It is the unfortunate tendency of literary habits to enamour the studious of the seclusion of the closet, and to render them more conversant with the philosophy and erudition of bye-gone times, than with the sentiments and feelings of their fellow-men. Their knowledge of the world is, in a great measure, derived from books, not from an acquantance with its active duties; and the consequence is that when they venture into its busy haunts, they bring with them a spirit of uncompromising independence, which arrays itself at once against every prejudice they have to encounter: such a spirit is but ill calculated to disarm the hostility of any casual opponent, or in the circle where it is exhibited <to buy golden opinions> of any <sorts of people>. If the felictious example of the poet of the drawing room [poeta de câmara] seduces them into the haunts of fashionable life, they find themselves still less in their element; the effort to support the dignity of genius in a common-place conversation costs them, perhaps, more fatigue than the composition of half a volume would occasion in their study. Or if any congenial topic engage attention, they may have the good sense to subdue their ardour, and endeavour to assume an awkward air of fashionable nonchalance; they may attempt to be agreable, they may seem to be at ease, but they are on the stilts of literary abstraction all the time, and they cannot bow them down to kiss the crimson robe of good society with graceful homage. But these are minor inconveniences that arise from long indulgence in literary habits; the graver ones are those that arise from impartial health and depressed spirits, the inevitable consequence of excessive mental application. Waywardness of temper, testiness of humour and capriciousness of conduct result from this depression; and under such circumstances the errors of genius are estimated too often by their immediate consequences, without any reference to predisposing causes. The fact is the carriage of genius is unlikely to conciliate strangers, while its faibles are calculated to weary even friends, and its very glory to make bitter rivals of its contemporaries and comrades.

Accordingly we find that its ashes are hardly cold before its failties are raked up from the tomb, and baited at the ring of biography, till the public taste is satiated with the sport. It is only when its competitors are gathered to their fathers, and the ephemeral details of trivial feuds, of petty faibles, and private scandal are buried with their authors that the conduct of genius begins to be understood, and its character to be fairly represented.”

It was nearly a quarter of a century before <the malignant principles of Milton> gave the world sufficient time to ascertain there was such a poem in existence as Paradise Lost. Only 3,000 copies of it were sold in 11 years, while 8,000 copies of a modern novel have been disposed of in as many days; but we need not go back to the age of Milton for evidence of the tardy justice that is done to genius. Ten years ago the indiscretions of Shelly had rendered his name an unmentionable one to ears polite; but there is a reaction in public opinions, and whatever were his follies, his virtues are beginning to be known, and his poetry to be justly appreciated.”

Ser um poeta na verdadeira acepção da palavra é tão desesperador quanto ser um crente genuíno. A única coisa que você pode ter certeza é da sua danação, caso alguns requisitos se manifestem neste mundo; mas da salvação, da salvação você jamais terá provas ou certezas! O poeta não ruim, mas ao menos medíocre, se tornará famoso até o dia de sua morte, sabendo que nunca será considerado um poeta atemporal. O poeta que estiver entre os melhores do seu século morrerá nessa dúvida agoniante: não fui reconhecido porque os homens ainda não estavam prontos ou realmente jamais serei sequer mencionado ou lembrado? O gênio, por mais gênio, não consegue descobrir se é gênio ou farsante. Apenas pode saber, pela falta de fama imediata, que não é um poeta comum, mas pode ser um péssimo poetastro ou, quem sabe, um grande poeta que o destino se encarregará de enterrar na obscuridade pela perda e sumiço de seus manuscritos… Ambos destinos igualmente distantes do legado de um Goethe…

Os juízes (a crítica), o Radamanto das Musas Contemporâneas, são justamente do filão dos medíocres. Não é que os juízes condenem Byron, é que nem sequer o percebem digno de julgamento; ou sequer o percebem… Quanto aos amigos íntimos, também eruditos e poetas provavelmente, eles alimentarão apenas a indústria da fofoca, pois conhecerão os defeitos do temperamento poético do falecido amigo mais do que ninguém.

Suicide might, indeed, have well had its horrors for that bard, who was even a more sensitive man than <the melancholy Cowley>, when he was informed that one of his best-natured friends was only waiting for the opportunity to write his life.”

The Pythoness, we are told, was but a pitiable object when removed from the inspiration of the tripod, and the man of genius is, perhaps, no less divested of the attributes of his greatness when he is taken from his study, or followed in crowded circles.”

MAGNYFIYNG MALYGNYTI MYRROR: “But when biography is made the vehicle, not only of private scandal, but of that minor malignity of truth, which holds, as it were, a magnifying mirror to every naked imperfection of humanity, which possibly had never been discovered had no friendship been violated, no confidence been abused, and no errors exaggerated by the medium through which they have been viewed, it ceases to be a legitimate inquiry into private character or public conduct, and no infamy is comparable to that of magnifying the faults, or libelling the fame of the illustrious dead.”

Blame not the world for such curiosity about its great ones; this comes of the world’s old-established necessity to worship. – Blame it not, pity it rather with a certain loving respect. Nevertheless, the last stage of human perversion, it has been said, is when sympathy corrupts itself into envy, and the indestructible interest we take in men’s doings has become a joy over their faults and misfortunes; this is the last and lowest stage – lower than this we cannot go. In a word, that species of biography which is written for contemporaries, and not for posterity, is worse than worthless. It would be well for the memory of many recent authors if their injudicious friends had made a simple obituary serve the purpose of a history.”

It is rarely the lot of the wayward child of genius to have a Currie for his historian”

It is greatly to be regretted that eminent medical men are not often to be met with literary attainments as well as professional ability for undertakings of this kind [biography a dead poet].”

MISANTHROPHY: “It is not amongst the Harveys, the Hunters, or the Heberdens of our country, or indeed amongst the enlightened physicians of any other, that we must look for the disciples of a gloomy misanthropy.”

In spite of all the Rochefoucaults, who have libelled humanity –, in spite of all the cynics, who have snarled at its character, our tendency is to love mankind.” “It is to the practical and thorough knowledge of human nature which the physician attains by the exercise of his art that the active benevolence and general liberality which peculiarly distinguishes the medical profession is mainly to be attributed.”

The literary man who indulges in habits prejudicial to his health, cannot be supposed ignorant of the effects that must arise from excessive application; and who can say he is guiltless of the infirmities he drags upon him?”

The studious man sets out with stealing an hour or two from his ordinary repose: sometimes perhaps more; and finished by devoting whole nights to his pursuits. But this night-work leads to exhaustion, and the universal sense of sinking in every organ that accompanies it suggests the use of stimulants, most probably wine {!}; alcohol, however, in some shape or other. And what is the result? – why, the existence that is passed in a constant circle of excitement and exhaustion is shortened, or rendered miserable by such alternations; and the victim becomes accessory to his own sufferings.”

if the proteiform symptoms of dyspepsia at last make their appearance, and the innumerable anomalous sufferings which, under the name of nervous and stomachic ailments, derange the viscera, and rack the joints of the invalid; if by constant application the blood is continually determined to the brain, and the caliber of the vessels enlarged to the extent of causing pressure or effusion in that vital organ; in any case, if the mischief there is allowed to proceed slowly and steadily, perhaps for years (as in the case of Swift), giving rise to a long train of nervous miseries – to hypochondria in its gloomiest form, or mania in its wildest mood, or paralysis in the expressionless aspect of fatuity [arrogância] (that frequent termination of the literary career); who can deny that the sufferer has, in a great measure, drawn the evil on himself, but who will not admit that his infirmities of mind and body are entitled to indulgence and compassion?”

Misled by fancy’s meteor ray,

By passion driven,

But yet the light that led astray,

Was light from heaven.”



A distinction has been made between literary men and men of letters; the former title has been given to authors, the latter to the general scholar and lover of science. In these volumes the term literary is applied to all persons who make books the business of their lives, or who are addicted to studious habits; and our observations apply to those who think too much on any subject, whether that subject be connected with legal, polemical or medical erudition.”

It surely is not the least advantage of literary employment that it enables us to live in a state of blissful ignorance of our next-door neighbour’s fortune, faith and politics; that it produces a state of society which admits of no invasion on domestic privacy, and furnishes us with arms against ennui, which supersede the necessity of a standing army of elderly female moralists, and domestic politicians. In large cities, at least, literature occupies the ground which politics and scandal keep possession of in small ones; in the time of Tacitus, the evil was common to the communities of both:

Vitium parvis magnisque civitatibus commune

Ignorantium et invidiam.

Leisure, it seems, had no better occupation ere <the art of mutiplying manuscripts through the intervention of machinery> was discovered. But in these days of book-publishing celebrity, when the Press pours volumes on the twon with the velocity of Perkin’s steam-gun, one has hardly sufficient leisure to acquire a knowledge even of the names of those <dread counterfeits> of dead men’s thoughts, which living plagiarism is continually recasting and sending forth.”

if we delude ourselves with the idea that we exert any happy influence over our country, or our own peace, by the unceasing agitation of political questions, we have formed a mistaken notion of our duties, as well as of our recreations.” A alegria do cultivado já era pouca; aí o povo pediu pela deterioração irremediável de toda a ordem social, e nos contaminou com problemas diários evitáveis no que concernisse a nós mesmos. Gastamos excessiva energia mental apenas ansiando não perder nosso sustento, não perder nossa (exígua) liberdade de expressão artística responsável, enfim, as condições mínimas para um escritor viver. Não sobra muita para nosso próprio trabalho.

If the tea-table has ceased to be the terrible areopagus of village politics, where private reputation used formerly to be consigned to the tender mercies of maiden gentle-women and venerable matrons, whose leisure had no other occupation – it is because literature has afforded them an employment more pleasing to themselves, and less injurious to others.”

The military man is well aware that the days of Ensign Northerton are long gone by, and that it has ceased to be the fashion to shoot maledictions at literature, even through the sides of Homer.”

leisure without books is the sepulture of the living soul.” Seneca

A comunidade das letras não tem partido, não tem nação; é uma pura República, em perpétua paz; o sossego não é atrapalhado por malícia doméstica, ou por assaltos estrangeiros; as perturbações não são provocadas por gritos de facção ou animosidade pública; a falsidade é o único inimigo denunciado pelos seus habitantes; a Verdade e seu ministro, a Razão, são os únicos guias que merecem crédito.”


the progress of crime is in a direct ratio with the pace of <the schoolmasters>”

Festus told St. Paul that much learning had made him mad (…) Machiavel forbade princes to addict themselves to learning.”

few have left their names to posterity without some appeal to future candour from the perverseness of malice of their own times.”

It is indeed so seductive a pursuit, that the wear and tear of mind and body produce no immediate weariness, and at the moment no apparent ills. But study has no sabbath, the mind of the student has no holiday (…) he works his brain as if its delicate texture was an imperishable material which no excess was capable of injuring”

other men look to their tools – a painter will wash his pencils, a smith will look to his hammer, a husbandman will mind his plough-irons, a huntsman will have a care of his hounds, a musician of his lute – scholars alone neglect that instrument which they daily use, by which they range over the world, and which, by study, is much consumed.”


The nervous energy is so much a part and parcel of the vital principle, their union is so intimate, that whether they stand in the relation of cause and effect, or are different names only for the same essence, they cannot be separately considered.”

Nothing of it that doth fade

But doth suffer a sea change

Into something rare and strange.”

The body is allowed to have its transformations, but the mind is not worthy of a transmigration, not even to be portioned among the worms which have their being in our forms.”

V. (continuação)

On a frosty day, for one melancholy mien we observe, we meet a hundred faces, the hilarity of whose expression is due to no other cause than that which has been just named.”

O fetiche da eletricidade! Capítulo estranho da obra…


Every class of genius has distinct habits; all poets resemble one another, as all painters and all mathematicians. There is a conformity in the cast of their minds, and the quality of each is distinct from the other: the very faculty which fits them for one particular pursuit is just the reverse required for the other.” D’Israeli

They are not so much injured by study who only covet to know what others knew before them, and reckon it the best way to make use of other people’s madness, as Pliny says of those who do not take the trouble to build new houses, but rather buy and live in those that are built by other people.”

Keats wrote several pieces before he was 15, and only reached his 25th year.”

The lady Dante celebrated in his poems under the name of Beatrice he fell in love with at the age of 10, and his enthusiasm terminated with life at 56.”


No common error is attended with worse consequences to the children of genius than the practice of dragging precocious talent into early notice, of encouraging its growth in the hot-bed of parental approbation, and of endeavouring to give the dawning intellect the precocious maturity of that fruit which ripens and rots almost simultaneously.”

Michelângelo e Ticiano viveram 96 anos, quase o triplo de Rafael!

Brincadeira do sortilégio: a média entre todas as profissões levantadas por Madden, com vários nomes (como Beard já nos trouxe em AMERICAN NERVOUSNESS), será a idade de minha morte: 66. Poetas, como sempre, na lanterna – mina sorte é ser polímata!




Though law has occasionally to do with fiction, it is only in Ireland that it has to deal with fancy [!!]”

Though the condition of all men too busily employed is miserable, yet are they most miserable who have not leisure to mind their own affairs.” Xilander

It is an ugly custom we have brought into use of getting into a coach every foot we have to go: if we did but walk the ¼ part of the distance that we ride in a day, the evils of our sedentary habits might be greatly obviated by such exercise.”

Another unseasonable annoyance of ours, is to be interrupted in our meals by business; and Hippocrates condemns all study soon after meals, especially in those of a bad digestion.”

the latter days are the lawyer’s only holidays.”

every dramatist must be a poet, but many of the greatest poets have proved very indifferent dramatists.”

Se um gênio aparecesse, quantos anos você trocaria por livros, provado que cada livro valesse um ano de sua vida?


He that condemns himself to compose on a stated day, will often bring to his ask an attention dissipated, a memory embarrassed, a mind distracted with anxieties, a body languishing with disease; he will labour on a barren topic till it is too late to change it; for in the ardor of invention, his thoughts become diffused into a wild exuberance which the pressing hour of publication cannot suffer judgment to examine or reduce.”

There is, indeed, no labour more destructive to health than that of periodical literature, and in no species of mental application, or even of manual employment, is the wear and tear of mind and body so early and so severely felt.

But with the novelist it is far different; they have their attention devoted, perhaps for months, to one continued subject, and that subject neither dry nor disagreeable. They have no laborious references to make to other books, they have to burthen their memories with no authorities for their opinions, nor to trouble their brain with the connexion of any lengthened chain of ratiocination.”

Scott seldom exceeded 15 pages a day, but even this for a continuance was a toilsome task, that would have broken down the health of any other constitution at a much earlier period.” “Pope boasts in one of his letters of having finished 50 lines of his Homer in one day; and it would appear to be the largest number he had accomplished.”


But seclusion from the world, and sedentary habits, can alone enable the philologist to make his memory the store-house of the erudition of past ages, or furnish the necessary materials for that vast pyramid of classical erudition, which is based on a catacomb of ancient learning, and has its apex in a cloud that sheds no rain on the arid soil beneath it.”

Languages are but the avenues of learning, and he who devoted his attention to the formation of the pebbles that lay along the road, will have little leisure for the consideration of more important objects, whose beauty or utility arrest the attention of the general observer.”


Finally, we have to observe the extraordinary difference in the longevity of the musical composers and that of the artists. We find the amount of life in the list of the sculptors and painters larger (…) than in that of the votaries of Euterpe [musa].”

The term genus irritabile deserves to be transferred from the poetical to the musical tribe; for we take it that an enraged musician is a much more common spectacle than an irritated bard, and infinitely more rabid in his choler.

Generally speaking, musicians are the most intolerant of men to one another, the most captious, the best humoured when flattered, and the worst tempered at all other times.”

It has been truly observed by an intelligent traveller that what the ancient poets fancied in verse, the sculptors formed in marble; what the priests invented afterwards in their cells, the painters have perpetuated on canvass.

The sublimest effort of pictorial art that can be adduced in favour of the received opinion of the inventive genius of painting is that wonderful picture of the Last Judgment, by Michael Angelo.”

Juízo final, MichelangeloJuízo final, Michelangelo (detalhe central)


What medical man has attended at the death-bed of the scholar, or the studious man, and has not found death divested of half its terrors by the dignified composure of the sufferer, and his state one of peace and serenity, compared with the abject condition of the unenlightened mind in the same extremity?”

A German entertains his fate, in his dying moments, more like a philosopher than a Frenchman. And, of all places in the world, the capital of Turkey is it, where we have seen death present the greatest terrors, and where life has been most unwillingly resigned. The Arabs, on the other hand, professing the same religion as the Turks, differ from them wholly in this respect, and meet death with greater indifference than the humbler classes of any other country, Mahomedan or Christian.”

In various epidemics in the East, we have had occasion to observe the striking difference in the conduct of both in their last moments, and especially in the expedition of Ibrahim Pasha to the Morea, when hundreds were dying daily in the camp at Suda. There the haughty Moslem went to the society of his celestial houries like a miserable slave, while the good humoured Arab went like a hero to his long last home. The difference in their moral qualities, and the mental superiority the Egyptian over the Turk, made all the distinction.

The result of the observation of many a closing scene in various climes, leads to the conclusion that death is envisaged by those with the least horror, whose lives have been least influenced by superstition or fanaticism, as well as by those who have cultivated literature and science with the most ardour.”

Let us not be led into a mistake by the convulsive throbs, the rattling in the throat, and the apparent pangs of death, which are exhibited by many persons when in a dying state. These symptoms are painful only to the spectators, and not to the dying, who are not sensible of them. The case here is the same as if one, from the dreadful contortions of a person in an epileptic fit, should form a conclusion respecting his internal feelings: from what affects us so much, he suffers nothing.”

The effect of this new stimulus of dark coloured blood in the arterial vessels appears strongly to resemble the exhilerating effects of opium, inasmuch as physical pain is lulled, the sensations soothed, and the imagination exalted. Long forgotten pleasures are recalled, old familiar faces are seen in the mind’s eye, and well remembered friends are communed with, and the imaginative power of giving a real presence to the shadowy reproductions of memory is busily employed, and a sort of delirium, or rather of mental exaltation, is the consequence, in which a rapid succession of ideas, in most instances apparently of an agreeable nature, pass through the mind, and the sense of bodily pain, to all appearance is wholly overpowered.”

Rousseau, when dying, ordered his attendants to place him before the window, that he might once more behold his garden, and bid adieu to nature.”

Petrarch was found dead in his library, leaning on a book.”

Chaucer died ballad making. His last production he entitled A Ballad, made by Geoffry Chaucer on his death-bed, lying in great anguish.”


Newton, Galileo, Michael Angelo, Locke, Hume, Pope never married; neither did Bacon, Voltaire and many other illustrious men, who either distrusted their own fitness for the married state, or were afraid to stake their tranquillity on the hazard of the matrimonial die.”

FOR ALL THAT IT IS WORTHY, I.E., NOT IN THE LEAST FOR MONEY: “Camoens died in an alms-house, and 15 years afterwards had a splendid monument erected to his memory.”

When Jupiter’s daughters were all married to the gods, the Muses alone were left solitary, probably because they had no portions. Helicon was forsaken of all suitors, and Calliope only continued to be a maid, because she had no dower.”

They cannot ride a horse, which every clown can manage; salute and court a gentlewoman; carve properly at table; cringe and make congies, which every common swasher can do.”

Examine, choose, or reject the wares, but stand to your own judgment, and do not, like children, when you have purchased one thing, repine that you do not possess another, which you did not purchase. If you would be rich, you must put your heart against the Muses, and be content to feed your understanding with plain and household truths. You must keep on in one beaten track, without turning to the right hand or the left.”

Was it to be rich that you grew pale over the midnight lamp?”


The most frequent disorders of literary men are dyspepsia and hypochondria, and in extreme cases the termination of these maladies is in some cerebral disorder, either mania, epilepsy or paralysis, and there we intend to notice in order of their succession in the following brief sketches of the physical infirmities of Pope, Johnson, Burns, Cowper, Byron and, lastly, Scott, in whose case the absence of the ordinary errors of genius may be ascribed in a great measure to well regulated habits, which certainly were not those of the others above mentioned.”

One patient calls his disorder spleen, another nervousness, another melancholy, another irritability: the medical nomenclature is no less prolific, but all their titles are for a single malady and <not one of them>, says Dr. James Johnson, in his admirable treatise on the Morbid Sensibility of the Stomach, <expresses the real nature of the malady, but only some of its multiform symptoms. Of all these designations, indigestion has been the most hacknied title, and it is, in my opinion, the most erroneous. The very worst forms of the disease – forms in which the body is tortured for years, and the mind ultimately wrecked, often exhibit no sign or proof of indigestion, in the ordinary sense of the word, the appetite being good, the digestion apparently complete.>”

The fact is that where pain is not the character of the disease, the attention of the patient is carried to the symptoms in organs, perhaps, the remotest from the cause; and in this particular disorder, the patient is seldom or ever sensible of pain in the actual seat of it.”

Pope wrote his compositions on the backs of letters, by which perhaps he might have saved 5 shillings in 5 years (a crime against stationary, by the way, which he shared in common with Sir Walter Scott)”

But Pope’s biting sarcasm was only aimed at his enemies. Byron little cared whether friend or foe was the victim of his spleen; those he best loved in the world were those who suffered most from the bitterness of his distempered feelings. To read those injurious lines on Rogers, that have lately appeared, and which never ought to, is to fancy the malignity of Byron greater even than Milton’s, which (we are falsely told) was sufficient to make hell grow darker at its scowl.”

censure is the tax which a man pays to the public for being eminent” Swift

This extraordinary necessity for artificial warmth was an evident indication of the deficiency of nervous energy”


hypochondria is the middle state between the vapours of dyspepsia and the delusions of monomania.”

His well meaning friends see no reason why he should deem himself either sick or sorrowful, when his physician can put his finger on no one part of his frame and say: Here is a disease

It is vain to tell him his sufferings are imaginary, and must be conquered by his reason, and that the shapes of horror, and the sounds of terror, which haunt and harass him by day and night, are engendered in his brain, and are the effects of a culpable indulgence in gloomy reveries. In his better moments he himself knows that it is so, but in spite of every exertion, those reveries do come upon him” “It is worse than useless to reason with him about the absurdity of his conduct – his temper is only irritated – it is cruel to laugh at his delusions, or try to laugh him out of them – his misery is only increased by ridicule.” “Raillery, remonstrance, the best of homilies, the gravest of lectures, do not answer here”

Remédio prescrito: dieta regulada e laxantes! Ah, o Zeitgeist!

Keila (quando ter um além é o mesmo que ter dois infernos – niilismo acabado//o contrário de um salto da fé e da ética do caval(h)eiro da resignação): “They can take no rest in the night, or if they slumber, fearful dreams astonish them, their soul abhorreth all meat, and they are brought to death’s door, being bound in misery and in iron. Like Job, they curse their stars [!!!], for Job was melancholy to despair, and almost to madness. They are weary of the sun and yet afraid to die, vivere nolunt et mori nesciunt. And then, like Esop’s fishes, they leap from the frying-pan into the fire, when they hope to be eased by means of physic [Jamais tomarei esses remédios hereges – RAFAEL, ME DÁ UM ZOLPIDEM?!? COMO VC É MAU!!]; – a miserable end to the disease when ultimately left to their fate by a jury of physicians furiously disposed; and there remains no more to such persons, if that heavenly Physician, by his grace and mercy (whose aid alone avails), do not heal and help them. [!!!] One day of such grief as theirs, is 100 years: it is a plague of the sense, a convulsion of the soul, an epitome of hell: and if there be a hell upon earth it is to be found in a melancholy man’s heart! (…) All other diseases are trifles to hypochondria; it is the pith and marrow [medula e tutano] of them all!” The sickest person under the sun. But never sick enough, know what I mean?

A melancholy man is the true Prometheus, bound to Caucasus; the true Tityus, whose bowels are still devoured by a vulture.”

XVII. JOHNSON CONTINUED (Madden é uma maritaca!)

the only wonder is that a physician could be found so ignorant of the moral duties of his calling, or so reckless of the feelings of a melancholy man, as to implant the very notion in his mind which it was his business to endeavour to eradicate if already fixed there; namely, that madness was to be the termination of his disease.”

But the error is daily committed by the inexperienced, of supposing that literary men are possessed of strength of mind that may enable them to rise superior to the fears and apprehensions of the common invalid, and consequently that all reserve is to be laid aside and the real condition of such patients freely and fearlessly exhibited to their view.”


Metastasio never permitted the word death to be pronounced in his presence; and Johnson was so agitated by having the subject spoken of in his hearing that on one occasion he insulted Boswell for introducing the topic; and in the words of the latter he had put <his head into the lion’s mouth a great many times with comparative safety, but at last had it bitten off>.” Se este pobre Johnson vivesse hoje e trabalhasse na CAP a mera leitura das mensagens do grupo do whatsapp com anúncios diários de morte – obituário em tempo real – seria capaz de levá-lo ao suicídio.

it was difficulty, says Sir John Hawkins, he could persuade him to execute a will, apparently as if he feared his doing so would hasten his dissolution.”

There are no people, rude or learned, among whom apparitions of the dead are not related or believed.” Johnson “This is the language of the hypochondriac, not of the moralist”


Like all hypochondriacs, he was a bad sleeper, and when sleepless he was accustomed, to use his own words, <to read in bed like a Turk> – by the way, the Turk neither reads in bed nor out of it.”


I may be cracking my jokes, and yet cursing the sun – sun, how I hate thy beams!”

he died in his perfect senses, resigned to his situation, at peace with himself and in charity with all men, in his 75th year.”


Every quarter of a century a revolution takes place in literary taste, the old idols of its worship are displaced for newer effigies, but the ancient altars are only overthrown to be re-established at some future time, and to receive the homage which they forfeited, on account of the fickleness of their votaries, and not in consequence of any demerits of their own.”

Currie’s life of Burns still deserves to be considered one of the best specimens of biography in the English language.”

the fastidious imagination can hardly associate the idea of poetry with that of an atmosphere that is redolent of tobacco smoke and spirituous liquors.” “In the parlance of convivial gentlemen, to have a bout at the Clarendon is to exceed in the pleasures of the table; but to commit the same excess in a country ale-house is to be in a state of disgusting intoxication.”

Nor wine nor love could make me gay” Dryden

At 22 he writes to his father: the weakness of my nerves has so debilitated my mind, that I dare not review past events, nor look forward into futurity, for the least anxiety or perturbation in my head produce most unhappy effects on my whole frame.”

Inspector (espécie de vigilante sanitário) e coletor de impostos foram suas opções de carreira nas “horas vagas” da poesia – urgh! “It would have been difficult to have devised a worse occupation for the poet, or to have found a man less fitted for its duties than Burns. After occupying his farm for nearly 3 years and a half, he found it necessary to resign it, and depend on the miserable stipend of his office – about 50 pounds a year, which ultimately rose to 70.”

there is not among all the martyrologies that ever penned so rueful a narrative as the lives of the poets.”

excess in wine is not the only intemperance; but that excessive application to studious habits is another kind of intemperance no less injurious to the constitution than the former.”

wiki: “He is regarded as a pioneer of the Romantic movement, and after his death he became a great source of inspiration to the founders of both liberalism and socialism, and a cultural icon in Scotland and among the Scottish diaspora around the world. Celebration of his life and work became almost a national charismatic cult during the 19th and 20th centuries, and his influence has long been strong on Scottish literature. In 2009 he was chosen as the greatest Scot by the Scottish public in a vote run by Scottish television channel STV.”

AS EXTRAORDINÁRIAS AVENTURAS DO BARÃO MUNCHAUSEN: Um RPG Superlativo num Estilo Totalmente Inovador pelo Barão Munchausen – James Wallis, trad. Marta Cancela, DEVIR, 1998.

segundo a minha família, havia um Munchausen viajando clandestinamente na Arca de Noé”

a minha reputação, e com ela o recontar de diversas das minhas espantosas aventuras, espalhou-se em todo o mundo civilizado, através dos oceanos, das profundezas da África ao longínquo Japão, os mundos gêmeos do Sol e da Lua e os estranhos povos que lá vivem, e até mesmo na França. Portanto, para onde quer que viaje, encontro sempre quem me convença a contar essas histórias cujos pedidos nunca recuso, sendo um homem de nobre criação.

De acordo com o mencionado, os palermas que querem ouvir mais uma vez como os meus companheiros e eu fomos engolidos por uma baleia, ou como atravessei os céus de Constantinopla montado numa bola de canhão, não me permitem um momento de paz. E muitas vezes tenho como única recompensa um copo do mais ordinário conhaque ou até mesmo nada! Serei eu um contador de histórias que o faz apenas para o divertimento de outros? Não! Sou um nobre, um soldado e um aventureiro, enquanto eles são apenas simplórios, e que eu seja amaldiçoado se quiser ter algo mais a ver com eles.”

Penso que esta deve ser a maior inovação na concepção de jogos desde o Baralho de Cartas de Tarot Colecionável, que eu inventei quando estava encarcerado na Bastilha, por uma falsa acusação de importar marmelos num domingo.”

Este é um jogo de narração de histórias, e cada uma dessas histórias será baseada nas extraordinárias aventuras que vivi – no seu estilo, se não no seu conteúdo. Mas enquanto as histórias que vós contais são ficção, as minhas são inteiramente verdadeiras em todo e qualquer pormenor. Não o dizer é chamar-me de mentiroso, e fingir que as vossas fantasias aconteceram comigo é chamar-me de charlatão, e, se fizerdes qualquer uma destas duas coisas, levar-vos-ei lá fora e farei uma tal demonstração da arte da esgrima que vos estonteareis de tal modo que ficareis cego pelas faíscas durante um mês. Eu sou um nobre, senhores, e comigo não se brinca.”

O jogo é simples. Os jogadores sentam-se à volta de uma mesa, de preferência com uma garrafa de um licor interessante ou de um vinho decente para umedecer as gargantas, e cada um, a sua vez, conta uma aventura ou feito espantoso. A narração da história é desencadeada por um dos outros, e o resto dos companheiros pode interromper com perguntas e observações quando acharem que o devem fazer, e é a função do narrador refutar ou evitar essas questões. Quando todos terminarem, o que tiver contado a melhor história paga bebidas aos seus companheiros e, com todos devidamente fortificados, o jogo pode recomeçar.”

Se os vossos companheiros forem em número menor que cinco, então dai a cada homem cinco moedas. Se contardes mais de 20, não penseis em jogar o jogo: em vez disso aconselho que junteis as vossas posses, contrateis alguns mercenários e planejeis uma invasão da Bélgica.”

quem propuser jogar com dinheiro em papel – que não serve para mais nada senão para limpar o tra… não é certamente um cavalheiro e deve ser expulso do vosso grupo e em seguida do vosso clube.”

Se o grupo não estiver bêbado, cansado ou aborrecido, passai para a CRIAÇÃO DOS PERSONAGENS. Caso contrário, podereis omiti-la. Ou simplesmente omitir tudo.”

Para tratar do assunto da criação dos personagens será necessário um pedaço de pergaminho e uma pena – assumindo que, tendo recebido uma educação decente, vós sabeis ler e escrever, pelo menos em Latim.”

O curso da narrativa nunca pode amolecer, pois os outros jogadores podem interromper a qualquer momento o contador com uma aposta ou uma objeção. Isto é feito quando o jogador empurra uma moeda (nunca mais de uma) das moedas que tem a sua frente – a que chamaremos a parada –, interrompendo o curso da narrativa. Uma aposta seria lançada como demonstram estes exemplos:

– Aposto, Barão, que atrás da porta que mencionastes estava todo um regimento de cavalaria com fuzis esperando para vos emboscar; ou:

– Aposto, Conde, que a Imperatriz não se impressionou com a vossa oferta de duas girafas e mandou-vos abandonar os seus aposentos imediatamente.

As objeções, pelo contrário, lançam-se deste modo:

– Mas, Conde, é sabido que a Imperatriz tem ódio a girafas, desde que o seu cãozinho foi comido por uma; ou:

– Mas Duquesa, no momento que mencionais, o Colosso de Rodes já era uma ruína há 50 anos, por isso seria impossível terdes feito a sua escalada.”

Se a aposta ou objeção do jogador que interrompeu estiver correta deve o contador concordar com o seu companheiro e pode guardar a moeda. Deverá, contudo, explicar obrigatoriamente como os acontecimentos introduzidos na interrupção do companheiro não o impediram de continuar com a aventura que está a descrever.

Se, contudo, a interrupção for julgada incorreta pode afastar a parada do colega junto com uma moeda sua, e informar ao outro que ele é um idiota que claramente não sabe do que fala e que obtém as suas informações ouvindo coscuvilhices de solteironas em rodadas de gim. Se aquele que interrompeu não está preparado para fazer frente a este insulto a sua honra, pode juntar outra moeda à pilha e devolvê-la ao contador, reforçando o seu caso e devolvendo o insulto com juros. O contador pode de novo devolver a aposta com outra moeda e outro insulto, e assim sucessivamente até que um dos lados retire a sua objeção e aceite o insulto (ficando com toda a ‘parada’), ou uma das partes esgote os seus fundos mas não desista – caso em que devem travar um duelo.”

Os nobres enquadram-se num modelo estabelecido por Deus Todo Poderoso, e descrito pela 1ª vez por Baldesar Castiglione na sua obra O Livro do Cortesão. A verdade das suas palavras vem até hoje, apesar do fato de – devido a uma má fortuna de nascimento – ele ser italiano. Tomarei a liberdade de citar esse augusto nobre sem a sua permissão, visto que já faleceu há mais de 200 anos.”

O comportamento do nobre é a pedra basilar de toda a civilização, pois sem a nobreza não haveria o patrocínio das ciências, artes, literatura ou música; e apenas as diversões mais comuns como o teatro, os bailaricos, a política e as trocas comerciais permaneceriam. Naturalmente, nenhum nobre tem coisa alguma a ver com magia, pela razoabilíssima razão de que a magia não existe.”

(…O meu editor, digo, cujos olhos brilham de raiva e o cabelo se eriça como o daquele ouriço-cacheiro gigante que uma vez derrotei na Escócia virando-o pelo avesso, e assim apunhalando-o mortalmente com seus próprios espinhos – o meu editor, temo, morrerá de uma apoplexia, a menos que eu termine esta digressão, feche estes parênteses e regresse ao assunto das OBJEÇÕES E APOSTAS. Francamente, estou achando este assunto das regras mais do que aborrecido, especialmente agora que esta garrafa de conhaque acabou. Sim, isso foi uma indireta, que, ao que parece, ele não entendeu. O quê? Ah! fechar os parênteses. Que assim seja.)”

É mais do que óbvio, até para o idiota mais tapado, que o contador da história não foi morto, pois ele está contando a história, e se tal objeção for feita, o contador pode embolsar a moeda do objetante, e todos os companheiros devem olhar para o tolo com indisfarçado desprezo. Podem atirar sobre ele pedaços de pão duro, mas atiçar-lhe os cães já é considerado de má-educação.”


(Advertem-me de que a moda agora é chamar a esta parte das regras de <Sistema de Combate>. É um nome feio que tropeça na língua e parece um manual prussiano sobre os métodos de esgrima com sabre. Desprezo-o. Se o seu criador sentir-se incomodado pelo meu desprezo por ele e pela sua frase, deixai-o desafiar-me e veremos se sabe algo sobre os verdadeiros <sistemas de combate>, ao mesmo tempo que reduzo a suas calças a renda.)”

Lutar por questões de honra é um assunto perigoso que pode trazer a pobreza, ferimentos ou a morte ou – um horror pior – o ridículo perante os participantes, mas é tão necessário como o bife para um inglês, o ouro para um suíço ou evitar banhos para um francês.”

O duelo tem de prosseguir somente até haver sangue derramado ou incapacidade, pois este é apenas um desentendimento amigável, mas já vi duelos serem travados até o desmembramento ou à morte por assuntos como um particípio passado mal conjugado.”

Qualquer pessoa que possui um título hereditário ou que tenha servido como oficial em qualquer dos melhores exércitos do mundo (o alemão, o prussiano, o inglês, o espanhol, o italiano ou, para esse fim, o do Catai, o etíope, o persa – e com efeito, agora que pensei nisso, todos exceto o turco, o polonês e o irlandês) deve passar à seção seguinte.”

recomendo um mestre de duelos inglês para duelos que possam durar até 5 dias e depois serem cancelados ou adiados devido à chuva ou acabarem em empate.”

Um certo número de estados não-iluminados declararam os duelos ilegais, por isso os participantes correm o risco de serem interrompidos por membros das classes baixas brandindo cassetetes e mandados, o que é mais do que suficiente para pôr qualquer duelista desconcentrado.”


Se sois fraco de sangue, mole das carnes ou débil do fígado ou – como modo de obter uma desculpa – se estais com pressa para terminar o jogo, ou se há senhoras presentes que ficariam chocadas ao ver sangue, ou se sois incapaz de manterdes o papel que estais a desempenhar ao pensar num combate nobre, e vos encontrais de novo reduzido ao papel de um mero camponês, ou se fordes galês; se qualquer destas coisas for verdade, então talvez desejeis evitar o combate físico que representa um duelo. Em vez disso, tal como estais fingindo ser um nobre no meu jogo, podeis fingir que estais travando um duelo com um conjunto de regras que eu mesmo concebi para esse fim.

Eu retiro o <eu mesmo <concebi>. Na verdade, este jogo foi-me ensinado por um habitante da Estrela-Cão, que encontrei a uma grande distância de sua casa, na última ocasião em que visitei a Lua. Sei que este jogo foi ensinado originalmente a estes caninos astrais pelo famoso navegante Vasco da Gama, que em sua derradeira viagem, traçou a rota para a ilha do Ceilão, mas errou por vários milhares de léguas e acabou navegando para fora da borda do mundo. Eu culpo a fraca imitação que são as cartas marítimas portuguesas, mesmo sabendo que, sem dúvida, os portugueses hão de culpar a bússola, ou o vento, ou a água, ou os habitantes do Ceilão, ou a forma do mundo, ou a Lua, ou qualquer coisa que pudesse absolver a sua relaxada mão-de-obra.

Vasco da Gama chamou as regras de <Garrafa-Copo-Garganta> (ele era português, tal como esclareci anteriormente) e os habitantes da Estrela-Cão conhecem-nas como <Osso-Pau-Bola>. Chamar-lhes-ei de <Pedra-Papel-Tesoura> e… Ah! O meu editor diz-me que fui ultrapassado pelo destino e que o jogo já é conhecido por esse nome em todo o mundo, e que devo riscar o parágrafo acima.”

bebi fundo do vinho do porto de lorde Bootlebury e dos olhos castanhos de sua filha mais nova, tão grandes e profundos como os do veado que matei na Floresta Negra empanturrando-o de bolo – o seu sabor, devo dizer, não ficou muito favorecido por este método”

Poderia dizer mais, porém não vou gastar mais palavras neste assunto, destinado como é, apenas a mariquinhas e àqueles que têm medo de ver um pouco de sangue, ou de somar mais uma morte ou duas à sua consciência.”

Assumindo que ambas as partes ainda vivem, o resultado de um duelo é o seguinte: o perdedor deve entregar todo o conteúdo da sua bolsa ao vencedor e retirar-se do jogo. Se uma das duas partes chegou a perder a vida no conflito, então a sua testemunha deve seguir essas instruções. Contudo, o seu galardão – se o tiver – deve permanecer intacto.”

uma tripulação de piratas morenos e eu estávamos encurralados nas entranhas de um enorme monstro marinho que infelizmente nos tinha engolido – um acontecimento comum, soube pelas minhas conversas com diversos aventureiros marítimos, mas esta sendo de algum modo peculiar pois estávamos escalando o Matterhorn quando fomos engolidos.”


Pela minha experiência, uma história não deve demorar mais do que 5min, pois para além desse tempo os ouvintes começam a ficar aborrecidos e indiferentes e a falar entre eles e a atirar pedaços de pão duro e a jogar dados ou cartas e a chamar músicos e a dançar em cima da mesa e a seduzir a anfitriã e a distribuir literatura sediciosa ou revolucionária e a congeminar guerras na Ásia, e outras distrações que poderão fazer até mesmo o melhor contador perder o ritmo – particularmente se ele também tiver intuitos que envolvam a anfitriã.”

Se um contador de histórias termina sua narrativa e não há ninguém para gritar <Viva!>, pois estão todos a dormir ou com outras ocupações, então ele deve dar a entender aos companheiros que chegou ao fim levantando-se e proferindo em alto e bom som: <Esta é a minha história, na qual todas as palavras são verdade, e se algum homem duvidar fá-lo-ei beber uma garrafa de conhaque num só gole.> Isso serve de sinal aos companheiros, pelo volume, não pelas palavras, que deverão levantar-se do torpor causado por uma história maçante e reunir uns quantos <Viva!> para darem a entender que perceberam que a história acabou.”

Se porventura um contador se embrenhou de tal modo na sua narração que não percebeu que o grupo perdeu o interesse e começou em vez disso a fazer lutas de galos ou a caçar texugos, então qualquer dos seus companheiros poderá interromper num momento oportuno dizendo: <Isso me lembra a história contada pelo Barão N… (nomeando o jogador sentado à direita do presente contador) no qual ele..> e nomeia uma aventura. Com isso, ele deve avançar uma moeda. Se os demais integrantes do grupo concordarem, devem também avançar uma moeda cada um, e se mais da metade dos presentes concordarem que o manto de contador deve passar ao seguinte, então o Barão N— começará o relato de uma nova aventura. O contador anterior, abatido pela vergonha e pela desonra, poderá somar o dinheiro reunido à sua bolsa como uma recompensa. Se menos da metade do grupo apoiar com moedas a causa, então esse montante será entregue ao criado para comprar mais vinho.”


Quando todos terminaram as suas histórias, deverá haver um momento de pausa. Reclinai-vos nas vossas cadeiras e permiti que o criado ou criada que está a servir o vinho volte a encher o vosso copo. Pensai nas histórias que ouvistes e decidi qual delas é a melhor. Se fordes do tipo erudito podereis querer debater esta questão com os vossos companheiros, fazendo referência à Arte Poética de Aristóteles e aos recentes trabalhos críticos do poeta Dryden. Ou se não, tudo bem. Não tem importância.”

Quando todos os jogadores tiverem falado, votado e distribuído o seu galardão (e devo de novo relembrar aos mais lentos, populares e plebeus dentre os meus leitores que um nobre nem consideraria a idéia de votar em si próprio), então cada jogador deve contar o número de moedas votadas para si e para a sua história. (Em voz baixa, naturalmente, não há nada que fique tão mal a um nobre como saber apenas contar alto; e se os vossos conhecimentos numéricos não passam do 5, então deveis desde já desistir de quaisquer intenções de jogar este jogo, e descobri para vós um passatempo mais de acordo com a vossa natureza como cultivar nabos, trabalhar como isca para ursos ou declarar guerra aos turcos.)


O jogador com o maior galardão é declarado o vencedor do jogo. Todos gritam um sonoro <Viva!> e manda-se vir mais vinho para se beber à saúde do vencedor. É da etiqueta que o vencedor deverá pagar este vinho, e é também de praxe que o dinheiro acumulado como galardão não deve ser – ou melhor, nunca é – suficiente para cobrir o seu custo. Mas isso não é problema. Somos nobres e coisas mesquinhas como o pagamento justo e o dinheiro são consideradas por nós como sendo de menor importância.”

Se jogardes estrategicamente, de modo a obterdes mais moedas, posso assegurar-vos que perdereis o jogo; parcialmente porque o vosso dinheiro deve ser dado a outro, e parcialmente porque tereis criado tal inimizade por parte dos restantes que nenhum votará em vós. Contudo, esta tática dar-vos-á a honra de decidir quem ganha o jogo.”

Sem moedas não podereis interromper um camarada, contestar interrupções à vossa história ou votar pelo vencedor. E como um nobre não pede nem rouba, já que não tendes fundos, o melhor é aumentá-los contando uma bela história que estimule muitas interrupções por parte dos vossos companheiros, e que saibais desviá-las com a destreza da vossa língua.”

Na rodada final do jogo, se os vossos companheiros admitiram mulheres ao jogo, NÃO RECOMENDO que voteis na VOSSA AMADA, ou no membro do grupo que esteja INTERESSADO EM VÓS. Segundo a minha experiência, isso raramente leva ao sucesso, e os vossos companheiros notarão, fazendo troça do vosso nobre gesto durante semanas.”


Estamos obviamente no século XVIII, pois decerto não houve melhor época para se viver. Mais precisamente, encontramo-nos no ano da graça de 17–. A Renascença findou, o poder da Igreja está em decadência e finalmente a Europa é um local civilizado. Os turcos estão em Constantinopla e, na verdade, por todo o lado, os franceses estão de novo a gerar conflitos. A Suécia está em declínio, os russos vão invadindo a Criméia a intervalos regulares, o rei da Inglaterra é alemão e louco – duas excelentes condições para governar essa ilha – e algures, do outro lado do Oceano Atlântico, alguns colonos começam a superestimar a sua real importância.

A maravilha desta época é, sem sombra de dúvida, o maravilhoso balão voador dos irmãos Montgolfier, que pode transportar pessoas e animais alto no ar em perfeita segurança (…) Creio que os irmãos criaram essa sua invenção apenas como um modo de deixarem a França.”

Agora que as Austrálias foram descobertas, está a ser-lhes dado um nobre uso como depósito de todos os indesejáveis da Europa. Um jovem indivíduo inglês chamado Watt criou uma chaleira gigante que pode dar potência a uma fábrica – dando chá quente em quantidade suficiente para contento de todos os trabalhadores. Incrível!”

Os elementos das classes mais baixas que crêem que o dinheiro é um substituto aceitável para os títulos nobiliárquicos foram rápidos em aceitar essas inovações, e estão febrilmente ocupados em construir fábricas e empregar mulheres de nome Jenny para lhes tecer algodão.”

Confesso que nada disto percebo nem entendo, mas parece que a Inglaterra está criando uma espécie de império – baseado, vejam só, em comércio, dinheiro e tubérculos. Que deus nos ajude…”

a chama da aventura na alma do Homem tem sido recentemente acalmada por coisas grosseiras como ir ao teatro, ler novelas e jogar uíste.”

eu não sou um homem extraordinário, meramente vivi em tempos extraordinários”

Não está, lamento dizer-vos, dentro das vossas capacidades fazer amor com a imperatriz da Rússia, pela razão de que a sua honra está sob a minha proteção e, se vos apanho perto dela, dar-vos-ei uma surra tal que magoará de tal forma os vossos pés e o vosso traseiro que não sereis capaz de estar de pé ou de vos sentardes, e sereis forçados a passar um mês no ar, girando como um pião, a algumas polegadas acima do chão. Considerai isso um aviso.”

Como, Barão, conseguistes passar por nativo entre o pequeno povo de Liluput.”

E como, e por quê, sois conhecido na França como o Quinto Mosqueteiro?”

Como provastes à Royal Society que o mundo não é redondo?”

Como é que Platão menciona um diálogo que teve convosco no seu livro A República escrito há 2 mil anos?”

Como foi que fostes vós e não Francis Bacon quem escreveu as peças de Shakespeare?”

O que fizestes para que o ano de 1752 tenha perdido os dias entre 3 e 14 de setembro?”

O vosso envolvimento no esquema da Royal Society para extrair luz solar de pepinos.”

Por que fostes aprisionado na mesma cela do Homem da Máscara de Ferro, o que se passou entre vós, e como escapastes?”

Como vos deitaste com o fantasma de Ana Bolena.”

As três noites que passastes no castelo do conde da Transilvânia.”

Como salvastes a raça dos Houhynhymns da sua vida de escravidão sob o jugo dos seus cruéis donos.”

Como escrevestes o Réquiem de Mozart?”

Como provastes que o monstro do Loch Ness não existe?”

Com que provas acreditais que o Homem e o macaco são primos?”

Como foi que servistes Gustave Doré ao ponto num jantar e no dia seguinte ele fez uma ilustração vossa?

R.I.P. Munchhausen 17—1797!

AMERICAN NERVOUSNESS: ITS CAUSES AND CONSEQUENCES (A supplement to “Nervous exhaustion: Neurasthenia”) – George Beard, 1881.

-Um glamouroso retrato da decadência ocidental, embora ingenuamente otimista quanto a ele e de um ultimado chauvinismo ianque!-

Nervousness is strictly deficiency or lack of nerve-force. This condition, together with all the symptoms of diseases that are evolved from it, has developed mainly within the 19th century, and is especially frequent and severe in the Northern and Eastern portions of the United States. Nervousness, in the sense here used, is to be distinguished rigidly and systematically from simple excess of emotion and from organic disease.”

The sign and type of functional nervous diseases that are evolved out of this general nerve sensitiveness is neurasthenia (nervous exhaustion), which is in close and constant relation with such functional nerve maladies as certain physical forms of hysteria, hay-fever [rinite alérgica], sick-headache, inebriety, and some phases of insanity; is, indeed, a branch whence at early or later stages of growth these diseases may take their origin.”

The greater prevalence of nervousness in America is a complex resultant of a number of influences, the chief of which are dryness of the air, extremes of heat and cold, civil and religious liberty, and the great mental activity made necessary and possible in a new and productive country under such climatic conditions.

A new crop of diseases has sprung up in America, of which Great Britain until lately knew nothing, or but little. A class of functional diseases of the nervous system, now beginning to be known everywhere in civilization, seem to have first taken root under an American sky, whence their seed is being distributed.

All this is modern, and originally American; and no age, no country, and no form of civilization, not Greece, nor Rome, nor Spain, nor the Netherlands, in the days of their glory, possessed such maladies.” Not in their glories, that is.

to solve it in all its interlacings, to unfold its marvellous phenomena and trace them back to their sources and forward to their future developments, is to solve the problem of sociology itself.” [!!!]

Among the signs of American nervousness specially worthy of attention are the following: The nervous diathesis [degenerescência genética, i.e., uma suposta maior vulnerabilidade a doenças dos nervos decorrente da debilidade dos progenitores]; susceptibility to stimulants and narcotics and various drugs, and consequent necessity of temperance¹ [e ainda chama essa abordagem de sociológica sem levar em conta o fator cultural?]; increase of the nervous diseases inebriety [alcoolismo ou uma ligeira variação deste – suscetibilidade exagerada –, que o autor diferenciará no segundo capítulo] and neurasthenia (nervous exhaustion), hay-fever, neuralgia [dor crônica nas terminações nervosas], nervous dyspepsia [indigestão], asthenopia [fadiga ocular e dores de cabeça derivadas] and allied diseases and symptoms [bem específico…]; early and rapid decay of teeth [já fez seu Amil Dental?]; premature baldness; sensitiveness to cold and heat; increase of diseases not exclusively nervous, as diabetes and certain forms of Bright’s disease of the kidneys and chronic catarrhs; unprecedented beauty of American women; frequency of trance and muscle-reading [a tênue linha entre a paranormalidade e simples efeitos de indução eletromagnética]; the strain of dentition, puberty, and change of life; American oratory, humor [haha!], speech, and language; change in type of disease during the past half-century, and the greater intensity of animal life on this continent. [???]

¹ Ah, obviamente Sêneca e Epicuro concordariam contigo!

longevity has increased, and in all ages brain-workers have, on the average, been long-lived, the very greatest geniuses being the longest-lived of all.” “the law of the relation of age to work, by which it is shown that original brain-work is done mostly in youth and early and middle life, the latter decades being reserved for work requiring simply experience and routine.” Pequena confusão entre decaimento fisiológico e e incorporação da experiência como forma de reduzir o esforço mental!

Poetas românticos não usavam a cabeça? Pois sua efemeridade é mais-que-popular…

in all our cyclopedias of medicine, the terms hysteria, somnambulism, ecstasy, catalepsy, mimicry of disease, spinal congestion, incipient ataxy, epilepsy, spasms and congestions, anemias and hyperemias, alcoholism, spinal irritation, spinal exhaustion, cerebral paresis, cerebral exhaustion and irritation, nervousness and imagination [!] are thrown together recklessly, confusedly, hopelessly as in a witches cauldron; and in all, and through all, one shall look vainly—save here and there, for an intelligent and differential description of neurasthenia, the most frequent, the most important, the most interesting nervous disease of our time, or of any time

still our medical graduates, after years spent in listening to lectures, must wait for their diploma before they are even ready to begin the study of this side of the nervous system. Meantime the literature of ataxia [desarranjo da coordenação motora], which is but an atom compared with the world of functional nervous diseases, has risen and is yet rising with infinite repetitions and revolutions to volumes and volumes.”

So far as I know, there has been no hostile criticism of this philosophy in Germany, but in England, even now, these views are not unanimously sustained.” Nazistas retesados.


Trance, with its numerous, interesting and intricate phenomena, a condition that has been known in all ages, and among almost all people, is not nervousness, albeit nervous people are sometimes subject to it. See my work on Trance [não muito interessado, mas obrigado assim mesmo!], in which this distinction between physiology and psychology is discussed more fully and variously illustrated.” “This interesting survival of the Middle Ages that we have right here with us today, is the most forcible single illustration that I know of, of the distinction between unbalanced mental organization and nervousness. These Jumpers are precious curiosities, relics or antiques that the 14th century has, as it were, dropped right into the middle of the 19th. The phenomena of the Jumpers are as interesting, scientifically, as any phenomena can be, but they aren’t contributions to American nervousness.

Brainlessness (excess of emotion over intellect) is, indeed, to nervousness, what idiocy is to insanity”

Nervousness is not passionateness. A person who easily gets excited or angry, is often called nervous. One of the signs, and in some cases, one of the first signs of real nervousness, is mental irritability, a disposition to become fretted over trifles; but in a majority of instances, passionate persons are healthy—their exhibitions of anger are the expression of normal emotions, and not in any sense evidences of disease, although they may be made worse by disease, either functional or organic. Nervousness is nervelessness—a lack of nerve-force.” “In medical science we are forced to retain terminology that is in the last degree unscientific, for the same reason that we retain our orthography, which in the English language is, as all know, very bad indeed.” <Febre da grama> realmente não é muito literal!

fear of lightning, or fear of responsibility, of open places or of closed places, fear of society, fear of being alone, fear of fears, fear of contamination, fear of everything, deficient mental control, lack of decision in trifling matters, hopelessness, deficient thirst and capacity for assimilating fluids, abnormalities of the secretions, salivation, tenderness of the spine, and of the whole body, sensitiveness to cold or hot water, sensitiveness to changes in the weather, coccyodynia, pains in the back, heaviness of the loins and limbs, shooting pains simulating those of ataxia, cold hands and feet, pain in the feet, localized peripheral numbness and hypersesthesia, tremulous and variable pulse and palpitation of the heart, special idiosyncrasies in regard to food, medicines, and external irritants, local spasms of muscles, difficulty of swallowing, convulsive movements, especially on going to sleep, cramps [cãibras ou cólicas], a feeling of profound exhaustion unaccompanied by positive pain, coming and going, ticklishness [hiperdelicadeza ou sensibilidade; em sentido mais estrito, facilidade para sentir comichão ou cócegas], vague pains and flying neuralgias, general or local itching, general and local chills and flashes of heat [calafrios e ondas de calor esporádicos], attacks of temporary paralysis, pain in the perineum, involuntary emissions, partial or complete impotence, irritability of the prostatic urethra, certain functional diseases of women [vague!], excessive gaping and yawning [bocejar exagerado], rapid decay and irregularities of the teeth, oxalates, urates, phosphates and spermatozoa in the urine, vertigo or dizziness, explosions in the brain at the back of the neck [?!], dribbling and incontinence of urine [incontinência urinária e seu reverso, alternados], frequent urination, choreic movements of different parts of the body, trembling of the muscles or portions of the muscles in different parts of the body, exhaustion after defecation and urination, dryness of the hair, falling away of the hair and beard, slow reaction of the skin, etc. Dr. Neisser, of Breslau, while translating my work on Nervous Exhaustion into German, wrote me that the list of symptoms was not exhaustive. This criticism is at once accepted, and was long ago anticipated. An absolutely exhaustive catalogue of the manifestations of the nervously exhausted state cannot be prepared, since every case differs somewhat from every other case.”

There are millionnaires of nerve-force—those who never know what it is to be tired out, or feel that their energies are expended, who can write, preach, or work with their hands many hours, without ever becoming fatigued, who do not know by personal experience what the term <exhaustion> means; and there are those—and their numbers are increasing daily—who, without being absolutely sick, without being, perhaps for a lifetime, ever confined to the bed a day with acute disorder, are yet very poor in nerve-force; their inheritance is small, and they have been able to increase it but slightly, if at all; and if from overtoil, or sorrow, or injury, they overdraw their little surplus, they may find that it will require months or perhaps years to make up the deficiency, if, indeed they ever accomplish the task. The man with a small income is really rich, as long as there is no overdraft on the account; so the nervous man may be really well and in fair working order as long as he does not draw on his limited store of nerve-force. But a slight mental disturbance, unwonted toil or exposure, anything out of and beyond his usual routine, even a sleepless night, may sweep away that narrow margin, and leave him in nervous bankruptcy, from which he finds it as hard to rise as from financial bankruptcy.”

Hence we see that neurasthenics who can pursue without any special difficulty the callings of their lives, even those callings requiring great and prolonged activity, amid perhaps very considerable excitement, as that of statesmanship, politics, business, commercial life, or in overworked professions, are prostrated at once when they are called upon to do something outside of their line, where their force must travel by paths that have never been opened and in which the obstructions are numerous and can only be overcome by greater energy than they can supply.” The purpose of treatment in cases of nervous exhaustion is of a two-fold character— to widen the margin of nerve-force, and to teach the patient how to keep from slipping over the edge.”

Our title is justified by this, that if once we understand the causes and consequences of American nervousness, the problems connected with the nervousness of other lands speedily solve themselves.” The philosophy of Germany has penetrated to all civilized nations; in all directions we are becoming Germanized. Similarly, the nervousness of America is extending over Europe, which, in certain countries, at least, is becoming rapidly Americanized. Just as it is impossible to treat of German thought without intelligent reference to the thought of other nationalities, ancient or modern, so is it impossible to solve the problem of American nervousness without taking into our estimate the nervousness of other lands and ages. [Acaba de contradizer o grifado em verde!]”


Indeed, nervousness, in its extreme manifestations, seems to save one from these organic incurable diseases of the brain and of the cord; with some exceptions here and there, the neurasthenic does not go into or die of nervous disease.” They may become insane—some of them do; they may become bed-confined invalids; they may be forced, as they often are, to resign their occupations, but they do not, as rule, develop the structural maladies to which here refer.” nervousness is a physical not a mental state, and its phenomena do not come from emotional excess or excitability or from organic disease but from nervous debility and irritability.”


No one dies of spinal irritation; no one dies of cerebral irritation; no one dies of hay-fever; rarely one dies of hysteria; no one dies of general neuralgia; no one dies of sick-headache; no one dies of nervous dyspepsia; quite rarely does one die of nervous exhaustion; and even when these conditions are the cause of death they are not noted as such in the tables of mortality” Nervousness of constitution is, indeed, an aid to longevity, and in various ways; it compels caution, makes imperative the avoidance of evil habits, and early warns us of the approach of peril.” Wickedness was solemnly assigned as the cause of the increase of nervous diseases, as though wickedness were a modern discovery.” nervous diathesis—an evolution of the nervous temperament.” “It includes those temperaments, commonly designated as nervous, in whom there exists a predisposition to neuralgia, dyspepsia, chorea, sick-headache, functional paralysis, hysteria, hypochondriasis, insanity, or other of the many symptoms of disease of the central or peripheral nervous system.”

A fine organization. The fine organization is distinguished from the coarse by fine, soft hair, delicate skin, nicely chiselled features [bem-cinzelada ou esculpida – somos belos!], small bones, tapering extremities [membros pontiagudos, i.e., que se afunilam nas mãos e nos pés, na canela e no antebraço!], and frequently by a muscular system comparatively small and feeble. It is frequently associated with superior intellect, and with a strong and active emotional nature.” “It is the organization of the civilized, refined, and educated, rather than of the barbarous and low-born and untrained”

The nervous diathesis appears, within certain limits, to protect the system against attacks of fever and inflammation.” Isso explicaria porque só tive febre uma vez desde a idade adulta.

