ISC Class 11 Literature– Salvatore by W. Somerset Maugham

Salvatore by W. Somerset Maugham

About the author .. Rarely has English literature produced such a prolific short story writer, playwright, and novelist as Dr. Somerset Maugham(1874-1965). This literary genius, born in a family of legal luminaries, spurned a career in law, although it offered him assured success. He studied medicine, and qualified as a doctor, but rarely practiced what he had been trained for. Except a stint with the Red Cross, Somerset Maugham never took to treating patients. However, his encounter with many poor suffering patients during his medical education had a profound influence on him. He began writing when he was in college studying to become a doctor. His first novel, ‘Liza of Lambeth’ dealt with infidelity prevalent among middle class men and women during those times, and the painful consequences of such unfaithfulness among spouses. The book soon flew off the shelves, giving Maugham a flying start to Maugham’s literary ambitions.
Maugham was born in France, educated in England, and lived in Spain. He travelled extensively throughout South East Asia and India observing the ways of the Eastern societies. In his six decades of writing life, he turned out many spectacular novels, short story collections and even thrillers. ‘The Magician’ (1908) captivated thriller-loving readers. At one time, London’s four opera houses were simultaneously running four of Maugham’s plays. This speaks volumes about the way the readers loved Maugham’s writings.
Maugham had a flawed romantic life, that raised eyebrows in the contemporary Victorian society, but his literary brilliance overshadowed this little distortion.

About this story ‘Salvatore’ .. This short story is set in a tiny remote fishing village in Italy. It centers around Salvatore, a young 15-year-old happy-go-lucky lad who had grown up in a fisherman’s family. He whiled away his time blithely in the sea beach. Salvatore had two young siblings, who gamboled in the shallow waters of the sea. When they went a bit far, Salvatore used to yell at them to come ashore.

Salvatore found his sweet-heart, but draft duty came first …The scrawny Salvatore stepped into his adulthood sooner than later. He was enamoured of a girl from Grande Marina who bore her charm with dignity. The courtship went on, but Salvatore couldn’t marry his sweetheart. He had to complete his conscription in the navy, before he could settle down. It was a daunting, but inescapable obligation that made Salvatore nervous and fearful. It was not the horrors of battle, but the prospect of leaving home that made Salvatore anxious.

Aboard the naval ship, in a sailor’s uniform, Salvatore gazed at the horizon and remembered the sunset over Ischia that he used to watch every evening. This island situated to the north of the Gulf of Naples looked majestic when the sun dipped into the horizon. Salvatore yearned for Marina. The pangs of separation from her filled his mind with gloom. Salvatore was very forlorn.

In far away China, lonely and sick …His ship passed through Spezzia, Venice, and Bari before reaching China. Misfortune awaited Salvatore at China. He was afflicted by a debilitating disease, and had to be admitted to a hospital in that distant country. The doctor said that Salvatore had contacted a virulent strain of rheumatism, and wouldn’t be able to do heavy manual work for the rest f his life. The hospital’s findings came as  bolt from the blue for Salvatore, but it brought huge relief to the home-sick and love-sick young man. He knew he would be discharged from the navy forthwith. That meant deliverance from the battleship, and most importantly, an early return to his lady love. It cheered Salvatore to the point of being ecstatic.

Back home, but ‘no show’ by his girl ..Salvatore headed home. In the final lap of his journey, he was rowed ashore to the beach where his parents, friends, and a whole crowed waited for him. Salvatore looked at them gleefully, but there was one person missing. The Grande Marina girl was not there to welcome her darling home. It puzzled Salvatore. The waiting crowd kissed and hugged Salvatore, but he missed the kiss of his most wanted. His fiancee’s absence filled Salvatore’s mind with angst.

