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One night, the exalted boar, Old Major , organizes a meeting, at which he calls for the overthrow of humans and teaches the animals a revolutionary song called " Beasts of England ". When Old Major dies, two young pigs, Snowball and Napoleon , assume command and stage a revolt, driving Mr. Jones off the farm and renaming the property "Animal Farm". They adopt the Seven Commandments of Animalism, the most important of which is, "All animals are equal".
The decree is painted in large letters on one side of the barn. Snowball teaches the animals to read and write, while Napoleon educates young puppies on the principles of Animalism. Food is plentiful, and the farm runs smoothly. The pigs elevate themselves to positions of leadership and set aside special food items, ostensibly for their personal health. Following an unsuccessful attempt by Mr.
Jones and his associates to retake the farm later dubbed the "Battle of the Cowshed" , Snowball announces his plans to modernize the farm by building a windmill. Napoleon enacts changes to the governance structure of the farm, replacing meetings with a committee of pigs who will run the farm.
Through a young pig named Squealer , Napoleon claims credit for the windmill idea, claiming that Snowball actually was only trying to win animals to his side. The animals work harder with the promise of easier lives with the windmill. When the animals find the windmill collapsed after a violent storm, Napoleon and Squealer convince the animals that Snowball is trying to sabotage their project and begin to purge the farm of animals Napoleon accuses of consorting with his old rival.
When some animals recall the Battle of the Cowshed, Napoleon who was nowhere to be found during the battle gradually smears Snowball to the point of saying he is a collaborator of Mr. Jones, even dismissing the fact that Snowball was given an award of courage while falsely representing himself as the main hero of the battle. Despite their hardships, the animals are easily placated by Napoleons retort that they are better off than they were under Mr.
Frederick, a neighbouring farmer, attacks the farm, using blasting powder to blow up the restored windmill. Although the animals win the battle, they do so at great cost , as many, including Boxer the workhorse , are wounded. Although he recovers from this, Boxer eventually collapses while working on the windmill being almost 12 years old at that point.
However, Napoleon had in fact engineered the sale of Boxer to the knacker, allowing him and his inner circle to acquire money to buy whisky for themselves. Years pass, the windmill is rebuilt, and another windmill is constructed, which makes the farm a good amount of income. However, the ideals that Snowball discussed, including stalls with electric lighting, heating, and running water, are forgotten, with Napoleon advocating that the happiest animals live simple lives.
In addition to Boxer, many of the animals who participated in the rebellion are dead or old. Jones, having moved away after giving up on reclaiming his farm, has also died. The pigs start to resemble humans, as they walk upright, carry whips, drink alcohol, and wear clothes. The Seven Commandments are abridged to just one phrase: "All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.
He abolishes the practice of the revolutionary traditions and restores the name "The Manor Farm". The men and pigs start playing cards, flattering and praising each other while cheating at the game. Both Napoleon and Mr. Pilkington, one of the farmers, play the Ace of Spades at the same time and both sides begin fighting loudly over who cheated first. When the animals outside look at the pigs and men, they can no longer distinguish between the two. He is an allegorical combination of Karl Marx , one of the creators of communism, and Vladimir Lenin , the communist leader of the Russian Revolution and the early Soviet nation, in that he draws up the principles of the revolution.
His skull being put on revered public display recalls Lenin, whose embalmed body was put on display. Napoleon — "A large, rather fierce-looking Berkshire boar, the only Berkshire on the farm, not much of a talker, but with a reputation for getting his own way".
His life parallels that of Leon Trotsky ,  but may also combine elements from Lenin. Rodden compares him to the poet Vladimir Mayakovsky. Humans Mr. Jones — A heavy drinker who is the original owner of Manor Farm, a farm in disrepair with farmhands who often loaf on the job.
He is an allegory of Russian Tsar Nicholas II ,  who abdicated following the February Revolution of and was murdered, along with the rest of his family, by the Bolsheviks on 17 July The animals revolt after Jones drinks so much he does not care for them. Frederick — The tough owner of Pinchfield, a small but well-kept neighbouring farm, who briefly enters into an alliance with Napoleon. The animals of Animal Farm are terrified of Frederick, as rumours abound of him abusing his animals and entertaining himself with cockfighting a likely allegory for the human rights abuses of Adolf Hitler.
Napoleon enters into an alliance with Frederick in order to sell surplus timber that Pilkington also sought, but is enraged to learn Frederick paid him in counterfeit money. Shortly after the swindling, Frederick and his men invade Animal Farm, killing many animals and destroying the windmill. The brief alliance and subsequent invasion may allude to the Molotov—Ribbentrop Pact and Operation Barbarossa. Pilkington — The easy-going but crafty and well-to-do owner of Foxwood, a large neighbouring farm overgrown with weeds.
Although on bad terms with Frederick, Pilkington is also concerned about the animal revolution that deposed Jones and worried that this could also happen to him. Whymper — A man hired by Napoleon to act as the liaison between Animal Farm and human society. At first, he is used to acquire necessities that cannot be produced on the farm, such as dog biscuits and paraffin wax , but later he procures luxuries like alcohol for the pigs.
Equines Boxer — A loyal, kind, dedicated, extremely strong, hard-working, and respectable cart-horse, although quite naive and gullible. He is shown to hold the belief that "Napoleon is always right.
