Free Study Guide for Watership Down by Richard Adams|
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WATERSHIP DOWN BOOK NOTES
The story ends on an October morning about six weeks later. Groundsel and the other Efrafan captives have gradually become accepted as members of the Honeycomb and have settled in "because Hazel was determined that they should. Several of the does have had litters including Vilthuril to whom Fiver is attached. They have also heard that the Efrafa warren is doing well although things are a bit different under Campion. Hazel brings up his former idea, to send some of his own youngsters out to meet some from Efrafa and start a new warren in the spring. They plan to use Kehaar as their messenger when he returns. Bigwig is captain of the Owsla which is described as "free and easy." Silver comments that Bigwig had beaten Woundwort even though it would have been too late if the dog had not come. The rabbits watch a lone horseman riding across the down, then hop into their burrows to hide from the cold and spend the winter telling more stories of El-ahrairah.
The novel is finished with an "Epilogue" that addresses the reader
with the things "that happened in the end." Hazel lived longer
than most rabbits but then was called to join a spirit Owsla. Groundsel
become first chief rabbit of the new warren, joined by rabbits from Efrafa
who were led by Captain Avens. As for Woundwort, there was a legend that
he never died, but that he lived as a great, solitary rabbit who would
fight for those who honored him; mother rabbits used the general’s name
as a threat by which to discipline their young if they misbehaved.
Readers are left with a "happy ever after sense" and a feeling that the rabbit characters are almost human. At the very least, they have learned important "human" lessons, some of which are listed here.
1. Old habits can and should be changed when they no longer serve.
2. Freedom is a precious and fragile gift. It is just as possible to have too much as it is to have too little.
3. An open minded attitude sometimes brings unusual and beneficial friendships.
4. Each member of a community has something to offer; such gifts should not be treated lightly.
5. Trusting a timid character with a little responsibility will encourage him to take more.
6. Stories are the heart of any society. The stories of the past provide the lessons of the present
7. Intelligence is a greater asset than physical strength.
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Ruff, Karen SC. "TheBestNotes on Watership Down".
. 09 May 2017