Summary: Chapter 88
Sophie and Langdon descend into the subway. Sophie tells Langdon that the best thing they can do for Teabing is to call the police on Rémy and Silas and turn them into fugitives. Langdon wants to go to a library and look up one of the phrases from the poem on an electronic database. But when Sophie calls the police, they transfer her to Fache, who tells her he knows Langdon is innocent and he wants her to come into the London police station to ensure her own safety.
The difference between the Anglican Church and the Catholic Church of Rome, while not explicitly analyzed, is significant to the story. Teabing refers to the Church of England, or the Anglican Church, and its propensity for bleak architecture. Anglicans and other non-Catholic sects of Christianity differentiated themselves from Roman Catholics through lack of decoration and artifice. The Roman Catholic affection for theater, which we have seen embodied by Aringarosa and his enormous ring, was offensive to some Christians, who split off to form their own sects. The Knights Templar’s association with this bleak and unadorned place, then, is appropriate.
Rémy is revealed as a traitor when he fails to come to Teabing’s aid during Silas’s attack. Still, it comes as a shock to find that he is betraying his employer simply for money. Rémy does not want to be a servant to Teabing for his entire life, so he turns against the employer who has been so kind to him. Rémy’s betrayal echoes the biblical story of Judas, who betrayed Jesus for money.
The tombs are a classic dead end of the type Brown seems to favor. Teabing and Langdon do not know it, but the tombs do not actually contain bodies. They are just statues placed over empty space.
In this part of the novel, Brown gets closer to revealing the identity of the Teacher when he reveals that the Teacher doesn’t want anyone to get hurt in the process of carrying out this mission. This revelation about his personality, combined with the fact that he has access to electronic surveillance and that he is not known to Bishop Aringarosa, suggests that perhaps he is not associated with the Church. At this point, the identity of the Teacher is the second most important secret of the book, after the location of the Grail itself.
In the subway, Sophie and Langdon reverse roles: for once, Sophie is the one who wants to involve the authorities, and Langdon is the one who is leery of the police. Since they found Saunière, Langdon has dropped his naiveté and become suspicious and cautious. In one way, The Da Vinci Code is not just a thriller but also a coming-of-age tale about Langdon.
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