Hard realities bite and the young lady slips away .…..Salvatore’s mother said that she had not seen the girl for two or three weeks. It added to his anxiety. He couldn’t wait any longer. As dusk fell, he went to his beloved’s house the same evening to meet her. To his great distress, he got a cold stare from her. She stood detached. He asked her if she hadn’t received the letter he had written about his return. He told her reassuringly that the doctor’s diagnosis was a bit exaggerated, and he would soon be fit and fine. Again, the maiden showed no emotion. Salvatore looked quizzically into her eyes, but she remained aloof. Finally, she dropped the bombshell. In clear terms, she told Salvatore that he was crippled, and couldn’t work hard enough to earn a living. So, she had decided to go by her father’s decision that she must marry someone else fit enough to be the bread earner of the family. She told that it was her family’s unanimous decision. Her father simply couldn’t give her to a man who can’t slog like an able-bodied fisherman.

Salvatore trudged back home with the grief gnawing at his heart incessantly. Back home, he discovered, to his dismay, that his family members were aware of the girl’s decision, and they had held back the news from him.

Salvatore was broken, but not bitter ..Clearly, Salvatore was devastated. He let his tears wet his mother’s bosom. But, the rancor and the indignation were not there in his mind. Unlike what most young lovers would do, he didn’t blame her for her decision to abandon him. He understood marrying a semi-crippled young man would have been untenable for a working class fishing family. He bore his misfortune with remarkable fortitude.

Months rolled by. Salvatore resumed his toil in his father’s vineyard and fishing trips. He soon came to terms with his life without Marina.

His mother had a news to break for her lonely son. She said there was a young woman by the name Assunta in the community who was willing to marry him. Salvatore’s initial comment about the girl was rather disparaging. She had no great looks, and was older than him. Her fiancé had died in battle somewhere in Africa. Assunta was ready to tie the knot, if Salvatore agreed.

Assunta stepped in to mend Salvatore’s broken heart .…Apart from this, his mother disclosed that Assunta had some money with her. After marriage, she could buy a fishing boat and rent a vine yard, so that the couple could make a living with ease. Moreover, Assunta had developed a fascination for him after she saw him at the festa. 

Salvatore decided to see the girl. The following Sunday, he dressed himself smartly in black to look robust, and sat in a vantage point in the Church from where he could see Assunta properly. Salvatore agreed to make Assunta his wife. He told his mother about it.

The duo settled down ..The couple lived in a tiny white-washed cottage at the middle of the vine yard. Salvatore had become a stout, jolly, and hard-working guy. He had retained his childlike air, his pleasing eyes, and his cool demeanour. He, accompanied by his younger brother, went into the sea at evening, caught the lucrative cuttlefish, and rowed back early so that he could sell the catch to the ships bound for Naples. During the days he didn’t go out fishing, he worked in his vineyard from dawn to dusk, with a short break in the afternoon.

The rheumatism returned sporadically making it very hard for him to work. He would then indolently lie on the beach, smoking cigarettes and gazing at the sea. He bore the rheumatic pain stoically, and had a friendly chat with those passing by him.

Salvatore was as jolly as ever …On some occasions, he brought his children to bathe them in the sea waters. The two boys abhorred being pushed into the waters. The elder demurred lightly, but the younger one screamed with fright. Salvatore was a genteel loving father who poured affection on his two sons. It was remarkable how the trio enjoyed their beach outings with warmth and togetherness.

Maugham’s account of Salvatore has no heroics, no chivalry, no melodrama. Yet, Salvatore’s character exudes the values that make a person adorable. His life, very ordinary and mundane, radiates goodness, at every step.

———————————END—————————-

Question …

Look into Salvatore’s life through Maugham’s eyes, and discover the goodness of his character that impressed the author.

Answer …

W.Sommerset Maugham was a humanist. Almost all his writings have strong undertones of human suffering – from broken marriages, devastated families, poverty, and colonial exploitation. Salvatore is another such story that portrays the travails of a young man who has suffered great setbacks in life, but has managed to re-build his life through astounding forebearance and equanimity.

