Part One: Aschenbach at Home in Munich

Study Questions
1. Where did Aschenbach live?

2. Why did he go for a walk?

3. Where did Aschenbach encounter the pilgrim?

4. How did the pilgrim respond to Aschenbach?

5. How did the pilgrim appear?

6. What sort of landscape did Aschenbach imagine?

7. What had been Aschenbach’s initial fear?

8. Why did Aschenbach lay his initial fear aside?

9. In which direction did Aschenbach wish to travel?

10. What is a “mid-life” crisis?

Answers
1. He lived in Munich, Germany.

2. He was overwrought from hard work, and needed relaxation.

3. The pilgrim was standing in the portico of a mortuary chapel.

4. The pilgrim returned Aschenbach’s stare with such hostility that Aschenbach had to turn away.

5. The pilgrim had a snub-nose and a protruding Adam’s apple. He wore a straw hat and appeared to be a foreigner.

6. He dreams of an exotic, primeval wilderness.

7. Aschenbach had feared that he might not live long enough to finish all the works he had planned.

8. Despite all his efforts, Aschenbach had lately been able to make little progress in his writing.

9. Aschenbach wished to travel South.

10. A mid-life crisis comes when a person, having entered middle age, becomes more intensely aware of death and feels very dissatisfied with the previous course of his or her life.