Summary and Characters Analysis of “The Alchemist”

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The Gypsy only values money and a person’s personal legend. The only reason why she helped Santiago complete his personal journey was because She only willingly did it in exchange for part of his treasure when he finds it.

The gypsy’s purpose in the book was to make Santiago realize what he was supposed to do in life. Society influenced the character by giving gypsies a bad reputation which could’ve shaped and molded their character and why they are deceitful.

Society has painted the Gypsy to be untrustworthy and allies of the devil. However this stereotype is incorrect as seen by Santiago.


In the beginning of the book, Santiago valued his freedom and his sheep. Throughout the book, he values his Personal Legend along with his love for Fatima.

Santiago was the main character of the story. He experiences all of the events that took place in the book for himself. All of the characters we are introduced to has an impact on him.

The society of the book and its surroundings cause Santiago to become more educated since he knows the cities and their geography causing him to be more resourceful as well.

Melchizedek (King of Salem)

Melchizedek values a person’s Personal Legend. He believes people should follow omens yet have trust in their own ideas at the same time. He shows this by giving Santiago the rocks to decide if the omen is good or bad however, he tells Santiago he must listen to his own ideas.

He was introduced after Santiago left the gypsy. He pushed Santiago to fulfil his personal Journey by buying his sheep and giving him everything he needs to go on the journey.

Society gave him the money to be able to help Santiago fulfil his Personal Legend.

The Crystal Merchant

A major value that the Crystal Merchant lives by is a following your Personal Journey. He told Santiago he should follow his however, he did not follow his own Personal Journey.

The Crystal Merchant is introduced as a sour old man but reasonable nonetheless. He helped Santiago make money in order to continue on his journey and telling him the importance of following your Personal Legend.

Society forced him to stay where he is instead of following his Personal Legend. In order to finish his Personal Legend, he needs to have money. However, he doesn’t have the money.

The Englishman

The englishman values the secrets of life. He went across the desert to meet the alchemist to have him be able to learn how to be an alchemist and learn all of the secrets of life like the Elixir of Life and the Philosopher’s stone.

Santiago tried to help the Englishman find the alchemist but he ends up finding the alchemist for himself. The Englishman’s only goal is to find the alchemist and to learn the secrets of it.

The society affects the Englishman by making him more educated and motivated to go on a journey in order to discover what it means to be a true Alchemist.


Fatima values being a woman of the desert. She has accepted the fact that Santiago needs to travel and complete his Personal Legend. She lets Santiago marry her as long if he comes back to get her.

She is the girl Santiago falls in love with. Due to Santiago’s love for her, Santiago sees things he wouldn’t normally see and that leads to him seeing the Sun by taunting the Wind with his knowledge of love.

As a woman of the desert, society tells her that her only purpose in life is to wait for her significant other, no matter how long they may take.

Camel Driver

He values living in the present, rather than dwelling on past decisions.

The Camel Driver’s purpose in the novel is to bring Santiago across the desert all while telling him stories about his life.

Overtime, Santiago learns patience and understanding through the Camel Driver’s perspectives.

The Alchemist

He values omens, Personal Legends, and the Language of the World. He shows this by helping Santiago finish his Personal Legend while teaching about the Language of the World.

The Alchemist helped Santiago realize the importance of his Personal Legend and a way to follow his heart. Santiago learned how to love his heart and to listen to it no matter what.

Society does not believe the alchemist exists. They also don’t believe in the Language of the World. However, what society thinks does not matter to the alchemist. He learns from their actions and finds a way to respond to them.

The Wind and Sun

The Wind and Sun value the importance of the Language of the World. They

The Wind and Sun introduced Santiago the importance of the world and a way to understand everything around him. By doing this, Santiago was able to leave the Commander.

Society is unaware the Wind and Sun are live beings. The Wind and Sun have more power than society knows of.

The Commander

The Commander values his army above everything. Instead of killing Santiago and the Alchemist, he accepts the challenge. However, he tries to stop the wind before it can destroy his post.

The Commander tests Santiago’s abilities by threatening to kill him if he can’t turn into the wind. He pushed Santiago to speak to the Wind and Sun in order to know the Language of the World.

Society shaped the commander to be a prideful man. This causes him to accept the alchemist’s challenge just to show that he will be right.


