Taboo

Taboo
A Legend Retold from the Dirghic of Sævius Nicanor, with Prolegomena, Notes, and a Preliminary Memoir

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Taboo by James Branch Cabell

Published:

1921

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Taboo
A Legend Retold from the Dirghic of Sævius Nicanor, with Prolegomena, Notes, and a Preliminary Memoir

By

4
(1 Review)

Book Excerpt

o eat: and therefore any such mention is an obscene libel."

4--How There Was Babbling in Philistia

Now Horvendile, yet in bewilderment, lamented, and he fled from the man of law. Thereafter, in order to learn what manner of writing was most honored by the Philistines, this Horvendile goes into an academy where the faded old books of Philistia were stored, along with yesterday's other leavings.

And as he perturbedly inspected these old books, one of the fifty mummies which were installed in this Academy of Starch and Fetters, with a hundred lackeys to attend them, spoke vexedly to Horvendile, saying, as it was the custom of these mummies to say, before this could be said to them, "I never heard of you before."

"Ah, sir, it is not that which is troubling me," then answered Horvendile: "but rather, I am troubled because the book of my journeying has been suspected of encroachment upon gastronomy. Now I notice your most sacred volume here begins with a very remarkable myth about the fruit of a tr

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An elaborate satire on censorship and pompous critics, complete with ancient, fabricated, footnotes. It is dedicated to an agent of the New York Society for the Suppression of Vice, whom the author credits with publicizing and popularizing his books.
It is the story of a clerk traveling through a country where a natural body function is considered obscene in literature, so is never mentioned. The clerk's diary runs afoul of the law.
I found it funny without being silly.