In Boyne's The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, what did Bruno's old house in Berlin look like?  

In The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, Bruno's old house in Berlin was a spacious structure with more than three floors, including an attic with a “little room” and a window. His parents’s bedroom and large bathroom is one floor below the attic. Below that are the children’s bedrooms and shared bathroom. On the ground floor are his father's office, the dining room, the kitchen, and the living room, and “two enormous oak doors” beside the stairs.

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Bruno loves his home in Berlin for many reasons. First, he is accustomed to it and to Berlin. All of his friends and, most importantly, his grandparents live nearby. In addition, he loves the house itself. It stands on “a quiet street and alongside it were a handful of other...

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Bruno loves his home in Berlin for many reasons. First, he is accustomed to it and to Berlin. All of his friends and, most importantly, his grandparents live nearby. In addition, he loves the house itself. It stands on “a quiet street and alongside it were a handful of other big houses.” It is multi-leveled; there are more than three floors. We know this because Bruno describes the house at Auschwitz as having "only three floors."

Thus, the Berlin house is quite spacious. Bruno loves its banister, which “stretched from the very top floor ... to the ground floor.” The top floor in the Berlin house is most likely the attic. It has a small room that contains a window where Bruno can see “across Berlin” if he stands on his tiptoes. The floor below contains his parents’s bedroom and a large bathroom. The floor below theirs is where his bedroom and Gretel's room are, and there is a bathroom on this level that is smaller than the one located on his parents’ floor.

There are “two enormous oak doors” at the bottom of the banister. Although the world “enormous” might be relative here as Bruno is a little boy, these are probably actually very large doors, implying that the house itself is large.

Finally, below the floor where the children’s’ bedrooms are is the ground floor where his father's office is located. Also there is the dining room, the kitchen, and a living room or family area. There are also probably some smaller rooms, because Bruno notes that in the Berlin house, there were “nooks and crannies that he hadn't fully finished exploring yet. There were even "whole rooms” that he was not allowed to enter. The hallway on the ground level is large enough to contain the family’s Christmas tree in December.

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Bruno's old home in Berlin is a large, ornate home, which has massive oak doors, a grand staircase, and plenty of nooks and crannies that Bruno can explore. Bruno mentions that his home is four floors with a basement, where the family's cook and servants live. The ground floor of Bruno's Berlin home includes a kitchen, a large dining room, and his father's office, which Bruno is prohibited from entering unless he is given special permission. There are two bedrooms on the second floor, which belong to Bruno and Gretel, and there is a master bedroom with a bathroom on the third floor. On the fourth floor, there is a small room with slanted windows that overlooks Berlin. Bruno's favorite thing about his home in Berlin is the massive banister that runs from the fourth floor to the ground level. Bruno's favorite pastimes are sliding down the massive banister and exploring the numerous nooks and crannies throughout the massive home. Unfortunately, Bruno's father is promoted to Commandant and the family moves from Berlin to Auschwitz.

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Bruno's old house in Berlin, as he remembers it, functions in the book as a symbol for Bruno's longing for the past, as well as a demonstration of his naivete. Bruno's old home is incredibly spacious, with four stories and plenty of small areas for him to explore. Bruno loves playtime in the old house, and one of his favorite activities is to use the lengthy banister that runs from the top floor to the bottom as an enormous slide.

In contrast, Bruno's home in "out with" seems quite desolate and lonesome, and without its ornate and spacious interior, is far less appealing to explore. This is likely mostly due to Bruno's bias against moving away from Berlin, as the house is still very comfortable comparatively, especially against the harsh living conditions that Shmuel has to endure.

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Bruno's old house in Berlin shows how high-status his family is in Nazi Germany. At a time when an average Berlin family lived in a small one level apartment, Bruno's family occupies a four-story home with large double oak doors at the entrance and a grand staircase with a banister Bruno likes to slide down.

His parents have a bedroom and bath on one level, which is a story above where Bruno and his sister Gretel sleep. The house has a dining room and a study, where he is not allowed to go. It is on a quiet street and is similar to "other big houses" on the block.

In fact, we are told that the house is "enormous" and that there are many nooks and crannies Bruno has yet to explore in it. He is growing up in a mansion.

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Bruno's house in Berlin has four levels. The family occupies three of these. The ground level has the dining room, living room, kitchen, and father's office. The next level up is where Bruno and his sister Gretel sleep. The master bedroom is found on the floor above the children's rooms. The fourth level is not quite an attic because it seems to be more of an area of extra space. However, Bruno says that there is a window on the fourth floor that allows him to see across the city if he stands on his toes.

One of Bruno's favorite activities is to start on the top floor and slide down the banister to the lowest level. Once on the ground floor, Bruno looks up to see two large oak doors that lead to the front porch. Bruno especially likes the banister, as described in the following passage:

"And Bruno liked nothing better than to get on board the banister at the top floor and slide his way through the house, making whooshing sounds as he went" (9).

The house in Berlin is important because Bruno misses it when he moves with his family to a significantly smaller house next to the Auschwitz concentration camp. The home at Auschwitz does not have a fun banister, luxurious fixtures, spacious rooms, a large dining room, or as many levels to explore and enjoy.

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