One Hundred Years of Solitude
Important Quotations Explained
that time Macondo was a village of twenty adobe houses, built on
the bank of a river of clear water that ran along a bed of polished
stones, which were white and enormous, like prehistoric eggs. The
world was so recent that many things lacked names, and in order
to indicate them it was necessary to point.
José had been destined to find with [Carmelita Montiel] the happiness
that Amaranta had denied him, to have seven children, and to die
in her arms of old age, but the bullet that entered his back and
shattered his chest had been directed by a wrong interpretation
of the cards.
was as if God had decided to put to the test every capacity for
surprise and was keeping the inhabitants of Macondo in a permanent
alternation between excitement and disappointment, doubt and revelation,
to such an extreme that no one knew for certain where the limits
of reality lay. It was an intricate stew of truths and mirages that
convulsed the ghost of José Arcadio Buendía with impatience and made
him wander all through the house even in broad daylight.
(II)] saw the epigraph of the parchments perfectly paced in the
order of man’s time and space: The first of the line is
tied to a tree and the last is being eaten by the ants.
. . . Melquíades had not put events in the order of a man’s conventional
time, but had concentrated a century of daily episodes in such a
way that they coexisted in one instant.
(II)] had already understood that he would never leave that room,
for it was foreseen that the city of mirrors (or mirages) would
be wiped out by the wind and exiled from the memory of men at the
precise moment when Aureliano Babilonia would finish deciphering
the parchments, and that everything written on them was unrepeatable
since time immemorial and forever more, because races condemned
to one hundred years of solitude did not have a second opportunity
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