Skip over navigation

A Farewell to Arms

Ernest Hemingway


Study Questions & Essay Topics

Suggestions for Further Reading

1. At the beginning of the novel, Henry reports that seven thousand soldiers have died due to what?

2. Immediately before Henry kisses Catherine for the first time, they make a pact to do what?

3. Hemingway famously said that a writer can “omit things that he knows and that a reader, if the writer is writing truly enough, will have a feeling of those things as strongly as though the writer had stated them.” What term best describes this philosophy?

4. Before Henry heads off to the front at Pavla, what does Catherine give him?

5. Before the trench mortar wounds him, why does Henry leave the dugout?

6. How does Mrs. Walker greet Henry upon his arrival at the American hospital in Milan?

7. Why does the barber who comes to shave Henry almost kill him?

8. What is the name of the good-natured doctor who agrees to operate on Henry’s leg?

9. Why does Catherine decide to bet on a certain horse in a race that she believes has been fixed?

10. How does Catherine respond to the news that Henry has received three weeks of convalescent leave?

11. What characteristic makes Ettore Moretti a good contrast to Lieutenant Henry?

12. What does Henry do when the engineering sergeants in Aymo’s car refuse to help rescue the vehicle from the mud?

13. Where does Catherine accompany Henry before he leaves for the front?

14. In what year was A Farewell to Arms published?

15. Why do the battle police seize Henry?

16. How is Henry wounded after he crawls out of the river?

17. In Milan, who lends Henry a suit of civilian clothing?

18. What is Helen Ferguson’s reaction upon seeing Henry in Stresa?

19. Why do the Swiss guards argue in front of Catherine and Henry?

20. Which destination do Catherine and Henry claim they have come to Switzerland to visit?

21. In later life, what nickname did Hemingway assume to convey a sense of strength, wisdom, and mastery?

22. Why does Catherine suggest that Henry grow a beard?

23. Before she dies, what does Catherine say that the world has done to her?

24. What place does Catherine dream of visiting after she officially marries Henry?

25. What is Henry’s reaction to his child’s birth?

More Help

Previous Next
The Ending.

by BubblyBaby5832, August 04, 2012

The ending was good, but depressing.


8 out of 29 people found this helpful


by doctordepp, October 14, 2013

I personally thought it was okay.
It only got interesting for me towards the end.

Love it.

by ktrain119, December 19, 2013

Hemingway is my absolute favorite author and A Farewell to Arms is absolutely stunning. A lot of people have trouble reading Hemingway, he leaves a lot up for interpretation and discussion but this is just part of his genius. As for symbols, this SparkNotes page is lacking severely. Some big ones are touched on but read carefully and read it a few times keeping in mind that each word has a purpose. Scene descriptions are not put in there for entertainment, the weather, the trees, the mountains, each description keys in to another aspect of t... Read more


71 out of 79 people found this helpful

See all 6 readers' notes   →

Follow Us