The Boy Who Drew Cats

by Lafcadio Hearn

Start Free Trial

Why did the parents in "The Boy Who Drew Cats" take their son to the priest?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

According to the story, the parents took the boy to the priest because he wasn't suited for the rigors of farm work.

We are told that the boy's parents, a poor farmer and his wife, had many children. The parents had to rely on help from their children to complete chores on the farm. By the time he was fourteen, the oldest child could work alongside his father in the field. Meanwhile, his little sisters helped their mother at home; they did so almost as soon as they could walk.

However, the youngest child did not seem fit for hard work. He was unusually small and was weaker than the other children. Yet he had an advantage over the others: he was very intelligent. This led his parents to conclude that he would be better suited to the sedentary life of a priest. So, they brought their son to the village temple and asked the old priest to take the child on as an acolyte.

As for the priest, he decided to test the boy. For his part, the boy proved himself capable. He gave clever answers to the challenging questions the priest asked. In the end, the priest decided that he would train the young boy for the priesthood.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial