"The Chronicles of Narnia" is a book series consisting out of seven sequels, written by the popular English writer C. S. Lewis, and the book "Prince Caspian" is the fourth part of the series. Lewis in one of his letters recommends a different order of reading from the way the sequels were published, so this part is recommended as the second one in reading order.
The world of Narnia is a place of numerous adventures for everyone who enters, and author's master descriptive skills are a relentless source of stimulants and pleasure as for children, but also for some of the older companions through the adventures of life. As said by Lewis himself, he got the vision of Narnia and it's magic when he was only sixteen, and then, after almost thirty years later, he decided and promised to himself that he will share this interesting story.
Although the stories from Narnia tells us adventures from another world and another time period, their inhabitants, rulers, their festivities and troubles as well, the main motif of the story is a fight between good and evil.
The display of that ultimate battle is the sole purpose of author's novels, and for that evil to be conquered, the excessive amount of effort and knowledge is required, as well as the special ability to observe the moral, value and positivity by using the inner eye. Lewis finds that ability as an irreplaceable consistency of life, recognizable within children and adults as well, together with the ability to cope and fighting against all the opposites of good.
Also, the base of this Chronicles is its self-existence in which everything is arguable and it seems exactly the way as it is. There is present a conscious about human's ability to make the various choices, relevant for his life, and mostly for his feelings and inner urges. Exactly that is the reason why this accentuation of conscience is relevant for the reader's mind, especially for children because this type of conscience requires a fight, similar to the ones that creatures of Narnia are fighting.
The four children - Lucy, Susan, Peter and Edmund, who's adventures are followed after entering the Narnia through the closet doors, are entering the world of the Narnia for the last time in the tale of Prince Caspian. They are helping him win over and conquer the kingdom which prevailed the Narnia in that time.
Main theme: Fight and resistance in old Narnia as the way of helping Prince Caspian in exterminating the Telmarines, who are leading the Narnia in the wrong direction
Motives and highlights: Victory of good over evil, with the ability to lead the reader in establishing contact with himself, as a goal of developing into stronger and more powerful sense, using the effort for reaching the main goal of accentuating the good and the power of good.
Place: Narnia, train station somewhere in England
It's been exactly a year since Lucy, Susan, Edmund and Peter entered the magical closet, and came out into an entirely different world. It was the kingdom of Narnia, where they were crowned as kings and queens , after saving the land from eternal winter with their heroic actions. In the real world, especially their place of residence, nothing has changed, and it seemed like the time wasn't passing while their adventures took place in Narnia.
The story starts in medias res while the four of the children were sitting at the train station and getting ready for a journey to their school. Suddenly, Lucy felt an unexpectable pain in her chest. Moments after, Edward screams and feels exact the same pain. Then, everyone felt this strange energy pulling them and piercing through their bodies. In the next moment, luggage, bench, platform and the train station completely vanished. They found themselves within a forest, holding each others hands and grasping for air. They were in Narnia again, at first unaware and not believing in that possibility.
After some time, the four children started to investigate their former kingdom.The shore they were walking on was becoming closer to the one opposite of them, so children were expecting the point of the shores connecting together by each passing cape. They went in the direction of the stream, searching for a water suitable for a drink. After drinking the water, they were eating the sandwiches prepared by their mother as a snack for school. They were eating with caution and sparingly, aware that their search for something edible won't be easy.
The children were in the search for the food for the next couple of days. They were heading in the direction of the forest, struggling between the overgrown plants. After finding the apple tree, they found a couple of other trees as well. They realized that they are standing in a place of a former orchard and that the island they were standing on was inhabited in the past. Soon they noticed a wall and penetrated their way through the thick tree branches to get closer. When they arrived closer to the wall, they found a large arch who appeared as the construction for doors, now filled with the giant apple tree.
Children continued on passing further and suddenly found themselves in a wide open space, surrounded by the wall. Space was foul, as it was used for the last time many years ago. They were passing through the middle of the space, and then through the doors into the yard covered with grass, flowers and other plants. Peter got excited as he recognized the place as Cair Paravel, the location of their festivities and feasts during the time they ruled the kingdom.
They decided to stay overnight, so they made themselves a cozy haven. Although in the real world only one year has gone by, in Narnia a couple of decades passed. When they finally found the doors, broke them to open and then came to the room behind them, they were assured that this was a vault of the Cair Paravel, where the kings and queens were reigning. They found various jewels, weapons, armory, necklaces and bracelets...
