to laugh, but he never did. William then tells him that Saint Lawrence was making ridiculous comments to humiliate his enemies when they were going to die. Jorge responds by saying, “Which proves that laughter is something very close to death and to the corruption of the body,” (Eco 96).

    This argument ended because the abbot said to be silent. The second debate on the licitness of laughter takes place in the scriptorium when William is looking through Venantius’ desk. What basically happened in this debate is that William thought they were talking about the comedies in the other debate, and Jorge tells him that they were talking about laughter and not about the comedies. They both then go back and forth stating why and why not laughing is a good thing. In the end, Jorge seems a bit upset and the William forgives himself for showing Jorge a lack of respect.

    The last debate that William has with Jorge about the licitness of laughter is when they are in the finis Africae and Jorge has the book that William wanted. The book that Jorge is hiding is the second book of Aristotle which talks about laughing and comedy as a good thing. Jorge obviously believe that laughing is not a good thing and him and William start having another debate, which then leads Jorge to start eating the papers of the book so that no one will know what the book had to say about laughter. This eventually leads to the destruction of the abbey in a huge fire. . Umberto Eco used a lot of allusions in this novel so that the reader can connect the content to other things and better understand what is going on in the book. One story that The Name of the Rose is used as an allusion to is “The Gold Bug” by Edgar Allan Poe. It is in a lot of ways alike because first of all the main characters in both stories are named William and the narrator of both stories is best friend to the William’s of each stories. Another thing that the story and t he novel have in common is that in a way they both have something to search for.

    In the Gold Bug, they are looking for the treasure and in The Name of the Rose, they are looking for the murderer that is behind all of the deaths in the abbey. Another thing that is common in both stories is that both of them use some sort of code to get to their desired destination, whether it be the finis Africae or the treasure. The other short story that is somewhat similar in ways to The Name of the Rose is the short story “Adventure of the Dancing Men” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The similarities between this one and The Name of the Rose are that they both use a code to decipher things and they both contain murders.

    Another thing that is sort of similar between these two stories is that in The Name of the Rose, Adelmo kills himself and in the Adventure of the Dancing men, Elsie tries to kill herself, but she doesn’t manage to. The three stories are tied into each other because the three of them include a mystery of some sort, and each of the three stories has some sort of code that leads them to where they want to be. 6. A historical novel is a novel where fictional characters take part in actual historical events and interact with real people from the past. A detective tory is a narrative about someone who investigates crimes and obtains evidence leading to their resolution. A Gothic romance is a romance that deals with desolate and mysterious and grotesque events. A postmodern apocalypse is a writing that refers to the end of the world. An encyclopedia is a comprehensive reference work with articles on a range of topics. This novel fits under the classifications of historical novel and detective story. It is a historical because constantly throughout the novel, you get references to popes, emperors, and kings. The characters constantly came into contact with people that were real in the past.

    One of them is Fra Dolcino, who the cellarer and Salvatore both knew. You know that they made contact with him because when the cellarer was in his trial he says, “I told Dolcino I no longer felt capable of participating in their battle,” (Eco 380). That quote shows that the cellarer came in contact with Fra Dolcino, who really existed in the past. The Name of the Rose is a historical novel, but it is more of a detective story. From day one William is assigned the investigation and the reader knows this because he tells the abbot, “Will you assign me this mission coram monachis? ” (Eco 34).

    What he said was that if he could investigate in the presence of the monks. Another reason for it being a detective story is because they get their resolutions. One example of William getting a resolution is when he says to Jorge, “And I should go on leafing like that until a good portion of the poison had passed to my mouth. I am speaking of the poison that you, one day long ago, took from the laboratory of Severinus. ” (Eco 469). What he basically telling Jorge is that he figured out why the monks that died had black fingers and a black tongue, they were poisoned when they tried to look through the book. . When you first read the two parts of Salvatore’s language and the dream that Adso had, you think that it doesn’t make any sense and that it doesn’t relate to the story. In some ways it does make the story more interesting and understandable and in other it is just there to entertain. As you know, Salvatore has an extremely weird way of talking. What he does is that he just picks random languages and puts them all in a sentence and what you get is a big jumble of different languages in a sentence, which is difficult to understand.

