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Apocryphal Tales Paperback – April 1, 1997
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From Library Journal
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Top Customer Reviews
Apocryphal Tales is a journey through the history of the world. In a series of short stories from the discovery of fire through Napoleon, Capek presents a little vignette with a viewpoint slightly different from our received wisdom. The tales begin with the Punishment of Prometheus, in which Prometheus is sentenced to death for his discovery of fire. The grounds: blasphemy; damaging the property of others; and treason. Next, an old cave man bemoans the audacity and idleness of the younger generation, wasting their time drawing bison and other creatures on cave walls. A solider complains about Achilles' vain striving for glory in doing battle with Troy. Next we come across a letter from Alexander the Great to Aristotle in which he tries to explain to his old teacher that his desire to conquer the world is based purely on the need to more properly defend his small homeland. When one considers that this last piece was written in 1937 the tale is as much a cautionary note as it is a simple story. The Death of Archimedes is also prescient.Read more ›
Perhaps the most interesting tale Capek tells in this work is the story of "Five Loaves." This is about the biblical account of Jesus blessing five loaves of bread and feeding the crowd of five thousand with them. The story is told by an angry baker who first liked and in fact loved Jesus and His teaching, but when he saw how His miracle threatened his business he quickly changed is mind. It's brilliant and makes you think of biblical stories in a different light.
Not all the tales are as interesting as this one, but they are worth reading. Capek's writing in Czech is so brilliant that it's difficult to translate and not lose some of that brilliance.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
capek is a writer i'm currently reading in english translation - plan to read everything available. a truly great writer! Read morePublished 3 months ago by D. A. Fleming
Short historic episodes told with twists, written by the eminent Check writer Karel Chapek during 1920 to 1938. Clever and entertaining.Published 22 months ago by yoram weiss
I live in Prague when I am between jobs, and have been fortunate to visit the Capek house. I knew only that the Capek brothers invented the word ROBOT, and wrote children's books... Read morePublished on April 6, 2013 by Karen Campbell