Origin Legend of the Navaho Flintway
Father Berard has made an indispensable bilingual volume available to the student of Navajo culture, language and ways-of-thought. Together with his Origin Legend of the Navaho Enemy Way it is the largest accumulation of recorded Navaho texts in existence, and the richest source of combined linguistic and ethnological data ever to be published. We find association of Navajo legendary material with archaeological sites in and outside of Navajo country. Father Berard and his informants have quite definitely identified the always mysterious Sun Temple of the Mesa Verde with the "home of flint”. The text contains a complete record of the songs and prayers of Flintway, the first to be published for any Navajo ceremonial. The text and translation are preceded by an extensive introduction and numerous ethnological notes and are followed by notes to the text and to the translation. In these sections one finds not only data specifically pertaining to Flintway, but enough material to give the reader a fair idea of Navajo ceremonialism as a whole. The legend itself concerns the adventures of a young hunter who, having had adulterous relations with the wife of White Thunder, was shattered by the latter. Gila Monster Man was employed to restore him; and the detailed description of the process makes up the Flintway ceremonial complex used to treat internal injuries and their effects.