The place seemed sad and a bit frightening, abandoned for such a long time. By taking the items in their hands, they revived their past actions, reigning, festivities, adventures and the magic of Narnia's atmosphere and locations. They took their presents which were carried on by them at the time of their reign as well. Lucy took a bottle and strapped it around her body with a belt, Susan's present were the bow, arrows and a horn which she lost while they were leaving for England. Peter took his sword Rindon, and Edmund was the only one without a present because he wasn't with them at the time.
They spent the night there, deciding on leaving the island in the morning. After drinking water from the stream, they saw a boat moving in the distance. Two of the men on the boat were soldiers, and the third one was a dwarf with legs and arms tied. Susan's arrow shot the helmet of one of the soldiers who fell in the water, and the other one ran away as fast as he could. The children hurried to the boat to save the dwarf.
He told them all about soldier's plans of drowning him as a result of a very long story. He invited them to have a breakfast together, and afterward, he started the story he kept for himself for such a long time. The dwarf was a king Caspian's messenger, but children didn't know anything about the king at all. He mentioned Narnians, new reigning order, and fights. But soon he began to tell a story from it's beginning. From this moment, author describes the Caspian's life and life in Narnia in general after Susan, Lucy, Peter and Edmund returned to England.
The prince Caspian lived in a large castle in the center of Narnia, together with his uncle Miraz and his redheaded wife, queen Prunaprismia. Caspian was growing up and starting to form his own opinions. He admired the old Narnia, that he found a lot about from the bedtime stories that his elderly nanny used to tell him.
One day, he answered to his uncle that he would rather live in the old Narnia when all the animals were able to talk and handsome people were living inside the streams and trees. Dwarfs were also there, together with the fauns in the wood. Lucy, Susan, Edmund, and Peter reigned after killing the witch, and there was the lion Aslan as well, who arrived from the other side of the sea.
Miraz got furious after hearing that, asking about who told him all of that nonsense. Caspian replied him that nanny was the source of the information, so she has removed away from the boy soon after, and their further contact was prohibited as well.
Caspian got a new teacher and immediately become fond of him because Cornelius was a very lovable person. He was the smallest and thickest person Caspian ever met. He had long and silver pointed beard. His voice was serious, but his eyes were filled with happiness. Doctor Cornelius taught Caspian many things, but Caspian kept asking about the history of Narnia and the four of the children who saved Narnia, among the other things. Soon Cornelius got mad, replying he won't talk about those subjects during his class, rather he'll lecture what he was assigned.
A couple of days later, Cornelius lectured him about astronomy and the rare phenomenon of interplanetary conjugation, visible only once in every couple of centuries. Caspian didn't find that related with the old kingdom of Narnia, but he went to bed earlier so he could observe the phenomenon during that night.
Early in the morning, his tutor woke him and handed him a couple of blankets and a pair of warm boots. Caspian followed his teacher through the halls, staircases and then finally, they were on the roof, beside the central tower of the castle.
Doctor Cornelius brought Caspian here in order to tell him everything about the old Narnia without a fear of getting eavesdropped. They kept on visiting the roof for a couple of nights in a row, and Caspian learned a lot about Narnia's past. Cornelius decided to share his knowledge with Caspian because he had a few reasons for doing so; he got too old for keeping the secret memories that were causing him a lot of pain and he felt like his heart will burst if he kept silent.
The second reason was the Caspian was capable of helping the old kingdom of hidden Narnians, despite the effort of reigning Telmarines who are trying to exterminate every bit of old Narnia, led by his uncle Miraz. When Caspian becomes a king, he can gather wise magicians, search all the hiding shelters and wild areas and check if there is any fauns, dwarfs or talking animals left.
After that first night, Caspian and his teacher kept on having the conversations about Narnia. Caspian, as a result of those conversations, learned a lot about the old Narnia, and soon he began lusting and daydreaming about it in all of his spare time. One day, while things in Narnia kept on getting worse, his teacher packed him a bag with food and sent him far away from the castle, giving him cape and sword as well, and assuring him he is the only one who could make things better, as a valid descendant of king Caspian the Ninth.
Caspian understood nothing, but the teacher kept on explaining him the intentions of his uncle Miraz. He wanted to exterminate every part of the old Narnia, including Caspian as well. The teacher showed him the horn, the greatest and more sacred treasure in all of the Narnia. Everyone who blows that horn can expect miraculously, yet unexplainable assistance in danger. Caspian went into the deep forest, followed by his horse and fully equipped, and the teacher left in the opposite direction, in the attempt of keeping them unnoticeable.
