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The Diary of a Young Girl | Study Guide

Anne Frank

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Course Hero. "The Diary of a Young Girl Study Guide." Course Hero. 12 Jan. 2017. Web. 8 June 2023. <>.

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Course Hero. "The Diary of a Young Girl Study Guide." January 12, 2017. Accessed June 8, 2023.


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The Diary of a Young Girl | Symbols


Though diarists don't often use symbolism, certain emotional touchstones turn up regularly in The Diary of a Young Girl and help convey Anne Frank's experiences and thoughts.

Chestnut Tree

Anne comes to cherish the only tree she can see from her confined space. "Our chestnut tree is in full bloom," she writes on May 13, 1944. "It's covered with leaves and is even more beautiful than last year." For someone trapped indoors, the tree provides natural beauty and marks the passing of the seasons. More importantly, it provides a sense of permanence. Anne's world is painfully changed, but the tree is always there.


When Anne and her family move into the Secret Annex, they're forced to leave their cat, Moortje, behind for a neighbor. For Anne, this is a terrible loss. "I miss her every minute of the day, and no one knows how often I think of her; whenever I do, my eyes fill with tears," she writes on July 12, 1942. The cats in the Secret Annex not only keep away rats, they provide affection and occasional humor, and are integral participants in the lives of the residents.

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