Why did Candide and Cacambo leave El Dorado?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Even though El Dorado is filled with splendour and great wealth, Candide and Cacambo leave because Candide wants to go back and pursue Cunegonde. Initially, Baron Thunder Ten-Tronckh, Cunegonde’s father, had walked in on Candide kissing his daughter, an act that he deeply frowned upon especially due to the fact...

See
This Answer Now

Start your subscription to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your Subscription

Even though El Dorado is filled with splendour and great wealth, Candide and Cacambo leave because Candide wants to go back and pursue Cunegonde. Initially, Baron Thunder Ten-Tronckh, Cunegonde’s father, had walked in on Candide kissing his daughter, an act that he deeply frowned upon especially due to the fact that Candide was a commoner and his daughter a noble. He, therefore, ordered that Candide is ejected from both the castle and Westphalia.

With his newfound wealth, however, Candide is confident that the baron will welcome his advances towards Cunegonde. He, therefore, sets off from El Dorado with over thirty sheep loaded with diamonds, gold, and gems among other gifts. Unfortunately, even after paying for the freedom of the baron, Cunegonde, and the other baron’s relations, the baron is still too proud to allow the union of the two. Candide, determined to tie the knot with his lover, hatches a plan with his advisors to dispose of the baron in Rome after which he and Cunegonde finally marry. The two, much to Candide’s regret, end up living a miserable life.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Remember that Candide and Cacambo were raised under a different socio-economic system that the citizens of El Dorado. Essentially, they were restless and unfulfilled by the idea of being equal to everyone all the time. Candide of course still yearned for Cunegonde, and he uses that desire as at least one reason for leaving the utopia. But they also have a very material motivation...they want to be rich. Even though they want for nothing in El Dorado, they surmise that if they leave with the jewels and sheep of the country, they will become rich beyond belief. Those who have never seen El Dorado would pay mightily for its riches, and Candide and Cacambo can live better than they ever imagined off the wealth.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

That's an interesting question. Eldorado was a place where even the mud was made of gold and the stones were jewels. The society is technologically advanced, and the people are peaceful. There are no religious conflicts, and they don't even have a court system because there is no crime. You would think Candide would consider himself in heaven.

However, Candide is in love with Cunegonde. He has vowed to marry her, and so he longs to be with her. Even in a place full of riches, he has nothing because he doesn't have her. So he and Cacambo decide to leave Eldorado--but not without loads of jewels!

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team