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AFor my part, I have no curiosity to see France,@ said Candide. AYou may easily conceive, my friend, that after spending a month in El Dorado, I can desire to behold nothing upon earth but Cunégonde. I am going to wait for her at Venice. I intend to pass straight through France on my way to Italy. Will you not bear me [email protected]

AWith all my heart,@ said Martin. AThey say Venice is agreeable to none but noble Venetians, but that, nevertheless, strangers are well received there when they have plenty of money. Now I have none, but you have; therefore I will attend you wherever you [email protected]

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AFor my part, I have no curiosity to see France,@ said Candide. AYou may easily conceive, my friend,
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ANow we are upon the subject of Venice,@ said Candide, Ado you think that the earth was originally all water, as we read in that great book which belongs to the captain of the [email protected]

AI believe nothing of it,@ replied Martin, Aany more than I do of the many other chimeras which have been related to us for some time [email protected]

ABut then, to what end,@ said Candide, Awas the world [email protected] ATo make us mad,@ said Martin.

AAre you not surprised,@ continued Candide, Aat the love which the two girls in the country of the

Oreillons had for those two monkeys? You knowBI have told you the [email protected]

[email protected] replied Martin, Anot in the least. I see nothing strange in this passion. I have seen so many extraordinary things that nothing is extraordinary to me [email protected]

ADo you think,@ said Candide, Athat mankind always massacred one another? Were they always guilty of lies, fraud, treachery, ingratitude, inconstancy, envy, ambition, and cruelty? Were they always thieves, fools, cowards, backbiters, gluttons, drunkards, misers, vilifiers, debauchees, fanatics, and [email protected]

ADo you believe,@ said Martin, Athat hawks have always been accustomed to eat pigeons when they came in their [email protected]

ADoubtless,@ said Candide.

AWell then,@ replied Martin, Aif hawks have always had the same nature, why should you suppose that mankind have changed [email protected]

AOh,@ said Candide, Athere is a great deal of difference; for, after all, free will . . . @ and reasoning on in this manner they arrived at Bordeaux.

Chapter 22 – What Happened to Candide and Martin in France

Candide stayed no longer at Bordeaux than was necessary to dispose of a few of the pebbles he had brought from El Dorado, and to provide himself with a post-chaise for two persons, for he could no longer stir a step without his philosopher Martin. The only thing that give him concern was being obliged to leave his sheep behind him, which he intrusted to the care of the Academy of Sciences at Bordeaux, who proposed, as a prize subject for the year, to prove why the wool of this sheep was red; and the prize was awarded to a northern sage, who demonstrated by A plus B, minus C, divided by Z, that the sheep must necessarily be red and must die of the mange. In the meantime, all travelers whom Candide met with in the inns, or on the road told him that they were going to Paris. This general eagerness gave him likewise a great desire to see this capital; and it was not much out of his way to Venice.

He entered the city by the Faubourg Saint-Marceau[footnoteRef:22] and thought himself in one of the vilest hamlets in all Westphalia. Candide had not been long at his inn, before he was seized with a slight disorder, owing to the fatigue he had undergone. As he wore a diamond of an enormous size on his finger and had among the rest of his equipage a strong box that seemed very weighty, he soon found himself between two physicians whom he had not sent for, a number of intimate friends whom he had never seen, and who would not quit his bedside, and two women devotees who were very careful in providing him hot broths. [22: In Voltaire=s day, one of the worst slums on the outskirts of Paris. ]

AI remember,@ said Martin to him, Athat the first time I came to Paris I was likewise taken ill. I was very poor, and accordingly I had neither friends, nurses, nor physicians, and yet I did very [email protected]

However, by dint of purging and bleeding, Candide=s disorder became very serious. The priest of the parish came with all imaginable politeness to give him a note to be delivered at the gate to the next world[footnoteRef:23]. Candide refused to accept this commission; but the women devotees assured him that it was a new fashion. Candide replied, that he was not one that followed the fashion. Martin was for throwing the priest out of the window. The priest swore that Candide should not have Christian burial. Martin swore in his turn that he would bury the priest alive if he continued to plague them any longer. The dispute grew warm; Martin took the priest by the shoulders and turned him out of the room, which gave great scandal, and developed into a case at law. [23: A reference to billets de confession, without which one could not be given last rites. ]

Candide recovered, and till he was in a condition to go abroad had a great deal of company to pass the evenings with him in his chamber. They gambled at cards. Candide was surprised to find he could never win a trick; Martin was not surprised at all.

Among those who did him the honors of the place was a little spruce abbé of Perigord, one of those insinuating, busy, fawning, impudent, necessary fellows, that lay wait for strangers on their arrival, tell them all the scandal of the town, and offer to minister to their pleasures at various prices. This man conducted Candide and Martin to the playhouse; they were acting a new tragedy. Candide found himself placed near a cluster of wits: this, however, did not prevent him from shedding tears at some parts of the piece which were most affecting, and best acted. One of these talkers said to him between acts, AYou are greatly to blame to shed tears; that actress plays horribly, and the man that plays with her still worse, and the piece itself is still more execrable than the representation. The author does not understand a word of Arabic, and yet he has laid his scene in Arabia, and what is more, he is a fellow who does not believe in innate ideas. Tomorrow I will bring you a score of pamphlets that have been written against [email protected][footnoteRef:24] [24: At this point in the book=s second edition (1761), Voltaire interpolated several pages of satire directed at some of his literary contemporaries. These pages are omitted here and a brief passage from the first edition is retained in their place. ]

ASir,@ said the abbé from Perigord, Ado you see that young woman with the lovely face and figure?

Well, she would cost only ten thousand francs a month, and for fifty thousand . . . @

AI could spare her only a day or two,@ said Candide. AI have an appointment to keep in [email protected]

The next night the abbé took up the subject again: ASo, sir, you have an engagement in [email protected]

AYes, Monsieur l’Abbé,@ answered Candide, AI must absolutely wait upon Cuné[email protected]; and then the pleasure he took in talking about the object he loved, led him insensibly to relate, according to habit, part of his adventures with that illustrious Westphalian beauty.

AI fancy,@ said the abbé, AMiss Cunégonde has a great deal of wit, and that her letters must be very [email protected]

AI never received any from her,@ said Candide; Afor you must consider that, being expelled from the castle upon her account, I could not write to her, especially as soon after my departure I heard she was dead; but thank God I found afterwards she was living. I left her again after this, and now I have sent a messenger to her near two thousand leagues from here, and wait here for his return with an answer from [email protected] The artful abbé let not a word of all this escape him, though he seemed to be musing upon something else. He soon took his leave of the two adventurers, after having embraced them with the greatest cordiality.

The next morning, almost as soon as his eyes were open, Candide received the following billet: AMy Dearest Lover: I have been ill in this city these eight days. I have heard of your arrival, and should fly to your arms were I able to stir. I was informed of your being on the way hither at Bordeaux, where I left the faithful Cacambo, and the old woman, who will soon follow me. The Governor of Buenos Aires has taken everything from me but your heart, which I still retain. Come to me immediately on the receipt of this. Your pres

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