What are some quotes (including chapter/page #) from Simon in Lord of the Flies that really summarize who he is?

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peaceveg eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Golding’s Lord of the Flies is an allegorical novel where the main characters represent certain groups of people in a society.  Ralph, for example, epitomizes the fair and democratic leaders who are not easily corrupted by power. Simon represents the mystics and clairvoyants in a society who are often misunderstood and scorned despite their truths. Golding himself stated that he intended to create Simon as a Christ-figure within the story.


With all this being said, Simon doesn’t speak much throughout the course of the play. However, when he does speak, his words are prophetic and wise in ways that make the others uncomfortable. Perhaps one of Simon’s most iconic phrases occurs in Chapter 5 when the boys discuss the possibility of a beast. In the midst of the chaos, Simon steps forward and says, “Maybe it’s only us.” Here he demonstrates wisdom beyond his years; he is the only boy to realize that the real beast lies within each of them. The others, unable to understand Simon’s astute answer, simply respond with shouts of “Nuts!”


Another instance of Simon’s prophetic nature is found in Chapter 7 as he talks with Ralph, who is losing hope of ever being rescued. Several times Simon tells Ralph, “you’ll get back all right.” Later we find out that Simon’s prophecy has come true; Ralph and the others are saved, but Simon himself is not.


These are just two examples of quotes that give insight into the character of Simon. In addition to being clairvoyant, Simon is one of the few sensitive and gentle characters in the story. Perhaps you can find other quotations that exemplify his gentle and caring nature to further support the complexity of this character.


Noelle Thompson eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Wow, this is a hard one simply because Simon doesn't say much.  However, a point can be made that when Simon DOES speak, it is important and with conviction.  The irony is, the Lord of the Flies is about a big, savage group of boys, ... and Simon has trouble speaking in front of a group, ... especially THIS group.  Ha!  Still,  there is something telling in the following two quotes, both from Chapter 5:

"Maybe," he said hesitantly, "maybe there is a beast." "I don't know," said Simon. His heartbeats were choking him. "But,"

Simon grabbed the conch convulsively. "I wanted--to go to a place--a place I know." "What place?" "Just a place I know. A place in the jungle."

It is Simon's hesitation here that shows his goodness.  It's Simon's hesitation that shows he is different from the other boys.  Simon, therefore, cannot live.  In a world of savagery, innocence and goodness and hesitation and value cannot survive.

Lori Steinbach eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Simon is a spiritual figure, and in chapter seven he tells Ralph:

"You'll get back where you came from."

When Ralph is puzzled by this pronouncement, Simon says:

"I just think that you'll get back all right."

This is an important moment because it foreshadows both that Ralph will be able to go home one day and that Simon will not. We aren't sure how Simon knows such a thing, but we believe him--or at least want to believe him. We probably pay less attention to this a foreshadowing of Simon's eventual death, but clearly it is since he says "we" rather than "I."

mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Chapter Eight, when Piggy argues that there is no sense in climbing the mountain to the "beast" when Ralph and the others could do nothing, Simon whispers,

"What else is there to do?"

This simple question by Simon suggests that the boys must be in control of their own destinies and not allow the forces from without and within to control them.  Also, this again is an example of Simon's attempts to be supportive.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Rather than one quote, I think everything Simon says should be looked at carefully.  He is our window to the soul of the island.  Simon is the instrospective one.  He is the only one that seems to think about what is happening.

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Lord of the Flies

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