The River Between

by

Ngugi wa Thiong’o

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Mugo is a Gikuyu seer of generations past who prophesied about the arrival of the white people and the threat that they posed to the tribe. He also prophesied of a Gikuyu savior who would come down from the hills and save the tribe from the white people. Chege and Waiyaki are Mugo’s direct descendants, which Chege believes must mean that Waiyaki is the prophesied savior.
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Mugo Character Timeline in The River Between

The timeline below shows where the character Mugo appears in The River Between. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Colonialism Theme Icon
Tradition vs. Progress Theme Icon
Unity and Division Theme Icon
...stronger, since many heroes rose from its people over the years, including a seer named Mugo who prophesied that “people with clothes like butterflies” would invade their land. But the Gikuyu... (full context)
Chapter 2
Colonialism Theme Icon
Christianity, Tribal Customs, and Identity Theme Icon
Tradition vs. Progress Theme Icon
...has one wife remaining. Chege is wise, and many villagers believe he is a seer, Mugo’s successor. For years, Chege warns the other villagers of the growing threat of the white... (full context)
Chapter 5
Colonialism Theme Icon
Christianity, Tribal Customs, and Identity Theme Icon
Tradition vs. Progress Theme Icon
...created Gikuyu and Mumbi as the “father and mother of our tribe.” After them came Mugo the seer, who had visions of many butterflies arriving and “disrupting the peace and ordered... (full context)
Colonialism Theme Icon
Christianity, Tribal Customs, and Identity Theme Icon
Tradition vs. Progress Theme Icon
...the ridges rejected his own warnings about the missionaries in Siriana, just as they rejected Mugo’s prophecy of the butterflies. Mugo also prophesied that a savior would come from their family,... (full context)
Chapter 9
Colonialism Theme Icon
Christianity, Tribal Customs, and Identity Theme Icon
Tradition vs. Progress Theme Icon
Unity and Division Theme Icon
...this happens, he will be able to trust that Waiyaki will do the work that Mugo started; Waiyaki will defeat the white people by using their own knowledge against them. However,... (full context)
Chapter 18
Christianity, Tribal Customs, and Identity Theme Icon
Tradition vs. Progress Theme Icon
Unity and Division Theme Icon
...more experienced. He would even be happier if Kamau led rather than Waiyaki. Kabonyi knows Mugo’s prophecy and fears that Waiyaki may actually be their foretold savior. (full context)