    If you translate what Salvatore was saying in those pages, you might look at it and have no idea what he is talking about. What he said was that the Devil was coming and a dragon was going to come eat your soul and that the monastery is good, but everything else isn’t worth anything. This is sort of foreshadowing what was going to happen in the future because in a way, the Devil did come to the abbey with all the murders and then in the end with the fire that completely burned down the entire abbey. So it did sort of contribute to the development of the novel if you thought about it.

    Adso’s dream was also something that didn’t seem important while it really was. Basically, his dream was just a big irony dream because everyone from the past was doing what they were said to have done, and they were all going crazy and behaving wildly. When Adso explained his dream to William, William used it to draw more hypotheses. This is how Adso’s dream contributed to the novel because it helped William get closer to finding out the mystery of what was going on in the abbey. 8. The author’s narrative style would obviously have to be first-person narration because Adso is the one narrating from his point of view.

    The author used this type of narrative style because it is a good type of narrative style you could use for detective or mystery stories, which this one is. It impacts the perception and the knowledge of the reader because if they reader really wants to find out who is causing all this havoc, then they would have to use their mind to solve the mystery with the clues given. The narrative style affects the perception as well, because it makes you see things in a different way and you try to see things in a way so that it can help you understand what is going on in the book.

    It impacts the unraveling of the truth because as you go along and you get more knowledgeable about the book, you start to see things more clearly and then when you get all the information that you need, you will have figured out the mystery and uncovered the truth behind what is going on at the time in the book. The discovery of the truth has to be the main objective for the author because the book is a mystery/detective story and all those types of stories have the villan being unveiled in the end.

    The truth slowly starts to get more obvious as you progress through the book, and if you don’t notice the truth you will at the end because that is what the author wants you to know, the truth. 9. The quote “Knowing is seeing” is a something that is very true in many ways. One way is that when you know something, your eyes open up to other things and more knowledge can be acquired. That is basically saying that knowledge lets you see things that you never knew existed or stuff that you never thought interesting.

    Another way you can look it is that until you know something exists, you never knew it was there. An example of that would be that you meet someone new that goes to your school, and when you did not know who they were, you never saw them. Once you realized that they existed, you start seeing them in places that you never saw them before. It happens because since they are not important in your life, you don’t notice them when they are around you, but when you acknowledge their existence you see them more often because they are now part of your life.

    The setting of this novel is in northern Italy. At the time of the novel, Italy was a very important place because Vatican City was in Italy, and back then, religion was a very important part of everyone’s life. The abbey is a microcosm of the world because like the world, the abbey had a lot of conflicts and mysteries of their own. There was also a diversity of people in the abbey, just like there is in the world. Obviously it is not at the same extent as the world, but that is why it is a microcosm, which is a miniature model of something.

    Like the world, the abbey has its own conflicts. As you know, 3 of the 4 monks that died committed suicide and the other 3 were murdered. The world, as you know, is a harsh place. Back then, the world was more brutal and if you were mixing yourself with the wrong group, you were accused of heresy and a lot of times, people were burned at the stake. The never burned people at the stake in the abbey, but the people who died there, died of horrible ways. 10. To me there is one basic universal truth in this novel.

    The universal truth that I saw in this novel is to let people have their own opinions and to worry about yourself and nobody else. Jorge thought that by hiding the book in the finis Africae, he was protecting the abbey when really, he is the reason that the abbey was destroyed. If you think of it in a metaphysics way, it was sort of like he knew what was inside the book and he didn’t want anyone else to know because he had his own opinions about the book and he thought the book was bad, so he didn’t take anyone into consideration and kept the book hidden.

    The monks in this novel obviously are well in tune with their religious side, and they take their religion very seriously. Some of them believe that religion should be above all things, but people like Jorge think that material things are more important and should be protected. The stuff that was kept in the crypt was important, but what they signified was what was important. If stuff didn’t have any significance, than it wouldn’t really matter if we had them or not.

    The monks all had one belief set in stone and usually if you had another belief you were called a heretic, and you were killed. This is sort of wrong, because today there are many different religions and just because you have a different religion from someone doesn’t mean that you or the other person has to die. You just have to be considerate of other people’s opinions and keep your opinions to yourself and if necessary, express them in an orderly way.

    This essay was written by a fellow student. You may use it as a guide or sample for writing your own paper, but remember to cite it correctly. Don’t submit it as your own as it will be considered plagiarism.

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