The Wisdom of Father Brown

A Collection of Short Stories

G. K. Chesterton

Whitaker House (publisher)

"Wherever you find men ruled merely by mystery, it is the mystery of iniquity. If the devil tells you something is too fearful to look at, look at it. If he says something is too terrible to hear, hear it. If you think some truth unbearable, bear it." G. K. Chesterton. The Wisdom of Father Brown, "The Purple Wig."

In this 1914 sequel to G. K. Chesterton's The Innocence of Father Brown, we find the tenacious little priest hounding thieves, traitors, and killers throughout England, and even to France and Italy. Here are eleven more cases featuring Father Brown, a priest turned detective who combines philosophical and spiritual reasoning with scientific observation to solve crimes. In doing so, Chesterton laid the foundation for future detective figures in literature, such as Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple, Ellery Queen, and Nero Wolfe.

Unlike other writers of his time, who concocted outlandish crimes and intricate puzzles for the protagonist to solve, Chesterton pioneered the cozy mystery, narrowing the scope of the investigation to limited time, limited space, and a limited number of suspects, with all of the clues revealed to the reader, as well as to the detective.

Chesterton is highly regarded as a biting social commentator, and his humorous and insightful comparisons leave readers reeling. The tales in this collection are short, easy reads with strong plots, all connected by the clever cleric's intuitive understanding of the dark side of human nature.

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