The tuberculous diathesis frequently accompanies a fine organization; but fine organizations only in a certain proportion of cases have a tuberculous diathesis. The nervous diathesis is frequently not only not susceptible to tuberculosis, but apparently much less so than the average, and sometimes, indeed, seems to be antagonistic to it, for there are many nervous patients in whom no amount of exposure or hardship or imprudence seems to be able to develop phthisis [tísica]” Devo acrescentar alguma imunidade ao câncer?

Among Americans of the higher orders, those who live in-doors, drinking is becoming a lost art; among these classes drinking customs are now historic, must be searched for, read or talked about, like extinct or dying-away species.” There is, perhaps, no single fact in sociology more instructive and far reaching than this, and this is but a fraction of the general and sweeping fact that the heightened sensitiveness of Americans forces them to abstain entirely, or to use in incredible and amusing moderation, not only the stronger alcoholic liquors, whether pure or impure, but also the milder wines, ales, and beers, and even tea and coffee.”

I replied that there were very few nervous patients who were not injured by it, and very few who would not find it out without the aid of any physician. Our fathers could smoke, our mothers could smoke, but their children must oft-times be cautious; and chewing is very rapidly going out of custom, and will soon, like snuff-taking, become a historic curiosity; while cigars give way to cigarettes. From the cradle to the grave the Chinese empire smokes, and when a sick man in China has grown so weak that he no longer asks for his pipe, they give up hope, and expect him to die. Savage tribes without number drink most of the time when not sleeping or fighting, and without suffering alcoholism, or without ever becoming inebriates [!]” But 50 years ago opium produced sleep; now the same dose keeps us awake, like coffee or tea—susceptibility to this drug has been revolutionized.” Thus the united forces of climate and civilization are pressing us back from one stimulant to another, until, like babes, we find no safe retreat save in chocolate and milk and water.”

Reprove an Angola negro for being drunk and he will reply, <My mother is dead,> as though that were excuse enough. Even as recently as the beginning of the present century, the custom of drinking at funerals yet survived with our fathers. At the present time both culture and conscience are opposed to such habits.”

It is through the alcohol, and not the adulterations, that excessive drinking injures.” This functional malady of the nervous system which we call inebriety, as distinguished from the vice or habit of drunkenness, may be said to have been born in America, has here developed sooner and far more rapidly than elsewhere, and here also has received earlier and more successful attention from men of science.” For those individuals who inherit a tendency to inebriety, the only safe course is absolute abstinence, especially in early life; and in certain cases treatment of the nervous system, on the exhaustion of which the inebriety depends.”

AQUILO QUE NENHUMA REVISTA DE NUTRIÇÃO DIRÁ: “we so often find not only epileptics, but neurasthenics and nervous persons with other symptoms, are free and sometimes excessive eaters. They say their food does not give them strength, and it does not, for the same reason that the acid poured into the impure fluid of the battery does not give us electric force. There are those who all their lives are habitually small eaters and yet are great workers, and there are those who, though all their lives great eaters, are never strong; their food is either not digested or thoroughly assimilated, and so a much smaller fraction than should be is converted into nerve-force.”

In all the great cities of the East, among the brain-working classes of our large cities everywhere, pork, in all its varieties and preparations, has taken a subordinate place among the meats upon our tables, for the reason that the stomach of the brain-worker cannot digest it.”

Four and 5 meals a day is, or has been, the English and, notably, the German custom. Foreigners have greatly surpassed us in the taking of solid as well as liquid food.”

The eyes also are good barometers of our nervous civilization. The increase of asthenopia and short-sightedness [miopia], and, in general, of the functional disorders of the eye, are demonstrated facts and are most instructive. The great skill and great number of our oculists are constant proof and suggestions of the nervousness of our age. The savage can usually see well; myopia is a measure of civilization.” “near-sightedness increases in schools” Macnamara declares that he took every opportunity of examining the eyes of Southall aborigines of Bengal, for the purpose of discovering whether near-sightedness and diseases of like character existed among them, and he asserts that he never saw a young Southall whose eyes were not perfect.”

at the age of 20, 26% of Americans are near-sighted. In Russia, 42%, and in Germany, 62%.” A nação mais intelectual do mundo.

American dentists are the best in the world, because American teeth are the worst in the world.”

Irregularities of teeth, like their decay, are the product primarily of civilization, secondarily of climate. These are rarely found among the Indians or the Chinese; and, according to Dr. Kingsley, are rare even in idiots”

It is probable that negroes are troubled earlier than Indians. The popular impression that negroes always have good teeth is erroneous—the contrast between the whiteness of the teeth and the blackness of the face tending not a little to flatter them.”

Coarse races and peoples, and coarse individuals can go with teeth badly broken down without being aware of it from any pain; whereas, in a finely organized constitution, the very slightest decay in the teeth excites pain which renders filling or extracting imperative. The coarse races and coarse individuals are less disturbed by the bites of mosquitoes, by the presence of flies or of dirt on the body, than those in whom the nervous diathesis prevails”

It is said, for example, of the negroes of the South, that they rarely if ever sneeze.”

Special explanations without number have been offered for this long-observed phenomenon—the early and rapid decay of American teeth—such as the use of sweets, the use of acids, neglect of cleanliness, and the use of food that requires little mastication. But they who urge these special facts to account for the decay of teeth of our civilization would, by proper inquiry, learn that the savages and negroes, and semi-barbarians everywhere, in many cases use sweets far more than we, and never clean their mouths, and never suffer, except in old age.”

the only races that have poor teeth are those who clean them.” Quando o remédio vem mais tarde que a doença.

Among savages in all parts of the earth baldness is unusual, except in extreme age, and gray hairs come much later than with us. So common is baldness in our large cities that what was once a deformity and exception is now almost the rule, and an element of beauty.”

Increased sensitiveness to both heat and cold is a noteworthy sign of nervousness.”

Cold bathing is not borne as well as formerly.” “Water treatment is as good for some forms of nervous disease as it ever was; but it must be adapted to the constitution of the patient, and adapted also to the peculiar needs of each case.”

The disease, state, or condition to which the term neurasthenia is applied is subdivisible, just as insanity is subdivided into general paresis or general paralysis of the insane, epileptic insanity, hysterical, climatic, and puerperal insanity; just as the disease or condition that we call trance is subdivided into clinical varieties, such as intellectual trance, induced trance, cataleptic trance, somnambulistic trance, emotional trance, ecstatic trance, etc.

That diabetes is largely if not mainly a nervous disease is becoming more and more the conviction of all medical thinkers, and that, like Bright’s disease, it has increased of late, can be proved by statistics that in this respect are in harmony with observation.”

A ERA DA RINITE E DAS ALERGIAS: “A single branch of our neurological tree, hay-fever, has in it the material for years of study; he who understands that, understands the whole problem. In the history of nervous disease I know not where to look for anything as extraordinary or instructive as the rise and growth of hay-fever in the USA.”

Catarrh of the nose and nasal pharyngeal states — so-called nasal and pharyngeal catarrh — is not a nervous disease, in the strict sense of the term, but there is often a nervous element in it; and in the marked and obstinate forms it is, like decay and irregularities of the teeth, one of the signs or one of the nerve-symptoms of impairment of nutrition and decrease of vital force which make us unable to resist change of climate and extremes of temperature.”

The phenomenal beauty of the American girl of the highest type, is a subject of the greatest interest both to the psychologist and the sociologist, since it has no precedent, in recorded history, at least; and it is very instructive in its relation to the character and the diseases of America.”

The same climatic peculiarities that make us nervous also make us handsome”

In no other country are the daughters pushed forward so rapidly, so early sent to school, so quickly admitted into society; the yoke of social observance (if it may be called such), must be borne by them much sooner than by their transatlantic sisters — long before marriage they have had much experience in conversation and in entertainment, and have served as queens in social life, and assumed many of the responsibilities and activities connected therewith. Their mental faculties in the middle range being thus drawn upon, constantly from childhood, they develop rapidly a cerebral activity both of an emotional and an intellectual nature, that speaks in the eyes and forms the countenance; thus, fineness of organization, the first element of beauty, is supplemented by expressiveness of features — which is its second element”

Handsome women are found here and there in Great Britain, and rarely in Germany; more frequently in France and in Austria, in Italy and Spain”

One cause, perhaps, of the almost universal homeliness of female faces among European works of art is the fact that the best of the masters never saw a handsome woman.” Esqueceu da relatividade histórica do tipo belo!

If Raphael had been wont to see everyday in Rome or Naples what he would now see everyday in New York, Baltimore, or Chicago, it would seem probable that, in his Sistine Madonna he would have preferred a face of, at least, moderate beauty, to the neurasthenic and anemic type that is there represented. [?]”

To the first and inevitable objection that will be made to all here said — namely, that beauty is a relative thing, the standard of which varies with age, race, and individual — the answer is found in the fact that the American type is today more adored in Europe than in America; that American girls are more in demand for foreign marriages than any other nationality; and that the professional beauties of London that stand highest are those who, in appearance and in character have come nearest the American type.” Isso se chama cultura hegemônica, e não um argumento de defesa – e um pouco de chauvinismo também…

The ruddiness or freshness, the health-suggesting and health-sustaining face of the English girl seem incomparable when partially veiled, or when a few rods away” HAHA. Uma obra não muito recomendável na parte estética… Beleza EXÓTICA!

The European woman steps with a firmer tread than the American, and with not so much lightness, pliancy, and grace. In a multitude, where both nations are represented, this difference is impressive.”

The grasp of the European woman is firmer and harder, as though on account of greater strength and firmness of muscle. In the touch of the hand of the American woman there is a nicety and tenderness that the English woman destroys by the force of the impact.”


Punctuality is a greater thief of nervous force than is procrastination of time. We are under constant strain, mostly unconscious, often-times in sleeping as well as in waking hours, to get somewhere or do something at some definite moment.”

In Constantinople indolence is the ideal, as work is the ideal in London and New York”

There are those who prefer, or fancy they prefer, the sensations of movement and activity to the sensations of repose”

The telegraph is a cause of nervousness the potency of which is little understood. (…) prices fluctuated far less rapidly, and the fluctuations which now are transmitted instantaneously over the world were only known then by the slow communication of sailing vessels or steamships” “every cut in prices in wholesale lines in the smallest of any of the Western cities, becomes known in less than an hour all over the Union; thus competition is both diffused and intensified.”

Rhythmical, melodious, musical sounds are not only agreeable, but when not too long maintained are beneficial, and may be ranked among our therapeutical agencies.”

The experiments, inventions, and discoveries of Edison alone have made and are now making constant and exhausting draughts on the nervous forces of America and Europe, and have multiplied in very many ways, and made more complex and extensive, the tasks and agonies not only of practical men, but of professors and teachers and students everywhere” Um tanto utópico e nostálgico para um “médico pragmático”…

On the mercantile or practical side the promised discoveries and inventions of this one man have kept millions of capital and thousand of capitalists in suspense and distress on both sides of the sea.”

the commerce of the Greeks, of which classical histories talk so much, was more like play — like our summer yachting trips”

The gambler risks usually all that he has; while the stock buyer risks very much more than he has. The stock buyer usually has a certain commercial, social, and religious position, which is thrown into the risk, in all his ventures”

as the civilized man is constantly kept in check by the inhibitory power of the intellect, he appears to be far less emotional than the savage, who, as a rule, with some exceptions, acts out his feelings with comparatively little restraint.”

Love, even when gratified, is a costly emotion; when disappointed, as it is so often likely to be, it costs still more, drawing largely, in the growing years of both sexes, on the margin of nerve-force, and thus becomes the channel through which not a few are carried on to neurasthenia, hysteria, epilepsy, or insanity.”

A modern philosopher of the most liberal school states that he hates to hear one laugh aloud, regarding the habit, as he declares, a survival of barbarism.”

There are two institutions that are almost distinctively American — political elections and religious revivals”

My friend, presidents and politicians are chips and foam on the surface of the sea; they are not the sea; tossed up by the tide and left on the shore, but they are not the tide; fold your arms and go to bed, and most of the evils of this world will correct themselves, and, of those that remain, few will be modified by anything that you or I can do.”

The experiment attempted on this continent of making every man, every child, and every woman an expert in politics and theology is one of the costliest of experiments with living human beings, and has been drawing on our surplus energies with cruel extravagance for 100 years.” Agora, 250…

Protestantism, with the subdivision into sects which has sprung from it, is an element in the causation of the nervous diseases of our time. No Catholic country is very nervous, and partly for this—that in a Catholic nation the burden of religion is carried by the church.” Coitado do Brasil, trocando o certo pelo duvidoso assim…

The difference between Canadians and Americans is observed as soon as we cross the border, the Catholic church and a limited monarchy acting as antidotes to neurasthenia and allied affections. Protestant England has imitated Catholicism, in a measure, by concentrating the machinery of religion and taking away the burden from the people. It is stated —although it is supposed that this kind of statistics are unreliable— that in Italy insanity has been on the increase during these few years in which there has been civil and religious liberty in that country.”

The anxieties about the future, family, property, etc., are certainly so wearing on the negro, that some of them, without doubt, have expressed a wish to return to slavery.”

advances in science are not usually made by committees—indeed, are almost never made by them, least of all by government committees”

The people of this country have been pressed constantly with these 3 questions: How shall we keep from starving? Who is to be the next president? And where shall we go when we die? In a limited, narrow way, other nations have met these questions; at least two of them, that of starvation and that of the future life; but nowhere in ancient or modern civilization have these 3 questions been agitated so severely or brought up with such energy as here.”

Those who have acquired or have inherited wealth, are saved an important percentage of this forecasting and fore-worry”

The barbarian cares nothing for the great problems of life; seeks no solution — thinks of no solution of the mysteries of nature, and, after the manner of many reasoners in modern delusions, dismisses what he cannot at once comprehend as supernatural, and leaves it unsatisfactorily solved for himself, for others, and for all time”

Little account has been made of the fact that the old world is small geographically. The ancient Greeks knew only of Greece and the few outside barbarians who tried to destroy them. The discovery of America, like the invention of printing, prepared the way for modern nervousness; and, in connection with the telegraph, the railway, and the periodical press increased a hundred-fold the distresses of humanity.” The burning of Chicago—a city less than half a century old, on a continent whose existence was unknown a few centuries ago—becomes in a few hours the property of both hemispheres, and makes heavy drafts on the vitality not only of Boston and New York, but of London, Paris, and Vienna.”

Letter-writing is an index of nervousness; those nations who writes the most letters being the most nervous, and those who write scarcely at all, as the Turks and Russians, knowing nothing or but very little of it.”

The education of the Athenian boy consisted in play and games and songs, and repetitions of poems, and physical feats in the open air. His life was a long vacation, in which, as a rule, he rarely toiled as hard as the American lad in the intervals of his toil. (…) What they called work, gymnastics, competition games, and conversations on art and letters, is to us recreation.”

Up to a certain point work develops capacity for work; through endurance is evolved the power of greater endurance; force becomes the parent of force. But here, as in all animate nature, there are limitations of development which cannot be passed. The capacity of the nervous system for sustained work and worry has not increased in proportion to the demands for work and worry that are made upon it.”

GREEN COMMENT LAND: “Continuous and uniform cold as in Greenland, like continuous and uniform heat as on the Amazon, produces enervation and languor; but repeated alternations of the cold of Greenland and the heat of the Amazon produce energy, restlessness, and nervousness.”

The element of dryness of the air, peculiar of our climate as distinguished from that of Europe, both in Great Britain and on the Continent, is of the highest scientific and practical interest.” “On the nervous system this unusual dryness and thinness of the air have a many-sided influence; such as increase of headaches, neuralgias, and diminished capacity for sustaining cerebral toil.” The organs, pianos, and violins of America are superior to those made in Europe at the present time. This superiority is the result, not so much of greater skill, ingenuity, or experience, but—so far as I can learn, from conversing with experts in this line—from the greater dryness of the air, which causes the wood to season better than in the moist atmosphere of Europe.”

Moisture conducts electricity, and an atmosphere well charged with moisture, other conditions being the same, will tend to keep the electricity in a state of equilibrium, since it allows free and ready conduction at all times and in all directions.” In regions where the atmosphere is excessively dry, as in the Rocky Mountains, human beings—indeed all animals, become constantly acting lightning-rods, liable at any moment to be made a convenient pathway through which electricity going to or from the earth seeks an equilibrium.”

in the East our neuralgic and rheumatic patients, just before thunder-storms, are suddenly attacked by exquisite pains that at once disappear with the fair weather. There are those so sensitive that for 100 miles, and for a full day in advance, as Dr. Mitchell has shown, they can predict the approach of a storm.”

Dryness of the air, whether external or internal, likewise excites nervousness by heightening the rapidity of the processes of waste and repair in the organism, so that we live faster than in a moist atmosphere.”

one of the Manchester mill owners asserted that, during a season of dry weather, there was, in weaving alone, a loss of 5%, in quantity, and another loss of 5%, in quality; in spinning, also, an equal loss is claimed. To maintain moisture in mills, sundry devices have been tried, which have met, I believe, with partial success in practice.”

Even in our perfect Octobers, on days that are pictures of beauty and ideals of climate — just warm enough to be agreeable and stimulating enough not to be depressing, we yet remain in the house far more than Europeans are wont to do even in rainy or ugly seasons.” So what, Mr. Productive Media?

The English know nothing of summer, as we know of it — they have no days when it is dangerous, and scarcely any days when it is painful to walk or ride in the direct rays of the sun; and in winter, spring, and fall there are few hours when one cannot by proper clothing keep warm while moderately exercising.”

The Kuro Siwo stream of the Pacific, with its circuit of 18,000 miles, carries the warm water of the tropics towards the poles, and regulates in a manner the climate of Japan. Mr. Croll estimates that if the Gulf Stream were to stop, the annual temperature of London would fall 30 degrees [Farenheit], and England would become as cold as Nova Zembla. It is the influence of the Gulf Stream that causes London, that is 11° farther north than New York, to have an annual mean temperature but 2° lower.”

According to Miss Isabella Bird, who has recently published a work entitled Unbeaten Tracks in Japan, which is not only the very best work ever written on Japan, but one of the most remarkable works of travel ever written by man or woman, it seems that the Japanese suffer both from extremes of heat and cold, from deep snows and ice, and from the many weeks of sultriness such as oppress us in the US. The atmosphere of Japan is though far more moist than that of America, in that respect resembling some of the British Isles”

Our Meteorological Bureau has justified its existence and labors by demonstrating and popularizing the fact that our waves of extreme heat and of extreme cold and severe climatic perturbations of various kinds are born in or pass from the Pacific through these mountains and travel eastward, and hence their paths can be followed and their coming can be predicted with a measure of certainty.”

in the latter part of the winter and early spring—or what passes for spring, which is really a part of winter, and sometimes its worse part—there is more suffering from cold, more liability to disease, by taking cold, and more debility from long confinement in dry and overheated air than in early and mid-winter”

the strong races, like the Hebrews and Anglo-Saxons, succeed in nearly all climates, and are dominant wherever they go; but in unlimited or very extended time, race is a result of climate and environment.”

Savages may go to the most furious excesses without developing any nervous disease; they may gorge themselves, or they may go without eating for a week, they may rest in camp or they may go upon laborious campaigns, and yet never have nervous dyspepsia, sick-headache, hay-fever, or neuralgia.”

No people in the world are so careful of their diet, the quality and quantity of their food, and in regard to their habits of drinking, as the very class of Americans who suffer most from these neuroses.”

Alcohol only produces inebriety when it acts on a nervous system previously made sensitive. Alcoholism and inebriety are the products not of alcohol, but of alcohol plus a certain grade of nerve degeneration.”

But bad air, that is, air simply made impure by the presence of human beings, without any special contagion, seems powerless to produce disease of any kind, unless the system be prepared for it. Not only bad air, but bad air and filth combined, the Chinese of the lower orders endure both in this country and their own, and are not demonstrably harmed thereby (…) but impure air, plus a constitution drawn upon and weakened by civilization, is an exciting cause of nervous disease of immense force.”

The philosophy of the causation of American nervousness may be expressed in algebraic formula as follows: civilization in general + American civilization in particular (young and rapidly growing nation, with civil, religious, and social liberty) + exhausting climate (extremes of heat and cold, and dryness) + the nervous diathesis (itself a result of previously named factors) + overwork or overworry, or excessive indulgence of appetites or passions = an attack of neurasthenia or nervous exhaustion.”

Dr. Habsch, the chief oculist in Constantinople, says that the effect of tobacco upon the eyes is very problematical; that everybody smokes from morning to night, the men a great deal, the women a little less than the men, and the children smoke from the age of 7 and 8 years. He states that the number of cases of amaurosis [cegueira] is very limited. If expert oculists would examine the eyes of the Chinese, who smoke quite as much as the Turks, if not more, and smoke opium as well as tobacco, they would unquestionably confirm the conclusion of Dr. Habsch among the Turks. Dr. Habsch believes that in persons with a very delicate skin and conjunctiva [membrana mucosa que liga as pálpabras com o tecido ocular propriamente dito] among the Turks, smoking frequently causes chronic irritation, local congestion, profuse lachrymation, blepharitis ciliaris [inflamação dos cílios], and more or less intense redness of the eyelids. (cf. Dr. Webster on Amblyopia [Perda de visão] from the Use of Tobacco) [livro inexistente na web]”

The Hollanders, according to a most expert traveller, Edmondo De Amicis, are the greatest smokers of Europe; on entering a house, with the first greeting you are offered a cigar, and when you leave another is handed to you; many retire with a pipe in their mouth, re-light it if they awake during the night; they measure distances by smoke – to such a place by not so many miles but by so many pipes.” “Says one Hollander, smoke is our second breath; says another, the cigar is the 6th finger of the hand.”

Opium eating in China does not work in the way that the same habit does in the white races.” “when it is said of a Chinaman that he smokes opium, it is meant that he smokes to excess and has a morbid craving for it, just as with us the expression a man drinks means that he drinks too much”

It is clear that the habit of taking opium does not necessarily impair fertility, since large families are known among those who use opium, even to excess.”

Among my nervous patients I find very many who cannot digest vegetables, but must use them with much caution; but all China lives on vegetables, and indigestion is not a national disease. Many of the Chinese live in undrained grounds, in conditions favorable to ague and various fevers, but they do not suffer from these diseases, nor from diseases of the lungs and bronchial tubes, to the same extent as foreign residents there who do not use opium.”

I have been twice favored with the chance to study Africa in America. On the sea islands of the South, between Charleston and Savannah, there are thousands of negroes, once slaves, most of whom were born on those islands, who there will die, and who at no time have been brought into relation with our civilization, except so far as it is exhibited in a very few white inhabitants in the vicinity. Intellectually, they can be not very much in advance of their African ancestors; in looks and manners they remind me of the Zulus now exhibiting in America; for although since emancipation they have been taught by philanthropists, part of the time under governmental supervision, some of the elements of common school teaching, yet none of them have made, or are soon likely to make, any very important progress beyond those elements, and few, if any of them, even care to exercise the art of reading after it is taught them. Here, then, is a bit of barbarism at our door-steps; here, with our own eyes, and with the aid of those who live near them and employ them, I have sought for the facts of comparative neurology. There is almost no insanity among these negroes; there is no functional nervous disease or symptoms among them of any name or phase; to suggest spinal irritation, or hysteria of the physical form, or hay-fever, or nervous dyspepsia among these people is but to joke.” These primitive people can go, when required, for weeks and months sleeping but 1 or 2 hours out of the 24; they can labor for all day, or for 2 days, eating nothing or but little; hog and hominy and lish, all the year round, they can eat without getting dyspepsia; indulgence of passions several-fold greater, at least, than is the habit of the whites, either there or here, never injures them either permanently or temporarily; if you would find a virgin among them, it is said you must go to the cradle; alcohol, when they can get it, they drink with freedom, and become intoxicated like the whites, but rarely, indeed, manifest the symptoms of delirium-tremens, and never of chronic alcoholism”

These blacks cannot summon as much energy for a moment in an emergency as the whites, since they have less control over their energies, but in holding-on power, in sustained, continuous, unbroken muscular endurance, for hours and days, they surpass the whites.”

The West is where the East was a quarter of a century ago—passing more rapidly, as it would appear, through the same successive stages of development.”


Without civilization there can be no nervousness; there is no race, no climate, no environment that can make nervousness and nervous disease possible and common save when reenforced by brain-work and worry and in-door life. This is the dark and, so far as it goes, truthful side of our theme; the brighter side is to be drawn in the present chapter.

Thomas Hughes, in his Life of Alfred the Great, makes a statement that <the world’s hardest workers and noblest benefactors have rarely been long-lived>. That any intelligent writer of the present day should make a statement so untrue shows how hard it is to destroy an old superstition.

The remark is based on the belief which has been held for centuries that the mind can be used only at the injurious expense of the body. This belief has been something more than a mere popular prejudice; it has been a professional dogma, and has inspired nearly all the writers on hygiene since medicine has been a science; and intellectual and promising youth have thereby been dissuaded from entering brain-working professions; and thus, much of the choicest genius has been lost to civilization; students in college have abandoned plans of life to which their tastes inclined, and gone to the farm or workshop; authors, scientists, and investigators in the several professions have thrown away the accumulated experience of the better half of life, and retired to pursuits as uncongenial as they were profitless. The delusion has, therefore, in 2 ways, wrought evil, specifically by depriving the world of the services of some of its best endowed natures, and generally by fostering a habit of accepting statement for demonstration.

Between 1864 and 1866 I obtained statistics on the general subject of the relation of occupation to health and longevity that convinced me of the error of the accepted teachings in regard to the effect of mental labor.”

The views I then advocated, and which I enforced by statistical evidence were:

1st. That the brain-working classes—clergymen, lawyers, physicians, merchants, scientists, and men of letters, lived much longer than the muscle-working classes.

2nd. That those who followed occupations that called both muscle and brain into exercise, were longer-lived than those who lived in occupations that were purely manual.

3rd. That the greatest and hardest brain-workers of history have lived longer on the average than brain-workers of ordinary ability and industry.

4th. That clergymen were longer-lived than any other great class of brain-workers. [QUE PRAGA!]

5th. That longevity increased very greatly with the advance of civilization; and that this increase was too marked to be explained merely by improved sanitary knowledge.

6th. That although nervous diseases increased with the increase of culture, and although the unequal and excessive excitements and anxieties attendant on mental occupations of a high civilization were so far both prejudicial to health and longevity, yet these incidental evils were more than counter-balanced by the fact that fatal inflammatory diseases have diminished in frequency and violence in proportion as nervous diseases have increased; an also that brain-work is, per se, healthful and conducive to longevity.”

the greater majority of those who die in any one of the three great professions — law, theology, and medicine — have, all their lives, from 21 upwards, followed that profession in which they died.”

I have ascertained the longevity of 500 of the greatest men in history. The list I prepared includes a large proportion of the most eminent names in all the departments of thought and activity. (…) the average age of those I have mentioned, I found to be 64.2. (…) the greatest men of the world have lived longer on the average than men of ordinary ability in the different occupations by 14 years” The value of this comparison is enforced by the consideration that longevity has increased with the progress of civilization, while the list I prepared represents every age of recorded history.” “I am sure that any chronology comprising from 100 to 500 of the most eminent personages in history, at any cycle, will furnish an average longevity of from 64 to 70 years. Madden, in his very interesting work The Infirmities of Genius, gives a list of 240 illustrious names, with their ages at death.”

IV comparative longevity of brain-workers

The full explanation of the superior longevity of the brain-working classes would require a treatise on the science of sociology, and particularly of the relation of civilization to health. The leading factors, accounting for the long life of those who live by brain-labor, are:


In the successful brain-worker worry is transferred into work; in the muscle-worker work too often degrades into worry.” “To the happy brain-worker life is a long vacation; while the muscle-worker often finds no joy in his daily toil, and very little in the intervals.”

Longevity is the daughter of comfort. Of the many elements that make up happiness, mental organization, physical health, fancy, friends, and money—the last is, for the average man, greater than any other, except the first.”

for a large number, sleep is a luxury of which they never have sufficient for real recuperation”

The nervous temperament, which usually predominates in brain-workers, is antagonistic to fatal, acute, inflammatory disease, and favorable to long life.”

Nervous people, if not too feeble, may die everyday. They do not die; they talk of death, and each day expect it, and yet they live. Many of the most annoying nervous diseases, especially of the functional, and some even of the structural varieties, do not rapidly destroy life, and are, indeed, consistent with great longevity.”

the nervous man can expose himself to malaria, to cold and dampness, with less danger of disease, and with less danger of death if he should contract disease, than his tough and hardy brother.”

In the conflict with fevers and inflammations, strength is often weakness, and weakness becomes strength—we are saved through debility.”

Still further, my studies have shown that, of distinctively nervous diseases, those which have the worst pathology and are the most hopeless, such as locomotor ataxia, progressive muscular atrophy, apoplexy with hemiplegia, and so on, are more common and more severe, and more fatal among the comparatively vigorous and strong, than among the most delicate and finely organized. Cancer, even, goes hardest with the hardy, and is most relievable in the nervous.”

Women, with all their nervousness—and in civilized lands, women are more nervous, immeasurably, than men, and suffer more from general and special nervous diseases—yet live quite as long as men, if not somewhat longer; their greater nervousness and far greater liability to functional diseases of the nervous system being compensated for by their smaller liability to certain acute and inflammatory disorders, and various organic nervous diseases, likewise, such as the general paralysis of insanity.”

Brain-workers can adapt their labor to their moods and hours and periods of greatest capacity for labor better than muscle-workers. In nearly all intellectual employments there is large liberty; literary and professional men especially, are so far masters of their time that they can select the hours and days for their most exacting and important work; and when from any cause indisposed to hard thinking, can rest and recreate, or limit themselves to mechanical details.”

Forced labor, against the grain of one’s nature, is always as expensive as it is unsatisfactory”

Even coarser natures have their moods, and the choicest spirits are governed by them; and they who worship their moods do most wisely; and those who are able to do so are the fortunate ones of the earth.”

Again, brain-workers do their best work between the ages of 25-45; before that period they are preparing to work; after that period, work, however extensive it may be, becomes largely accumulation and routine.” “It is as hard to lay a stone wall after one has been laying it 50 years as during the first year. The range of muscular growth and development is narrow, compared with the range of mental growth; the day-laborer soon reaches the maximum of his strength. The literary or scientific worker goes on from strength to strength, until what at 25 was impossible, and at 30 difficult, at 35 becomes easy, and at 40 a past-time.”

