Study Guide

A Canticle for Leibowitz Chapter 26

By Walter M. Miller, Jr.

Chapter 26

  • A cease-fire order is issued by the World Court of Nations (the future U.N.), and Zerchi wonders if he can believe anything he hears on the radio.
  • Zerchi shows Joshua a letter. The message basically means that Zerchi needs an answer from the brother now.
  • Although Joshua is willing, he isn't sure about accepting the priesthood.
  • Zerchi asks him to consider what he's made of, and gives him some extra time.
  • In the church, Zerchi gives the mission monks a pep talk about bringing the Memorabilia into space. That way, when humanity needs it again, it'll be there for them.
  • Also, when the going gets tough, the tough… blah blah blah.
  • Outside, Brother Joshua prays for a sign, and sees a snake instead.
  • Okay, maybe the snake was a sign. And maybe it wasn't. But he returns to Zerchi and accepts the offer.
  • With that, the monks charter a flight to New Rome, and Quo peregrinatur is underway.
  • Zerchi realizes that those who stayed behind truly have it easier. They simply have to wait (to die, probably) and pray.