Complete summary of Stephen Vincent Benét’s By the Waters of Babylon. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of By the Waters of Babylon. The great river in the story “By the Waters of Babylon” is the Hudson River. The Hudson River is the river separating parts of New York from New Jersey. By the Waters of Babylon has ratings and 44 reviews. Corinne said: By the Waters of Babylon is a really well written story, with so many effects go.

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I would recommend this book to anyone who not only enjoys science-fiction, but would like to see the roots of the science-fiction genre. The lock of it was broken and I opened it and went in. No trivia or quizzes yet.

By the Waters of Babylon by Stephen Vincent Benét

I did not like that. Its name is Ou-dis-sun, the Sacred, the Long. John faces some obstacles during his journey to the forbidden place in the east, but he successfully overcomes them and reaches his destination. I have always thought about that.

By the Waters of Babylon

I feel like this story is complete from the beginning to the end and contains everything to make it an excellent one. There was a roaring in my ears like the rushing of rivers.

I have come to the great river. I said aloud, “I am a priest and the son of a priest!

It was just kinda blah. They are the men.

I do not know the customs of rivers—we are the People of the Hills. I looked about me—not far away there was a great, broken god-road, leading north. They are hard to learn. I got that part. There was drink, too, in bottles of glass—the drink of the gods was strong and made my head swim.

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Now I tell what is very strong magic.

It was magic what they could do—it was magic what they did. The story ends with John stating his conviction that, once he becomes the head priest, “We must build again. Dec 31, Kirsten rated it liked it. Then the towers began to fall. At least, we make a beginning. The bones are light and old—sometimes they will fall into dust if you touch them. I looked at the bones in the shadow and kept my voice still. Nor were there many trees in that wilderness of stone. And, when I am chief priest we shall go beyond the great river.

My voice sounded thin in my ears but that was because of the smoke.

By the Waters of Babylon – Wikipedia

A hte story that provides so many great ideas that contrast bby our real world these days, regarding the beliefs of the people of the hill, and the external and internal conflicts that john was having throughout the story. But when I started to climb down, I heard the squeaking of rats, so I did not go—rats are unclean, and there must have been many tribes of them, from baby,on squeaking. This science-fiction story was decades ahead of its time, and it reminds me of other stories that were currently written, almost like they took ideas from this short story.

The book is very much ahead of its time, and I respect it for that. I was also impressed with how well thought out it was and how many clues there were to what was going on. When the raft was made, I said the sayings for the dead and benett myself for death.

The first room was a small ante-room—I waited there for some time, telling the spirits of the place that I came in peace and not as a robber.


The Forest People could have killed me without fight, if they had come upon me then, but they did not come. He had sat at his window, watching his city die—then he himself had died. Trivia About By the Waters of This story focuses on the main character, and narrator, John, who goes on an journey to finally fulfill what he has wanted all of his life view spoiler [ to become a priest hide spoiler ].

I saw them with wisdom beyond wisdom and knowledge beyond knowledge. Almost I would have gone down again and faced the dogs, but I did not. I have been in the fights with the Forest People—I have seen men die. Very great they were, and wonderful and broken—broken in the time of the Great Burning when the fire fell out of the sky.

He was a big dog, with a gray-brown coat, as big as a wolf. Do they like to be scared? At last, I came out upon an open place at the top of a cliff. Dec 05, Heather rated it it was amazing Shelves: But when I boasted or wept without a reason, he punished me more strictly than my brothers. In Edgar Pangborn wrote “The Music Master of Babylon”, [6] a post-apocalyptic story told from the point of view of a pianist living alone in a ruined New York City, and after decades of total isolation encountering two youths from a new culture which had arisen in the world, who come exploring the ruined city.

I grew angry then—my heart felt strong.