The number of illustrious names of history is by no means so great as is currently believed; for, as the visible stars of the firmament, which at a glance appear infinite in number, on careful estimate are reduced to a few thousands, so the galaxy of genius, which appears interminable on a comprehensive estimate, presents but few lights of immortal fame. Mr. Galton, in his Hereditary Genius, states that there have not been more than 400 great men in history.”

obscurity is no sure evidence of demerit, but only a probability of such”

Only in rare instances is special or general talent so allied with influence, or favor, or fortune, or energy that commands circumstances, that it can develop its full functions; <things are in the saddle and ride mankind>, environment commands the environed.”

The stars we see in the sky are but mites compared with the infinite orbs that shall never be seen; but no star is a delusion—each one means a world, the light of which very well corresponds to its size and distance from the earth and sun.” “Routine and imitation work can no more confer the fame that comes from work that is original and creative than the moon can take the place of the sun.”

It is this confounding of force with the results of force, of fame with the work by which fame is attained that causes philosophers to dispute, deny, or doubt, or to puzzle over the law of the relation of age to work, as here announced.

When the lightning flashes along the sky, we expect a discharge will soon follow, since light travels faster than sound; so some kinds of fame are more rapidly diffused than others, and are more nearly contemporaneous with their origin; but as a law, there is an interval — varying from years to hundreds of years — between the doing of any original work and the appreciation of that work by any considerable number of mankind that we call fame.

The great men that we know are old men; but they did the work that has made them great when they were young; in loneliness, in poverty, often, as well as under discouragement, and in neglected or despised youth has been achieved all that has advanced, all that is likely to advance mankind.”

In the man of genius, the idea starts where, in the man of routine, it leaves off.”

Original work—that done by geniuses who have thereby attained immortal fame, is the only kind of work that can be used as the measure of cerebral force in all our search for this law of the relation of work to the time of life at which work is done for the two-fold reason—first, that it is the highest and best measure of cerebral force; and, secondly, because it is the only kind of work that gives earthly immortality.”

Men do not long remember, nor do they earnestly reverence those who have done only what everybody can do. We never look up, unless the object at which we look is higher than ourselves; the forces that control the rise and fall of reputation are as inevitable and as remorseless as heat, light, and gravity; if a great man looms up from afar, it is because he is taller than the average man; else, he would pass below the horizon as we receded from him; factitious fame is as impossible as factitious heat, light, or gravity; if there be force, there must have been, somewhere, and at some time, a source whence that force was evolved.”

the strength of a man is his strength at his strongest point—what he can do in any one direction, at his very best. However weak and even puerile, immature, and non-expert one may be in all other directions except one, be gains an immortality of fame if, in that one direction he develops a phenomenal power; weaknesses and wickednesses, serious immoralities and waywardnesses are soon forgotten by the world, which is, indeed, blinded to all these defects in the face of the strong illumination of genius. Judged by their defects, the non-expert side of their character, moral or intellectual, men like Burns,¹ Shakespeare, Socrates, Cicero, Caesar, Napoleon, Beethoven, Mozart, Byron, Dickens, etc., are but as babes or lunatics, and far, very far below the standard of their fellows.”

¹ Poeta escocês, 1759-96.

SOBRE A PRECOCIDADE E “GASTO DA ENERGIA MENTAL”: “Men to whom these truths are repelling put their eyes on those in high positions and in the decline of life, like Disraeli or Gladstone, forgetting that we have no proof that either of these men have ever originated a new thought during the past 25 years, and that in all their contributions to letters during that time there is nothing to survive, or worthy to survive, their authors.

They point to Darwin, the occupation of whose old age has been to gather into form the thoughts and labors of his manhood and youth, and whose only immortal book was the product of his silver and golden decade.”

IV the relation of age to original work

The lives of some great men are not sufficiently defined to differentiate the period, much less the decade or the year of their greatest productive force. Such lives are either rejected, or only the time of death and the time of first becoming famous are noted; very many authors have never told the world when they thought-out or even wrote their masterpieces, and the season of publication is the only date that we can employ. These classes of facts, it will be seen, tell in favor of old rather than of young men, and will make the year of maximum production later rather than earlier, and cannot, therefore, be objected to by those who may doubt my conclusions.”

For those who have died young, and have worked in original lines up to the year of their death, the date of death has sometimes been regarded as sufficient. Great difficulty has been found in proving the dates of the labors of the great names of antiquity, and, therefore, many of them are necessarily excluded from consideration, but in an extended comparison between ancient and modern brain-workers, so far as history makes possible, there was but little or no difference.”

This second or supplementary list was analyzed in the same way as the primary list, and it was found that the law was true of these, as of those of greater distinction. The conclusion is just, scientific, and inevitable, that if we should go down through all the grades of cerebral force, we should find this law prevailing among medium and inferior natures, that the obscure, the dull, and the unaspiring accomplished the little they did in the direction of relatively original work in the brazen and golden decades.” Tenho 8 anos pela frente.

These researches were originally made as far back as 1870, and were first made public in lectures delivered by me before the Long Island Historical Society. The titles of the lectures were, Young Men in History, and the Decline of Moral Principle in Old Age.”

Finally, it should be remarked that the list has been prepared with absolute impartiality, and no name and no date has been included or omitted to prove any theory. The men who have done original or important work in advanced age, such as Dryden,¹ Radetzky,² Moltke,³ Thiers,4 De Foe,5 have all been noted, and are embraced in the average.”

¹ Poeta inglês, 1631-1700.

² Marechal, militar estrategista alemão que combateu inclusive Napoleão, vivendo ativo até uma idade avançada (1766-1858).

³ Provavelmente o Conde Adam Moltke (1710-1792), diplomata dinamarquês. Seu filho foi primeiro-ministro.

4 Marie Adolph –, político e escritor francês, 1797-1877, foi presidente eleito na França após a queda dos Bourbon.

5 Daniel Defoe viveu 71 anos e também foi ensaísta e publicou obras de não-ficção, além de seu maior sucesso.

The golden decade alone represents nearly 1/3 of the original work of the world. (…) The year of maximum productiveness is 39.”

All the athletes with whom I have conversed on this subject, the guides and lumbermen in the woods — those who have always lived solely by muscle — agree substantially to this: that their staying power is better between the ages of 35 and 45, than either before or after. To get the best soldiers, we must rob neither the cradle nor the grave; but select from those decades when the best brain-work of the world is done.”

Original work requires enthusiasm; routine work, experience.” “Unconsciously the people recognize this distinction between the work that demands enthusiasm and that which demands experience, for they prefer old doctors and lawyers, while in the clerical profession, where success depends on the ability to constantly originate and express thought, young men are the more popular, and old men, even of great ability, passed by. In the editorial profession original work is demanded, and most of the editorials of our daily press are written by young men. In the life of every old man there comes a point, sooner or later, when experience ceases to have any educating power; and when, in the language of Wall St., he becomes a bear; in the language of politics, a Bourbon.”

some of the greatest poets, painters, and sculptors, such as Dryden, Richardson, Cowper, Young, De Foe, Titian, Christopher Wren, and Michael Angelo, have done a part of their very best work in advanced life. The imagery both of Bacon and of Burke seemed to increase in richness as they grew older.

In the realm of reason, philosophic thought, invention and discovery, the exceptions are very rare. Nearly all the great systems of theology, metaphysics, and philosophy are the result of work done between 20 and 50.”

Michael Angelo and Sir Christopher Wren could wait for a quarter or even half a century before expressing their thoughts in St. Peter’s or St. Paul’s; but the time of the conception of those thoughts — long delayed in their artistic expression — was the time when their cerebral force touched its highest mark.

In the old age of literary artists, as Carlyle, Dickens, George Elliot, or Tennyson, the form may be most excellent; but from the purely scientific side the work though it may be good, is old; a repetition often-times, in a new form, of what they have said many times before.”

The philosophy of Bacon can never be written but once; to re-write it, to present it a 2nd time, in a different dress, would indicate weakness, would seem almost grotesque; but to statuary and painting we return again and again; we allow the artist to re-portray his thought, no matter how many times; we visit in succession a hundred cathedrals, all very much alike; and a delicious melody grows more pleasing with repetition; whence it is that in poetry — the queen of the arts — old age has wrought little, or not at all, since the essence of poetry is creative thought, and old age is unable to think; whence, also, in acting — the oldest of all the arts, the servant of all — the best experts are often at their best, or not far below their best, save for the acquisition of new characters, in the iron and wooden decades.”

Similarly with the art of writing—the style, the dress, the use of words, the art of expressing thoughts, and not of thinking. Men who have done their best thinking before 40 have done their best writing after that period.” it is thought, and not the language of thought, that best tests the creative faculties.”

The conversation of old men of ability, before they have passed into the stage of imbecility, is usually richer and more instructive than the conversation of the young; for in conversation we simply distribute the treasures of memory, as a store hoarded during long years of thought and experience. He who thinks as he converses is a poor companion, as he who must earn his money before he spends any is a poor man. When an aged millionnaire makes a liberal donation it costs him nothing; he but gives out of abundance that has resulted by natural accumulation from the labors of his youth and middle life.”

An amount of work not inconsiderable is done before 25 and a vast amount is done after 40; but at neither period is it usually of the original or creative sort that best measures the mental forces.” “In early youth we follow others; in old age we follow ourselves.”

The same law applies to animals. Horses live to be about 25, and are at their best from 8 to 14” “Dogs live 9 or 10 years, and are fittest for the hunt between 2 and 6.”

Children born of parents one or both of whom are between 25 and 40, are, on the average, stronger and smarter than those born of parents one or both of whom are very much younger or older than this.” “we are most productive when we are most reproductive [18-26??].”

In an interesting paper entitled When Women Grow Old, Mrs. Blake has brought facts to show that the fascinating power of the sex is often-times retained much longer than is generally assumed.

She tells us of Aspasia, who, between the ages of 30 and 50 was the strongest intellectual force in Athens; of Cleopatra, whose golden decade for power and beauty was between 30 and 40; of Livia, who was not far from 30 when she gained the heart of Octavius; of Anne of Austria, who at 38 was thought to be the most beautiful queen in Europe; of Catherine II of Russia, who, even at the silver decade was both beautiful and imposing; of Mademoiselle Mars, the actress, whose beauty increased with years, and culminated between 30 and 45; of Madame Recamier, who, between 25 and 40, and even later, was the reigning beauty in Europe; of Ninon de I’Enclos, whose own son — brought up without knowledge of his parentage — fell passionately in love with her when she was at the age of 37, and who even on her 60th birthday received an adorer young enough to be her grandson.

The voice of our great prima donnas is at its very best between 27 and 35; but still some retains, in a degree, its strength and sweetness even in the silver decade. The voice is an index of the body in all its functions, but the decay of other functions is not so readily noted.”

As a lad of 16, Lord Bacon began to think independently on great matters; at 44, published his great work on The Advancement of Learning; at 36, published 12 of his Essays; and at 60 collected the thoughts of his life in his Organum. His old age was devoted to scientific investigation.

At the age of 29, Descartes began to map out his system of philosophy, and at 41 began its publication, and at 54 he died.

Schelling, as a boy, studied philosophy, and at 24 was a brilliant and independent lecturer, and at 27 had published many important works; at 28 was professor of philosophy and arts, and wrote his best works before 50.

Dryden, one of the exceptions to the average, did his best work when comparatively old; his Absalom was written at 50, and his Alexander’s Feast when he was nearly 70.

Dean Swift wrote his Tale of a Tub at 35, and his Gulliver’s Travels at 59.”

Charles Dickens wrote Pickwick at 25, Oliver Twist and Nicholas Nickleby before 27, Christmas Chimes at 31, David Copperfield at 38, and Dombey and Son at 35. Thus we see that nearly all his greatest works were written before he was 40; and it is amazing how little all the writings of the last 20 years of his life took hold of the popular heart, in comparison with Pickwick and David Copperfield, and how little effect the most enormous advertising and the cumulative power of a great reputation really have to give a permanent popularity to writings that do not deserve it. If Dickens had died at 40 his claim to immortality would have been as great as now, and the world of letters would have been little, if any, the loser. The excessive methodical activity of his mature and advanced life could turn off works with fair rapidity; but all his vast experience and all his earnest striving failed utterly to reach the standard of his reckless boyhood. His later works were more perfect, perhaps, judged by some canons, but the genius of Pickwick was not in them.”

Edison with his 300 patents, is not the only young inventor. All inventors are young. Colt was a boy of 21 when he invented the famous weapon that bears his name; and Goodyear began his experiments in rubber while a young man of 24, and made his first success at 38, and at 43 had brought his discovery to approximate perfection.”

The name of Bichat is one of the greatest in science, and he died at 32.”

Handel at 19 was director of the opera at Hamburg; at 20 composed his first opera; at 35 was appointed manager of the Royal Theatre at London; at 25 composed Messiah and Jephtha, and in old age and blindness his intellect was clear and his power of performance remarkable.”

Luther early displayed eloquence, and at 20 began to study Aristotle;¹ at 29 was doctor of divinity, and when he would refuse it, it was said to him that <he must suffer himself to be dignified, for that God intended to bring about great things in the church by his name>; at 34 he opposed the Indulgencies, and set up his 95 propositions; at 37 he publicly burned the Pope’s bull; at 47 he had completed his great task.”

¹ Realmente é impossível derivar prazer de ler Aristóteles antes dessa idade, senão uma ainda mais avançada!

Von Moltke between 65 and 70 directed the operation of the great war of Prussia against Austria and France. But that war was but a conclusion and consummation of military study and organization that had been going on for a quarter of a century.”

Jenner at 21 began his investigation into the difference between cow-pox and small-pox. His attention was called to the subject by the remark of a country girl, who said in his hearing that she could not have the small-pox, because she had had the cow-pox.” Varíola e varíola bovina. Bom… realmente existem ovos de Colombo!

old men, like nations, can show their treasures of art long after they have begun to die; this, indeed, is one of the sweetest and most refreshing compensations for age”

A contemporary deader in science (Huxley) has asserted that it would be well if all men of science could be strangled at the age of 60, since after that age their disposition — with possible exceptions here and there — is to become reactionary and obstructionists”

Se um homem não é belo aos 20, forte aos 30, experiente aos 40 e rico aos 50, ele jamais será belo, forte, experiente ou rico neste mundo.” Lutero

Só começamos a contar nossos anos quando já não há nada mais a ser contado” Emerson

Procrastinamos nossos trabalhos literários até termos experiência e habilidade o bastante, até um dia descobrirmos que nosso talento literário era uma efervescência juvenil que finalmente perdemos.” E.

Quem em nada tem razão aos 30, nunca terá.”

Revoluções não são feitas por homens de óculos, assim como sussurros contendo verdades novas nunca são ouvidos por quem já entrou na idade da surdez” Oliver Holmes

Como pode ser que “o povo da minha rua” seja, para tantos indivíduos, a gente mais burra de toda a Terra? E, pior ainda, que todos que o dizem pareçam estar com a razão?!

Dizem que os jovens são os únicos que não escutam a voz da razão na discussão sobre a verdadeira idade da razão ser a juventude, e não a velhice. Ou eles estão errados ou eles estão errados.

It is not in ambitious human nature to be content with what we have been enabled to achieve up to the age of 40. (…) Happiness may augment with years, because of better external conditions; and yet the highest happiness is obtained through work itself more than through the reward of work”

a wise man declared that he would like to be forever 35, and another, on being asked his age, replied that it was of little account provided that it was anywhere between 25 and 40.”

$$$: “Capacity for original work age does not have, but in compensation it has almost everything else. The querulousness of age, the irritability, the avarice are the resultants partly of habit and partly of organic and functional changes in the brain. Increasing avarice is at once the tragedy and the comedy of age; as we near the end of our voyage we become more chary of our provisions, as though the ocean and not the harbor were before us.” “our intellectual ruin very often dates from the hour when we begin to save money.” A do meu pai começou quando criança.

PORQUE SIM, PORQUE EU MANDEI – POR QUE VOCÊ É ASSIM? NÃO RESPEITA SEU PAI, NÃO? POR QUE NÃO FAZ UM DOUTORADO? POR QUE NÃO COMPRA UM CARRO? “Moral courage is rare in old age; sensitiveness to criticism and fear of opposition take the place, in the iron and wooden decades, of delight in criticism and love of opposition of the brazen and golden decades” Nostalgic UnB times…

fame like wealth makes us cautious, conservative, cowardly, since it implies the possibility of loss.”

when the intellect declines the man is obliged to be virtuous. Physical health is also needed for indulgence in many of the vices”

The decline of the moral faculties in old age may be illustrated by studying the lives of the following historic characters: Demosthenes, Cicero, Sylla, Charles V, Louis XIV, Frederic of Prussia, Napoleon (prematurely old), Voltaire, Jeffries, Dr. Johnson, Cromwell, Burke, Sheridan, Pope, Newton, Ruskin, Carlyle, Dean Swift, Chateaubriand, Rousseau, Milton, Bacon, Earl Pussell, Marlborough and Daniel Webster. In some of these cases the decline was purely physiological, in others pathological; in the majority it was a combination of both.

Very few decline in all the moral faculties. One becomes peevish, another avaricious, another misanthropic, another mean and tyrannical, another exacting and ugly, another sensual, another cold and cruelly conservative, another excessively vain and ambitious, others simply lose their moral enthusiasm and their capacity for resisting disappointment and temptation.”

There are men who in extreme age preserve their teeth sound, their hair unchanged, their complexion fresh, their appetite sharp and digestion strong and sure, and their repose sweet and refreshing, and who can walk and work to a degree that makes their children and grandchildren feel very humble; but these observed exceptions in no way invalidate the general law, which no one will dispute, that the physical powers reach their maximum between 20 and 40, and that the average man at 70 is less muscular and less capable of endurance than the average man at 40.”

For age hath opportunity no less

Than youth itself, though in another dress;

And as the evening twilight fades away,

The sky is filled with stars invisible by day.”


To age is granted in increasing richness the treasures of memory and the delights of recognition which most usually come from those who, at the time of the deeds whose value they recognize, were infants or unborn; only those who bury their contemporaries, can obtain, during their own lifetime, the supremacy of fame.”

POR QUE CRIANÇAS PRODÍGIO SÃO A MAIOR FALSIFICAÇÃO POSSÍVEL: “Mrs. Carlyle, when congratulated on the honors given to her husband on the delivery of his Edinburgh address, replied with a certain disdain, as though he should have been honored before; but only by a reversal of the laws of the evolution of fame shall the manifestation of genius and the recognition of genius be simultaneous.”

The high praise of contemporaries is almost insulting, since it implies that he whom they honor is but little better than themselves. Permanent fame, even in this rapid age [!!], is a plant of slow growth—first the blade; then, after a time, the ear; then, after many, many years, the full corn in the ear”

MEU COPYDESK E EU DE 2015 PARA CÁ SENTIMO-NOS ASSIM: “while the higher power of creating is disappearing, the lower, but for many the more needful, and with contemporaries more quickly appreciated, power of imitation, repetition, and routine, is increasing; we can work without working, and enjoy without striving”

O TRABALHO MATA AOS POUCOS: “An investigation made more recently by a Berlin physician into the facts and data relating to human longevity shows the average age of clergymen to be 65; of merchants, 63; clerks and farmers, 61; military men, 59; lawyers, 58; artists, 57; and medical men, 56 [!]. Statistics are given showing that medical men in England stand high in the scale of longevity. Thus, the united ages of 28 physicians who died there last year, amount to 2,354 years, giving an average of more the 84 years to each [!]. The youngest of the number was 80; the oldest, 93; 2 others were 92 and 89, respectively; 3 were 87, and 4 were 86 each; and there were also more than 50 who averaged from 74 to 75 years.”

That precocity predicts short life, and is therefore a symptom greatly to be feared by parents, has, I believe, never been questioned. (…) plants that are soon to bloom are soon to fade”

APOSTO MINHA VIDA QUE MORREREI ANTES DE A.: “It is probable that, of two individuals with precisely similar organizations and under similar circumstances, the one that develops earlier will be the first to die.”

MINHA ‘GENÉTICA’ NÃO AJUDA: “millionnaires in intellect as well as in money, who can afford to expend enormous means without becoming impoverished.”

Investigating the records of the past two centuries, Winterburn finds 213 recorded cases of acknowledged musical prodigies. None of them died before their 15th year, some attained the age of 103 — and the average duration of life was 58 — showing that, with all their abnormal precocity, they exceed the ordinary longevity by about 6%.”

an almost irresistible impulse to the art in which they are destined to excel manifests itself in future virtuosi— in poets, painters, etc., from their earliest youth.” Wieland

Uma idéia de filme bem ruim: O ESCRITOR NOVATO DE 40 ANOS!

A infância revela o homem, como a manhã revela o dia.” Milton

Madden – Infirmities of Genius (downloads)

MEMENTO À “PROFESSORA SORRISO”: “The stupidity attributed to men of genius may be really the stupidity of their parents, guardians, and biographers.”

Music and drawing appeal to the senses, attract attention, and are therefore appreciated, or at least observed by the most stupid parents, and noted even in the most superficial biographies. Philosophic and scientific thought, on the contrary, does not at once, perhaps may never, reveal itself to the senses—it is locked up in the cerebral cells; in the brain of that dull, pale youth, who is kicked for his stupidity and laughed at for his absent-mindedness, grand thoughts may be silently growing”

Newton, according to his own account, was very inattentive to his studies and low in his class, but a great adept at kite-flying, with paper lanterns attached to them, to terrify the country people, of a dark night, with the appearance of comets; and when sent to market with the produce of his mother’s farm, was apt to neglect his business, and to ruminate at an inn, over the laws of Kepler.”

This belief is strengthened by the consideration that many, perhaps the majority, of the greatest thinkers of the world seemed dull, inane, and stupid to their neighbors, not only in childhood but through their whole lives.”

It is probable, however, that nearly all cases of apparent stupidity in young geniuses are to be explained by the want of circumstances favorable to the display of their peculiar powers, or to a lack of appreciation or discernment on the part of their friends.”

As compared with the world, the most liberal curriculum is narrow; to one avenue of distinction that college opens, the world opens ten.”

GREAT precocity, like GREAT genius, is rare.”

O GÊNIO & O GENIOSO: “There is in some children a petty and morbid smartness that is sometimes mistaken for precocity, but which in truth does not deserve that distinction.”

A DOENÇA DE STEWIE: “Petty smartness is often-times a morbid symptom; it comes from a diseased brain, or from a brain in which a grave predisposition to disease exists; such children may die young, whether they do or do not early exhibit unusual quickness.”

A AMEBA SUPREMACISTA: “M.D. Delaunay has addressed to the Societé de Biologie a communication in which he takes the ground that precocity indicates biological inferiority. To prove this he states that the lower species develop more rapidly than those of a higher order; man is the slowest of all in developing and reaching maturity, and the lower orders are more precocious than the higher. As proof of this he speaks of the children of the Esquimaux, negroes, Cochin Chinese, Japanese, Arabs, etc. (…) He also states that women are more precocious than men”

THE RECURRING THEME: “The highest genius, as here and elsewhere seen, never repeats itself; very great men never have very great children; and in biological analysis, geniuses who are very precocious may be looked upon as the last of their race or of their branch—from them degeneracy is developed; and this precocity, despite their genius, may be regarded as the forerunner of that degeneracy.”

Leibniz, at 12 understood Latin authors well, and wrote a remarkable production; Gassendi, <the little doctor>, preached at 4; and at 10 wrote an important discourse; Goethe, before 10, wrote in several languages; Meyerbeer, at 5, played remarkably well on the piano; Niebuhr, at 7, was a prodigy, and at 12 had mastered 18 languages [QUÊ?!]; Michael Angelo at 19 had attained a very high reputation; at 20 Calvin was a fully-fledged reformer, and at 24 published great works on theology that have changed the destiny of the world; Jonathan Edwards, at 10, wrote a paper refuting the materiality of the soul, and at 12 was so amazingly precocious that it was predicted of him that he would become another Aristotle; at 20 Melanchthon was so learned that Erasmus exclaimed: <My God! What expectations does not Philip Melanchthon create!>.”

In order that a great man shall appear, a double line of more or less vigorous fathers and mothers must fight through the battles for existence and come out triumphant. However feeble the genius may be, his parents or grandparents are usually strong; or if not especially strong, are long-lived. Great men may have nervous if not insane relatives; but the nervous temperament holds to life longer than any other temperament. (…) in him, indeed, the branch of the race to which he belongs may reach its consummation, but the stock out of which he is evolved must be vigorous, and usually contains latent if not active genius.”

The cerebral and muscular forces are often correlated; the brain is a part of the body. This view, though hostile to the popular faith, is yet sound and supportable; a large and powerful brain in a small and feeble body is a monstrosity.”

a hundred great geniuses, chosen by chance, will be larger than a hundred dunces anywhere — will be broader, taller, and more weighty.”

In any band of workmen on a railway, you shall pick out the <boss> by his size alone: and be right 4 times out of 5.”

In certain of the arts extraordinary gifts may lift their possessor into fame with but little effort of his own, but the choicest seats in the temples of art are given only to those who have earned them by the excellence that comes from consecutive effort, which everywhere test the vital power of the man.”

One does not need to practice medicine long to learn that men die that might just as well live if they had resolved to live and that many who are invalids could become strong if they had the native or acquired will to vow that they would do so. Those who have no other quality favorable to life, whose bodily organs are nearly all diseased, to whom each day is a day of pain, who are beset by life-shortening influences, yet do live by the determination to live alone.”

the pluck of the Anglo-Saxon is shown as much on the sick-bed as in Wall Street or on the battlefield.” “When the negro feels the hand of disease pressing upon him, however gently, all his spirit leaves him.”

INNER VOW: “they live, for the same reason that they become famous; they obtain fame because they will not be obscure; they live because they will not die.”

it is the essence of genius to be automatic and spontaneous. Many a huckster or corner tradesman expends each day more force in work or fretting than a Stewart or a Vanderbilt.”

As small print most tires the eyes, so do little affairs the most disturb us” “the nearer our cares come to us the greater the friction; it is easier to govern an empire than to train a family.”

Great genius is usually industrious, for it is its nature to be active; but its movements are easy, frictionless, melodious. There are probably many school-boys who have exhausted themselves more over a prize composition than Shakespeare over Hamlet, or Milton over the noblest passages in Paradise Lost.”

So much has been said of the pernicious effects of mental labor, of the ill-health of brain-workers of all classes, and especially of clergymen, that very few were prepared to accept the statement that the clergy of this country and of England lived longer than any other class, except farmers; and very naturally a lurking fallacy was suspected. Other observers, who have since given special attention to the subject, have more than confirmed this conclusion, and have shown that clergymen are longer lived than farmers.” “A list of 10,000 is sufficient and more than sufficient for a generalization; for the second 5,000 did nothing more than confirm the result obtained by the first. It is fair and necessary to infer that if the list were extended to 10,000, 20,000, or even 100,000, the average would be found about the same.” “In their manifold duties their whole nature is exercised — not only brain and muscle in general, but all, or nearly all, the faculties of the brain — the religious, moral, and emotional nature, as well as the reason. Public speaking, when not carried to the extreme of exhaustion, is the best form of gymnastics that is known; it exercises every inch of a man, from the highest regions of the brain to the smallest muscle.” “The average income of the clergymen of the leading denominations of this country in active service as pastors of churches (including salary, house rent, wedding fees, donations, etc.), is between $800 and $1000, which is probably not very much smaller than the net income of all other professional classes. Furthermore, the income of clergymen in active service is collected and paid with greater certainty and regularity, and less labor of collection on their part, than the income of any other class except, perhaps, government officials; then, again, their earnings, whether small or great, come at once, as soon as they enter their profession, and is not, as with other callings, built up by slow growth.” “Merchants now make, always have made, and probably always will make, most of the money of the world; but business is attended with so much risk and uncertainty, and consequent anxiety, that merchants die sooner than clergymen, and several years sooner than physicians and lawyers.” “During the past 15 years, there has been a tendency, which is now rapidly increasing, for the best endowed and best cultured minds of our colleges to enter other professions, and the ministry has been losing, while medicine, business, and science have been gaining.”

There are those who come into life thus weighted down, not by disease, not by transmitted poison in the blood, but by the tendency to disease, by a sensitiveness to evil and enfeebling forces that seems to make almost every external influence a means of torture; as soon as they are born, debility puts its terrible bond upon them, and will not let them go, but plays the tyrant with them until they die. Such persons in infancy are often on the point of dying, though they may not die; in childhood numberless physical ills attack them and hold them down, and, though not confining them to home, yet deprive them, perhaps, of many childish delights; in early maturity an army of abnormal nervous sensations is waiting for them, the gauntlet of which they must run if they can; and throughout life every function seems to be an enemy.

The compensations of this type of organization are quite important and suggestive, and are most consolatory to sufferers. Among these compensations, this perhaps is worthy of first mention — that this very fineness of temperament, which is the source of nervousness, is also the source of exquisite pleasure. Highly sensitive natures respond to good as well as evil factors in their environment, salutary as well as pernicious stimuli are ever operating upon them, and their capacity for receiving, for retaining, and for multiplying the pleasures derived from external stimuli is proportionally greater than that of cold and stolid organizations: if they are plunged into a deeper hell, they also rise to a brighter heaven (…) art, literature, travel, social life, and solitude, pour out on them their selected treasures; they live not one life but many lives, and all joy is for them variously multiplied. To such temperaments the bare consciousness of living, when life is not attended by excessive exhaustion or by pain, or when one’s capacity for mental or muscular toil is not too closely tethered, is often-times a supreme felicity. The true psychology of happiness is gratification of faculties, and when the nervous are able to indulge even moderately and with studied caution and watchful anxiety their controlling desires of the nobler order, they may experience an exquisiteness of enjoyment that serves, in a measure, to reward them for their frequent distresses.”

The physician who collects his fee before his patient has quite recovered, does a wise thing, since it will be paid more promptly and more gratefully than after the recovery is complete.”

Nervous organizations are rarely without reminders of trouble that they escape — their occasional wakefulness and indigestion, their headaches and backaches and neuralgias, their disagreeable susceptibility to all evil influences that may act on the constitution, keep them ever in sight of the possibility of wliat they might have been, and suggest to them sufferings that others endure, but from which they are spared.”

