In the Time of the Butterflies Questions and Answers
by Julia Alvarez

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When did the Mirabel sisters get the name "The Butterflies" in "In the Time of the Butterflies"?

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The Mirabal sisters get the name "The Butterflies" in Chapter Seven. In this chapter, Maria Teresa (Mate) is the narrator, and her story is told in a series of diary entries from 1953 to 1958.

Many important events are mentioned in this chapter: the family's grief over Papa's death, Mate's attendance at college as an architectural student, and Minerva's graduation from law school. By 1957, Mate grieves that, at almost twenty-two years old, she has yet to have a special man in her life. After Minerva's graduation, Minerva asks Mate to help her set up housekeeping in Monte Cristi. Mate agrees to move in with Minerva and Manolo, but she soon discovers that all is not well with the couple.

It seems that Manolo has been staying out late, and there is tension between him and Minerva. Eventually, Minerva admits that Manolo is seeing another woman. As time progresses, however, Mate...

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