Seven is the magic number

Various societies regard the number seven as magical, possessing both religious (seven deadly sins, seven virtues) and secular connotations (seven planets, seven wonders of the ancient world).

In "The Magic Mountain" Thomas Mann takes this symbolism to a higher, indeed structural level.

Occurrences I noticed:
– The novel is divided into 7 chapters.
– There are 7 tables in the dining room.
– Hans Castorp stays at the Berghof international sanatorium for 7 years.
– Joachim and Hans Castorp keep their thermometers in their mouths for 7 minutes.
– Hans Castorp's room numbers add up to 7 (first 34 and then 43). When I visited Schatzalp, the former luxury sanatorium that is now a hotel, in October 2023, I was given Room 304.

Those I only discovered by reading Rodney Simmington's "Thomas Mann's The Magic Mountain: A Reader's Guide" (Cambridge, 2011):
– Settembrini contains the Italian word for 7 ("sette").
– HC receives his first bill after 7 days and has his first X-ray after 7 weeks.
– The names of several of the main characters have seven letters: Castorp, Ziemßen, Clawdia, Behrens, um...
– HC exchanges glances with Clawdia Chauchat 7 times before they have sex after 7 months.

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