While it is true that pain is more painful than its absence is agreeable, so that we think more of what is evil than of what is good in our environment, and dwell longer on the curses than the blessings of our lot, and fancy all others happier than ourselves, yet it is true likewise that our curses make the blessings more blissful by contrast”

There are those who though never well are yet never sick, always in bondage to debility and pain, from which absolute escape is impossible, yet not without large liberty of labor and of thought” “Such persons may be exposed to every manner of poison, may travel far and carelessly with recklessness, even may disregard many of the prized rules of health; may wait upon and mingle with the sick, and breathe for long periods the air of hospitals or of fever-infested dwellings, and come out apparently unharmed.”

This recuperative tendency of the nervous system is stronger, often-times, than the accumulating poison of disease, and overmasters the baneful effects of unwise medication and hygiene. Between the ages of 25 and 35, especially, the constitution often consolidates as well as grows, acquires power as well as size, and throws off, by a slow and invisible evolution, the subtile habits of nervous disease, over which treatment the most judicious and persistent seems to have little or no influence. There would appear to be organizations which at certain times of life must needs pass through the dark valley of nervous depression, and who cannot be saved therefrom by any manner of skill or prevision; who must not only enter into this valley, but, having once entered, cannot turn back: the painful, and treacherous, and agonizing horror, wisdom can but little shorten, and ordinary misdoing cannot make perpetual; they are as sure to come out as to go in; health and disease move in rhythm; the tides in the constitution are as demonstrable as the tides of the ocean, and are sometimes but little more under human control.” It is an important consolation for those who are in the midst of an attack of sick-headache, for example, that the natural history of the disease is in their favor. In a few days at the utmost, in a few hours frequently, the storm will be spent, and again the sky will be clear, and perhaps far clearer than before the storm arose.” nearly all severe pain is periodic, intermittent, rhythmical: the violent neuralgias are never constant, but come and go by throbs, and spasms, and fiercely-darting agonies, the intervals of which are absolute relief. After the exertion expended in attacks of pain, the tired nerve-atoms must need repose. Sometimes the cycles of debility, alternating with strength, extend through long years — a decade of exhaustion being followed by a decade of vigor.”

There are those who pass through an infancy of weakness and suffering and much pain, and through a childhood and early manhood in which the game of life seems to be a losing one, to a healthy and happy maturity; all that is best in their organizations seems to be kept in reserve, as though to test their faith, and make the boon of strength more grateful when it comes.”

Perfect health is by no means the necessary condition of long life; in many ways, indeed, it may shorten life; grave febrile and inflammatory diseases are invited and fostered by it, and made fatal, and the self-guarding care, without which great longevity is almost impossible, is not enforced or even suggested.” “Headaches, and backaches, and neuralgias, are safety-valves through which nerve-perturbations escape, and which otherwise might become centres of accumulated force, and break forth with destruction beyond remedy. The liability to sudden attacks of any form of pain, or distress, or discomfort, under overtoil or from disregard of natural law, is, so far forth, a blessing to its possessor, making imperative the need of foresight and practical wisdom in the management of health, and warning us in time to avoid irreparable disaster. The nervous man hears the roar of the breakers from afar, while the strong and phlegmatic steers boldly, blindly on, until he is cast upon the shore, often-times a hopeless wreck.”

A neurastenia também tem o nome de “cãibra do escritor”. No trecho a seguir, a referida “cãibra” está mais próxima de um surto neurastênico agudo, do qual, defende Beard, o ‘nervoso típico’ está protegido: “Those who are sensitive, and nervous, and delicate, whom every external or internal irritation injures, and who appreciate physical injury instantly, as soon as the exciting cause begins to act, cannot write long enough to get writer’s cramp; they are warned by uneasiness or pain, by weariness, local or general, and are forced to interrupt their labors before there has been time to receive a fixed or persistent disease.” “had they been feeble they would have been unable to persevere in the use of the pen so as to invite permanent nervous disorder.” Without such warnings they might have continued in a life of excessive friction and exhausting worry, and never have suspected that permanent invalidism was in waiting for them, until too late to save themselves either by hygiene or medication. When a man is prostrated nervously, all the forces of nature rush to his rescue; but the strong man, once fully fallen, rallies with difficulty, and the health-evolving powers may find a task to which, aided or unaided, they are inadequate.”

The history of the world’s progress from savagery to barbarism, from barbarism to civilization, and, in civilization, from the lower degrees towards the higher, is the history of increase in average longevity, corresponding to and accompanied by increase of nervousness. Mankind has grown to be at once more delicate and more enduring, more sensitive to weariness and yet more patient of toil, impressible but capable of bearing powerful irritation: we are woven of finer fibre, which, though apparently frail, yet outlasts the coarser, as rich and costly garments often-times wear better than those of rougher workmanship.”

Among our educated classes there are nervous invalids in large numbers, who have never known by experience what it is to be perfectly well or severely ill, whose lives have been not unlike a march through a land infested by hostile tribes, that ceaselessly annoy in front and on flank, without ever coming to a decisive conflict, and who, in advanced age, seem to have gained wariness, and toughness, and elasticity, by the long discipline of caution, of courage, and of endurance; and, after having seen nearly all their companions, whose strength they envied, struck down by disease, are themselves spared to enjoy, it may be, their best days, at a time when, to the majority, the grasshopper becomes a burden, and life each day a visibly losing conflict with death.” “the irritability, the sensitiveness, the capriciousness of the constitution, between the ages of 15 and 45, have, in a degree, disappeared, and the system has acquired a certain solidity, steadiness, and power; and thus, after a long voyage against opposing winds and fretting currents, they enter the harbor in calmness and peace.”

MEU SÉCULO ME IMPEDE DE COMPARTILHAR DESTE OTIMISMO: “It may be doubted whether, in the history of disease of any kind, there has been made so decided and so satisfactory an advance as has been made within the last quarter of a century, in the treatment of nervousness in its various manifestations.” “One great factor in the modern treatment of these functional nervous diseases is individualization, no two cases being treated precisely alike, but each one being studied by itself alone. Among wise physicians, the day for wholesale treatment of nervous diseases can never return. The result of all this progress is, that thousands who formerly would have suffered all their lives, and with no other relief except that which comes from the habitual addiction to narcotics, can now be cured, or permanently relieved, or at least put into working order where they are most useful and happy.” if all new modes of action of nerve-force are to be so many added pathways to sorrow,—if each fresh discovery or invention is to be matched by some new malady of the nerves,—if insanity and epilepsy and neurasthenia, with their retinue of neuroses, through the cruel law of inheritance, are to be organized in families, descending in fiery streams throught the generations, we yet have this assurance,—that science, with keen eyes and steps that are not slow, is seeking and is finding means of prevention and of relief.”

5. PHYSICAL FUTURE OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE [epílogo cagado e ‘poliânico’ totalmente desnecessário]

This increase of neuroses cannot be arrested suddenly; it must yet go on for at least 25 or 50 years, when all of these disorders shall be both more numerous and more heterogenous than at present. But side by side with these are already developing signs of improved health and vigor that cannot be mistaken; and the time must come—not unlikely in the first half of the 20th century—when there will be a halt or retrograde movement in the march of nervous diseases, and while the absolute number of them may be great, relatively to the population, they will be less frequent than now; the evolution of health, and the evolution of nervousness, shall go on side by side.”

Health is the offspring of relative wealth.” “febrile and inflammatory disorders, plagues, epidemics, great accidents and catastrophes even, visit first and last and remain longest with those who have no money.” the absence of all but forced vacations—the result, and one of the worst results, of poverty—added to the corroding force of envy, and the friction of useless struggle,—all these factors that make up or attend upon simple want of money, are in every feature antagonistic to health and longevity. Only when the poor become absolute paupers, and the burden of life is taken from them and put upon the State or public charity, are they in a condition of assured health and long life.” “The inmates of our public institutions of charity of the modern kind are often the happiest of men, blessed with an environment, on the whole, far more salubrious than that to which they have been accustomed, and favorably settled for a serene longevity.” “For the same reasons, well-regulated jails are healthier than many homes, and one of the best prescriptions for the broken-down and distressed is for them to commit some crime.”

A fat bank account tends to make a fat man; in all countries, amid all stages of civilization and semi-barbarism, the wealthy classes have been larger and heavier than the poor.” “In India this coincidence of corpulence and opulence has been so long observed that it is instinctively assumed; and certain Brahmins, it is said, in order to obtain the reputation of wealth, studiously cultivate a diet adapted to make them fat.”

The majority of our Pilgrim Fathers in New England, and of the primitive settlers in the Southern and Middle States, really knew but little of poverty in the sense in which the term is here used. They were an eminently thrifty people, and brought with them both the habits and the results of thrift to their homes in the New World. Poverty as here described is of a later evolution, following in this country, as in all others, the pathway of a high civilization.”

the best of all antidotes and means of relief for nervous disease is found in philosophy.” Thus it is in part that Germany, which in scientific and philosophic discovery does the thinking for all nations, and which has added more to the world’s stock of purely original ideas than any other country, Greece alone excepted, is less nervous than any other nation; thus it is also that America, which in the same department has but fed on the crumbs that fall from Germany’s table, has developed a larger variety and number of functional nervous diseases than all other nations combined.”

The capacity for growth in any given direction, physical or mental, is always limited; no special gift of body or mind can be cultivated beyond a certain point, however great the tenderness and care bestowed upon it.”

In man, that higher operation of the faculties which we call genius is hereditary, transmissible, running through and in families as demonstrably as pride or hay-fever, the gifts as well as the sins of the fathers being visited upon the children and the children’s children; general talent, or some special talent, in one or both parents rises and expands in immediate or remote offspring, and ultimately flowers out into a Socrates, a Shakespeare, a Napoleon, and then falls to the ground”

That a single family may rise to enduring prominence and power, it is needful that through long generations scores of families shall endure poverty and pain and struggle with cruel surroundings”

The America of the future, as the America of the present, must be a nation where riches and culture are restricted to the few—to a body, however, the personnel of which is constantly changing.”

Inebriety being a type of the nervous diseases of the family to which it belongs, may properly be here defined and differentiated from the vice and habit of drinking with which it is confounded. The functional nervous disease inebriety, or dipsomania, differs from the simple vice of drinking to excess in these respects:


The simple habit of drinking even to an extreme degree may be broken up by pledges or by word promises or by quiet resolution, but the disease inebriety can be no more cured in this way than can neuralgia or sick-headache, or neurasthenia, or hay-fever, or any of the family of diseases to which it belongs.


Of the nervous symptoms that precede, or accompany, or follow inebriety, are tremors, hallucinations, insomnia, mental depressions, and attacks of trance, to which I give the term alcoholic trance.


even drunkenness in a parent or grandparent may develop in children epilepsy or insanity, or neurasthenia or inebriety.


The attacks of inebriety may be periodical; they may appear once a month, and with the same regularity as chills and fever or sick-headache, and far more regularly than epilepsy, and quite independent of any external temptation or invitation to drink, and oftentimes are as irresistible and beyond the control of will as spasms of epilepsy or the pains of neuralgia or the delusions of insanity. Inebriety is not so frequent among the classes that drink excessively as among those who drink but moderately, although their ancestors may have been intemperate; it is most frequent in the nervous and highly organized classes, among the brain-workers, those who have lived indoors; there is more excessive drinking West and South than in the East, but more inebriety in the East.”

probably no country outside of China uses, in proportion to population, so much opium as America, and as the pains and nervousness and debility that tempt to the opium habit are on the increase, the habit must inevitably develop more rapidly in the future than in the past; of hay-fever there must, in a not very distant time, be at least 100,000 cases in America, and in the 20th century hundreds of thousands of insane and neurasthenics.”

There must be, also, an increasing number of people who cannot bear severe physical exercise. Few facts relating to this subject are more instructive than this — the way in which horseback-riding is borne by many in modern times. In our country, I meet with large numbers who cannot bear the fatigue of horseback-riding, which used to be looked upon — possibly is looked upon to-day — as one of the best forms of exercise, and one that is recommended as a routine by physicians who are not discriminating in dealing with nervously-exhausted patients.” The greatest possible care and the best judgment are required in prescribing and adapting horseback-riding to nervous individuals of either sex; it is necessary to begin cautiously, to go on a walk for a few moments; and even after long training excess is followed by injury, in many cases.”

ANTIRRUBENISMO: “If either extreme is to be chosen, it is well, on the whole, to err on the side of rest rather than on the side of excess of physical exertion.”

Why Education is behind other Sciences and Arts? Schools and colleges everywhere are the sanctuaries of medievalism, since their aim and their powers are more for retaining what has been discovered than for making new discoveries; consequently we cannot look to institutions or organizations of education for the reconstruction of that system by which they enslave the world and are themselves enslaved. It is claimed by students of Chinese character that that great nation has been kept stationary through its educational policy — anchored for centuries to competitive examinations which their strong nerves can bear while they make no progress. In a milder way, and in divers and fluctuating degrees, all civilized nations take their inspiration from China, since it is the office and life of teaching to look backward rather than forward; in the relations of men as in physics, force answers to force, and as the first, like the second childhood is always reactionary, a class of youths tend by their collective power to bring the teacher down more than he can lift them up. Only conservative natures are fond of teaching; organizations are always in the path of their own reconstruction; mediocrity begets mediocrity, attracts it, and is attracted by it. Whence all our institutions become undying centres of conservatism. The force that reconstructs an organization must come from outside the body that is to be reconstructed.”

The Gospel of Rest. The gospel of work must make way for the gospel of rest. The children of the past generation were forced, driven, stimulated to work, and in forms most repulsive, the philosophy being that utility is proportioned to pain; that to be happy is to be doing wrong, hence it is needful that studies should not only be useless but repelling, and should be pursued by those methods which, on trial, proved the most distressing, wearisome, and saddening. That this philosophy has its roots in a certain truth psychology allows, but the highest wisdom points also to another truth, the need of the agreeable; our children must be driven from study and all toil, and in many instances coaxed, petted, and hired to be idle; we must drive them away from schools as our fathers drove them towards the schools; one must be each moment awake and alive and active, to keep a child from stealthily learning to read; our cleverest offspring loves books more than play, and truancies [matar aula] and physical punishments are far rarer than half a century ago.”

From investigations at Darmstadt, Paris, and Neuremburg, Dr. Treichler concludes that one-third of the pupils suffer more or less from some form of headache. It is not probable that these headaches in children are the result purely of intellectual exertion, but of intellectual exertion combined with bad air, with the annoyances and excitements and worries, the wasting and rasping anxieties of school life.”

Even studies that are agreeable and in harmony with the organs, and to which tastes and talents are irresistibly inclined, are pursued at an expenditure of force which is far too great for many nervously organized temperaments. I have lately had under my care a newly married lady who for some years has been in a state of neurasthenia of a severe character, and of which the exciting cause was devotion to music at home; long hours at the piano, acting on a neurasthenic temperament, given to her by inheritance, had developed morbid fears and all the array of nervous symptoms that cluster around them, so that despite her fondness for a favorite art she was forced to abandon it, and from that time was dated her improvement, though at the time that I was called in to see her she had yet a long way to travel before she would reach even approximate health.”

The reconstruction of the principles of evidence, the primary need of all philosophy, which cannot much longer be delayed, is to turn nearly all that we call history into myth, and destroy and overthrow beyond chance of resurrection all but a microscopic fraction of the world’s reasoning. Of the trifle that is saved, the higher wisdom of coming generations will know and act upon the knowledge that a still smaller fraction is worthy of being taught, or even remembered by any human being.” A tragédia é que uma filosofia do conhecimento só pode vir depois da burra e didática memorização de fatos tão lineares quanto sem nexo. Ou seja: chega-se ao ideal da educação quando ela já está finalizada ou, antes, só se chega ao suposto ideal, descobrindo-se que o começo devera ter sido diferente, quando o começo se sedimentou. Pode-se ensinar certo, mas não se pode aprender certo!

The fact that anything is known, and true and important for some is of itself no reason why all should know or attempt to know it”

Our children are coaxed, cajoled, persuaded, enticed, bluffed, bullied, and driven into the study of ancient and modern tongues; though the greatest men in all languages, whose writings are the inspiration to the study of languages themselves knew no language but their own; and, in all the loftiest realms of human creative power the best work has been done, and is done today, by those who are mostly content with the language in which they were cradled.” “of all accomplishments, the ability to speak and write in many tongues is the poorest barometer of intellectual force, and the least satisfactory for happiness and practical use”

Shakespeare, drilled in modern gymnasia and universities, might have made a fair school-master, but would have kept the world out of Hamlet and Othello.”

Of the sciences multiplying everyday, but few are to be known by any one individual; he who has studied enough of the systematized knowledge of men, and looked far enough in various directions in which it leads to know which his tastes and environment best adapt him to follow, and who resolutely obeys his tastes, even in opposition to all teachers,(*) philosophers, and scholars, has won the battle of life” Mementos: Jabur, Edsono (um representante dos jornalistas e um dos pseudossociofiloepistemólogos)

the study of the art of thinking, of the philosophy of reasoning, in mathematics, poetry, science, literature, or language, is the best exercise for those who would gain this mental discipline”

O coach está para para o acadêmico de hoje como os sofistas estavam para os filósofos jônicos e eleatas da Grécia Antiga: é um sintoma da crise e insustentabilidade desse modo de conhecimento, mas tampouco chega a lugar algum. Prenuncia um tipo de Sócrates que vem aí?

In all spheres of thought, the most hospitable of intellects, the most generous in their welcome to new truths or dreams of truth are those who have once learned the great secret of life—how to forget.”

GUSMÓN: “Conscientious professors in colleges often-times exhort their graduates to keep up some of the studies of college life during the activity of years — if those graduates are ever to do much in the world, it is by doing precisely NOT what they are thus advised to do.”

ESPECIALISTA AGRAMATICAL: “The details of geography, of mathematics, and of languages, ancient as well as modern, of most of the sciences, ought, and fortunately are, forgotten almost as soon as learned, save by those who become life-experts in these special branches”

The systems of Froebel and Pestalozzi, and the philosophy of Rousseau in his Émile, analyzed and formulated in physiological language is, in substance, that it costs less force and is more natural and easy to get into a house through the doors, than to break down the walls, or come through the roof, or climb up from the cellar. Modern education is burglary; we force ideas into the brain through any other pathway and every other way except the doors and windows, and then we are astonished that they are unwelcome and so quickly expelled.”

they see with the mind’s eye, though we close their eyelids.”

Medicine has been taught in all our schools in a way the most unphilosophical, and despite all the modifications and improvements of late years, by bedside teaching and operations and demonstrations, the system of medical education is in need of reconstruction from the foundation; it begins where it should end; it feeds the tree through the leaves and branches instead of through the roots; physiology itself is taught unphysiologically; the conventional, hereditary, orthodox style is, for the student to take systematic text-books, go through them systematically from beginning to end, and attend systematic lectures, reserving study at the bedside for the middle and later years of his study; the didactic instruction coming first, and the practical instruction and individual observation coming last. Psychology and experience require that this should be reversed; the first years of the medical student’s life should be given to the bedside, the laboratory and dissecting room, and the principles of systematic instruction should be kept for the last years, and then used very sparingly. The human mind does not work systematically, and all new truths enter most easily and are best retained when they enter in psychological order. System in text-books is a tax on the nerve-force, costly both of time and of energy, and it is only by forgetting what has been taught them in the schools that men even attain eminence in the practice of medicine.

The first lesson and the first hour of medical study should be at the bedside of the sick man; before reading a book or hearing a lecture, or even knowing of the existence of a disease, the student should see the disease, and then, after having seen it and been instructed in reference to it, his reading will be a thousand-fold more profitable than it would had he read first and seen the case afterwards. Every practitioner with any power of analyzing his own mental operations knows that his reading of disease is always more intelligent after he has had a case, or while he has a case under treatment under his own eyes, and he knows also that all his reading of abstract, systematic books is of but little worth to him when he meets his first case, unless he re-read, and if he do so, he will find that he has forgotten all he has read before, and he will find, also, that he never understood what he read, and perhaps thoroughly and accurately recited on examination. By this method one shall learn more what is worth learning of medicine in one month, than now we learn in a year, under the common system, and what is learned will be in hand and usable, and will be obtained at incommensurably less cost of energy, as well as of time. So-called <systematic instruction> is the most extravagant form of instruction and is really no instruction, since the information which it professes to give does not enter the brain of the student, though the words in which it is expressed may be retained, and recited or written out on examination. I read the other day an opening lecture by a professor in one of our chief medical schools. I noticed that the professor apologized for being obliged to begin with what was dry and uninteresting, but stated that in a systematic course it was necessary to do so. It will not be his fault only, but rather the fault of the machinery of which he is one of the wheels, if the students who listen to and take notes of and worry over his lecture, never know what he means; 5 minutes study of a case of rheumatism or an inflamed joint, under the aid of an expert instructor, will give a person more knowledge of inflammation, in relation to the practice of medicine, than a year of lectures on that subject.

I make particular reference to medical education, not because it is the leading offender, but because it has made greater progress, perhaps, than almost any other kind of modern education.” and the time will come when men shall read with amusement and horror of intelligent, human, and responsible young men beginning a medical course by listening to systematic abstract lectures.” 140 anos e nada…

In theological seminaries, students are warned about preaching, or speaking, or lecturing during their 1st or 2nd year, and tied and chained down to lectures and homiletics, and theology and history” Nothing David (or Solomon) would be good at…

Aside from the study of language, which is a separate matter, the first day’s work in a theological school should be the writing or preparing a sermon, and homiletics should follow — not precede.”

All languages should be learned as we learn our own language — not through grammars or dictionaries, but through conversation and reading, the grammars and dictionaries being reserved for a more advanced stage of investigation and for reference, just as in the language in which we were born.”

I applaud the English because they boast of their ignorance of American geography; of what worth to them, of what worth to most of us whether Montana be in California, or Alaska be or be not the capital of Arizona?”

The Harvard professor who says that when students enter his room his desire is, not to find out what they knew, but what they did not know, ought to have been born in the 20th century, and possibly in the 30th, for his philosophy is so sound and so well grounded psychology that he cannot hope to have it either received or comprehended in his lifetime; and the innovation that Harvard has just promised, of having the teacher recite and the pupils ask the questions, is one of the few gleams of light in the great darkness by which this whole subject of education has been enveloped.”

EDSONO’S EXQUISITE CLASS OF TORTURE (2009): Lectures, except they be of a clinical sort [belo troca-trilho!], in which appeals are made to the senses, cost so much in nerve-force, in those that listen to them, that the world cannot much longer afford to indulge in them and the information they give is of a most unsatisfactory sort, since questioning, and interruption, and repetition, and reviewing are scarcely possible (…) The human brain is too feeble and limited an organ to catch a new idea when first stated, and if the idea be not new it is useless to state it.”

ServIce on dem and us

dire dim straits

a threat!

One of the pleasantest memories in my life, is that, during my medical education, I did not attend one lecture out of 12 — save those of a clinical sort — that were delivered (brilliant and able as some of them were) in the college where I studied, and my regret is that the poverty of medical literature at that time compelled me to attend even those. All the long lectures in my academical course at the college were useful to me — and I think were useful to all my classmates — only by enforcing the necessity, and inspiring the habit of enduring passively and patiently what we know to be in all respects painful and pernicious, providing we have no remedy.”

Original thinkers and discoverers, and writers are objects of increasing worry on the part of their relatives and friends lest they break down from overwork; whereas, it is not so much these great thinkers as the young school-girl or bank clerk that needs our sympathy.”

In England during the last summer, I attempted, without any human beings on whom to experiment, to explain some of the theories and philosophies of trance before an audience composed of the very best physiologists and psychologists of Europe, and with no hetter success than at home. If I had had but one out of the 20 or 30 cases on whom I have lately experimented, to illustrate and enforce my views, there would have been, I am sure, no difficulty in making clear not only the facts, but what is of chief importance, the interpretation of the facts.”

Modern competitive examinations are but slightly in advance of the system of recitations and lectures. They seem to have been invented by someone who wished to torture rather than benefit mankind, and whose philosophy was: whatever is disagreeable is useful, and that the temporary accumulation of facts is true wisdom, and an accurate measure of cerebral force.”

Knowing by heart is not knowing at all” Montaigne

the greatest fool may often pass the best examination [Exemplo contemporâneo: ‘Patrick Damascenos’ se tornando médicos diplomados por universidades federais – no mínimo os minions esquecem o que aprendem em História após 30 dias (‘conteúdo inútil’, etc.), embora apostilas do Sigma ou Galois nunca fossem lá muito confiáveis, para início de conversa…]; no wise man can always tell what he knows; ideas come by suggestion rather than by order; you must wait for their appearing at their own time and not at ours” “he who can always tell what he knows, knows little worth knowing.”

The first signs of ascension, as of declension, in nations are seen in women.”

palace cars and elevators and sewing machines are types of recent improvements that help to diminish the friction of modern life. Formerly [!!!] inventors increased the friction of our lives and made us nervous.” E que diabos eram palace cars?

The Germanization of America — by which I mean the introduction through very extensive immigration, of German habits and character — is a phenomenon which can now be observed, even by the dullest and nearest-sighted, in the large cities of the Northern portion of our country.” O nazismo foi o último a chegar.

tending to displace pernicious whiskey by less pernicious beer and wine, setting the example of coolness and calmness, which the nervously exhausted American very much needs.”

Tempos em que valia a pena se conservar: “We have been all English in our conservatism, a quality which has increased in proportion as we have gained anything of wealth or character or any manifestation of force whatsoever, that is worth preserving.” Hoje os americanos são azeitonas vencidas em conserva.

after such a vacation one needed a vacation.”

The nervousness of the third generation of Germans [?] is a fact that comes to my professional notice more and more.”

Not only are the <ha, ha’s> [RONALDINHO SOCCER!], of which so much [mundial] SPORT was once made, heard much less frequently than formerly in public meetings, but there is a positive ease and attractiveness to very many of the English speakers in and out of Parliament, in the pulpit and on the platform, that is thoroughly American” it was proved that if all the [congress] speakers continued to speak as often and as elaborately as they had been speaking, a number of years would be required before they could adjourn [se significa entrar em recesso ou perder a próxima eleição, deixo a critério do leitor de criptas!].”

the forces that renovate and save are mightier far than the forces that emasculate and destroy.”

Não sei se chamo o comentário de genial ou estúpido: “The American race, it is said, is dying out; but there is no American race. Americans are the union of European races and peoples, as lakes are fed by many streams, and can only disappear with the exhaustion of its sources. Europe must die before America. In sections of America, as in New England, and in large cities, the number of children to a family in certain classes is too small for increase of population.” Uma eterna sucessão de sins e nãos no melhor estilo Cleber Machado!

Felizmente o Deus Europeu-Ocidental morreu e a Ásia com seu rostinho de beldade imortal de 20 aninhos vem aí…

DANIEL DEFOE, JONATHAN SWIFT & UM PANORAMA DA LITERATURA INGLESA DOS XVIII // OU AINDA: UMA CRÍTICA DA CLASSE MÉDIA E, AINDA, ALGUMAS CONSIDERAÇÕES PROTOFEMINISTAS – Excertos traduzidos de um capítulo de livro de Terry Eagleton, crítico literário britânico, intitulado “Daniel Defoe and Jonathan Swift”

Os excertos giram em torno de dois autores contemporâneos, talvez os dois mais conhecidos hoje fora da Inglaterra em termos de literatura clássica daquele país – As Viagens de Gulliver veio ao mundo menos de quinze anos depois d’As Aventuras de Robinson Crusoe. São duas obras espantosamente similares e divergentes ao mesmo tempo. Duas narrativas, eu diria, de restless wanderers, viajantes incansáveis, espécies de maníacos tragicamente involuntários por navegar o mundo, sem propósito claro em mente…

Assim como o novelista e ex-condenado Jeffrey Archer, a carreira de Daniel Defoe abrangeu dívidas e alta política, a profissão de escritor e o cárcere. Cronologicamente falando, a arte imitou a vida com Defoe, uma vez que ele começou a escrever maior parte de suas obras enquanto ativista. De outro ângulo, entretanto, sua vida imitou, sim, a arte, pois sua trajetória foi sensacionalista o bastante para que pudesse figurar tranquilamente como o protagonista de suas próprias novelas tumultuadas. Em diversos momentos ele se dedicou ao comércio de vestuário, vinho e tabaco, foi dono de uma fábrica de tijolos, um político vira-casaca, uma espécie de espião do submundo e dos bastidores da política, agente secreto oficial do governo, espécie de diplomata e assessor do império britânico por meio de suas publicações jornalísticas (o que na época chamavam de publicista). Não bastasse todo esse cartel, tomou parte ativa em uma rebelião armada contra Jaime II, excursionou incansavelmente pela Europa e teve um papel crucial nas históricas negociações da unificação política dos reinos da Inglaterra e da Escócia.

Defoe faliu mais de uma vez, foi preso por débitos e até exposto no pelourinho num processo de sedição após publicar um panfleto satírico. Mesmo depois dessa experiência, ele viria a publicar um Hino ao Pelourinho (Hymn to the Pillory), bem como um Hino às Massas (Hymn to the Mob), em que, escandalosamente para a época, enaltecia o povo de extrato inferior por sua extrema lucidez de julgamento. É difícil imaginar outro grande autor inglês fazendo a mesma coisa na mesma época. Entre suas obras, está também Uma História Política do Demônio (A Political History of the Devil), um estudo sobre fantasmas, motivado pela Grande Praga de Londres, um surto da peste bubônica que eclodiu em 1665 e durou até o biblicamente simbólico ano seguinte. Defoe publicou também uma apologia irrestrita da instituição do casamento intitulada Indecência Conjugal; ou da Prostituição Marital. Um tratado sobre a Utilidade e a Inconveniência da Cama de Casal (Conjugal Lewdness; or Matrimonial Whoredom. A Treatise Concerning the Use and Abuse of the Marriage Bed). De modo algum ele seria um ‘novelista’ no puro senso da palavra (o próprio termo em voga criou sua acepção muito mais tarde), muito embora ele tenha atacado os ‘Romances’ (o gênero pré-novelístico por excelência), que para ele eram estórias que não informavam, apenas entretinham (e isso era necessariamente ruim naquela Inglaterra). Suas obras mais consagradas, Moll Flanders e Robinson Crusoe, são ‘novelas’ apenas em retrospecto. Defoe só escrevia aquilo com que pensava poder lucrar, sendo uma espécie de autor oportunista altamente prolífico que ‘atirava para todos os lados’ no mercado literário em ebulição de seus dias. A imprensa da época não discriminava entre gêneros, muito menos Defoe o faria.