 

Salvatore went on naval duty to far-off China when he had never gone out of his village even once. When the war duty came, he was an adolescent. He had been gripped by the first flush of intoxicating romance with a local girl. The conscription call tore him away from his village and from his girl. He didn’t rage, nor did he try to evade. He fell in line, like any other young man with a sense of responsibility and patriotism. In far-away China, he was crippled by rheumatism – a deadly misfortune to befall a young man from a working class family. Again, he took the misfortune in its stride.

When he couldn’t spot his beloved in the shore among the crowd gathered to welcome him back, he was shocked, but the deadliest blow came when she told him plainly that the marriage had been aborted due to his physical disability. Salvatore didn’t remonstrate, didn’t curse her, didn’t decide to end his life. Unlike most jilted lovers, he returned home dejected, but not the least vengeful. The wound in his heart was oozing blood, but he managed to hide it from public view. He remained quiet.

After his marriage to Assunta, he never looked back. He became a loving husband and a doting father. He toiled to make his living. In the midst of his two children and his wife Assunta, he found bliss and fulfillment.

In more ways than one, Salvatore emerges as an ideal young man. Spite, revenge and cursing don’t touch his heart. As a young recruit, and later as Assunta’s husband, he remained committed to his duty. The story doesn’t have a spectacular end, but the uneventful end imparts a rare goodness to the character of Salvatore.

——————————————————————–END——————————————————–

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Rajrani Sadhu
2 years ago

Excellent writeup and very useful. Thank you so much!

admin
admin
2 years ago
Reply to  Rajrani Sadhu

Thank you, Rajrani for your appreciation. If you are keen to improve your English, you may visit our Vocabulary, Comprehension, and Summary / Precis writing posts.

Arindam Chakrabarty
Arindam Chakrabarty
2 years ago

Good presentation but it needs some deep analysis of the crucial moments of Salvator’s life, compare and contrast of superficial love and true virgin love with respect to the characters: the girl and Assunta. What is the significance of nature in Salvator’s life to build up his goodness?

admin
admin
2 years ago

Yes, I agree. May be I will write it later.

Anjali
Anjali
1 year ago

Salvator’s beloved refused to marry him. What do you think of her decision?
(within 120-150 words)
Sir please answer my question by monday.

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  Anjali

Wait till 9.30pm tonight.

Nishita Jain
Nishita Jain
1 year ago
Reply to  admin

Please answer this question
How successful was the writer in bringing out the protagonist’s innate goodness in the short story Salvatore?

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  Nishita Jain

Please give the word limit.

Shubhangi
Shubhangi
1 year ago
Reply to  admin

the word limit is 1000

Pratyush Agrawal
Pratyush Agrawal
1 year ago
Reply to  admin

250 words

admin
admin
1 year ago

By Sept 12 9pm. (tomorrow)

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  admin

I sat down to write the answer, but can’t find the question. Can you please send it again?

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  Anjali

The young lady can’t be faulted for her decision. She was under the care of her parents, and the latter cared for her well being. She couldn’t have argued with them to accept a physically crippled young man as the son-in-law of the family. They belonged to the working class who earned their bread through toil in the fields or in the sea. A young husband who is infirm can’t work his fingers to the bone. He can’t earn a living. So, the paents were justified in botching the proposal, and the young lady was right in going by their decision. So, no guilt can be attached to her.

Anjali
Anjali
1 year ago
Reply to  admin

Thanks a lot sir.

Dev
Dev
1 year ago

Salvatore’s beloved refused to marry him. What do you think of her decision?

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  Dev

Do you want me to write an answer? In how many words? By when?

Dev
Dev
1 year ago

i got the answer. thanks to you.

Dev
Dev
1 year ago

Write a Critical Analysis in not more than 300-400 words for the story ‘Salvatore’.
Please answer by or before 9th Feb.

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  Dev

W.Sommerset Maugham was a humanist. Almost all his writings have strong undertones of human suffering – from broken marriages, devastated families, poverty, and colonial exploitation. Salvatore is another such story that portrays the travails of a young man who has suffered great setbacks in life, but has managed to re-build his life through astounding forebearance and equanimity.

