There are many authors that use symbols in their works of literature to give the reader a different message of what they literally wrote. One great example of symbolism is fire. Fire has been used as a symbol in many books to convey different messages like in the novels To Kill a Mockingbird and “Myth of Prometheus.”
In Harper Lee’s novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, Miss Maudie’s house caught on fire. This caused many people to gather up in order to help put out the fire and remove valuable belongings from the house to prevent them from getting damaged. After the fire finished burning down Miss Maudie’s house, she admitted feeling happy because she always wanted a smaller house and a bigger yard. The author suggests that Miss Maudie is looking forward to a new life. Therefore, the fire in this example symbolizes a new beginning.
In “Myth of Prometheus” Zeus got angry at Prometheus for creating Man. Zeus forbade the Gods from introducing fire to Man, but Prometheus was determined to give Man fire. He felt that Man should have all the benefits that the fire would bring them. Prometheus entered the lands of Men and introduced them to coals which broke Zeus’ order by teaching Man about fire. The knowledge of fire allowed Man to start a better life style because it brought warmth, allowed them to cook food, and other benefits. As you can see, the fire in this myth symbolized knowledge.
These two meanings of the symbol fire are similar in one significant way. In To Kill…