What is the beast in Lord of the Flies?

What is the beast in Lord of the Flies

What is the beast in Lord of the Flies? As one of the most iconic and widely read novels in English literature, William Golding’s Lord of the Flies has captivated readers for generations. One of the key themes in the novel is the concept of a beast that haunts and terrorizes the young boys stranded on a deserted island. But what is the beast?

What is the beast in Lord of the Flies? (Answer)

At first glance, it may seem that the beast, also referred to as the beastie, is simply a physical threat that the boys must overcome in order to survive. The boys are frightened of the beast, building up elaborate defenses and weapons to protect themselves from its supposed attacks. However, as the story progresses, it becomes clear that the beast is more than just a figment of their imaginations – it is a powerful symbol for something much deeper and more primal within each of them.

The idea of a “primal instinct” or savagery lurking within all human beings is not a new one. However, the author takes this concept to its extreme in “Lord of the Flies”. The boys are forced to confront their own inner demons as they struggle for power and control over each other. The fear they feel towards the beast is really a manifestation of their fear towards themselves – towards their own capacity for violence and cruelty.

It is only Simon who truly understands this. He realizes that there is no actual beast on the island but rather that it exists within each one of the boys. In his final conversation with the Lord of The Flies (a pig head on a stick), he comes to recognize that evil lies not in an external force but inside oneself. The Lord of the Flies tells Simon, “Fancy thinking the beast was something you could hunt and kill! You knew didn’t you? I’m part of you?” Simon’s realization highlights an important truth about humanity – depending on our circumstances, we are all capable of both good and evil.

The theme of human nature’s inherent duality has been explored in literature throughout history; however, few works have captured it as vividly as “Lord of the Flies”. By personifying the beast within us, Golding forces us to confront our own demons and consider what we would do if placed in similar desperate situations. Would we act with compassion and kindness or succumb to our primal instincts and become savage?

What was the real beast in Lord of the Flies?

In “Lord of the Flies”, the real beast is within each boy, representing their inner darkness and instincts towards violence and savagery. The imaginary beast that frightens the boys on the island serves as a projection of their own inner fears and desires. The novel suggests that human beings are not inherently good or evil but rather capable of both, depending on the situation they find themselves in. Therefore, the real beast is not a physical creature but rather an inherent part of human nature that can lead to destructive behavior if left unchecked.

Why is the beast called Lord of the Flies?

In William Golding’s novel “Lord of the Flies,” the author uses the beast to represent the evil that lies within each of us. The name “Lord of the Flies” is the English translation of the Hebrew word “Beelzebub,” which is the name of the biblical Devil.

The pig’s head on a stick, also known as “the Lord of the Flies,” becomes a symbol of this evil. It is covered in flies that are attracted to its decaying flesh, and it speaks to Simon in his hallucination, representing temptation and corruption.

The name itself suggests that evil is similar to flies around a carcass. The boys’ fear and belief in the beast give it power over them, just as believing in our own darkness can consume us. In essence, “Lord of the Flies” represents the manifestation of humanity’s darkest impulses and desires.

Is the beast a snake in Lord of the Flies?

No, the beast is not a snake in Lord of the Flies. The nature and identity of the beast remain ambiguous throughout the novel, but it is often interpreted as a manifestation of the boys’ fear and primal instincts. It is described as a creature that lives on the island and terrifies the boys with its presence, but its physical appearance is never clearly defined. While there are some references to snakes in the novel, they are not directly associated with the beast.

How is the beast described in Lord of the Flies?

In Lord of the Flies, the beast is described in two distinct ways. Firstly, there is the actual beast, which is a pig’s head on a stick surrounded by flies. This grotesque creation is called “the Lord of the Flies.” Secondly, there is the imaginary beast that both the littluns and older boys fear, which represents the savagery that lies within every human being.

Initially, the boys are terrified of both versions of the beast and go to great lengths to protect themselves from it. As time goes on, however, some of them begin to lose their fear and even revere it. As the boys’ belief in the beast grows stronger, they start to believe that they can either kill it or at least gain power over it.

Simon is one character who understands what the true nature of the beast really is. After a hallucination, Simon reaches the conclusion that it’s not an external enemy but rather a manifestation of their own inner darkness. Unfortunately, his attempts to explain this to the other boys are misunderstood, and he ends up being mistaken for the beast himself and killed by the other boys.

Overall, Golding uses the idea of the beast as a powerful allegory for human nature and our tendency towards violence and savagery if left unchecked.

Why do Ralph and Jack decide to find the beast?

Ralph and Jack decide to find the beast because they understand that the group’s irrational fear of the beast is paralyzing them, preventing them from taking any practical steps toward survival or rescue. By actively seeking out and confronting the beast, they hope to conquer their fears and gain control over their situation. In other words, they know that they must face the beast if they are to have any hopes of being free from their fears on the island.

