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Noli Me Tangere: Summary and Analysis of Chapter 23 (Fishing)

It was the day of the picnic.  Early in the morning they go on a boat ride across the lake, headed for the forest.  Everyone is enjoying the fun and excitement; only the boat driver, Elias, remains silent.  As requested, Maria Clara sings a patriotic melody.  This stirs the emotions of everyone there, but most especially kindles sadness in the hearts of Elias and Ibarra.  The lake is not a good place for fishing; the crocodile had frightened all the fish away.  Elias tries to get rid of the beast but when it nearly kills him, Crisostomo leaps off the boat and takes on the monster, saving Elias's life.

Points of Note:
The forest (the intended campsite) is located beside the lake.

The playful nature of the young men during that time is clearly described in this chapter.

It is most helpful to remember the young men who join in this picnic to more easily understand the coming revolt in response to the charges against Ibarra.

Frequently Asked Questions:
Question: Whom is Sinang referring to that Maria Clara should hate in order to "avoid being cultured by evil"?
Answer: She is referring to Crisostomo Ibarra. (Read the humorous conversation between the two women regarding courtship and marriage.)

Question: Why is Ibarra saddened and Elias drawn to reminiscence when Maria Clara sings her song?
Answer: Ibarra remembers the pain of losing his father in ways more cruel than he could have imagined, and Elias recalls his painful past.

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