After long walk and search, Caspian fell asleep on the ground and woke up in the unknown area, among the strange company. He was surrounded by three dwarfs- Trufflesearch, Nickabrick and Trumpkin. They were fighting about killing the Caspian because they knew he was coming from the Telmarine's area. After he explained everything to them, they agreed to back him up, providing him a place to stay and help with meeting the other creatures from the old days.
Through various adventures and walks in the wood, Caspian met the inhabitants who were living there secretly. Many of them at first didn't believe Caspian's story, but soon they all agreed on accepting his will, desires and intentions. He met squirrel Pattertwig, visited the Seven Brothers of Shuddering Woods and found the cave of the black dwarfs as well.
Not all of his visits were pleasant as the visit to the welcoming prophet and astronomer Burodolsky, who knew the reason for their visit immediately. Soon he met a fighting mouse and the rest of his species, fauns, badgers and many others. The evening ended with the cheerful and loud dance, praising the Caspian's kingdom and his intentions. They all agreed and gathered together in keeping the old Narnia and conquering the Telmarinians.
Caspian and his fellowship found asylum, hiding in the Aslan's mound. Luck soon turned against them, as the patrol of king Miraz soon uncovered their shelter so the king and his army surrounded the wood. Caspian was becoming increasingly difficult to watch the arrival of the new troops by each passing day. Battles were fought continuously, and Caspian's side kept on loosing. The old Narnians kept on fighting despite their wounds.
Trumpkin, Cornelius,badger and Nickabrick joined Caspian around the Stone table, encouraging him to use the horn. Trupmkin decided to go in search for some additional help because he didn't believe in the power of horn, and a couple of other went to the more powerful areas in seeking assistance as well.
That's the story which caught dwarf Trumpkin told to the children after the Telmarines caught him while he was searching for help. The horn brought the children to the Narnia as they were needed for providing help. The dwarf first doubted in the strength of the children because he was expecting strong warriors but Lucy, Susan, Edmund, and Peter assured him in the great strength of the power within them and their presents as well.
Soon they decided to leave with their equipment and willing to win, taking a journey towards prince Caspian. The journey lasted for a long time, and they had to overcome many obstacles as well. They were searching numerous shortcuts and tried to remember the shortest paths leading them to the place where the battles were fought.
One night Lucy saw Aslan, and no one believed her, assuming the weariness got her hallucinating. Only Edmund was partially believing in her story. During that night, while the rest of the children were sleeping, she saw the trees which were calling her and dancing using acrobat moves. She followed them into blank space surrounded by branches where the Aslan was standing. Brothers and sister didn't believe her until it became apparent that the Lucy was right.
Aslan wanted them to follow him, taking them slowly in the unknown direction. Only Lucy was able to see him, and the rest of the children followed her lead. He took them among the dancing trees, but no one was aware of their moves because Lucy was watching only for the Aslan, and the rest of the children got their eyes set on her.
Aslan took a long walk at the outer rim of the canyon until they got to the place where a couple of small trees were growing beside the cliff's edge. Aslan turned around and vanished among the trees. Lucy kept her breath because it appeared as he jumped off of the cliff but she was too overwhelmed with a desire of not losing him out of her sight to stop and think about it. They finally stopped when Aslan got lost among the cliffs on a path that led to nowhere.
However, they kept on following him downhill, trying to stay oriented by going after his shadow. Soon they found themselves among the trees from where the Aslan's mound was visible. Over there they ran into Bakh, his wild girls and the many other creatures who were delighted by their presence, so they celebrated their reunion with dancing and singing.
In the meanwhile, Trumpkin and two of the boys arrive in front of the Aslan's mound. They lightened the torches and stepped inside. Behind one door they heard Nickabrick, Cornelius, Trufflesearch and Caspian talking about the help they were expecting at any moment. They even accused Nickabrick of being a traitor, due to his lack of faith. Nicabrick used magic to call on the witch and the wolf, which resulted in a huge fight, and the help from the boys was required.
They finally introduced after killing the witch and the wolf and Peter got to explain Caspian his intention of helping him in becoming a king. They gathered all the help and prepared the army of the old Narnians for further attacks. They even sent a letter, inviting Miraz to participate in a duel, while Edmund was busy thinking about the combat tactics and a suitable spot for setting the fight.
