By Willa Cather
Dying Comes for the Archbishop is a 1927 novel through American writer Willa Cather. It issues the makes an attempt of a Catholic bishop and a clergyman to set up a diocese in New Mexico Territory.
The novel relies at the lifetime of Jean-Baptiste Lamy (1814-1888), and in part chronicles the development of the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi. The seize of the Southwest through the U.S. within the Mexican–American struggle is the catalyst for the plot.
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The Faith planted by the Spanish friars and watered with their blood . . [Laguna] lying, apparently, in the midst of bright yellow waves of high sand dunes. . From the flat red sea of sand rose great rock mesas, generally Gothic in outline, resembling vast cathedrals. That olive-coloured plant [rabbit brush] that grows in high waves like a tossing sea . . The whole country seemed fluid to the eye . . facing a sea of junipers and cedars. . The hogan was isolated like a ship's cabin on the ocean .
He has murdered his own children. " When he celebrates Mass for the people of Ácoma, he feels as if he were at the bottom of the sea ministering to rock-turtles. He feels something reptilian. The next section, titled "Snake Root," continues the mood. A dark wind out of the past comes out of the storm cloud which drives Father Latour and Jacinto into the ancient ceremonial cave for refuge from the blizzard. A feeling of revulsion persists in the priest long after he has left the cave. He inquires and finds that possibly there are still human sacrifices; babies to feed the snake.
12. Defend the name "Golden Legend" for this book. 13. Discuss the symbolism of thirst, water, and the desert. 14. How does Cather use history to enrich the story? 15. To which of the five senses does this book appeal? Give illustrations. 16. One critic has said this book shows more interest in food than in religion. Discuss. 17. What problems confronted the priests when they came to New Mexico? Discuss at least three. 18. What European views on Americans are expressed? Are they valid? 19. Cather said that she did not want to play up incidents for all there was in them.