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After finishing their survey of the library, they went down into the garden, when Candide commended the several beauties that offered themselves to his view.

AI know nothing upon earth laid out in such had taste,@ said Pococurante; Aeverything about it is childish and trifling, but I shall have another laid out tomorrow upon a nobler [email protected]

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As soon as our two travelers had taken leave of His Excellency, Candide said to Martin, AWell, I hope you will own that this man is the happiest of all mortals, for he is above everything he [email protected] ABut do not you see,@ answered Martin, Athat he likewise dislikes everything he possesses? As

Plato observed long ago, a poor stomach rejects all food without [email protected]

ATrue,@ said Candide, Abut still there must certainly be a pleasure in criticizing everything, and in perceiving faults where others think they see [email protected]

AThat is as much as to say,@ replied Martin, Athat there is pleasure in having no [email protected]

AWell, well,@ said Candide, AI find that I shall be the only happy man at last, when I am blessed with the sight of my dear Cuné[email protected]

AIt is good to hope,@ said Martin.

In the meanwhile, days and weeks passed away, and no news of Cacambo. Candide was so overwhelmed with grief, that he did not reflect on the behavior of Daisy and Friar Gillyflower, who never stayed to return him thanks for the presents he had so generously made them.

Chapter 26 – Candide and Martin Sup with Six Strangers and Who They Were

One evening as Candide, with his attendant Martin, was going to sit down to supper with some foreigners who lodged in the same inn where they had taken up their quarters, a man with a face the color of soot came behind him, and taking him by the arm, said, AHold yourself in readiness to go along with us; be sure you do not [email protected]

Upon this, turning about to see from whom these words came, he beheld Cacambo. Nothing but the sight of Cunégonde could have given him greater joy and surprise. He was almost beside himself, and embraced this dear friend.

ACuné[email protected] said he, ACunégonde is come with you doubtless! Where, where is she? Carry me to her this instant, that I may die with joy in her [email protected]

AMiss Cunégonde is not here,@ answered Cacambo; Ashe is in [email protected]

AGood heavens! in Constantinople! but no matter if she were in China, I would fly there. Quick, quick, dear Cacambo, let us be [email protected]

ASoft and fair,@ said Cacambo, Astay till you have supped. I cannot at present stay to say anything more to you; I am a slave and my master waits for me; I must go and attend him at table: but mum! say not a word, only get your supper, and hold yourself in [email protected]

Candide was divided between joy and grief, charmed to have thus met with his faithful servant again and surprised to hear he was a slave; his heart palpitating, his senses confused, but full of the hopes of recovering his dear Cunégonde, he sat down to table with Martin, who beheld all these scenes with great unconcern, and with six strangers, who had come to spend the Carnival at Venice.

Cacambo waited at table upon one of those strangers. When supper was nearly over, he drew near to his master, and whispered in his ear:

ASire, Your Majesty may go when you please; the ship is [email protected]; and so saying he left the room.

The guests, surprised, were looking at each other speechless when another servant, drawing near to his master, in like manner said, ASire, Your Majesty’s post-chaise is at Padua, and the bark is [email protected] The master made him a sign, and he instantly withdrew.

The company all stared at each other again, and the general astonishment was increased. A third servant then approached another of the strangers, and said, ASire, if Your Majesty will be advised by me, you will not make any longer stay in this place; I will go and get everything [email protected]; and instantly disappeared.

Candide and Martin then took it for granted that this was some of the diversions of the Carnival, and that these were characters in masquerade. Then a fourth domestic said to the fourth stranger, AYour Majesty may set off when you [email protected]; saying which, he went away like the rest. A fifth valet said the same to a fifth master. But the sixth domestic spoke in a different style to the person on whom he waited, and who sat near to Candide.

ATruly, sir,@ said he, Athey will advance no more credit to Your Majesty, nor to me either; and we may both of us be sent to jail this very night; I shall take care of myself, and so [email protected]

The servants being all gone, the six strangers, with Candide and Martin, remained in a profound silence. At length Candide broke it by saying:

AGentlemen, this is a very singular joke upon my word; how came you all to be kings[footnoteRef:27]? For my part I own frankly that neither my friend Martin here, nor myself, have any claim to [email protected] Cacambo’s master then began, with great gravity, to deliver himself thus in Italian: [27: Voltaire has taken some liberties with his dates in crowding all these high personages into an inn on the same evening, for they were not exactly contemporaries but his readers would recognize who they were and would acknowledge their histories. ]