Summarize the plot (This should be short! 50 words or fewer)

Santiago is a young shepard who longs to travel the world. He has recurring dreams in which a young kid appears and tells him to travel the the Egyptian pyramids to find hidden treasure. The Gypsy Woman is the first one Santiago consults about his dream. Melchizedek takes a seat next to Santiago in the town square of Tarifa, where he tells Santiago about the Soul of the World and his Personal Legend for the first time. He also gives Santiago the magical stones Urim and Thummim. He sells his flock of sheep and heads to Africa, where he is quickly robbed of all his gold and left despondent on the streets because he didn’t know the boy wasn’t a good omen. Santiago reaches the oasis with the Englishman and meets this girl name Fatima, who he fell in love with. Santiago had to decide whether to stay in the oasis because of Fatima or pursue his personal legend. Santiago witnesses an omen that shows an attack on the oasis. Santiago and the alchemist get captured by one of the groups in war and to be free he agrees to turn himself into the wind. Santiago escapes with the alchemist because the soldier was afraid of magic and returns to Fatima.

With Freytag’s Pyramid in mind, instead of constructing a plot diagram, list each component. Identify the inciting event, each of the conflicts/ complications, the crisis, the climax, and the resolution.

Inciting Event: A repetitive dream troubles Santiago, a young and audacious Andalusian shepherd. He has the dream each time he rests under a sycamore tree that grows out of the remnants of a church. During the fantasy, a child instructs him to look for treasure at the foot of the Egyptian pyramids. Santiago counsels a fortune teller to decipher the fantasy, and shockingly, she instructs him to go to Egypt. A man named Melchizedek, who claims to be the king of Salem, urges Santiago to start his adventure by ensuring he has no other decision yet to go to the pyramids. Melchizedek persuades Santiago to sell his flock of sheep and set out to Tangier. He additionally gives him the two stones which would enable him to make sense of good and awful signs.

Conflicts/ Complications: One conflict that Santiago goes through is he had to tell his father that he wanted to leave home and be a shepherd but his father wanted him to become a priest. His father did agree at the end. Another conflict is that when Santiago becomes a shepherd. He travels and meets a merchant’s daughter, he liked her but since he was shepherd he had to leave her to herd his sheep. The final conflict, in the beginning, was when Santiago traveled to Tangier and he did not speak the language and he got robbed by a supposed good omen. The main conflict is trying to find his treasure through the omens from his recurring dream.

Crisis (moment in the plot when the conflict has intensified to a level at which the protagonist’s lot will change decisively, either for better or worse): Santiago has to sell his flock to go to Tangier, in order to find his hidden treasure in the pyramids of Egypt.

Climax (The point of the greatest tension or emotional intensity in the plot. Can be different from the crisis): There, Santiago experiences passionate feelings for Fatima, who lives at the desert oasis. During a stroll in the desert, Santiago observes a sign that forecasts an assault on the oasis. He warns the chieftains of the assault, and therefore, Al-Fayoum effectively shields itself against the attack. The Alchemist gets rumors of Santiago’s vision and welcomes Santiago on a walk into the desert, which he shows Santiago the significance of tuning in to his heart and seeking after his Personal Legend. He persuades Santiago to leave Fatima and the train for an opportunity to complete his voyage to the pyramids, and he offers to go with Santiago on the following leg of his excursion. While the alchemist and Santiago proceed through the desert, the alchemist shares quite a bit of his intelligence about the Soul of the World. They are insignificant days from the pyramids when a clan of Arab officers catches them. In return for his life and the life of Santiago, the alchemist hands over to the clan the majority of Santiago’s cash and tells the officers that Santiago is a powerful alchemist who will transform into wind within three days. Santiago feels frightened in light of the fact that he has no clue how to transform into the breeze, and throughout the following three days he thinks about the desert. On the third day, he speaks with the breeze and the sun and coaxes them to enable him to make a gigantic dust storm. He implores the Hand That Wrote All and at the height of the storm at which the vanishes. He returns on the opposite side of the camp, and the tribesmen, surprised by the strength of the storm and santiago’s ability, let him and the alchemist go free.