Later, Jack uses the beast, specifically the boys’ fear of it, to create his own tribe. By encouraging the boys to fear the beast, the more real the beast seems to be, which he uses to his advantage. Jack treats the beast as a totemic god that must be left offerings to secure its favor.

Does Piggy believe in the beast? 

In the novel “Lord of the Flies,” Piggy does not believe in the existence of a real beast on the island. In Chapter 5, he clearly states his refusal to believe that there is a physical creature on the island, causing all of their problems. However, Piggy does acknowledge that fear itself exists and could be dangerous if it is allowed to take hold among the boys. He worries that if they begin to fear one another or allow other fears to consume them, they will become divided and possibly turn against each other. So while Piggy doesn’t believe in a physical beast, he understands that fear can be just as powerful and destructive.

The beast symbolism in Lord of the Flies (Quotes)

The symbol of the beast serves to illustrate how easily humans can be manipulated by fear and how quickly they can turn against each other when faced with uncertainty or danger. It ultimately represents the dark side of humanity that lies beneath our civilized exterior, reminding us that even seemingly innocent people are capable of causing harm when put into extreme situations. Below is a list of quotes from the book about the beast symbolism:

1. “There isn’t anyone to help you. Only me. And I’m the Beast.” – The Lord of the Flies (Chapter 8)

This quote represents the idea that the beast is not an external entity but rather symbolizes the evil inside each individual on the island. It also suggests that there is no hope for rescue or salvation, as the only force present on the island is this internal beast.

2. “Fancy thinking the Beast was something you could hunt and kill!” – The Lord of the Flies (Chapter 8)

This quote highlights how futile it is to try and defeat or conquer one’s own inner darkness or primal instincts. The boys’ belief that they could physically hunt and kill the beast symbolizes their misguided attempts to suppress their own savage impulses.

3. “Maybe there is a beast… maybe it’s only us.” – Simon (Chapter 5)

Simon’s observation here emphasizes that while there may not be a real monster lurking on the island, each boy carries within him his own capacity for brutality and violence. This quote also suggests that society itself can create monsters when individuals are stripped of their usual social constraints.

4. “The thing is – fear can’t hurt you any more than a dream.” – Piggy (Chapter 6)

Piggy’s statement speaks to how irrational fears can be just as damaging as real threats if they are allowed to control one’s behavior and mindset. Similarly, he implies that many of our fears are self-created and therefore have no basis in reality.

5. “I’m part of you,” said the beast, “and I’m the reason why it’s no go? Why things are what they are?” – The Lord of the Flies (Chapter 8)

This quote further reinforces the notion that each boy’s personal demons contribute to their collective downfall on this deserted island. By personifying these inner demons as the beast, the novel highlights the danger of losing control and succumbing to one’s primal instincts.

What does the Lord of the Flies symbolize?

The Lord of the Flies symbolizes various things. On the one hand, it is a physical embodiment of the beast that terrifies the boys and threatens their survival. On another level, it represents the power of evil and chaos that exists within each individual’s heart and mind. The Lord of the Flies can also be interpreted as a Satan-like figure who tempts and corrupts the previously civilized boys, leading them to give in to their primal instincts.

When examining the novel from a biblical perspective, there are parallels between the Lord of the Flies and Satan, just as Simon represents Jesus. Both characters embody opposing forces – good vs. evil – and have significant influence over those around them. As such, Golding’s use of religious symbolism adds depth to his exploration of morality and the dark side of human nature.

Overall, through its complex symbolism, “Lord of the Flies” highlights how easily humans can succumb to the savagery that exists within all of us when removed from society’s constraints and forced into extreme circumstances.

What does Jack symbolize in Lord of the Flies?

In Lord of the Flies, Jack symbolizes the primal instincts of savagery and desire for power. At first, he is just another boy stranded on a tropical island. However, as the story progresses, he begins to display an insatiable thirst for control and domination over others. His obsession with hunting and killing animals eventually turns into a bloodlust that drives him to commit murder. Jack’s actions demonstrate how easily humans can give in to their most primitive impulses when removed from society’s constraints. He symbolizes the innate darkness that exists within all human beings and warns against the dangers of unchecked ambition and aggression.


In conclusion, while it may seem like a simple question, “What is the beast in Lord of the Flies?” is actually quite complex. It represents not only a physical threat but also an inner struggle within each one of us – a reminder that savagery lies just beneath the surface of our so-called civilized society. Through his masterful storytelling, Golding challenges readers to confront these uncomfortable truths about human nature and consider what it means for our own lives.

Share this article