Salt Lake City, UT. : Deseret Book Company, 1968. Third printing. Hardcover. 288 pages ; photographic illustrations ; 25 cm. Price-clipped dust jacket with minor rips around the dust jacket edges. Pages are unmarked and binding is firm.
Dr. Milton R. Hunter, author of Christ in Ancient America, brings into publication another best seller for Latter-day Saints, adding to a long list of successful publication: Brigham Young the Colonizer, The Mormons and the American Frontier, Utah and her Western Setting, and Archaeology and the Book of Mormon.
To each of these books Dr. Hunter has brought the wealth of his scholarship, his historical training, and his power as a researcher.
In Christ in Ancient America, Dr. Hunter evidences all of these rare qualities—plus an additional one: that of being able to ferret out little-known and almost totally unavailable material.
Dr. Hunter has not only read widely and intensively in this filed, he has also made many trips to the areas he discusses, familiarizing himself with the background and acquainting himself with the peoples. It is small wonder that with the training and study that Dr. Hunter has made of archaeology and the Book of Mormon as well as of other historical subjects he has been called to write over a hundred special articles for encyclopedias, for historical journals, for books, and for yearbook material.
The text has been beautifully enhanced by the 146 illustrations Dr. Hunter has gathered, two of which are four-color plates, nineteen duotones, and the rest in black and white. Christ in Ancient America is a work of art as well as a book that is of great informational and spiritual significance.
In addition to the tremendous amount of work he has done in his specialized field of work, Dr. Hunter has fulfilled his calling as a member of the First Council of the Seventy, a position to which he was called in April 1945.
Christ in Ancient America, tells of "the white and bearded God," whom the Indians worshiped, whether in Peru or Guatemala or Mexico, and who influenced their philosophy and shaped their history. Indeed, it is doubtful whether, without their worship of "the white and bearded God," the Spaniards could have conquered these areas. The Indians' tradition concerning the return of this white God whom the Spaniards resembled externally made the conquest a foregone conclusion. By the time the Indians learned of the internal differences between the God they remembered and the conquistadores who now swarmed over their shores, it was too late.
Dr. Milton R. Hunter makes his research fascinating and firsthand—as if the reader becomes an eyewitness—a rare quality for a historian to possess. From the few extant records of the period that escaped Spanish destruction, Dr. Hunter has painstakingly gleaned these beliefs of the Indians. And from up-to-the minute studies of Indian tradition, he has also determined the historicity of these legends —to bring to Latter-day Saints a greater understanding and appreciation of these earliest of Americans. Certainly, after we read Christ in Ancient America, Quetzalcoatl and Virachocha and Kon Tiki and Kukulkan assume greater significance as significant evidence that Christ did appear in the Western Hemisphere in the Meridian of Time.
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