Salvatore went on naval duty to far-off China when he had never gone out of his village even once. When the war duty came, he was an adolescent. He had been gripped by the first flush of intoxicating romance with a local girl. The conscription call tore him away from his village and from his girl. He didn’t rage, nor did he try to evade. He fell in line, like any other young man with a sense of responsibility and patriotism. In far-away China, he was crippled by rheumatism – a deadly misfortune to befall a young man from a working class family. Again, he took the misfortune in its stride.

When he couldn’t spot his beloved in the shore among the crowd gathered to welcome him back, he was shocked, but the deadliest blow came when she told him plainly that the marriage had been aborted due to his physical disability. Salvatore didn’t remonstrate, didn’t curse her, didn’t decide to end his life. Unlike most jilted lovers, he returned home dejected, but not the least vengeful. The wound in his heart was oozing blood, but he managed to hide it from public view. He remained quiet.

After his marriage to Assunta, he never looked back. He became a loving husband and a doting father. He toiled to make his living. In the midst of his two children and his wife Assunta, he found bliss and fulfillment.

In more ways than one, Salvatore emerges as an ideal young man. Spite, revenge and cursing don’t touch his heart. As a young recruit, and later as Assunta’s husband, he remained committed to his duty. The story doesn’t have a spectacular end, but the uneventful end imparts a rare goodness to the character of Salvatore.

Dev
Dev
1 year ago
Reply to  admin

Thank you!

Amrita
Amrita
1 year ago

Thank u

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  Amrita

I appreciate.

Jaya diwakar
Jaya diwakar
1 year ago

Plzz answer this question ‘salvatore’ is set on an Italian island.what do you know about the life of people on this island?

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  Jaya diwakar

Please give the word limit.

Mehul Mittal
Mehul Mittal
1 year ago

Sir Plzz give answer of this 2 question:-
1: What is the role of Asunta in Salvatore life.
2:Mankind often forgets that morals and thee inner world of every person is greater than ones outer feaute. Do you agree? Discuss with close refrence to Salvatore.
Sir word limit 300-400

Mehul Mittal
Mehul Mittal
1 year ago

Plz answer the question
Q Mankind often forget that inner world of every person is greater than ones outer world feature . Do you agree? Discuss with close refrence to Salvatore.( Word limit 300-350).

shambhavi
shambhavi
1 year ago

sir what about tempest plz help me out with it plz provide some material for it

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  shambhavi

I have become too old to write more posts.

Shubhangi
Shubhangi
1 year ago

1000 words

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  Shubhangi

Can you please repeat your question?

Shubhangi
Shubhangi
11 months ago
Reply to  admin

How successful was the writer in bringing out the protagonist’s innate goodness in the short story Salvatore?

admin
admin
11 months ago
Reply to  Shubhangi

Give me the word limit.

Shubhangi
Shubhangi
11 months ago
Reply to  admin

1000 words

Mathi
1 year ago

Sir thanks a lot for posting this poem… It helped me a lot… Sir i need help in tempest also.. Pls do help by posting abt it…

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  Mathi

Sorry, Mahi, I have not written anything on The Tempest so fr.

Shreyasi
Shreyasi
1 year ago

Can anyone pls write the analysation of the character of salvatore in 1500 words .

admin
admin
1 year ago
Reply to  Shreyasi

It’s a complete two-day job. Very difficult to fit it into my schedule. What’s your deadline?

tanisha agarwal
tanisha agarwal
1 year ago

Plzz answer this question ‘salvatore’ is set on an Italian island.what do you know about the life of people on this island?
400 words

admin
admin
1 year ago

Salvatore’s village is a remote fishing island of Italy that has not been spoilt by the glitz and glamour of fast-paced urban life. Here folks are hard-working, simple in taste, and modest in their expectations from society. There are vast orchrds, and farms where the inhabitants toil to scrape a living. They love their way of life, and seldm crave for the comforts of a city.
Their attachment to their lands and the bea ches and their profession is unshakeable. Living such simple lives makes them unpr etentious, and unassuming too. This is why Salvatore craved to return t his village so much. This simple upbringing also made him free of rancour and retribution. When his sweetheart broke off the elationship, he bore his misfortune with fortitude.
In the whole island, society remained unsppoilt and untouched by the humdrum that we see in urban centers. In a way, despite its primitive ways, the pristine island was a paradise on erth.

