Author: Wright, Harold Bell
Genre: Culture
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This is the seventeenth book I have read of the nineteen that Wright wrote.  To be precise, this book was the fourteenth that he wrote, being published in 1929 by D. Appleton & Company.  Long Ago Told is one of the more rare HBW books and is worth much more than most of the others, especially an original edition which mine is.  This book is also the most different because it is not a western novel but a compilation of mythical stories of the Papago Indians whom Wright got to know through various friends.  I say mythological because they are stories of how the gods made the world and the things in it.  Some are similar to Greek mythology and some are more like Mother Goose or fairy tales.   In the introduction Wright doesn’t comment on whether these stories were accepted as true or real, he only states the desire to preserve the stories because they were not being passed on to future generations.  For me, this was the least enjoyable of the HBW books.  It obviously is not history, and it obviously is not creation truth.  The book does illustrate why we send missionaries to ancient tribes, to bring them truth that they need so badly.  I wished the book had ended with such an account, since Wright was a minister of sorts, but it did not.

 

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