What is the significance of the following quote from Fahrenheit 451?: “And on either side of the river was there a tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month; And the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.”

The significance of this quote from Fahrenheit 451 is to conclude the novel on a note of hope. It is a description of the New Jerusalem from Revelation 22. It suggests that through the wisdom in great books, the world will heal and rebuild.

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The quotation is from Revelations and is a prophecy about the New Jerusalem. It's clearly meant to be a gloss on the state of Montag's society, which has been destroyed by war. Like Granger's comment on the phoenix earlier in the chapter, and the hope that, at some point, mankind will finally grow out of its need to destroy itself, the reference to Revelation suggests that a new and better society will arise, based in part on the old knowledge from books that they have preserved.

It's also interesting that Montag struggles to remember this passage, and, once he has it in his mind, decides he will save it up for the talk that will happen later in the day. He feels "the slow simmer of words" as he remembers, and there is a sense that he feels the words will have a sustaining power for his companions. This gets at the nature of prophecy and the function of words to not only record past knowledge, but to articulate possible futures. Whereas Granger's image of the phoenix prioritizes learning from the past, Montag's memory of Revelations uses metaphor to describe what they hope to build when they finally reach the city at the end of their journey.

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This quote at the very end of Fahrenheit 451 comes from the biblical book of Revelation. In it, the speaker has a vision of the New Jerusalem, the final paradise in which heaven and Earth come together and humankind is redeemed. Humans will walk in the light of truth, not in fear of the destructive light of fires.

This quote is significant because despite Montag's society having been destroyed in nuclear war, the novel ends on a note of hope. First, Montag has escaped to one side of the river, but on the other side, where the ruins of the city lie, there is also hope: as the Revelation quote states, "on either [my italics] side of the river was there a tree of life."

In the novel, the tree of life is a metaphor for the knowledge which lies in great books of the past, which the men by the river, including Montag, have begun to reclaim. By associating books with the New Jerusalem, Bradbury invests them with a spiritual power.

The men who have memorized the contents of books are full of hope that they can use books' wisdom to rebuild society according to a better, sounder model. These "leaves" of truth, a pun on the leaves of the book and the leaves of the tree of life, once banned, are what will bring healing and rebirth to the Earth.

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As was mentioned in the previous post, Montag remembers the verse from Revelation 22:2 as he is walking towards the recently destroyed city. This verse is significant because it correlates with Montag's final goal in life, which is to heal the citizens of Bradbury's dystopian society by rebuilding a literate nation. The tree of life and its continual fruit represent the future prosperity that Montag and his intellectuals will provide society once they have rebuilt it. Through knowledge and cooperation, the traveling intellectuals plan on building a fruitful, peaceful society. The verse also mentions that the leaves on the tree of life will heal the nations. This coincides with Montag's newfound purpose in life. His work will heal society's wounds and bring the citizens of each nation together to live in harmony. As a whole, Revelation 22:2 represents Montag's future endeavors, which include rebuilding and healing society following the nuclear attack.  

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In the closing paragraphs of Fahrenheit 451, Montag suddenly recalls a passage from the Bible which he decides to save "for noon." This quote is taken from the Book of Revelation (22:2), one of the books that Montag has memorised, and is significant for a number of reasons.

First of all, the blossoming of fruit on the "tree of life" evokes a strong image of new beginnings which is particularly apt at this stage in the novel. This is because Montag and his friends have just witnessed the total destruction of the city and are now preparing to rebuild their society from scratch.

Furthermore, the allusion to the tree which bears fruit is a symbol of hope and optimism. It implies that Montag and his friends will be successful in their endeavours. This is further supported by the reference to the "healing of nations" which suggests that Montag's society will undergo a revitalization and a rebirth, washing away the censorship of the past and making way for a new, uncensored and liberated future. This is also supported by Granger's allusion to the Phoenix which appears just before this quote. This symbol evokes a potent image of a cleansing fire which will renew the spirits of those left behind and prepare them for the challenges ahead.

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