POOJA SINGH
POOJA SINGH
10 months ago
Reply to  admin

can u tell further or extend to the point of the character of salvatore against the socio economic italian background.

POOJA SINGH
POOJA SINGH
10 months ago
Reply to  POOJA SINGH

please help me faster.

Kanchan
1 year ago

How successful was the writer in bringing out the innate goodness of the protagonist in salvatore.
Word limit =1000-1200

foto
foto
1 year ago

Can u please write about character sketch of salvatore in around 1100 words…i would like to get it by this monday..pls help me

foto
foto
11 months ago
Reply to  foto

pls help me sir

admin
admin
11 months ago
Reply to  foto

Can you wait for two more days?

foto
foto
11 months ago
Reply to  admin

Tommorrow is the last date sir..pls help me

admin
admin
11 months ago
Reply to  foto

By 8am tomorrow. I have scheduled it.

foto
foto
11 months ago
Reply to  admin

sir,is it ready.??

admin
admin
11 months ago
Reply to  foto

Sorry, Yet to start. By 6pm possibly.

admin
admin
11 months ago
Reply to  foto

Character sketch of Salvatore
Dr. Somerset Maugham(1874-1965) is one of the most prolific writers in English. He was a very empathetic person who understood the anguish of the lovelorn hearts. Maugham had a chequered love life as his youthful romance swung between beautiful women, and quite uncharacteristically some young men whom he befriended with considerable warmth. In fact, in the fag end of his life, he decided to live with a male friend, not take wife. Maugham was a very large-hearted , warm, and considerate person.
Maugham’s inner self is reflected in his epic story Salvatore. This young lad grew up in a remote fishing village of Italy, where the footprints of the modern industrialized society were very faint. Salvatore’s upbringing in such un-spoilt environment shaped his persona. He grew up in the family that scraped its living from the soil. Toiling in the farms was Salvatore’s daily chore. He grew up like a robust, rustic and romantic lad. His beloved, a girl from a similar socio-economic background was an ideal fit for her. The duo made a good romantic pair, supplementing each other’s need for passionate longing, and togetherness.
The call for naval duty came as a huge disruption for both. It was a conscription call, so couldn’t be evaded. Salvatore, was not a meek man to shy away from the call. Sans his sweetheart, he had nothing to lose by accepting the call. Anyway, the duty was going to be f short duration, so he thought, he could go through it and return to the waiting bosoms of his girl. But, fate had something nasty in store for him. He was crippled in his leg. The infirmity could last all his life. For a young man used to the toil and sweat of the soil, it was a very rude shock. Just as he had borne the pain of his temporary separation from his girl friend ahead of the voyage, he bore this bad news with remarkable calm and fortitude. To the reader, Salvatore’s equanimity looks so un-worldly and so, unrealistic. But, it was Salvatore, not any boorish street lad. Salvatore appears so sagely.
The sea voyage and the stint with the navy ended prematurely enabling Salvatore to dream of returning to his land ahead of time. The news of his affliction had reached his village and the family of his girl friend. The news had upended Salvatore’s dreams, and his vision of life. When he was still at sea, the girl’s family had decided that he was not the man who could earn a living and support a family. So, they prevailed upon the girl to erase Salvatore from her mind. Pragmatism weighed heavier than the pull f teen age romance.
Salvatore returned to a cold and empty world. The girl had drifted away, although his physical debility had receded well enough to restore his power to slog in the field. It was a shock that could have driven any other man to do crazy things. But, vengeance was not in Salvatore’s blood. He didn’t even argue with the girl who had jettisoned him so unjustly and so abruptly. He didn’t flay her parents either for their disregard of their daughter’s wishes. Salvatore heard them out and in the most dignified manner made his way back carrying the weight of his grieving heavy heart. It was an epic moment in his life that had such profound consequences for him. In a way it was like Baptism by fire for Salvatore. Quite astonishingly, Salvatore carried his distraught heart with little bitterness and no ill-will towards the girl who had walked away from him. It was Salvatore at his best – a perfect gentleman , and a noble human being who bore his broken dreams with fortitude and stoicism.
Salvatore’s best is yet to come. He was coaxed to marry a girl elder than him in age, and not so beautiful. Salvatore was a kindly man. When he heard that the girl herself had wanted to marry him, he couldn’t break her heart by spurning her proposal. Finally Salvatore married her and became the father of two children. He lavished his love on his wife and the two ids. Like an ideal father, he reared them with all his ability. Not even for a second, did Salvatore think about his past romance. Never did he pine for the lost romance. Gallantly, he fought off those memories and became a real good family man. This was Salvatore at his best.
———————————-.——————————-

