Part One: Aschenbach at Home in Munich

New Characters:
Gustave von Aschenbach: famous writer; goes to Venice and falls in love with a boy named Tadzio

The Pilgrim: sinister fellow Aschenbach sees in mortuary chapel

As the story opens on a spring afternoon, the tensions in ¬Europe threaten to erupt in war. Gustave von Aschenbach, a distinguished writer in his fifties living in Munich, is exhausted and unable to concentrate. He strolls through the empty streets till he comes to a funeral chapel, where he contemplates the religious inscriptions: “They are entering the House of the Lord” and “May the Light Everlasting shine upon them.” This meditation on the words is interrupted by the sight of a pilgrim in...

(The entire section is 1578 words.)