illustration of an open wardrobe door with a castle and lion visible in through the door and an outline of a young girl standing on the opposite side of the door

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

by C. S. Lewis

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What are five characteristics of Aslan?

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Aslan is the Christ figure in the story and the epitome of good. Five of his characteristics are as follows:

He is self sacrificing. Aslan is willing to give up his life to save Narnia and, more particularly, to save Edmund, who (we could argue) hardly deserves the sacrifice after allying himself with the White Witch.

Aslan is compassionate: Aslan cares about the working-class occupants of Narnia, such as Mr. and Mrs. Beaver, who oppose the tyranny of the White Witch. He does not want others to suffer. The children, except for Edmund, are comforted just by hearing his name.

Aslan is regal: He is a lion, the king of the beasts, and we are told he has a "royal" bearing. He is a being of great dignity, who inspires awe.

Aslan is forgiving: Aslan, for example, forgives Edmund for his misdeeds, such as following the White Witch in the hopes of personal gain and betraying him to the White Witch.

Aslan is powerful: Although he is stabbed through the heart by the White Witch, Aslan comes back to life and defeats and kills her.

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In The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, the Pevensie children learn about Aslan first from Mr. and Mrs. Beaver. At the first mention of Aslan's name, each child has a different immediate reaction. Edmund, who is under the White Witch's spell, is horrified. Peter gains courage from hearing Aslan's name. Susan feels a sense of delight, and Lucy feels excited anticipation.

Later, Mr. Beaver quotes an ancient rhyme that gives four things that will happen when Aslan appears:

1. Wrong will be right.

2. Sorrows will disappear.

3. Winter will die.

4. Spring will return.

The Beavers go on to explain further: He is not a man; he is King of the wood; he is son of the great Emperor-beyond-the-Sea; he is the Lion; he is not safe, but he is good.

When three of the children meet Aslan, Lucy finds that his face is royal, strong, peaceful, and sad all at the same time.

In contrast to the Witch, who is cruel and selfish, Aslan is kind, loving, good, wise, forgiving, and self-sacrificing.

Aslan is presented as a mysterious and benevolent being who is worthy of the love and reverence of the children as well as all those in Narnia.

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