AI am not joking in the least, my name is Achmet III. I was Grand Sultan for many years; I dethroned my brother, my nephew dethroned me, my viziers lost their heads, and I am condemned to end my days in the old seraglio. My nephew, the Grand Sultan Mahomet, gives me permission to travel sometimes for my health, and I am come to spend the Carnival at [email protected] A young man who sat by Achmet, spoke next, and said:





My name is Ivan. I was once Emperor of all the Russians, but was dethroned in my cradle. My parents were confined, and I was brought up in a prison, yet I am sometimes allowed to travel, though always with persons to keep a guard over me, and I come to spend the Carnival at [email protected] The third said:

AI am Charles Edward, King of England; my father has renounced his right to the throne in my favor. I have fought in defense of my rights, and near a thousand of my friends have had their hearts taken out of their bodies alive and thrown in their faces. I have myself been confined in a prison. I am going to Rome to visit the King, my father, who was dethroned as well as myself; and my grandfather and I have come to spend the Carnival at [email protected] The fourth spoke thus:

AI am the King of Poland; the fortune of war has stripped me of my hereditary dominions. My father experienced the same vicissitudes of fate. I resign myself to the will of Providence, in the same manner as Sultan Achmet, the Emperor Ivan, and King Charles Edward, whom God long preserve; and I have come to spend the Carnival at [email protected] The fifth said:

AI am King of Poland also. I have twice lost my kingdom; but Providence has given me other dominions, where I have done more good than all the Sarmatian kings put together were ever able to do on the banks of the Vistula; I resign myself likewise to Providence; and have come to spend the Carnival at [email protected]

It now came to the sixth monarch’s turn to speak. AGentlemen,@ said he, AI am not so great a prince as the rest of you, it is true, but I am, however, a crowned head. I am Theodore, elected King of Corsica. I have had the title of Majesty, and am now hardly treated with common civility. I have had my image on money and am not now worth a single penny. I have had two secretaries, and I am now without a valet. I was once seated on a throne, and since then have lain upon a truss of straw, in a common jail in London, and I very much fear I shall meet with the same fate here in Venice, where I came, like Your Majesties, to divert myself at the [email protected]

The other five Kings listened to this speech with great attention; it excited their compassion; each of them made the unhappy Theodore a present of twenty sequins, and Candide gave him a diamond, worth just a hundred times that sum.

AWho can this private person be,@ said the five Kings to one another, Awho is able to give, and has actually given, a hundred times as much as any of [email protected]

Just as they rose from table, in came four more Serene Highnesses, who had also been stripped of their territories by the fortune of war and had come to spend the remainder of the Carnival at Venice. But Candide took no manner of notice of them; for his thoughts were wholly employed on his voyage to Constantinople, where he intended to go in search of his lovely Cunégonde.

Chapter 27 – Candide’s Voyage to Constantinople

The trusty Cacambo had already engaged the captain of the Turkish ship that was to carry Sultan Achmet back to Constantinople to take Candide and Martin on board. Accordingly they both embarked, after paying their obeisance to his miserable Highness. As they were going on board, Candide said to Martin:

AYou see we supped in company with six dethroned Kings, and to one of them I gave charity. Perhaps there may be a great many other princes still more unfortunate. For my part I have lost only a hundred sheep, and am now going to fly to the arms of my charming Cunégonde. My dear Martin, I must insist on it, that Pangloss was in the right. All is for the [email protected] AI wish it may be,@ said Martin.

ABut this was an odd adventure we met with at Venice. I do not think there ever was an instance before of six dethroned monarchs supping together at a public [email protected]

This is not more extraordinary,@ said Martin, Athan most of what has happened to us. It is a very common thing for kings to be dethroned; and as for our having the honor to sup with six of them, it is a mere accident, not deserving our [email protected]

As soon as Candide set his foot on board the vessel, he flew to his old friend and valet Cacambo and, throwing his arms about his neck, embraced him with transports of joy.

AWell,@ said he, Awhat news of Cunégonde? Does she still continue the paragon of beauty? Does she love me still? Is she well? You have, doubtless, purchased a superb palace for her at [email protected] AMy dear master,@ replied Cacambo, AMiss Cunégonde washes dishes on the banks of the Propontis, in the house of a prince who has very few to wash. She is at present a slave in the family of a onetime king named Ragotsky, whom the Grand Turk now allows three crowns a day to maintain him in his exile; but the saddest thing of all is that she is turned horribly [email protected]

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