Escrever, para Defoe, pois, não passava de commodity, como ele próprio retrata o mundo em suas ‘novelas’, que podemos resumir como ‘uma série de coisas a que se dá um preço de alto a baixo’. Tampouco era Defoe um ‘homem literário’: ao contrário, sua escrita é apressada, não pesa as palavras, e é transparente demais. Um ‘grau zero’ do estilo como se sempre fosse um jornalista ou historiador relatando fatos que tendia a apagar as próprias pegadas, negando seu próprio status de escritor e, portanto, de criador de realidades. O próprio Defoe batizava seu estilo de ‘cáustico’ ou ‘abjeto’ (mean), pretensamente desprovido de conscienciosidade e ignorante dos próprios artifícios. Na linguagem lacônica e um tanto caseira e pré-fabricada de Defoe sentimos, quase pela primeira vez na Literatura, o idioma dos comuns. Linguagem despida de textura e densidade, que permite ao leitor atravessar as palavras e ver as coisas de frente e em si mesmas. ‘O conhecimento das coisas, não das palavras, molda o erudito’, comentou Daniel Defoe no Compleat English Gentleman.¹ Uma profusão de aventuras e incidentes tem forçosamente de compensar as narrativas de Defoe, devido à crueza de textura. A suprema fertilidade de sua técnica é de fato impressionante. Defoe quase não se preocupa com o sentir das coisas, não mais do que um merceeiro passaria o dia acariciando e apalpando seus queijos, que são apenas seu ganha-pão. Defoe é o utilitarista-padrão: mais interessado no valor de troca dos objetos, não em suas qualidades sensuais ou sensórias. Há sem dúvida sensualidade em Defoe, principalmente nas obras de protagonistas mulheres (Moll Flanders e Roxana), mas não sensualismo, voluptuosidade. O realismo defoeniano é um realismo das coisas, enquanto que o de Richardson, por exemplo, é um das pessoas e sentimentos.”

¹ Uma espécie de enciclopédia de seu tempo, hoje de domínio público: Manuscritos descobertos no séc. XIX, tudo indica que fossem anotações diversas do escritor que ele tinha a intenção de completar e publicar.

Depois de um bom tempo exercendo seu ofício errático, pau-pra-toda-obra, escrevendo meramente para sobreviver, Defoe morreu enquanto se ocultava ou fugia de seus credores, autodeterminado, quem sabe, a acabar da mesma maneira que havia começado, ignorando outros estilos de vida. Foi um Dissidente (um imoralista) numa época em que ser Dissidente (assim, com letra maiúscula mesmo) era o mesmo que não possuir direitos civis. Como muitos de seus compatriotas novelistas, provinha da classe-média baixa econômica mas que possuía um status de pequena-burguesia, devido ao fator da formação intelectual: ilustrado, completou sua educação formal, cultivava ambições de ascensão e em seu meio os jovens eram politicamente articulados. No seu Journal of the Plague Year, ou Jornal do Ano da Peste, ele tripudia de algumas superstições do povão enquanto dá crédito irrestrito a outras. Muito parecido com William Blake em sua origem social, a rebeldia de Defoe afirmava a radical igualdade entre homens e mulheres, sustentando que o handicap feminino não passava do resultado de convenções. Desigualdades sexuais eram puramente culturais, nada naturais. O que distingue suas personagens Roxana e Moll Flanders, como outras tantas prostitutas vigaristas (seja as de luxo ou as que trabalhavam em espeluncas) e objetificadas da literatura de então, é que havia a afirmação premente, em todo o livro: elas não são propriedade de homem algum, elas não são de ninguém. No mundo de Defoe, nenhuma relação é permanente, aliás.”

Quando Moll Flanders diz levianamente que está grata por ter se livrado de seu filho na barriga, todo leitor de época se sentia escandalizado e ao mesmo tempo representado. Roxana é a comerciante-mulher, que embora seja a própria mercadoria é a dona do negócio: recusa o casamento, mesmo com um bom nobre, pois isso seria a ruína total de sua independência financeira. Ser esposa, para Roxana, era o mesmo que ser escrava. Os puritanos da geração de Defoe prezavam tanto a felicidade doméstica quanto o individualismo econômico; o único problema era a completa incompatibilidade de ambos. Sobretudo no caso das mulheres, que em quaisquer das esferas, isoladamente consideradas, estavam de todo modo alijadas da autonomia. Isso não significa que não fosse também uma questão masculina: na prática o individualismo econômico significava uma castração, compelindo à afabilidade, afeição, lealdade e companheirismo que o pai de família devia simbolizar.

Para complementar as credenciais progressistas de Defoe, ele militava pela absoluta soberania do plebeu, cujo direito de não se curvar a uma soberania injusta era, ele pregava, inalienável. Ele defendia os quakers e já então propagava os méritos de uma sociedade etnicamente miscigenada. Estrangeiros, segundo ele, eram um precioso acréscimo para a nação. Defoe troçava das mitologias chauvinistas dos bretões em poemas como O Inglês Puro-Sangue (The True-Born Englishman), cujos versos não hesitam em caracterizar a raça britânica justamente pela sua alta mestiçagem, desdenhando a noção aristocrática de pureza de sangue e ridicularizando a própria idéia-título do ‘puro-sangue’ com suprema ironia: mera ficção e, aliás, contradição. Não é irrelevante para essa polêmica (à época) que Guilherme III, sob quem Defoe exerceu seus trabalhos panfletários, fosse um holandês.”

“‘O que significam as capacidades naturais de qualquer criança sem a educação?’, o autor questiona no Compleat English Gentleman. Apenas tories absolutamente reacionários como Henry Fielding seriam capazes de enaltecer só o lado das qualidades inatas. Defoe não se mostrava pudico em politizar a questão: por trás dessa doutrina pedagógica ‘inocente’ havia toda uma tentativa de impedir as reformas pedagógico-sociais necessárias à Inglaterra, mediante o argumento dos talentos e habilidades congênitos e inalteráveis, que sempre legitimariam só as crianças da nobreza.”

O homem não é rico porque é honesto, mas é honesto porque é rico.

Essa é uma doutrina escandalosamente materialista avant-la-lettre, muito mais típica de um Bertolt Brecht do que de um ardoroso cristão dos Setecentos. Valores morais são o simples reflexo das condições materiais. Os ricos são apenas privilegiados o bastante para não terem de roubar. A moralidade é para aqueles que podem cultivá-la. Ideais calham muito bem a quem tem de sobra o que comer. Defoe também exigia leis que reconhecessem a condição dos miseráveis, ao invés da replicagem de um sistema que, em primeiro lugar, criou a miséria, para depois enforcar os miseráveis por serem eles o que são.”

Se a classe média preza tanto pelo eu autônomo na teoria, como pode ser que viole tanto essa doutrina na prática? Quer ela de fato a independência de todos os seus servos, assalariados que tem tão pouco poder de barganha que são menos do que cidadãos e pouco mais que escravos, sem falar dos colonizados além-mar? Não seria preferível para o pequeno-burguês, secretamente, é claro, preferir a liberdade irrestrita para si e a negativa para todos os competidores no mercado? A pequena-burguesia acredita na autodeterminação da população; mas ao mesmo tempo seus membros, homens e mulheres, não passam de títeres de forças econômicas impessoais. Os protagonistas de Defoe – Moll, Crusoe, Roxana, Coronel Jack – estão todos enleados nessa contradição. Se eles são, num sentido, forjadores de seu próprio destino, são, inegavelmente, vítimas desafortunadas da Providência, das leis do livre comércio e de seus próprios apetites.

No ensaio A Divindade da Troca (The Divinity of Trade), Defoe vê a Natureza como um tipo de capitalista, que – em sua infinita e inapreensível sabedoria burguesa – criou corpos capazes de flutuar sobre as águas, para que se pudessem construir navios e fomentar o comércio; criou as estrelas para nortear os navegadores; e até escavou rios no seio dos continentes que levam as embarcações direto para os recursos espoliáveis de outros países. Animais foram feitos dóceis e submissos deliberadamente para que o homem os explorasse como instrumentos e também como matéria-prima; linhas costeiras pedregosas foram criadas possibilitando a construção de fortalezas; matéria-prima conveniente foi distribuída ao longo de todo o planeta para que cada nação tivesse algo para vender e algo para comprar. Ainda que estejamos falando de um período muito aquém dos oceanos de Coca-Cola e da produção da necessidade quase que instintiva de calçar um Nike, a Natureza, para Defoe, não perdia e não perdeu nada de vista.”

Ora, se o homem era divinizado e elevado de forma sem precedentes nessa nova ordem social, temos em contrapartida a desvantagem de que qualquer indivíduo é indiferentemente intercambiável. Parceiros comerciais, sexuais ou maritais em Defoe vêm e vão, às vezes com tanta individualidade quanto numa coletividade de coelhos. Mas o maior conflito se dá entre as práticas amorais de uma cultura plutocêntrica e autocentrada em excesso e os altos ideais morais que essa própria cultura insiste em pregar.”

O escritor John Dunton, também do séc. XVIII, que teve ligeiro contato com Defoe, geria um jornal mensal devotado à prostituição, ou antes a denegrir a prática da prostituição ao invés de servir como Classificados do corpo humano alheio, o Night Walker: or, Evening Rambles in Search after Lewd Women (O Caminhante Noturno [/o Homem da Noite]: ou Aventuras do Entardecer em Busca de Mulheres Lascivas). Mesmo sendo vanguardista para a época, impossível que fosse um jornal politicamente correto para nossa concepção. A novela naturalista do século XIX procedia a expedientes parecidos, num meio-termo entre a objetificação degradante e gratuita da mulher da noite e a exposição de uma espécie de mal burguês: essas escapadelas maritais tinham um odor sensual e fatalista, havia um certo prazer mórbido no retrato de becos sujos e miseráveis em que todo moralista jogava a moral fora, e a mulher podia ser vista como a vítima de uma (des)ordem social; o século XIX foi cada vez mais inquirindo sobre esta questão de forma científica, menos sensacionalista, mas Defoe não chegou a testemunhar essa evolução.”

A família, para um puritano devoto como Defoe, é um domínio sagrado, como sugere seu panfleto de costumes O Instrutor da Família (The Family Instructor). Ao mesmo tempo, ele advoga, sem constrangimento, que tais laços podem e devem ser cortados quando se tornam mais maus do que bons: quando forem sinônimo de uma degradação do casamento, quando forem sinônimo do aviltamento das relações sangüíneas, acaba sendo a conduta mais autêntica e virtuosa o corte destes laços, ignorados ou tratados como meros meios para outros fins.”

Em Crusoe, é como se o colonialista frio e moderado desse o tom do enredo. Ele (o narrador em primeira pessoa) também é aquele que dá o matiz exótico ao objeto (cenário) em questão, isto é, sua colônia involuntária no meio dos trópicos. Essas narrativas sem adornos e sem culpa de consciência não chegam a destruir os vasos capilares do decoro ideológico da Inglaterra pós-elizabetana, mas são um primeiro desnudamento de sua lógica imperialista. Não são narrativas de uma veia polêmica, ainda, são mais cândidas que outra coisa. Não há sentimentalismo, porque sentimentos não podem ser quantificados, e nesta literatura em que só o que é quantificável é real eles ainda não aparecem. Nesta atmosfera intermediária de amoralismo, o relato é fidedignamente subversivo ou subversivamente fidedigno espelhando a existência social daquelas décadas; as relações são o que são, não o que deveram ser. Não obstante, a pura e simples descrição do fato e da matéria bruta não deixa de ser explosivo em si mesmo, ou conducente à explosão da dinamite próxima. O realismo se torna de grau em grau Política.”

Moll Flanders termina sua história contando como prosperou e chegou ao sucesso após uma vida de crimes, mas acrescentando, com alguma urgência, em tom de confissão compungida, que ela se arrepende sinceramente de todo seu passado. A moral da história – o crime não compensa – é explicitamente contradita pelo final efetivo. O contraste é tão desconcertante que alguns críticos passaram seu tempo imaginando se Defoe foi ou não abertamente sarcástico. Quando o náufrago Crusoe considera a inutilidade de todo o ouro que conseguira trazer do navio até a ilha, mas, no fim, decide levá-lo consigo assim mesmo – isso é uma tirada irônica do autor ou humor involuntário? Quando Crusoe, testemunhando Sexta-Feira que escapa de seus ex-irmãos canibais para não ser comido, reflete acerca da utilidade de levar consigo um servo, sendo este acréscimo a seu ‘patrimônio’ coincidente com um suposto chamado da Providência para salvar um desgraçado, seria essa harmonia entre interesse capitalista e revelação divina um artifício do autor para produzir o riso do leitor? Defoe está ou não depreciando sua heroína Roxana quando ela declara que deve manter seu próprio dinheiro separado do de seu amo e marido, para não misturar seus ganhos ilícitos com o suado e honesto capital do cônjuge?”

Porque se essa for a opinião fática do Defoe o Realista literário e Materialista radical, dificilmente seria também o credo de sua metade dissidente e religiosa. Defoe o Cristão estabelece a moral e a religião como realidades autossuficientes e inquestionáveis. Mas autossuficientes e inquestionáveis até que ponto, cara pálida? Se esses valores transcendentais existem numa esfera própria, eles pouco impactam na conduta efetiva dos personagens. Moll sente pena de uma de suas vítimas mesmo durante o ato de roubá-la, mas sua tristeza nada impede na concretização do ato. Como o Coronel Jack, que pode muito bem ser um perfeito larápio e viver com a consciência remoída. No século XVIII, piedade e nariz empinado não eram estranhos um ao outro. E não se distinguiam muito bem. Ou a moral falha porque está muito mesclada com o mundo material, ou falha porque está, justamente, dele apartada. Defoe reconhece esta última condição quando escreve: ‘Lágrimas e orações não fazem revoluções / Não derrubam tiranos, não quebram grilhões’.”

A moralidade em Defoe é geralmente retrospectiva. Uma vez que você tenha pilhado, pode finalmente ser penitente. Como demonstra o narrador de si próprio em Crusoe, é só ao escrever seus atos que você pode julgar sua vida como um todo. Enquanto tenta entender a própria vida ao vivo, você anda ocupado demais mantendo o nariz acima do nível d’água para levar a termo qualquer reflexão, quanto mais sentir remorso. Só há dois desfechos: continuar ou se afogar. Correr e ainda assim não ganhar nenhum terreno, continuar na condição em que já estava; ou simplesmente perecer. Não é fácil se embrenhar em considerações metafísicas enquanto a necessidade imediata é fugir dos credores ou lidar com seu atual marido. A narrativa sempre ziguezagueia num passo tão frenético que um evento vai borrando o outro num contínuo. Nenhum da horda de personagens da novela Moll Flanders chega a ter um intercurso mais que casual com a heroína – a interação típica entre cosmopolitas, mas impensável na comunidade rural dos livros de uma Jane Austen ou George Eliot. As figuras que interagem com Moll entram e saem de sua vida e das páginas de sua vida como meros transeuntes cruzam pela Piccadilly. A pergunta mais premente na cabeça do leitor que atravessa este processo metonímico virtualmente infindável é: o que vem a seguir? Sentido e relato não são concordes.

Assim como um parvo, diz-se, é incapaz de mascar chiclete e caminhar ao mesmo tempo, os personagens de Defoe só podem agir ou refletir, mas nunca os dois juntos. A ação moralmente informada é rara; a reflexão moral só vem bem depois. É essa a razão da coexistência de dois formatos literários consideravelmente diferentes sob a capa do Robinson Crusoe: a história aventuresca e a autobiografia espiritual. De todos os personagens de Daniel Defoe, Crusoe é o mais feliz na combinação dessa ação racional com a reflexão moral. Mas isso se dá, em parte, por causa das circunstâncias excepcionais: Crusoe está sozinho numa ilha, tem algum trabalho a executar, mas também muito tempo ocioso para meditar.”

Como a vida é terrivelmente material mas também uma sucessão ininterrupta e agitada de eventos, cada ato parece simultaneamente vívido e sem substância. Essas novelas são tornadas artigos fascinantes pelo processo de criação em si mesmo, pelo valor de troca, e não pelo valor de uso (intenção final). Não há uma lógica conclusiva para a narrativa de Defoe, é uma narrativa pura e simples. Não há um momento do livro em que o fechamento seria mais natural que em qualquer outro fecho de capítulo. O eu-lírico apenas prossegue acumulando narrativa(s), como um capitalista jamais cessa de acumular capital. Um pedaço de enredo, como um investimento particular, acaba levando ao próximo. Crusoe mal volta à terra natal e já está em alto-mar de novo, ainda acumulando aventuras, que serão obviamente narradas e contarão com o desejo do eu-lírico de formular um propósito. A sede de narrativa é insaciável. A acumulação de capital parece ter um propósito, mas é pura aparência. Secretamente, pelo menos no mercantilismo defoeniano, subjaz a verdade de que o único fim da acumulação é a própria acumulação. Uma novela de Defoe não tem o epílogo de facto, como têm as novelas de Fielding. Todos os finais são arbitrários, e todos poderiam ser apenas novos começos, se se quisesse.¹ O viajante inquieto só repousa a fim de se preparar para a próxima viagem…”

¹ A maior prova disso é que AS AVENTURAS DE ROBINSON CRUSOE são continuadas pelas NOVAS AVENTURAS DE ROBINSON CRUSOE, por mim panoramicamente traduzidas em O autor escolheu convenientemente que o primeiro livro é a primeira metade da vida de Crusoe, e depois veio a 2ª. Mas nada o impediria de estabelecer uma tripartição, ou uma divisão em 4. Exemplos literários correlatos é o que não falta!

E devido a essa narratividade pura poucos eventos em Defoe são fruídos com densidade o bastante para deixar uma impressão permanente ou recordação intacta. Personagens como Moll ou Roxana vivem premidas pelo pão de cada dia, contando apenas consigo próprias, flutuando conforme a maré, dançando conforme a dança, apostando tudo ou nada a cada momento. Em perfeita adaptação com o mundo altamente mutante que encontram, esses sujeitos sincopam seu ritmo. Ou seja: não há um núcleo central da personalidade, tampouco, porque memórias e aprendizados estarão sempre se acumulando sem uma síntese definitiva. A identidade é uma improvisação, um cálculo, uma estratégia de passagem. Trata-se de uma cadeia de reações possíveis para cada ação promovida pelo ambiente. Os impulsos humanos – avareza, egoísmo, autopreservação – são fixos e imutáveis, é verdade, mas para sempre alcançá-los cada personagem é obrigado a ser flexível a ponto de se converter em metamorfo. A perspicácia e cautela necessárias para lidar com o tema da epidemia no Jornal do Ano da Peste seriam versões escandalosas e exageradas das próprias exigências do cotidiano para o leitor-padrão.”

O Coronel Jack se casa quatro vezes, a despeito de poder passar tranqüilamente sem mulheres, e rompe com uma delas porque ela dilapida sua fortuna. Na veia mais hobbesiana e pragmática possível, o interesse burguês é muito mais fundamental que a o altruísmo iluminista. Só mesmo caçar para comer seria mais premente que caçar para lucrar.”

O eu-narrador deslinda a trama com ar imperturbável que sugere um presente consideravelmente distanciado do passado em que o eu-narrado aparece (anos de intervalo, com toda a certeza). Este último não se pode dar ao luxo dessa parcimônia glacial do primeiro. Há uma tensão constante entre as duas dimensões temporais.”

Embora ‘Deus não esteja morto’, pareceria, a essa altura, para o bom Protestante, que Ele se recolheu deste mundo. Essa é uma das razões para as especulações de Defoe sobre a Providência ecoarem com um quê de vacilação. Ora, lembra o autor em The True-Born Englishman: ‘O que vem da Providência, consiste no interesse de todo o universo.’. Se tomarmos a frase ao pé-da-letra, estariam justificados o estupro, o assassinato, o canibalismo. Cada um desses pecados teria seu papel na manutenção da harmonia do cosmo. Defoe declama piamente no prefácio do Crusoe como devemos honrar a sabedoria da Providência e suas obras, ‘sucedam como sucedam’; mas o protagonista, muito longe de se resignar ao destino, é hiperativo e incansável na tentativa de forjar seus próprios porquês.”

De nossa perspectiva, se Crusoe devera ser punido, não seria por ter vivido a primeira metade da vida como um pagão, mas sim por vender Xury, seu servo, à escravidão brutal e por gerir uma plantation no Brasil movida a mais trabalho escravo. Na verdade, quando naufraga, ele estava justamente prestes a comprar mais mão-de-obra escrava numa expedição clandestina para abastecer seu engenho. Mas nem o personagem nem o autor conseguiriam ver tais ações como pecaminosas, ainda que Crusoe se indigne com as condições do imperialismo espanhol nas Américas. Como com o narrador de O Coração das Trevas de Joseph Conrad, o ‘imperialismo dos outros’ é sempre mais repreensível que o nosso. O Coronel Jack defende o castigo físico dos escravos, e não há qualquer indicativo de que Defoe pensasse diferente. A liberdade era para os ingleses, não para os africanos! Como zeloso puritano, Defoe decerto cria que os ‘selvagens’ estavam condenados irremediavelmente à bestialidade nesta terra, e ao tormento eterno no além. Seu radicalismo (progressismo de vanguarda na política) tinha seus claros limites.”

A Natureza não é mais um livro aberto, mas um texto obscuro a ser decifrado com imensa dificuldade. O Protestante tateia avidamente no escuro atrás de qualquer signo ambíguo de sua própria salvação. Mas o fato é que, num universo secularizado, tudo está entregue à própria contingência, isto é, nada no mundo visível quer dizer alguma coisa nem dá qualquer pista de nada.”

Signos, nesse mundo dessacralizado, como também numa profusão de textos modernistas (dali a duzentos anos), são a priori e incontornavelmente ambíguos. Essa é a razão por que o crente nunca pode parar de trabalhar, porque se não se tem certeza da salvação agora, cada dia seu de labuta pode ser o fiel na balança para a absolvição no dia do Juízo. Ilhas tropicais, é bom lembrar, estão geralmente associadas à indolência, mas não no caso de Crusoe. Ele está sempre ocupado em melhorar e estender sua ‘propriedade paradisíaca’. ‘Eu realmente gostaria de um estábulo maior.’ Tanto é assim que o próprio Crusoe responde a si mesmo, vendo o quão ilógica é essa vontade: ‘Para quê?’. Crusoe não é um capitalista de verdade – é só um de mentirinha, sem mão-de-obra como Outro, sem mercado, consumidor, produto nem competidores ou divisão de trabalho. Mas, ainda que não tenha concorrentes, ele age como se os tivesse…”

A ilha de Crusoe é menos a utopia da pequena-burguesia numa dimensão paralela do que uma versão piorada ou distópica da situação pequeno-burguesa inglesa. Ou, antes, o que uma classe sofre no mundo, Crusoe sofre na sua ilha. Sua solidão é uma versão exponencial da solidão de todos os indivíduos da cidade moderna. Sendo absolutamente dependente num sentido, é verdade que é possível ser absolutamente autodeterminado num outro. Quão enérgico e engenhoso pode-se chegar a ser na administração de seu próprio império seria um índice de sua inclusão entre a minoria eleita. Assim poder-se-ia resolver o conflito aparente entre ser o joguete de Deus e, pelo próprio suor, pregar, no melhor estilo puritano, que o sucesso no trabalho é o melhor sinal que o mundo poderá dar de que você achou favor aos olhos da divindade.”

UM PROBLEMA ISENTO DE QUAISQUER “MEMÓRIAS PÓSTUMAS”: “A narrativa está sempre precariamente ancorada no presente que é um fio de navalha, em que a sorte do personagem é indefinida e o futuro absolutamente duvidoso; mas tudo isso é contado com um tal desassossego e afastamento, fechando um passado, que empresta certa autoridade. Supomos então que o narrador sobreviveu, nem que apenas pelo fato de estar agora, com a maior das calmas, falando de si mesmo na época em que corria perigo. Ansiedade e segurança se acoplam perfeitamente na escrita.”

E assim Defoe continua a insistir que sua estória existe com um fundo moral, embora isso seja obviamente uma farsa. O realismo, no sentido de uma atenção dedicada ao mundo material por si e nele mesmo, não está ainda avalizado neste período literário, embora se encontre em visível ascensão; embora a sociedade em que ele cresce e ascende demande-o cada vez mais, e encoraje-o mais que à moralidade, pois as pessoas passam a acreditar somente no que podem cheirar, tocar, provar. Samuel Johnson argumentava que o fato de um personagem ou evento ser fidedigno à natureza não servia de desculpa para incluí-lo num enredo ou obra de arte. Na teoria, essa colisão entre o moral e o real pode ser resolvida por justificações do autor, no estilo tabloide. Quão mais gráfica e escandalosa uma estória, mais fácil transmitir uma mensagem, poder-se-ia astuciosamente argumentar. Defoe escreve no prefácio para Roxana: ‘Se há qualquer parte da história, no relato de uma má ação, que pareça descrever as coisas de forma muito direta e impudica, todo o cuidado imaginável foi tomado para purificar o trabalho de todas as indecências e indecorosidades…’. Essas linhas, ao que parece, produziam, já naquele tempo, o mesmo efeito que hoje os avisos solenes, prévios a um audiovisual, acerca da presença de sexo e violência nos minutos que seguem: são só um chamariz a mais para a audiência (‘o que é proibido é melhor’), engenhosamente acrescentado pelo autor, sem transgredir nenhuma regra.

A novela realista se torna popular num marco da história em que o cotidiano banal começa a se tornar atrativo por si mesmo. Essa mescla do ordinário e exótico é a síntese do trabalho de Defoe. Parte do prazer extraído da leitura emana da excitação que deriva do puramente mundano. Defoe viveu em tempos turbulentos, e ninguém pode dizer que ele não viveu esses tempos intensa e perigosamente. Em épocas revolucionárias, a teatralidade adquire maior importância, mesmo fora da arte. Como a nova arte imita a vida, o teatral tem de despontar também na arte. Por último: Defoe também sabia o que era sofrer uma bancarrota, ser trancafiado nas galés e embarcar em expedições insólitas das quais não se sabia se se ia voltar.”

James Joyce, que, para nossa surpresa, enumera Defoe entre seus autores prediletos, escreveu do Crusoe que ele encarna ‘todo o espírito anglo-saxão … a independência masculina; a crueldade inconsciente; a persistência; a inteligência devagar mas eficaz; a apatia sexual; a religiosidade prática e metódica; a taciturnidade calculada’. Poderíamos dizer que essa é exatamente a visão que Sexta-Feira tem de Crusoe: Joyce é um súdito colonial da coroa britânica, e com certeza, quando alistado para a guerra, combateu muitos soldados com este perfil, em Dublin. Um ou dois assim são vistos no Ulisses. A passagem acima, que Joyce redigiu enquanto no exílio italiano, tem ainda algo do genial vislumbre do caráter imperial, que era meio-compatível com Joyce (colonizado, mas ao mesmo tempo da elite, ou seja, colonizador pela ótica dos subalternos, das massas irlandesas): outro materialista, o irlandês devia apreciar a fisicalidade intensa de Defoe. Uma vez o dublinense se descreveu como tendo a mente de um verdureiro. Defoe, por sua vez, destila em sua obra o autêntico espírito de uma nação de sapateiros.”

Quem é ele, ele se pergunta no mesmo estilo hipocondríaco do devoto liberal ou do pós-modernista, para interferir com a prática do canibalismo num povo primitivo? Mas o fato de maior parte da novela tratar justamente do know-how do homem civilizado e prático empresta lentes peculiares à tese do universalismo. A racionalidade ortodoxa, no sentido de ensinar quando o importante é se preservar, como não cair de um precipício, por exemplo, é mais plausível como universalidade de todos os povos do que qualquer outro tipo de raciocínio utilitário. É por isso que Sexta-Feira pode ajudar Crusoe nos trabalhos braçais muito antes de poder falar Inglês, porque a lógica do mundo material é comum a todas as culturas. Pedras caem em ambas (a ocidental e a autótocne) porque obedecem à gravidade, seja no Haiti ou em Huddersfield; quatro mãos aplicadas sempre trabalham melhor que duas para carregar objetos pesados; alguém pode jogar-lhe uma corda para evitar que você se afogue ainda que no sistema cultural de quem jogou a corda a água simbolize algo totalmente diferente do que você aprendeu em seus dogmas e valores. A racionalidade prática é, nesse aspecto, o epítome do Anglicismo: se o gentleman chegar de fato aos céus, está na cara que examinarão o lugar com bastante escrutínio, para tirarem o melhor proveito do que ele terá a oferecer. Mas eis um tipo de comportamento, senão onipresente, pelo menos atemporal.”

Não é escassa a literatura da tradição do comerciante-criminoso e vice-versa, dos vigaristas de John Gay em A Ópera do Vagabundo ao Vautrin de Balzac e o Mr. Merdle de Dickens. Como Bertolt Brecht disse: ‘O que é roubar um banco comparado com abrir um?’. A cozinha dos ladrões é a companhia de comércio sem a ideologia da respeitabilidade. O Coronel Jack começa como um ladrão de meia-tigela e termina como um bem-sucedido capitalista na Virgínia, sem nenhum talento a mais do que quando começara sua ‘carreira’. O mestre do crime de Fielding, Jonathan Wild, é um retrato satírico do político Robert Walpole, que funde em sua figura o mundo da alta política e da contravenção chic ou do colarinho branco. A idéia de ir parar numa terra virgem e construir do zero uma civilização deve constituir uma das fantasias mais intensas para a classe média. Sem dúvida isso ajuda a justificar a permanência de Crusoe como clássico sem o menor sinal de que vá ceder o posto tão cedo.”

