He/she claims that the story is in the Leipzig edition of the book. however, Beckford’s book does not have any reference to the case that told in the story. The major theme of the story, as its title also implied, is the question of immortality/temporality. In that sense, the story reminds “Garden of Eden” in the Bible. The aim of this paper is to compare how the theme of immortality/ temporality is interwoven into the fabrics of both stories. Firstly, a brief account on the theme of immortality in the “Garden of Eden” story will be given. Then, the stories’ differences in regard to the theme will be discussed.
Before proceeding to the comparison, the question of immortality raised by the “Garden of Eden” story must be discussed. The question of what death is and whether Adam was made mortal holds a crucial place in biblical studies. The question of mortality/immortality is significant in a sense that it puts the authority of God in question while raising a suspicion that whether the snake was right. In Genesis 2: 15-17, God makes an arrangement with Adam and tells him that he will die if he eats of the tree of the knowledge:
The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, “but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”
It is very clear from the above passage that if they disobey God’s command, they will be punished by death sentence. On the other hand, when the serpent and Eve converse (3:1b-5), the serpent says to the woman “You will not surely die” and contradicts God’s commandment of “You shall surely die”. However, although they ate the fruit of the tree of knowledge, they did not die and God pronounces a different sentence in 3:14-19.