admin
admin
11 months ago
Reply to  foto

Posted

Goldie
Goldie
10 months ago

2000

admin
admin
10 months ago
Reply to  Goldie

Sorry, Pooja. I need at least a week to write it.

POOJA SINGH
POOJA SINGH
10 months ago
Reply to  admin

sir i need it very very urgently. sir i have to submit it by today at 12 am night

POOJA SINGH
POOJA SINGH
10 months ago

please tell this
-character of salvatore against the socio economic italian background
very very urgent pls send it by today

POOJA SINGH
POOJA SINGH
10 months ago
Reply to  POOJA SINGH

sir now 1 week also over sir pls reply

Erika
Erika
9 months ago

Write the character sketch of Salvatore (1100 words)
Please can you do that by tomorrow pleaseeee

admin
admin
9 months ago
Reply to  Erika

It’a an onerous task to write an 100-word answer I don’t have time at the moment. Sorry for this.

Erika
Erika
9 months ago
Reply to  admin

It was 1100 words. It’s ok. Thank you for the content, I will take it’s help.

Disha Doshi
Disha Doshi
9 months ago

Sir my question is “discuss the Salvatore’s satisfaction life even it’s not the perfect one”. Word limit is 250 and i need till today.

admin
admin
9 months ago
Reply to  Disha Doshi

Salvatore was, in a sense, an anti-hero. Any other youngman of his ilk would have eviscerated the young maiden for having jettisoned him so unceremoniously. He did nothing of the sort. He didn’t explode, didn’t even curse her, and left the scene devastated and broken. Such ‘timidness’ is unbecoming of a young gallant man, and doesn’t quite fit the narrative. Most authors would have made Salvatore explode in anger and indignation, and demanded an answer from the girl. Salvatore nothing that could hurt her. So, the story is unusual and appears uncredulous for the normal reader. The plot looks sterile, insipid, and dull. So, for the pulp-fiction lovers, it’s not a good read, and not a stimulating story.Salvatore’s uncharacteristic stoicicsm looks so unreal. May be, from this angle, it’s not a perfect story, but such a conclusion is unkind and uncharitable for a great story-teller like Maughm.

Ilma sahar khan
Ilma sahar khan
7 months ago

Sir please give conclusion for the story Salvatore. In about 100-150 words

RUDRANSH TAPARIA
4 months ago

“Discuss the theme of love and affection as depicted in the story Salvatore.”
in 1000-1500 words

PRIYA MUKHERJEE
PRIYA MUKHERJEE
2 months ago

IT’S VERY HELPFUL FOR PROJECT

Anjali
2 months ago

did assunta do sex with salvatore

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