Ao desafiar a influência do gentil-homem e da nobreza, era necessário, para lograr êxito, desacreditar o poder da antiguidade no processo. Defoe é sardônico sobre a obsessão aristocrática com a pureza de sangue e o matrimônio: Por que – ele pergunta no Compleat English Gentleman – os nobres permitem de boa vontade que amas-de-leite plebéias amamentem seus filhos, já que, ironicamente, elas lhes estão repassando, conforme a própria teoria eugênica dos sangue-azul, um sangue degenerado? N’O Inglês Puro-Sangue ele admite explicitamente a irrelevância do tópico da ancestralidade. Destarte, é uma fantasia muito benquista pelo homem branco imaginar-se num território virgem, poder desfazer toda a história até suas origens, recomeçando-a melhor, já com a ‘classe média’ no poder.”

O MESMO EFEITO DA ESTÁTUA DA LIBERDADE NO PRIMEIRO LONGA DE PLANETA DOS MACACOS: “O que nos deixa derrotados em Robinson Crusoe, e um dos momentos mais insólitos da literatura universal, é aquela misteriosa única pegada encontrada na areia.”

Ainda assim, Robinson Crusoe segue muitos anos sem preocupações em sua ilha; O Gulliver, de Jonathan Swift, não tem a mesma sorte.”

Como Defoe, Swift escreve numa prosa prática, transparente, célere, com o perdão do trocadilho,¹ sem muita textura ou ressonância. Seu texto não possui, como um crítico bem apontou, recessos ou raízes e ramificações mil. Há uma alarmante ausência de metáforas. É um estilo da superfície, sem muita profundeza nem interioridade.² Swift desconfia de toda reflexividade textual como de toda metafísica ou especulação abstrusa. Essa indiferença à verdade filosófica nos conta algo sobre o clero do século XVIII, do qual Swift fazia parte. É quase como um ladrão de banco ser indiferente ao dinheiro. Um aristocrata tory da época de Swift era necessariamente um amador, não um especialista: acreditava num certo número necessário de princípios básicos que o século do Iluminismo vinha tornar acessíveis a todos. Swift não poderia entender, ainda que sobrevivesse a sua época, a era da prosa de gêneros especializada. As Viagens de Gulliver não são, no sentido hodierno da palavra, uma obra ‘literária’, e não teriam saído do papel se o autor pensasse em escrever uma novela. A linguagem de Swift, como a de Defoe, tenta apagar a si mesma desdobrando o real no real, e na época não havia palavra para batizar esse zero fictício. As palavras perdem o valor e privilegiam os objetos, que ocupam o centro do palco. A própria linguagem ideal que o autor imaginou – uma língua que abole a língua – é a transparência do modelo. Isso acontece entre os laputianos gramáticos que, ao invés de conversar entre si usando as cordas vocais e convenções aceitas unicamente pelo seu povo, carregam para um e outro lado uma sacola com diversos objetos que eventualmente precisem comunicar, e vão-nos mostrando ao interlocutor, desempenhando uma caricata ‘linguagem de Babel’. A verdade é que a linguagem humana é este saco, mas sem fundo e diáfano, uma forma de levar o mundo conosco sem carregar peso algum (ainda que com a inconveniência de cada povo ter a sua língua). Os Houyhnhnms evitam elaborações verbais e mantêm uma perfeita correspondência entre palavra e coisa – a tal ponto, aliás, que são incapazes de mentir. Perfeitos como são em sua representação do mundo, se houvera dentre eles um escritor, seria este capaz de produzir uma bela novela realista!”

¹ Swift em inglês é ágil, veloz.

² Sublinhei em verde porque não posso estar minimamente de acordo com Eagleton neste trecho!

As Viagens de Gulliver, muito ao contrário do Crusoe, é um libelo do ‘anti-progressismo’ em que um protagonista amnesíaco parece não aprender nada ou aprender muito pouco em cada uma de suas jornadas; assim que ele parte para uma nova aventura, volta a aparentar ser uma tabula rasa. De fato as viagens de Gulliver são mais entrecortadas que as de Crusoe. Estas, mesmo que possam ser segmentadas pelo autor em capítulos e tomos, parecem bem-costuradas narrativamente. Gulliver vive literalmente episódios desconexos um do outro. Não em vão fala-se d’As Viagens como a suprema paródia do livro de viagem, gênero literário¹ usualmente otimista e cheio de ‘lições e aprendizados’.”

¹ O leitor de minha tradução deve ter percebido que em seu afã descritivo o crítico costuma se contradizer bastante. Aqui, vemos que na verdade o europeu do século XVIII contemporâneo de Defoe e Swift já reconhecia, senão o realismo ou o romantismo, pelo menos certos gêneros literários…

O tory Swift, ao contrário do whiggiano Defoe,¹ nada quer ter a ver com indivíduos. Sua única descrição é a de uma verdade universal, enquanto Gulliver e os personagens secundários servem apenas como meios para ilustrá-la. Gulliver não passa de um dispositivo narrativo bem conveniente, não é um ‘personagem’ propriamente dito, não é possível se identificar resolutamente com ele. Crusoe é bem diferente e vai crescendo em nossa concepção conforme avançam as páginas. Gulliver apenas ‘pede’ que observemos e julguemos os lugares que ele visitou.”

¹ Ver tabelas no final.

Os lilliputianos são cruéis, gananciosos e sectários, como se fossem réplicas em miniatura dos políticos de Westminster. Esse retrato da raça humana como corrupta e imutável é típica do conservantismo anglicano swiftiano. Ele desdenha a possibilidade de qualquer progresso dramático e mudança revolucionária para melhor no campo social, e logo se vê que a tal verdade universal que ele tenta mostrar é uma só: já conhecíamos essa verdade antes de viajarmos. Deus nos deu tudo de que precisávamos logo de partida, e velejar a esmo tropeçando em criaturinhas de uma polegada ou esbarrando no tornozelo de gigantes pouco importa nesse quadro. Talvez todos os indivíduos exóticos que encontramos não passem de distrações válidas unicamente para o momento.”

Mas só sabemos que os lilliputianos são diferentes de nós porque conservamos com eles a identidade do conceito de tamanho. Chamamos tarântulas de tarântulas e não de humanos porque usamos a linguagem, pela qual descrevemos e nomeamos as tarântulas, e elas não. Se as tarântulas fossem tão alienígenas assim à espécie humana, não seria esse o caso. Não se pode falar da diferença sem a comparação e o diagnóstico de algo igual. Os únicos diferentes reais de nós são aqueles que passam invisíveis, de cócoras, bem diante do nosso nariz, e que jamais percebemos.”

A escrita de uma viagem é, mais do que antes, como se vê, um gênero muito duvidoso para um tory se engajar naquele tempo. De um livro como esse esperam-se sobretudo novidades, que são indesejáveis para os conservadores. Defoe escreveu cedo na vida um Ensaio sobre Projetos (Essay on Projects), que era o perfeito contraponto dessa ânsia de imobilismo do tory: exibia grande entusiasmo quanto às reformas técnico-científicas. Crusoe rejeita implicitamente, ao querer sair de casa, os valores benquistos pela aristocracia (o lar, a coroa, a nação). Toda essa sede mercantilista de Crusoe não parece mais do que a pornografia do progresso para muitas mentes mais estreitas ou mais clássicas. Fantasiar com monstros desconhecidos é indecoroso; tudo que não é verossímil só pode nublar nosso julgamento. Crusoe encoraja caprichos tolos e emoções extravagantes que são péssimos para a lei e a ordem. Fora que, quanto mais viaja, mais Crusoe se sente um relativista cultural, algo igualmente insidioso para um tory. Pode ser perigoso para o viajante chegar a se tornar tão sonhador e apegado a coisas estrangeiras, a ponto de bradar, por exemplo, que se deparou com selvagens que, eles sim, são felizes e vivem em harmonia com a natureza. Isso seria negar o pecado original e inspirar nas gentes utopias cândidas e pueris, coisa contra a qual se deve lutar. Além do mais, de que vale, se o aventureiro acabaria sempre voltando ao solo inglês, muito longe dessas tais utopias inúteis? As alusões anti-monárquicas e anti-establishment de tais peregrinações pareceram, em todos os tempos, muito grosseiras aos tories.

Muito do debate em curso no século XVIII girava em torno de um consenso político que pudesse superar as terríveis dissensões do século anterior, mais animoso, de guerras civis e de queda e restauração da monarquia. Swift se referiu em vida a Defoe com toda a prepotência de um patrício: ‘Aquele sujeito que foi exibido no pelourinho – esqueci o nome dele…’. Mas não podemos deixar de observar em Swift o mesmo entusiasmo pelo comércio que em Defoe. Swift é irlandês e a Irlanda estava sempre em posição mais combalida que a metrópole. Além disso, Swift também não dava crédito à teoria da pureza da raça, e gostava de se ver como um burguês em que tudo de seus antepassados já se diluíra há muito tempo, a ponto de torná-lo irreconhecível para estes. Swift foi um tory, mas um tory radical, um exemplar do animal oximorônico que muito enriqueceu a cultura inglesa se formos considerar outros escritores tories e radicais ao mesmo tempo, como William Cobbett e John Ruskin.

Defoe era ‘progressista’ e rebelde, mas chegava a delírios de esnobeza episódicos tão altaneiros que chegou a alterar seu nome de Daniel Foe para Daniel De Foe, e que hoje escrevemos Defoe. A conjunção ‘de’ implica origem nobre. Swift e autores como Pope viam a sociedade britânica como desprovida desde os primórdios de mérito congênito, uma raça venal que além de tudo foi muito corrompida pelo poder e pelo dinheiro com o passar do tempo, atributos que eles viam encarnados pelo odioso primeiro-ministro whig Robert Walpole (já comentado). Mas Defoe não deixava, idem, de criticar a obsessão cega e sem qualquer pano de fundo pelo dinheiro.

Poderíamos ver os mesmos entrelaçamentos complementares e/ou contraditórios em pares como Henry Fielding e Samuel Richardson. Richardson era filho de um carpinteiro de Derbyshire, não completou a escola básica e se tornou impressor, enquanto Fielding era um egresso do colégio de Eton repleto de conexões com figurões. Richardson tinha estilo agressivo, era um campeão das classes médias, e afirmava que o ofício do comércio ‘é infinitamente de mais conseqüência, e devia ser muito mais estimulado que qualquer outra posição ou ranking social, sobretudo as dos títulos inócuos típicas da Inglaterra’. E não obstante Richardson se punha estupefato diante da quantidade de personalidades decrépitas e mesquinhas das novelas de Fielding: chegou a afirmar que se não soubesse quem Fielding era, pensaria se tratar de um cavalariço. Fielding rebatia. Disse uma vez que Pamela de Richardson encorajava jovens aristocratas a se casarem com as camareiras de suas mamães, e que não conseguiria por nada pôr-se no lugar dos nobres de suas novelas. Com efeito, em vez de casar-se com a empregada de sua mãe, Henry Fielding casou-se, no segundo matrimônio, com a empregada de sua primeira esposa!” HA-HA-HA-HA!

O nome Gulliver está muito bem-dado, por sinal.¹ Sua credulidade é o mais das vezes seu ponto fraco. Ele de alguma forma se sente pateticamente (afetivamente) ligado a pessoas que conhece em suas viagens um tanto rápido demais, sem muito senso crítico. Em Lilliput, vangloria-se de seu título de Nardac, espécie de análogo a cavaleiro da rainha, lança-se como líder militar, envolve-se em intrigas as mais pavonescas, tendo de enfrentar um processo para provar que não cometeu fornicação com uma lilliputiana. A impossibilidade física do ato sexual entre seu corpo descomunal perto de um lilliputiano não parece ter passado ora alguma pela cabeça do réu que tentava, afobado, se defender. (…) De herói a vilão da pátria, Gulliver parece ser sempre o mesmo, tanto num pólo como noutro, levado unicamente pelas circunstâncias e vilezas dos outros personagens.”

¹ “Gullible” é bobo, ingênuo.

E a despeito do inconveniente de ser um inglês e de explorar terras tão remotas, ele é um ótimo aluno de idiomas, aprendendo rápido a falar como os nativos em suas jornadas, apesar de que isso soa mais como recurso estilístico para justificar a comunicação de Gulliver nessas praças do que uma característica que Swift gostaria de ter dado sem mais a seu protagonista. Se essa parte da personalidade de Gulliver se mostra tão expedita para se adaptar aos costumes forasteiros, sua outra metade é a de um inglês chauvinista cabeça oca, complacente e cego quanto aos defeitos dos seus conterrâneos. Seu relato visivelmente galante da história do reino britânico ao rei Brobdingnag logo produz um efeito contrário ao esperado, horrorizando-o, a ponto deste rei considerar que, se Gulliver fala mesmo a verdade, todos os bretões não passam de uns vermes.”

Ou ele é um imperialista ou um relativista cultural, sem meio-termo. A questão é que a novela serve para demonstrar a secreta afinidade entre os dois extremos. Não há tanta diferença entre defender acriticamente a Coroa inglesa ou o poder soberano de Lilliput. Se devêramos simpatizar com outras culturas, se isso fosse um imperativo, então por que não simpatizar com a própria civilização? Se devemos desculpar os canibais, por que não as grandes multinacionais que poluem a atmosfera? Se todas as culturas estão em ordem e seguem na supracitada ‘harmonia cósmica’, então na realidade não há nada o quê escolher, e nenhum indício de que os brobdingnaguianos seriam superiores, em qualquer sentido, aos ingleses.”

Swift com certeza conhecia o que era preconceito: difamador dos bons, satirista vituperador altamente imaginativo e polemista de vocação, capaz de ignorar a verdade só para terminar com a razão, acabava inadvertidamente por levantar a bandeira da intolerância política e religiosa. Se a sátira de Fielding é genial, a de Swift é tão brusca e amalucada em contraste que parece até semipatológica. Ele era misógino, autoritário, troçador da canalha, e acima de tudo um representante da Irlanda de seu tempo, isto é, a colônia inglesa que era quase um pária e que, caso houvesse uma corrida entre todos os povos colonizados pela Inglaterra decerto não chegaria em primeiro lugar, no juízo inglês. Eis aqui, outra vez, o incômodo e involuntário papel ambíguo de diplomata e capataz, exercido, como vimos, por James Joyce.”

Enfim, o que As Viagens parece querer ensinar? Que você deveria apreciar todas as culturas humanas em sua parcialidade, sem ser um Gulliver, mas também sem recair no niilismo. Homens e mulheres precisam cultivar ideais, como as virtudes plácidas e racionais dos Houyhnhnms, caso queiram ser mais do que reles materialistas. O problema é deixar que esses ideais exerçam um papel predatório na própria consciência. Isso seria ser tão ao revés de um materialista que representaria a negação do próprio corpo, tão ruim quanto a falta de ideais. Não se deve chegar a esse ponto, o de perceber-se com desgosto por causa do Outro. Não se conformar inteiramente com o próprio corpo, é certo, mas nem por isso chegar a reprimi-lo.”

Se não fosse por terem 4 patas e cauda, os Houyhnhnms talvez não estivessem totalmente fora do lugar num salão janeausteniano, tomando chá com Mr. Knightley. Mas convenhamos que este é o ponto: os Houyhnhnms são menos uma possibilidade humana do que, como um ensaísta bem colocou, uma impossibilidade insultante.”

Qual perspectiva é a correta? Difícil responder na época em que inventaram o microscópio. Quão distanciado ou aproximado dos fatos você precisa estar para vê-lo ‘direito’? O que se vê na lente de um microscópio é a verdade ou a distorção da verdade?”

Os novelistas do Dezoito, tendo estabelecido uma distância do mundo romanesco, estão a maior parte das vezes cônscios de que a crença no fato nu e cru é tão mítica quando o próprio ideal do Romance. A novela, sendo a forma literária que é, nada pode fazer no tocante a decidir qual perspectiva é mais ‘verdadeira’, embora exerça um importante papel na definição do ‘mundo real’. Gulliver é um empiricista ultimado ou crente no fato bruto, um ponto de vista que anda de mãos dadas com seu interesse ‘progressista’ nos problemas técnicos e mecânicos (em contraponto ao próprio Swift, parecendo-se, desse ângulo, uma reedição de Crusoe). Ele é um exemplar do ‘novo homem’: cabeça-dura, ou melhor, obstinado, pragmático, aposta todas as suas fichas na religião chamada progresso, é fascinado por esquemas quiméricos e projetos de reforma social, ansioso por galardoar sua narrativa em primeira pessoa com mapas e provas documentais que para ele atestam a veracidade absoluta do que observa nas nações forasteiras.”

Mas Swift não nos brinda com uma solução ao dilema fundamental. Ele desaparece de vista e dá espaço para o leitor lidar com as contradições postas. É da natureza de sua sátira deixar de propor qualquer resposta construtiva – em parte porque um gentleman não carece de se envolver com esses problemas, ninharia de pequeno-burguês; e em parte porque qualquer solução logo se denunciaria como parcial.”

Swift e Defoe escrevem ambos numa sociedade que acredita na verdade, na razão e na justiça teóricas, mas cuja conduta contumaz se tornou tão falsa, injusta e irracional que já não é possível acreditar em nenhum indivíduo na prática.”

Se ‘primitivos’ como os irlandeses (que não são civilizados como os ingleses, ainda) e os aborígenes do Pacífico Sul forem realmente Yahoos, parece que isso justificaria o imperialismo britânico. Mas se os Yahoos são a humanidade inteira, então os colonizadores são (metaforicamente) bestiais e vivem também cobertos de fezes, o que suprime qualquer direito de soberania que tanto se arrogam. Por esta via, o colonialismo se torna uma questão de um bando de selvagens hipócritas liderando outros selvagens, não-hipócritas. Os mestres seriam tão imprestáveis quanto os súditos – uma opinião que, n’O Coração das Trevas, desautoriza qualquer colonialismo mas confirma, ainda, alguns de seus preconceitos (sim, os nativos são mesmo uns imprestáveis).”

Yahhoo boss (Quintanilla)
O chefe Yahoo

No fim, o que cavalos pensam de nós não é o suficiente para nos rotular como Houyhnhnms nem Yahoos – exceto, talvez, para os antepassados dos nobres anglo-irlandeses, para quem era regra amar um cavalo mais do que seus entes queridos, quem dirá o povão.”

comparison gulliver vs crusoe
comparison swift vs defoe

MALLEUS MALEFICARUM (O MARTELO DA BRUXA) (com aproximadamente 30% de prólogos e prefácios, de facínoras ou não)

Kramer & Sprenger, 1486 (Summers,1928, 1948, [Wicca Society, 2001].


euhemerism: “The philosophy attributed to and named for Euhemerus, a Greek mythographer, holds that many mythological tales can be attributed to historical persons and events, the accounts of which have become altered and exaggerated over time.”

pitonisa: vidente, cartomante

zigurate: templo piramidal com terraplanagem (vários terraços configurando andares)

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Estimates of the death toll during the Inquisition worldwide range from 600,000 to as high as 9,000,000 (over its 250 year long course) (…) Thus has it been said that The Malleus Maleficarum is one of the most blood-soaked works in human history, in that its very existence reinforced and validated Catholic beliefs which led to the prosecution, torture, and murder of tens of thousands of innocent people.”

At the height of its popularity, The Malleus Maleficarum was surpassed in public notoriety only by The Bible. Its effects were even felt in the New World, where the last gasp of the Inquisition was felt in the English settlements in America (most notably in Salem, Massachusetts during the Salem Witch Trials).”

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IN the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, Amen. Know all men by these presents, whosoever shall read, see or hear the tenor of this official and public document, that in the year of our Lord, 1487, upon a Saturday, being the 19th day of the month of May, at the 5th hour after noon, or thereabouts, in the third year of the Pontificate of our most Holy Father and Lord, the lord Innocent, by divine providence Pope, the 8th of that name, in the very and actual presence of me Arnold Kolich, public notary, and in the presence of the witnesses whose names are hereunder written and who were convened and especially summoned for this purpose, the Venerable and Very Reverend Father Henry Kramer, Professor of Sacred Theology, of the Order of Preachers, Inquisitor of heretical depravity, directly delegated thereto by the Holy See together with the Venerable and Very Reverend Father James Sprenger, Professor of Sacred Theology and Prior of the Dominican Convent at Cologne, being especially appointed as colleague of the said Father Henry Kramer, hath on behalf both of himself and his said colleague made known unto us and declared that the Supreme Pontiff now happily reigning, lord Innocent, Pope, as hath been set out above [tá bom, que estilo grogue até para um nOTÁRIO!], hath committed and granted by a bull duly signed and sealed unto the aforesaid Inquisitors (…) granted (…) the power of making search and inquiry into all heresies, and most especially into the heresy of witches, an abomination that thrives and waxes strong in these our unhappy days, and he has bidden them diligently to perform this duty throughout the five Archdioceses of the five Metropolitan Churches, that is to say, Mainz, Cologne, Trèves, Salzburg and Bremen, granting them every faculty of judging and proceeding against such even with the power of putting malefactors to death (…) upon the tenor of the Apostolic bull, which they hold and possess and have exhibited unto us, a document which is whole, entire, untouched, and in no way lacerated or impaired, in fine whose integrity is above any suspicion. And the tenor of the said bull commences thus: <Innocent, Bishop, Servant of the servants of God, for an eternal remembrance. Desiring with the most heartfelt anxiety, even as Our Apostleship requires, that the Catholic Faith should be especially in this Our day increase and flourish everywhere, . . .> and it concludes thus: <Given at Rome, at S. Peter’s, on the 9 December of the Year of the Incarnation of Our Lord one thousand, four hundred and eighty-four, in the first Year of Our Pontificate.>” Ou seja: dois cretinos psicopatas levaram menos de 3 anos e ½ para escreverem esse verdadeiro TRATADO DE LESA-HUMANIDADE!

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There is left no doubt in the reader’s mind that Rev. Summers not only believed in the existence of witches as the Medieval Church perceived them, but felt that the Inquisition, and the Malleus, were both justified and necessary. In both of his introductions (especially the original 1928 introduction), he seems more intent on using the occasion to convince us that the murder of thousands of innocent people, for the crime of witchcraft, during the Inquisition was somehow noble, and that the authors of the Malleus, Heinrich Kramer and James Sprenger, were visionaries of their time. One often finds the text of the introductions reading as if it had been written 500 years previously when the Malleus was originally published and the Inquisition was in full swing.”

There were 14 editions between 1487 and 1520, and at least 16 editions between 1574 and 1669. There are modern translations as well: Der Hexenhammer, J.W.R. Schmidt, 1906, and this one.”

This famous document should interest the historian, the student of witchcraft and the occult, and the psychologist who is interested in the medieval mind as it was confronted with various forces which could only be explained as witchcraft.”

Those readers whose familiarity with The Bible comes from the King James Version may be surprised by the references to these <obscure> books of The Bible, such as Paralipomenon, Apocalypse, Judith, and Tobias. These books were originally a part of The Bible, but were cut from the King James version as it was developed. They exist today primarily as a part of the Douay Rheims Version of The Bible, which is widely used by Catholics.”

DATAÇÃO POR CARBONO-14! “Many participants in this project have questioned my determination to transcribe the text of the Malleus Maleficarum by hand, as opposed to scanning the pages and using Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to generate the text. While it is certain that the latter would prove more expedient and see the online edition posted much sooner, transcribing the text, while more labor intensive, ensures a more accurate translation to HTML format.” “In an age in which the Malleus Maleficarum could again achieve a relevance in the hands of radical Christian leaders, the accuracy of this online translation is, I believe, all-important.” Lovelace, 1998

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It has indeed lately come to Our ears, not without afflicting Us with bitter sorrow, that in some parts of Northern Germany, as well as in the provinces, townships, territories, districts, and dioceses of Mainz, Cologne, Trèves, Salzburg, and Bremen, many persons of both sexes, unmindful of their own salvation and straying from the Catholic Faith, have abandoned themselves to devils, incubi and succubi, and by their incantations, spells, conjurations, and other accursed charms and crafts, enormities and horrid offences, have slain infants yet in the mother’s womb, as also the offspring of cattle, have blasted the produce of the earth, the grapes of the vine, the fruits of the trees, nay, men and women, beasts of burthen, herd-beasts, as well as animals of other kinds, vineyards, orchards, meadows, pasture-land, corn, wheat, and all other cereals; these wretches furthermore afflict and torment men and women, beasts of burthen, herd-beasts, as well as animals of other kinds, with terrible and piteous pains and sore diseases, both internal and external; they hinder men from performing the sexual act and women from conceiving, whence husbands cannot know their wives nor wives receive their husbands; over and above this, they blasphemously renounce that Faith which is theirs by the Sacrament of Baptism, and at the instigation of the Enemy of Mankind they do not shrink from committing and perpetrating the foulest abominations and filthiest excesses to the deadly peril of their own souls, whereby they outrage the Divine Majesty and are a cause of scandal and danger to very many. And although (…) Henry Kramer and James Sprenger (…) have been by Letters Apostolic delegated as Inquisitors of these heretical pravities, and still are Inquisitors, the first in the aforesaid parts of Northern Germany, wherein are included those aforesaid townships, districts, dioceses, and other specified localities, and the second in certain territories which lie along the borders of the Rhine, nevertheless not a few clerics and lay-folk of those countries, seeking too curiously to know more than concerns them, since in the aforesaid delegatory letters there is no express and specific mention by name of these provinces, townships, dioceses, and districts, and further since the 2 delegates themselves and the abominations they are to encounter are not designated in detailed and particular fashion, these persons are not ashamed to contend with the most unblushing effrontery that these enormities are not practised in these provinces, and consequently the aforesaid Inquisitors have no legal right to exercise their powers of inquisition in the provinces, townships, dioceses, districts, and territories, which have been rehearsed, and that the Inquisitors may not proceed to punish, imprison, and penalize criminals convicted of the heinous offences and many wickednesses which have been set forth. Accordingly in the aforesaid provinces, townships, dioceses, and districts, the abominations and enormities in question remain unpunished not without open danger to the souls of many and peril of eternal damnation.”

We decree and enjoin that the aforesaid Inquisitors be empowered to proceed to the just correction, imprisonment, and punishment of any persons, without let or hindrance, in every way as if the provinces, townships, dioceses, districts, territories, yea, even the persons and their crimes in this kind were named and particularly designated in Our letters.”

We grant permission to the aforesaid Inquisitors, to one separately or to both, as also to Our dear son John Gremper, priest of the diocese of Constance, Master of Arts, their notary, or to any other public notary, who shall be by them, or by one of them, temporarily delegated to those provinces, townships, dioceses, districts, and aforesaid territories, to proceed, according to the regulations of the Inquisition, against any persons of whatsoever rank and high estate, correcting, fining, imprisoning, punishing, as their crimes merit, those whom they have found guilty, the penalty being adapted to the offence.”

DISSIMULANDIBUS: “excommunication, suspension, interdict, and yet more terrible penalties, censures, and punishment, as may seem good to him, and that without any right of appeal, and if he will he may by Our authority aggravate and renew these penalties as often as he list, calling in, if so please him, the help of the secular arm.

Non obstantibus . . . Let no man therefore . . . But if any dare to do so, which God forbid, let him know that upon him will fall the wrath of Almighty God, and of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul.”

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Witchcraft was inextricably mixed with politics. Matthew Paris tells us how in 1232 the Chief Justice Hubert de Burgh, Earl of Kent, (Shakespeare’s <gentle Hubert> in King John), was accused by Peter do (sic) Roches, Bishop of Winchester, of having won the favour of Henry III through <charms and incantations>. In 1324 there was a terrific scandal at Coventry when it was discovered that a number of the richest and most influential burghers of the town had long been consulting with Master John, a professional necromancer, and paying him large sums to bring about by his arts the death of Edward II and several nobles of the court. Alice Perrers, the mistress of Edward III, was not only reputed to have infatuated the old king by occult spells, but her physician (believed to be a mighty sorcerer) was arrested on a charge of confecting love philtres and talismans. Henry V, in the autumn of 1419, prosecuted his stepmother, Joan of Navarre, for attempting to kill him by witchcraft, <in the most horrible manner that one could devise.> The conqueror of Agincourt was exceedingly worried about the whole wretched business, as also was the Archbishop of Canterbury, who ordered public prayers for the king’s safety. In the reign of his son, Henry VI, in 1441, one of the highest and noblest ladies in the realm, Eleanor Cobham, Duchess of Gloucester, was arraigned for conspiring with <a clerk>, Roger Bolingbroke, <a most notorious evoker of demons>, and <the most famous scholar in the whole world in astrology and magic>, to procure the death of the young monarch by sorcery, so that the Duke of Gloucester, Henry’s uncle and guardian, might succeed to the crown.¹ In this plot were further involved Canon Thomas Southwell, and a <relapsed witch>, that is to say, one who had previously (11 years before) been incarcerated upon grave suspicion of black magic, Margery Jourdemayne. Bolingbroke, whose confession implicated the Duchess, was hanged; Canon Southwell died in prison; the witch in Smithfield was <burn’d to Ashes>, since her offence was high treason. The Duchess was sentenced to a most degrading public penance, and imprisoned for life in Peel Castle, Isle of Man. Richard III, upon seizing the throne in 1483, declared that the marriage of his brother, Edward IV, with the Lady Elizabeth Grey, had been brought about by <sorcery and witchcraft>, and further that <Edward’s wife, that monstrous witch, has plotted with Jane Shore to waste and wither his body.> Poor Jane Shore did most exemplary penance, walking the flinty streets of London barefoot in her kirtle. In the same year when Richard wanted to get rid of the Duke of Buckingham, his former ally, one of the chief accusations he launched was that the Duke consulted with a Cambridge <necromancer> to compass and devise his death.

One of the most serious and frightening events in the life of James VII of Scotland (afterwards James I of England) was the great conspiracy of 1590, organized by the Earl of Bothwell. James with good reason feared and hated Bothwell, who, events amply proved, was Grand Master of more than 100 witches, all adepts in poisoning, and all eager to do away with the King. In other words, Francis Stewart, Earl of Bothwell, was the centre and head of a vast political plot. A widespread popular panic was the result of the discovery of this murderous conspiracy. In France as early as 583, when the infant son and heir of King Chilperic, died of dysentery, as the doctors diagnosed it, it came to light that Mumolus, one of the leading officials of the court, had been secretly administering to the child medicines, which he obtained from <certain witches of Paris>. These potions were pronounced by the physicians to be strong poisons. In 1308, Guichard, Bishop of Troyes, was accused of having slain by sorcery the Queen of Philip IV of France (1285-1314), Jeanne of Navarre, who died three years before [1305]. The trial dragged on from 1308 to 1313, and many witnesses attested on oath that the prelate had continually visited certain notorious witches, who supplied him philtres and draughts. In 1315, during the brief reign (1314-1316) of Louis X, the eldest son of Philip IV, was hanged Enguerrand de Marigny, chamberlain, privy councillor, and chief favourite of Philip, whom, it was alleged, he had bewitched to gain the royal favour. The fact, however, which sealed his doom was his consultation with one Jacobus de Lor, a warlock [bruxo], who was to furnish a nostrum warranted to put a very short term to the life of King Louis. Jacobus strangled himself in prison.

