Death in Venice Part Six: Conclusion—The Plague

Thomas Mann

Part Six: Conclusion—The Plague

New Character:
The Young Englishman: a clerk who warns Aschenbach about the plague

Aschenbach comes across reports and indications of a plague. First, he hears a mysterious illness which caused a German family to leave, mentioned casually by the hotel barber. Soon he begins to smell disinfectant everywhere. Then he sees ordinances posted by city authorities, warning people not to eat oysters or use the canal waters. A shopkeeper tells Aschenbach that all these steps are just routine precautions.

While the papers for tourists mention nothing, Aschenbach finds reports of a plague in the German press, which are then ¬denied and angrily debated. Aschenbach gradually realizes...

(The entire section is 3692 words.)