Fawcett, Lt Colonel Percival Harrison - He had the gift of tongues
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
The Lost City of Z – David Grann
'My experience is that few of these people are naturally 'bad,' unless contact with 'savages' from the outside world has made them so."
Fawcett vigorously opposed the destruction of indigenous cultures through colonization…. After he witnessed a tribe cannibalize one of its dead as part of a religious ceremony-the body "roasted over a big fire" and "cut up and divided amongst the various families"-Fawcett beseeched Europeans not to deplore the "elaborate ritual."
He hated to classify unacculturated Indians as "savages"-then the common terminology-and he noted that the kind, decent Echojas were "plain proofof how unjustified is the general condemnation of all the wild forest people."
Along with adopting lndian mores, he leamed to speak myriad indigenous languages.
"He knew the lndians as few white men have ever known them, and he had the gift of tongues," observed the adventure writer and Fawcett associate Thomas Charles Bridges. "Few men have ever possessed that gift to such a marked degree."
Costin, summing up Fawcett's relationship with the natives of the Amazon, said simply, "He understood them better than anyone."