Resolution: The Alchemist continues to walk with Santiago as far as a Coptic monastery which is hours away from the pyramids. The alchemist demonstrates to Santiago his ability utilizing the Philosopher’s Stone to transform lead into gold. He gives Santiago gold and sends him off. Santiago starts digging for the fortune at the foot of the pyramids, yet two men confront him and beat him. At the point when Santiago addresses them about his fantasy vision, they choose he should have no cash and let him live. Before abandoning, one of the men attempts to show the uselessness of dreams by informing Santiago regarding his own fantasy. He realizes his fortune is covered in a deserted church in Spain where a sycamore tree develops. The church is a similar one in which Santiago had his unique dream, and he at last comprehends where his fortune is. He comes back to Spain to discover a chest of gems and gold covered under the tree and plans to come back with it to Al-Fayoum, where he will rejoin with Fatima, who anticipates him.

List any parallel or recurring events you see (example: Vision runs throughout The Giver, from the first mention of Jonas’s unusual pale eyes to the final image of the lights twinkling in the village in Elsewhere).

The conflict starts out with Santiago having a recurring dream about finding a treasure and later on that recurring dream becomes his reality because he actually embarks on a journey to find that treasure.

The journey begins with him meeting the king Melchizedek who gives him insight on his Personal Legend and what he should do along with spiritual advice. Along his journey, Santiago encounters minor characters which contribute to his journey and help him in a particular way. Throughout the novel, the author often compares the minor character to Melchizedek and mentions how they are similar to and remind Santiago of the king.

When Santiago starts to dig for his treasure at the egyptian he gets beat up by thieves who realize that Santiago has no money and set him free. Before leaving, the thief discloses the endeavor to pursue such a fantasy as idiocy on his part. Be that as it may, we understand the criminal is leaving his Personal Legend. Santiago’s second fortune calls to him when he has made a trip home to that relinquished church where he and his sheep had rested toward the start of the story.

In The Alchemist, the profound solidarity represented by the Soul of the World ties together all of nature, from people to desert sand. This thought shows the parallel events in the novel between the alchemist filtering metal into gold and Santiago refining himself into somebody capable of accomplishing his Personal Legend. Based on the novel, the Soul of the World has made an extreme aspiration, or Personal Legend, for everything, regardless of whether Santiago or a portion of iron. To achieve its Personal Legend, everything must figure out how to take advantage of the Soul of the World, which purges it. That constant refinement, at last, prompts flawlessness. This idea of people, metals, and every single other thing having a similar objective shows that all components in nature are basically unique types of a solitary soul.

See if you can make a connection between this work and another story with similar plot line or similar characters, etc.

The legend of Narcissus usually concludes when Narcissus turns out to be spellbound by his very own appearance that he falls in the lake and drowns. In the novel’s variant of the myth, we discover that the lake felt upset in light of the fact that it delighted in taking a look at its own appearance in Narcissus’ eyes, who is dead. Instead of being an unfortunate quality that prompts demise, a vanity gives off an impression of being a totally common trademark, to such an extent that the lake shows it. Like the introduction of the legend of Narcissus, The Alchemist itself has a message that concentrating on oneself can interface a man to nature and the profound world. By pursuing his legend he learns the secrets of the Soul of the World. All through the book, Santiago must put his own desires first over and over, as when he becomes a shepherd as opposed to a priest and when he leaves the desert oasis to proceed on his voyage. Be that as it may, through neglecting everything except for his own fantasy, Santiago understands his actual potential.

About the conclusion–was it a satisfactory ending to the work? Why/why not? If not, how would you have ended the work, and why?

It was a satisfactory ending to the work because Santiago left Spain, the very ruined church where there was a sycamore growing out of the ruins of the sacristy and Santiago slept with his sheep to travel to the pyramids in Egypt to accomplish his Personal Legend. When he finally arrived and started digging for the gold, he gets attacked by thieves. One of them reveals that he also had a recurring dream in which he was exposed to treasure at the abandoned church where there was a sycamore growing out of the ruins, however, he “walked away” from his personal legend. That is when Santiago realizes where his real treasure is, however, no regret lies within this journey because he also intercepted with another treasure. Fatima, whom he loves and promises to return to.


Cite this paper

Summary and Characters Analysis of “The Alchemist”. (2022, Jun 09). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/summary-and-characters-analysis-of-the-alchemist/

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