Which characters are healed when they come to the mountain? How are they healed?

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dashing-danny-dillinger eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Johanna Spyri’s classic piece of didactic Christian children’s literature Heidi illustrates the tale of Heidi and Clara Sesemann. Heidi travels to Frankfurt to work as a companion for the young invalid Clara. The story culminates when Heidi, who is homesick, decides to go back to her grandfather’s mountain in the Alps. She brings along her companion Clara, and the two young girls are healed—either physically or mentally—through the miraculous nature of the mountain. Heidi is no longer homesick once she arrives at the mountain, and she regains her health fairly quickly. The mountain is an idyllic, Edenic place where the young girls heal both spiritually and physically; they eat fresh, wholesome food and frolic in the mountain air. Over time, Clara is eventually able to walk:

“And Clara went on putting one foot out after another until all at once she called out, ‘I can do it, Heidi! look! look! I can make proper steps…. Clara still held on firmly to her supports, but with every step she felt safer on her feet, as all three became aware, and Heidi was beside herself with joy” (192).

This miraculous healing is attributed to Clara’s idyllic surroundings. More than that, though, her recovery is attributed to the Christian God. Indeed, Heidi is often praising the wisdom of God, and she reminds Clara to thank God for her new health:

“Both children said their prayers, and each thanked God in her own way for the blessing He had bestowed on Clara, who had for so long lain weak and ill” (196).

Thus, Heidi and Clara are the two characters who are most healed by the miraculous powers of the mountain, and Clara’s recovery especially is seen as a miracle derived from the power of the Christian God.

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