Peter and Miraz were fighting on a stick-bounded stage. In the meanwhile, Aslan was waking and gathering the old Narnian population. They were cheering and rooting for Peter who was fighting bravely until two Telmarines attacked him from behind. That resulted in a great battle which ended in Narnians conquering the Telmarines.
Next morning they were celebrating, laughing and playing all kinds of musical instruments. They spread the word about their victory and setting the Narnians free everywhere. Caspian became the king of Narnia, and Telmarines got a new world to live in, but they had to pass through the invisible doors to get there. Same doors were used in order for the Susan, Lucy, Edmund and Peter to get back to England. They returned joyful and proud to the exact same spot at the railway station from where they suddenly disappeared into Narnia.
Characters: Peter, Edmund, Susan, Lucy, Aslan, Narnians, Tellmarines
Aslan - the powerful good lion, his main cause is to help the children that used to rule the Narnia. Also, he is the definition of power in the land of Narnia, symbolizing the creature that represents the power in general. He became old, but still is wise and strong.
Also, through his little good deeds and existence, he is pictured as the greater good presented in the world of Narnia. He is respected and celebrated by everyone, as an impersonation of something higher and glorified. Aslan is highly appreciated, and without getting close to him children wouldn't be able to come to Narnia or achieve their victories.Aslan, Susan, Lucy, Edmund, and Peter are the foundation of the Narnia, making it as it is.
Susan, Lucy, Edmund, Peter - ordinary children who, by entering into the land of Narnia, get to change their power, attitudes and opinions in general. Despite their years, in Narnia, they are known as powerful kings and queens gifted with great powers, unlike in England where they are only average children. After stepping into the magical closet and entering the kingdom of Narnia, everything in their lives changes. They created and deliberated a part of Narnia by fighting the evil by using all of their strength, minds and souls.
They were all given personalized powers to help them conquer their enemies while they are in Narnia. Caspian asked for their help by letting the Narnians blow into the magical horn. Although they leave the impression of the average children at the first sight, they are completely different persons in Narnia. Narnia is their home, where they helped Narnian's dreams to become reality, and that's why they are praised, respected and appreciated.
Caspian - a young boy who was curious about the history of Narnia since he was a little child. He was never told the entire truth about all the events in Narnia and her expansion. He wasn't allowed to ask either, as that was forbidden subject during his childhood. He was raised as an orphan by his uncle Miraz and his wife, who he didn't like at all. Soon he found out about some bad stories and uncle's intentions from his old nanny, who got fired after Miraz found about it.
Doctor Cornelius, his new teacher, opens his mind wider by teaching him about Narnia. Without him, Caspian wouldn't be so eager to find help in saving the Narnians, he wouldn't take part in getting the old order back and stopping the extermination of the Narnian people in general, with all the memories and events from the past. He is the definition of urgency, desire, and aspiration for defining his purpose. With the help of Edmund,Peter, Susan and Lucy, Caspian becomes the king of Narnia at the end of the novel.
C.S. Lewis Biography
Clive Staples Lewis is a famous north Ireland writer of many famous children's books. He was born in Belfast on November 29, 1898. His brother Waren was also a writer but he was more interested in history.
When his mother died, he moved to England where he discovered Wagner's music and got an interest in Nordic mythology. In 1933, he became a part of the association “The Inklings”.
In 1938, he published his first novel, a part of a trilogy named “Out of the Silent Planet”. In 1934 he published the sequel “Perelandru” and after his close friend died he published the last part “The Hideous Strenght”.
1950 was his key year when the first book of “The Chronicles of Narnia” was published. It was called “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe”. The book had a movie adaptation and it became a complete success.
In 1951, the second part was published “Prince Caspian” and a year later “The voyage of the dawn treader”. The same year the author met his future wife, Joy Davidman Gresham. The books kept coming out so in 1935 we have “The Silver Chair”, in 1954 “The Horse and his Boy” and a year later the sixth novel “Magician's nephew”. The last part was published in 1956 and it was named “The Last Battle”.
Soon he married Joy but then they found out she had bone cancer. He died in 1960 and Lewis was left devastated. He also took care of her son Douglas from her first marriage.
In 1961, he published “A Grief Observed” where he described the great pain and suffering he felt after losing his wife.
He died on November 22nd , 1963 in Oxford, just a bit before turning 65.