A Canticle for Leibowitz : A novel by Walter M. Miller, Jr.
Philadelphia : J.B. Lippincott Company, 1959. Book club edition. Hardcover. 311 pages ; 22 cm. In original dust jacket with red cover boards and black title at spine. Owner name on flyleaf. Pages are clean and unmarked. Binding is firm.
From the Dust Jacket :
A CANTICLE FOR LEIBOWITZ BY WALTER M. MILLER, JR.
A Canticle for Leibowitz chronicles the slow and painful recovery of human civilization from near annihilation by thermonuclear war.
Isaac Edward Leibowitz, an obscure scientist, saw the destruction of his world in the Flame Deluge. Until his martyrdom at the hands of a crazed, book-burning mob, he had dedicated his life to the recovery and preservation of "pre-deluge" knowledge. Eventually, the Roman Church, one of the few organizations to survive the holocaust, made him a Saint and established an Abbey in his name to continue the important task of keeping safe the small remains of human knowledge.
Against ignorance, superstition, and savage barbarian hordes, the faithful Monks of Leibowitz cherish their scraps of truth and keep alive a tradition of scholarship in a world which regards mere literacy with deadly fear. Amid radioactive debris and roving bands of grotesque mutants, the Brothers give living witness to the belief that someday mankind will arise from the ruins of his own making.
After a Dark Age lasting centuries, the beginnings of a renaissance can be seen. Leibowitz Abbey begins to attract visitors. They come for diverse reasons. Some come for knowledge ... others want to obtain valuable books ... some await a Promised One ... some seek truth ... and others come to preserve another ancient tradition—that of war.
The spark nurtured for so long at Leibowitz Abbey at last kindles a flame of scientific and technological achievement. Starships journey forth to found colonies ... men and women no longer spend their entire lives toiling for a squalid existence ... and, to the dismay of the Church, nations again arise, arming themselves with the fearful engines of universal destruction.
The world still bears the scars of the Flame Deluge in seared wastelands and in the mutant flesh still being born. The next war will be the last. The Brothers of the Order of St. Leibowitz can only watch, pray and prepare for the unthinkable.
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