Boxer has been compared to Alexey Stakhanov , a diligent and enthusiastic role model of the Stakhanovite movement. Mollie — A self-centred, self-indulgent, and vain young white mare who quickly leaves for another farm after the revolution, in a manner similar to those who left Russia after the fall of the Tsar.
Clover — A gentle, caring mare, who shows concern especially for Boxer, who often pushes himself too hard. Clover can read all the letters of the alphabet, but cannot "put words together".
She seems to catch on to the sly tricks and schemes set up by Napoleon and Squealer. Benjamin — A donkey, one of the oldest, wisest animals on the farm, and one of the few who can read properly. He is skeptical, temperamental, and cynical: his most frequent remark is, "Life will go on as it has always gone on—that is, badly. Similarly to Benjamin, Muriel is one of the few animals on the farm who is not a pig but can read.
The puppies — Offspring of Jessie and Bluebell, the puppies were taken away at birth by Napoleon and raised by him to serve as his powerful security force. Moses — The Raven, "Mr.
Jones into exile, he reappears several years later and resumes his role of talking but not working. Their constant bleating of "four legs good, two legs bad" was used as a device to drown out any opposition or alternate views from Snowball, much as Stalin used hysterical crowds to drown out Trotsky.
The hens — The hens are promised at the start of the revolution that they will get to keep their eggs, which are stolen from them under Mr.
However, their eggs are soon taken from them under the premise of buying goods from outside Animal Farm. The hens are among the first to rebel, albeit unsuccessfully, against Napoleon. The cows — The cows are enticed into the revolution by promises that their milk will not be stolen but can be used to raise their own calves. Their milk is then stolen by the pigs, who learn to milk them.
The cat — Never seen to carry out any work, the cat is absent for long periods and is forgiven because her excuses are so convincing and she "purred so affectionately that it was impossible not to believe in her good intentions. In the preface of a Ukrainian edition of Animal Farm, he explained how escaping the communist purges in Spain taught him "how easily totalitarian propaganda can control the opinion of enlightened people in democratic countries.
He was also upset about a booklet for propagandists the Ministry of Information had put out. The booklet included instructions on how to quell ideological fears of the Soviet Union, such as directions to claim that the Red Terror was a figment of Nazi imagination. I saw a little boy, perhaps ten years old, driving a huge carthorse along a narrow path, whipping it whenever it tried to turn. It struck me that if only such animals became aware of their strength we should have no power over them, and that men exploit animals in much the same way as the rich exploit the proletariat.
Publication Publishing Orwell initially encountered difficulty getting the manuscript published, largely due to fears that the book might upset the alliance between Britain, the United States, and the Soviet Union. Four publishers refused to publish Animal Farm, yet one had initially accepted the work, but declined it after consulting the Ministry of Information. During the Second World War , it became clear to Orwell that anti-Soviet literature was not something which most major publishing houses would touch—including his regular publisher Gollancz.
He also submitted the manuscript to Faber and Faber , where the poet T. Eliot said he found the view "not convincing", and contended that the pigs were made out to be the best to run the farm; he posited that someone might argue "what was needed Anti-Russian books do appear, but mostly from Catholic publishing firms and always from a religious or frankly reactionary angle.
Such flagrant anti-Soviet bias was unacceptable, and the choice of pigs as the dominant class was thought to be especially offensive.
It may reasonably be assumed that the "important official" was a man named Peter Smollett , who was later unmasked as a Soviet agent. The publisher wrote to Orwell, saying:  If the fable were addressed generally to dictators and dictatorships at large then publication would be all right, but the fable does follow, as I see now, so completely the progress of the Russian Soviets and their two dictators [Lenin and Stalin], that it can apply only to Russia, to the exclusion of the other dictatorships.
Another thing: it would be less offensive if the predominant caste in the fable were not pigs. I think the choice of pigs as the ruling caste will no doubt give offence to many people, and particularly to anyone who is a bit touchy, as undoubtedly the Russians are. Frederic Warburg also faced pressures against publication, even from people in his own office and from his wife Pamela, who felt that it was not the moment for ingratitude towards Stalin and the heroic Red Army ,  which had played a major part in defeating Adolf Hitler.
A Russian translation was printed in the paper Posev, and in giving permission for a Russian translation of Animal Farm, Orwell refused in advance all royalties.
A translation in Ukrainian, which was produced in Germany, was confiscated in large part by the American wartime authorities and handed over to the Soviet repatriation commission. Although the first edition allowed space for the preface, it was not included,  and as of June most editions of the book have not included it. For reasons unknown, no preface was supplied, and the page numbers had to be renumbered at the last minute. Other publishers were still declining to publish it.
Writing in the American New Republic magazine, George Soule expressed his disappointment in the book, writing that it "puzzled and saddened me. It seemed on the whole dull. The allegory turned out to be a creaking machine for saying in a clumsy way things that have been said better directly. It seems to me that a reviewer should have the courage to identify Napoleon with Stalin, and Snowball with Trotsky, and express an opinion favourable or unfavourable to the author, upon a political ground.
In a hundred years time perhaps, Animal Farm may be simply a fairy story, today it is a political satire with a good deal of point. In , the government made the decision to censor all online posts about or referring to Animal Farm.
For the Noahide code, see Seven Laws of Noah.
Kötelező olvasmányok #1 George Orwell: Állatfarm