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Quote #4

"Praise the Lord," they sighed, "he's ours!" (8)

The villagers are united in claiming the drowned man collectively,

Quote #5

At the final moment it pained them to return him to the waters as an orphan and they chose a father and mother from among the best people, and aunts and uncles and cousins, so that through him all the inhabitants of the village became kinsmen. (12)

This is a key line in the story. The drowned man demonstrates that mythology has the ability to bring together a society through common beliefs and hopes.

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