Places Discussed

(Critical Guide to Settings and Places in Literature)


Bridge. Strategic target of the Republican offensive and the objective of Jordan’s mission. Pablo opposes the attack on the bridge because he knows that it will provoke retaliation by the fascists, but the other guerrillas eventually agree to support Jordan. Once the Republican bombardment begins, Jordan, with help from the guerrillas, destroys the bridge with explosives.


Comandancia. Headquarters of Commissar André Marty, a paranoid and demented old fanatic who delays the delivery to General Golz of Robert Jordan’s warning that the Republican attack is expected by the fascists.


Escorial. Site of the headquarters of Republican general Golz, who orders Jordan to blow up a bridge behind enemy lines.

La Granja

La Granja. Village near Pablo’s camp where the guerrillas obtain supplies and news.


Hilltop. Location where El Sordo and his men are trapped and finally killed by the fascists. The desperate courage of the guerrillas is futile in the face of the advanced weaponry brought against them in the form of the fascist airplanes.

Hotel Gaylord

Hotel Gaylord. Madrid building used as a headquarters by the Soviet agents who effectively control many aspects of the Republican struggle against the fascists. Jordan finds the Gaylord to be not only a place that...

(The entire section is 421 words.)

Historical Context

(Novels for Students)

The Spanish Civil War
Civil war broke out in Spain in 1936, but the underlying causes can be traced back several years...

(The entire section is 641 words.)

Literary Style

(Novels for Students)

Point of View
The novel presents the narrative through an omniscient point of view that continually shifts back and...

(The entire section is 367 words.)

Literary Techniques

(Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction)

Please see this section in the separate analysis of The Garden of Eden.

(The entire section is 13 words.)

Social Concerns

(Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction)

While reaction to For Whom the Bell Tolls in the highly charged political atmosphere of 1940 was sharply divided, and remains so to...

(The entire section is 205 words.)

Compare and Contrast

(Novels for Students)

  • 1930s-1940s: The world experiences a decade of aggression in the 1930s that culminates in World War II. This second...

(The entire section is 275 words.)

Topics for Further Study

(Novels for Students)

  • Watch the film version of For Whom the Bell Tolls. Do you think the film is dated? What scenes would you update for today’s...

(The entire section is 118 words.)

Literary Precedents

(Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction)

Perhaps the most famous of all epigraphs to a work of fiction, John Donne's poem sets the tone and establishes the theme of For Whom the...

(The entire section is 309 words.)

Related Titles

(Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction)

Hemingway's first important book, In Our Time (1925), displays great variety of technical experimentation and demonstrates the young...

(The entire section is 309 words.)


(Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction)

For Whom the Bell Tolls appeared in 1943, with Gary Cooper and Ingrid Bergman in the lead roles. Cooper, generally, may be the only...

(The entire section is 139 words.)

Media Adaptations

(Novels for Students)

  • For Whom the Bell Tolls was adapted as a film by Sam Wood, with a screenplay by Dudley Nichols, starring Gary Cooper and...

(The entire section is 48 words.)

What Do I Read Next?

(Novels for Students)

  • Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms (1929) chronicles a doomed love affair between an American...

(The entire section is 100 words.)

Bibliography and Further Reading

(Novels for Students)

Fiedler, Leslie A. Love and Death in the American Novel. Dell, 1960.

Nagel, James....

(The entire section is 220 words.)