In 1317 Hugues Géraud, Bishop of Cahors, was executed by Pope John XXII, who reigned 1316-1334, residing at Avignon. Langlois says that the Bishop had attempted the Pontiff’s life by poison procured from witches.

Perhaps the most resounding of all scandals of this kind in France was the La Voison case, 1679-1682, when it was discovered that Madame de Montespan had for years been trafficking with a gang of poisoners and sorcerers, who plotted the death of the Queen and the Dauphan, so that Louis XIV might be free to wed Athénais de Montespan, whose children should inherit the throne. The Duchesse de Fontanges, a beautiful young country girl, who had for a while attracted the wayward fancy of Louis, they poisoned out of hand. Money was poured out like water, and it has been said that <the entire floodtide of poison, witchcraft and diabolism was unloosed> to attain the ends of that <marvellous beauty> (so Mme. de Sévigné calls her), the haughty and reckless Marquise de Montespan. In her thwarted fury she well nigh resolved to sacrifice Louis himself to her overweening ambition and her boundless pride. The highest names in France – the Princesse de Tingry, the Duchesse de Vitry, the Duchesse de Lusignan, the Duchesse de Bouillon, the Comtesse de Soissons, the Duc de Luxembourg, the Marguis de Cessac – scores of the older aristocracy, were involved, whilst literally hundreds of venal apothecaries, druggists, pseudo-alchemists, astrologers, quacks, warlocks, magicians, charlatans, who revolved round the ominous and terrible figure of Catherine La Voisin, professional seeress, fortune-teller, herbalist, beauty-specialist, were caught in the meshes [teias] of law. No less than 11 volumes of François Ravaison’s huge work, Archives de la Bastille, are occupied with this evil crew and their doings, their sorceries and their poisonings. [Livro-pédia que não podemos deixar de perder!]

During the reign of Urban VIII, Maffeo Barberini, 1623-1644, there was a resounding scandal at Rome when it was discovered that <after many invocations of demons> Giacinto Contini, nephew of the Cardinal d’Ascoli, had been plotting with various accomplices to put an end to the Pope’s life, and thus make way for the succession of his uncle to the Chair of Peter. Tommaso Orsolini of Recanate, moreover, after consulting with certain scryers and planetarians, readers of the stars, was endeavouring to bribe the apothecary Carcurasio of Naples to furnish him with a quick poison, which might be mingled with the tonics and electuaries prescribed for the ailing Pontiff, (Ranke, History of the Popes, ed. 1901, Vol. III, pp. 375-6).”

¹ Se essas coisas fossem mesmo dotadas do mais remoto interesse, Shakespeare usaria muito de magia negra para apimentar suas peças, o que, vê-se, passa longe de ser o caso.

Jean Bodin, the famous jurisconsult (1530-90) whom Montaigne acclaims to be the highest literary genius of his time, and who, as a leading member of the Parlement de Paris, presided over important trials, gives it as his opinion that there existed, not only in France, a complete organization of witches, immensely wealthy, of almost infinite potentialities, most cleverly captained, with centres and cells in every district, utilizing an espionage in ever land, with high-placed adherents at court, with humble servitors in the cottage.”

Not the least dreaded and dreadful weapon in their armament was the ancient and secret knowledge of poisons (veneficia), of herbs healing and hurtful, a tradition and a lore which had been handed down from remotest antiquity.”

Little wonder, then, that later social historians, such as Charles MacKay and Lecky, both absolutely impartial and unprejudiced writers, sceptical even, devote many pages, the result of long and laborious research, to witchcraft. (…) The profoundest thinkers, the acutest and most liberal minds of their day, such men as Cardan; Trithemius; the encylcopædic Delrio; Bishop Binsfeld; the learned physician, Caspar Peucer; Sir Edward Coke, <father of the English law>; Francis Bacon; Malebranche; Bayle; Glanvil; Thomas Browne; Cotton Mather; all these, and scores besides, were convinced of the dark reality of witchcraft, of the witch organization.”

The latest reprint of the original text of the Malleus is to be found in the noble 4-volume collection of Treatises on Witchcraft, <sumptibus Claudii Bourgeat>, 4to., Lyons, 1669.”

It was implicitly accepted not only by Catholic but by Protestant legislature. In fine, it is not too much to say that the Malleus Maleficarum is among the most important, wisest, and weightiest books of the world.

It has been asked whether Kramer or Sprenger was principally responsible for the Malleus, but in the case of so close a collaboration any such inquiry seems singularly superfluous and nugatory. With regard to instances of jointed authorship, unless there be some definite declaration on the part of one of the authors as to his particular share in a work, or unless there be some unusual and special circumstances bearing on the point, such perquisitions and analysis almost inevitably resolve themselves into a cloud of guess-work and bootless hazardry and vague perhaps. It becomes a game of literary blind-man’s-bluff.

Heinrich Kramer was born at Schlettstadt, a town of Lower Alsace, situated some 26 miles south-west of Strasburg. At an early age he entered the Order of S. Dominic, and so remarkable was his genius that whilst still a young man he was appointed to the position of Prior of the Dominican House at his native town. He was a Preacher-General and a Master of Sacred Theology. P.G. and S.T.M., two distinctions in the Dominican Order. At some date before 1474 he was appointed an Inquisitor for the Tyrol, Salzburg, Bohemia, and Moravia. His eloquence in the pulpit and tireless activity received due recognition at Rome, and for many years he was Spiritual Director of the great Dominican church at Salzburg, and the right-hand of the Archbishop of Salzburg, a munificent prelate who praises him highly in a letter which is still extant.” “In 1495, the Master General of the Order, Fr. Joaquín de Torres, O.P., summoned Kramer to Venice in order that he might give public lectures, disputations which attracted crowded audiences, and which were honoured by the presence and patronage of the Patriarch of Venice. He also strenuously defended the Papal supremacy, confuting the De Monarchia of the Paduan jurisconsult, Antonio degli Roselli. At Venice he resided at the priory of Santi Giovanni e Paolo (S. Zanipolo). During the summer of 1497, he had returned to Germany, and was living at the convent of Rohr, near Regensburg. On 31 January, 1500, Alexander VI appointed him as Nuncio and Inquisitor of Bohemia and Moravia, in which provinces he was deputed and empowered to proceed against the Waldenses and Picards, as well as against the adherents of the witch-society.” “His chief works, in addition to the Malleus, are: Several Discourses and Various Sermons upon the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist, Nuremberg, 1496; A Tract Confuting the Errors of Master Antonio degli Roselli, Venice, 1499; and The Shield of Defence of the Holy Roman Church Against the Picards and Waldenses, an incunabulum, without date, but almost certainly 1499-1500. Many learned authors quote and refer to these treatises in terms of highest praise.”

James Sprenger was born in Basel, 1436-8 [que parto longo]. He was admitted a novice in the Dominican house of this town in 1452. His extraordinary genius attracted immediate attention, and his rise to a responsible position was very rapid. According to Pierre Hélyot, the Franciscan (1680-1716), Histoire des Ordres Religieux, III (1715), ch. XXVI, in 1389 Conrad of Prussia abolished certain relaxations and abuses which had crept into the Teutonic Province of the Order of S. Dominic, and restored the Primitive and Strict Obedience. He was closely followed by Sprenger, whose zealous reform was so warmly approved that in 1468 the General Chapter ordered him to lecture on the sentences of Peter Lombard at the University of Cologne, to which he was thus officially attached. A few years later he proceeded Master of Theology, and was elected Prior and Regent of Studies of the Cologne Convent, one of the most famous and frequented Houses of the Order. On 30 June, 1480, he was elected Dean of the Faculty of Theology at the University. His lecture-room was thronged, and in the following year, at the Chapter held in Roma, the Master General of the Order, Fra Salvo Cusetta, appointed him Inquisitor Extraordinary for the Provinces of Mainz, Trèves, and Cologne. His activities were enormous, and demanded constant journeyings through the very extensive district to which he had been assigned. In 1488 he was elected Provincial of the whole German Province, an office of the first importance [ah, o século!]. It is said that his piety and his learning impressed all who came in contact with him. In 1495 he was residing at Cologne, and here he received a letter from Alexander VI praising his enthusiasm and his energy.” “Among Sprenger’s other writings, excepting the Malleus, are The Paradoxes of John of Westphalia Refuted, Mainz, 1479, a closely argued treatise; and The Institution and Approbation of the Confraternity of the Most Holy Rosary, which was first erected at Cologne on 8 September in the year 1475. Sprenger may well be called the Apostle of the Rosary. None more fervent than he in spreading this Dominican elevation.”

Certain it is that the Malleus Maleficarum is the most solid, the most important work in the whole vast library of witchcraft. One turns to it again and again with edification and interest: From the point of psychology, from the point of jurisprudence, from the point of history, it is supreme. It has hardly too much to say that later writers, great as they are, have done little more than draw from the seemingly inexhaustible wells of wisdom which the two Dominicans, Heinrich Kramer and James Sprenger, have given us” “What is most surprising is the modernity of the book. There is hardly a problem, a complex, a difficulty, which they have not foreseen, and discussed, and resolved.”

The Malleus Maleficarum is one of the world’s few books written sub specie aeternitatis.

Montague Summers.

7 October, 1946.”

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Sometimes, no doubt, primitive communities were obliged to tolerate the witch and her works owing to fear; in other words, witchcraft was a kind of blackmail; but directly Cities were able to coordinate, and it became possible for Society to protect itself, precautions were taken and safeguards were instituted against this curse, this bane whose object seemed to blight all that was fair, all that was just and good, and that was well-appointed and honourable, in a word, whose aim proved to be set up on high the red standard of revolution; to overwhelm religion, existing order, and the comeliness of life in an abyss of anarchy, nihilism, and despair. In his great treatise De Civitate Dei S. Augustine set forth the theory, or rather the living fact, of the two Cities, the City of God, and the opposing stronghold of all that is not for God, that is to say, of all that is against Him. [humanity itself]”

and nations who had never heard the Divine command put into practice the obligation of the Mosaic maxim: Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. (Vulgate: Maleficos non patieris vivere. Douay: Wizards thou shalt not suffer to live. Exodus, 22:18.)” // “A feiticeira não deixarás viver.” Êxodo 22:18

It is true that both in the Greek and in the earlier Roman cults, worships often directly derived from secret and sombre sources, ancient gods, or rather demons, had their awful superstitions and their horrid rites, powers whom men dreaded but out of very terror placated; fanes [templos] men loathed but within whose shadowed portals they bent and bowed the knee perforce in trembling fear. Such deities were the Thracian Bendis [a nova Ártemis; ver referências aos jogos e festivais incluindo corridas de cavalos noturnas n’A República], whose manifestation was heralded by the howling of her fierce black hounds, and Hecate the terrible <Queen of the realm of ghosts>, as Euripides calls her, and the vampire Mormo [espécie de bicho-papão da Antiguidade: mas pelo menos era uma mulher! Posteriormente, Lamia] and the dark Summanus who at midnight hurled loud thunderbolts and launched the deadly levin [relâmpago] through the starless sky [Curiosa espécie de anti-Zeus, o Deus do Trovão Diruno. Milton e Camões equiparam-no a Hades.]. Pliny tells us that the worship of this mysterious deity lasted long, and dogs with their puppies were sacrificed to him with atrocious cruelty, but S. Augustine says that in his day <one could scarce find one within a while, that had heard, nay more, that had read so much as the name of Summanus> (De Civitate Dei, 4:23). (…) Towards the end of the 5th century, the Carthaginian Martianus Capella boldly declares that Summanus is none other than the lord of Hell, and he was writing, it may be remembered, only a few years before the birth of S. Benedict(*); some think that he was still alive when the Father of All Monks was born.”

(*) “The Medal of S. Benedict has been found to be extremely potent against all evil spells.”

many strange legends attached to the island of Lemnos, which is situated in the Aegaean Sea, nearly midway between Mt. Athos and the Hellespoint. It is one of the largest of the group, having an area of some 147 square miles. Lemnos was sacred to Hephaestus, who is said to have fallen here when hurled by Zeus from Olympus.” “It should further be noted that the old Italian deity Volcanus, with whom he was to be identified, is the god of destructive fire – fire considered in its rage and terror, as contrasted with fire which is a comfort to the human race, the kindly blaze on the hearth, domestic fire, presided over by the gracious lady Vesta. It is impossible not to think of the fall of Lucifer when one considers the legend of Hephaestus. Our Lord replied, when the disciples reported: Domine, etiam daemonia subiiciuntur nobis in nomine tuo (Lord, the devils also are subject to us in Thy Name), Videbam Satanam sicut fulgur de coelo cadentem (I saw Satan like lightning falling from Heaven); and Isaias says: Quomodo cecidisti de coelo, Lucifer, qui mane oriebaris? Corruisti in terram qui vulnerabas gentes? (How art thou fallen from Heaven, O Lucifer, who didst rise in the morning? How art thou fallen to the earth, that didst wound the nations?). Milton also has the following poetic allusion:

Nor was his name unheard or unador’d

In Ancient Greece; and in Ausonian land

Men called him Mulciber; and how he fell

From Heav’n, they fabl’d, thrown by angry Jove

Sheer o’er the Chrystal Battlements: from Morn

To Noon he fell, from Noon to dewy Eve,

A Summers day; and with the setting Sun

Dropt from the Zenith like a falling Star,

On Lemnos th’Ægæan Ile: thus they relate,

Erring; for he with his rebellious rout

Fell long before; nor aught avail’d him now

To have built in Heav’n high Towers; nor did he scape

By all his Engines, but was headlong sent

With his industrious crew to build in hell.”

Paraíso Perdido, 1:738-51

Levar poeta a sério é pedir pra se queimar na fogueira de São João!

Hephaestus, especially in later days, is represented with one leg shortened to denote his lameness; and throughout the Middle Ages it was popularly believed that his cloven hoof was the one feature which the devil was unable to disguise. In this connexion with Loki, the Vulcan of Northern Europe, will be readily remembered.”

É Hefesto o Lúcifer pagão ou não seria apenas Lúcifer o Hefesto cristão, que não saberá nunca dar a volta por cima? Mas na verdade ele tinha amores, era excelente ferreiro, e foi afinal perdoado e regressou ao Olimpo, pleno de honras!

There were also dark histories of murder and blood connected with Lemnos. When the Argonauts landed here they found it inhabited only by Amazons, who, having murdered all their husbands, had chosen as their queen Hypsipyle, daughter of Thoas, whom she secretly preserved alive. When this was discovered the unfortunate woman was compelled to leave the island, and being subsequently captured by pirates she was sold to Lycurgus, king of the sacred groves that surrounded the temple of Zeus Nemeus in a remote Argive valley. Hypsipyle here became the nurse of the mysterious child Archemorus, the Forerunner of Death, who was bitten by a magic serpent and vanished, portending the doom of the Seven who went against Thebes.”

It is curious to remark that a certain red clay (terra Lemnia) found on the island was, as Pliny tells us, employed as a remedy for wounds, and especially the bite of a snake.”

In Rome black magic was punished as a capital offence by the Law of the Twelve Tables, which are to be assigned to the 5th century B.C., and, as Livy records, from time to time Draconian statutes were directed against those who attempted to blight crops and vineyards or to spread rinderpest amongst flocks and cattle. Nonetheless it is evident from many Latin authors and from the historians that Rome swarmed with occultists and diviners, many of whom in spite of the Lex Cornelia almost openly traded in poisons, and not infrequently in assassination to boot. Sometimes, as in the Middle Ages, a circumstance of which the Malleus Maleficarum most particularly complains, the sorcerers were protected by men of wealth and high estate. This was especially the case in the terrible days of Marius and of Catiline, and during the extreme decadence of the latest Caesars. Yet, paradoxical as it may appear, such emperors as Augustus, Tiberius, and Septimius Severus, whilst banishing from their realms all seers and necromancers, and putting them to death, in private entertained astrologers and wizards among their retinue, consulting their art upon each important occasion, and often even in the everyday and ordinary affairs of life.”

stern and constant official opposition to witchcraft, and the prohibition under severest penalties, the sentence of death itself, of any practice or pursuit of these dangerous and irreligious arts, was demonstrably not a product of Christianity, but had long and necessarily been employed in the heathen world and among pagan peoples and among polytheistic societies. Moreover, there are even yet savage communities who visit witchcraft with death.”

If the disease is universal, the medicine must be sharp.”

a song or a country dance mayhap, innocent enough on the surface, and even pleasing, so often were but the cloak and the mask for something devilish and obscene, that the Church deemed it necessary to forbid and proscribe the whole superstition even when it manifested itself in modest fashion and seemed guileless, innoxious, and of no account.”

I knok this rage upone this stane

To raise the wind in the divellis name,

It sall not lye till I please againe.”

Cântico de bruxas escocesas

A pagan diviner or haruspex could only follow his vocation under very definite restrictions. He was not allowed to be an intimate visitor at the house of any citizen, for friendship with men of this kind must be avoided. The haruspex who frequents the houses of others shall die at the stake, such is the tenor of the code. It is hardly an exaggeration to say that almost every year saw a more rigid application of the laws; although even as today, when fortune-telling and peering into the future are forbidden by the Statute Book, diviners and mediums abound, so then in spite of every prohibition astrologers, clairvoyants, and psalmists had an enormous clientèle of rich and poor alike.

The early legal codes of most European nations contain laws directed against witchcraft. Thus, for example, the oldest document of Frankish legislation, the Salic Law (Lex salica), which was reduced to a written form and promulgated under Clovis, who died 27 November, 511, mulcts (sic) those who practise magic with various fines, especially when it could be proven that the accused launched a deadly curse, or had tied the Witch’s Knot. This latter charm was usually a long cord tightly tied up in elaborate loops, among whose reticulations it was customary to insert the feathers of a black hen, a raven, or some other bird which had, or was presumed to have, no speck of white. This is one of the oldest instruments of witchcraft and is known in all countries and among all nations. It was put to various uses. The wizards of Finland sold wind in the three knots of a rope. If the first knot were undone a gentle breeze sprang up; if the second, it blew a mackerel gale; if the third, a hurricane. But the Witch’s Ladder, as it was often known, could be used with far more baleful effects. The knots were tied with certain horrid maledictions, and then the cord was hidden away in some secret place, and unless it were found and the strands released the person at whom the curse was directed would pine and die. This charm continually occurs during the trials. Thus in the celebrated Island-Magee case, March 1711, when a coven of witches was discovered, it was remarked that an apron belonging to Mary Dunbar, a visitor at the house of the afflicted persons, had been abstracted. Miss Dunbar was suddenly seized with fits and convulsions, and sickened almost to death. After most diligent search the missing garment was found carefully hidden away and covered over, and a curious string which had nine knots in it had been so tied up with the folds of the linen that it was beyond anything difficult to separate them and loosen the ligatures. In 1886 in the old belfry of a village church in England there were accidentally discovered, pushed away in a dark corner, several yards of incle braided with elaborate care and having a number of black feathers thrust through the strands. It is said that for a long while considerable wonder was caused as to what it might be, but when it was exhibited and became known, one of the local grandmothers recognized it was a Witch’s Ladder, and, what is extremely significant, when it was engraved in the Folk Lore Journal an old Italian woman to whom the picture was shown immediately identified it as la ghirlanda delle streghe.”

In 578, when a son of Queen Fredegonde died, a number of witches who were accused of having contrived the destruction of the Prince were executed. (…) what else was there left for the Church to do?” Yea, what else?

HISTERIA COLETIVA: “In 814, Louis le Pieux upon his accession to the throne began to take very active measures against all sorcerers and necromancers, and it was owing to his influence and authority that the Council of Paris in 829 appealed to the secular courts to carry out any such sentences as the Bishops might pronounce. The consequence was that from this time forward the penalty of witchcraft was death, and there is evidence that if the constituted authority, either ecclesiastical or civil, seemed to slacken in their efforts the populace took the law into their own hands with far more fearful results.”

MEDIDAS PROFILÁTICAS:It is quite plain that such a man as Frederick II, whose whole philosophy was entirely Oriental; who was always accompanied by a retinue of Arabian ministers, courtiers, and officers; who was perhaps not without reason suspected of being a complete agnostic, recked little whether heresy and witchcraft might be offences against the Church or not, but he was sufficiently shrewd to see that they gravely threatened the well-being of the State, imperilling the maintenance of civilization and the foundations of society.”

QUANTA BONDADE ECLESIÁSTICA, DEIXAR A PENA DE MORTE PARA O ESTADO! “It may be well here very briefly to consider the somewhat complicated history of the establishment of the Inquisition, which was, it must be remembered, the result of the tendencies and growth of many years, by no means a judicial curia with cut-and-dried laws and a complete procedure suddenly called into being by one stroke of a Papal pen. In the first place, S.[atan] Dominic was in no sense the founder of the Inquisition. Certainly during the crusade in Languedoc he was present, reviving religion and reconciling the lapsed, but he was doing no more than S. Paul or any of the Apostles would have done. The work of S. Dominic was preaching and the organization of his new Order, which received Papal confirmation from Honorius III, and was approved in the Bull Religiosam vitam, 22 December, 1216. S. Dominic died 6 August, 1221, and even if we take the word in a very broad sense, the first Dominican Inquisitor seems to have been Alberic, who in November, 1232, was travelling through Lombardy with the official title of Inquisitor hereticae pravitatis. The whole question of the episcopal Inquisitors, who were really the local bishop, his arch-deacons, and his diocesan court, and their exact relationship with the travelling Inquisitors, who were mainly drawn from the two Orders of friars, the Franciscan and the Dominican, is extremely nice and complicated; whilst the gradual effacement of the episcopal courts with regard to certain matters and the consequent prominence of the Holy Office were circumstances and conditions which realized themselves slowly enough in all countries, and almost imperceptibly in some districts, as necessity required, without any sudden break or sweeping changes. In fact we find that the Franciscan or Dominican Inquisitor simply sat as an assessor in the episcopal court so that he could be consulted upon certain technicalities and deliver sentence conjointly with the Bishop if these matters were involved. Thus at the trial of Gilles de Rais in October, 1440, at Nantes, the Bishop of Nantes presided over the court with the bishops of Le Mans, Saint-Brieuc, and Saint-Lo as his coadjutors, whilst Pierre de l’Hospital, Chencellor of Brittany, watched the case on behalf of the civil authorities, and Frère Jean Blouin was present as the delegate of the Holy Inquisition for the city and district of Nantes. Owing to the multiplicity of the crimes, which were proven and clearly confessed in accordance with legal requirements, it was necessary to pronounce two sentences. The first sentence was passed by the Bishop of Nantes conjointly with the Inquisitor. By them Gilles de Rais was declared guilty of Satanism, sorcery, and apostasy, and there and then handed over to the civil arm to receive the punishment due to such offences. The second sentence, pronounced by the Bishop alone, declared the prisoner convicted of sodomy, sacrilege, and violation of ecclesiastical rights. The ban of excommunication was lifted since the accused had made a clean breast of his crimes and desired to be reconciled, but he was handed over to the secular court, who sentenced him to death, on multiplied charges of murder as well as on account of the aforesaid offences.”

Today the word heresy seems to be as obsolete and as redolent of a Wardour-street vocabulary as if one were to talk of a game of cards at Crimp or Incertain, and to any save a dusty mediaevalist it would appear to be an antiquarian term.” MORTE AOS COMUNAS! “The heretics were just as resolute and just as practical, that is to say, just as determined to bring about the domination of their absolutism as is any revolutionary of today. The aim and objects of their leaders, Tanchelin, Everwacher, the Jew Manasses, Peter Waldo, Pierre Autier, Peter of Bruys, Arnold of Brescia, and the rest, were exactly those of Lenin, Trotsky, Zinoviev, and their fellows.”

Their objects may be summed up as the abolition of monarchy, the abolition of private property and of inheritance, the abolition of marriage, the abolition of order, the total abolition of all religion. It was against this that the Inquisition had to fight, and who can be surprised if, when faced with so vast a conspiracy, the methods employed by the Holy Office may not seem – if the terrible conditions are conveniently forgotten – a little drastic, a little severe? There can be no doubt that had this most excellent tribunal continued to enjoy its full prerogative and the full exercise of its salutary powers, the world at large would be in a far happier and far more orderly position today. Historians may point out diversities and dissimilarities between the teaching of the Waldenses, the Albigenses, the Henricans, the Poor Men of Lyons, the Cathari, the Vaudois, the Bogomiles, and the Manichees, but they were in reality branches and variants of the same dark fraternity, just as the Third International, the Anarchists, the Nihilists, and the Bolsheviks are in every sense, save the mere label, entirely identical.”

There is an apparent absence of motive in this seemingly aimless campaign of destruction to extermination carried on by the Bolsheviks in Russia, which has led many people to inquire what the objective can possibly be. So unbridled are the passions, so general the demolition, so terrible the havoc, that hard-headed individuals argue that so complete a chaos and such revolting outrages could only be affected by persons who were enthusiasts in their own cause and who had some very definite aims thus positively to pursue. The energizing forces of this fanaticism, this fervent zeal, do not seem to be anymore apparent than the end, hence more than one person has hesitated to accept accounts so alarming of massacres and carnage, or wholesale imprisonments, tortures, and persecutions, and has begun to suspect that the situation may be grossly exaggerated in the overcharged reports of enemies and the highly-coloured gossip of scare-mongers.” EUREKA!

Nearly a century and a half ago Anacharsis Clootz(*), <the personal enemy of Jesus Christ> as he openly declared himself, was vociferating God is Evil, To me then Lucifer, Satan! whoever you may be, the demon that the faith of my fathers opposed to God and the Church. This is the credo of the witch.”

(*) Bases constitutionnelles de la République du genre humain, Paris, 1793

Revolucionário francês de tendências cosmopolitas (globais) à frente de seu tempo.

Naturally, although the Masters were often individuals of high rank and deep learning, that rank and file of the society, that is to say, those who for the most part fell into the hands of justice, were recruited from the least educated classes, the ignorant and the poor [já vi isso em algum lugar…]. As one might suppose, many of the branches or covens in remoter districts knew nothing and perhaps could have understood nothing of the enormous system. Nevertheless, as small cogs in a very small wheel, it might be, they were carrying on the work and actively helping to spread the infection. It is an extremely significant fact that the last regularly official trial and execution for witchcraft in Western Europe was that of Anna Göldi, who was hanged at Glaris in Switzerland, 17 June, 1782(*). Seven years before, in 1775, the villian Adam Weishaupt, who has been truly described by Louis Blanc as <the profoundest conspirator that has ever existed,> formed his <terrible and formidable sect>, the Illuminati. The code of this mysterious movement lays down: <it is also necessary to gain the common people (das gemeine Volk) to our Order. The great means to that end is influence in the schools.>“So in the prosecutions at Würzburg we find that there were condemned boys of 10 and 11, two choir boys aged 12, <a boy of 12-years-old in one of the lower forms of the school>, <the two young sons of the Prince’s cook, the eldest 14, the younger 12>, several pages and seminarists, as well as a number of young girls, amongst whom <a child of 9 or 10 and her little sister> were involved.”

(*) Nota corretiva (do próprio reverendo na segunda edição?): “The last trial and judicial execution in Europe itself was probably that of two aged beldames, Satanists, who were burned at the stake in Poland, 1793, the year of the Second Partition, during the reign of Stanislaus Augustus Poniatowski.” Mas parece que a correção do reverendo estava errada, prevalecendo a primeira versão, conforme wiki e outras fontes…

In England in the year 1324 no less than 27 defendants were tried at the King’s Bench for plotting against and endeavouring to kill Edward II, together with many prominent courtiers and officials, by the practice of magical arts. A number of wealthy citizens of Coventry had hired a famous <nigromauncer>, John of Nottingham, to slay not only the king, but also the royal favourite, Hugh le Despenser, and his father; the Prior of Coventry; the monastic steward; the manciple; and a number of other important personages. A secluded old manor-house, some 2 or 3 miles out of Coventry, was put at the disposal of Master John, and there he and his servant, Robert Marshall, promptly commenced business. They went to work in the bad old-fashioned way of modelling wax dolls or mommets of those whom they wished to destroy. Long pins were thrust through the figures, and they were slowly melted before a fire.(*) The first unfortunate upon whom this experiment was tried, Richard de Sowe, a prominent courtier and close friend of the king, was suddenly taken with agonizing pains, and when Marshall visited the house, as if casually, in order that he might report the results of this sympathetic sorcery to the wizard, he found their hapless victim in a high delirium. When this state of things was promptly conveyed to him, Master John struck a pin through the heart of the image, and in the morning the news reached them that de Sowe had breathed his last. Marshall, who was by now in an extremity of terror, betook himself to a justice and laid bare all that was happening and had happened, with the immediate result that Master John and the gang of conspirators were arrested. It must be remembered that in 1324 the final rebellion against king Edward II had openly broken forth on all sides. A truce of 13 years had been arranged with Scotland, and though the English might refuse Bruce his royal title he was henceforward the warrior king of an independent country. It is true that in May, 1322, the York Parliament had not only reversed the exile of the Despensers, declaring the pardons which had been granted their opponents null and void, as well as voting for the repeal of the Ordinances of 1311, and the Despensers were working for, and fully alive to the necessity of, good and stable government, but nonetheless the situation was something more than perilous; the Exchequer was well-nigh drained; there was rioting and bloodshed in almost every large town; and worst of all, in 1323 the younger Roger Mortimer had escaped from the Tower and got away safely to the Continent. There were French troubles to boot; Charles IV, who in 1322 had succeeded to the throne, would accept no excuse from Edward for any postponement of homage, and in this very year, 1324, declaring the English possessions forfeited, he proceeded to occupy the territory with an army, when it soon became part of the French dominion. There can be not doubt that the citizens of Coventry were political intriguers, and since they were at the moment unable openly to rebel against their sovran lord, taking advantage of the fact that he was harassed and pressed at so critical a juncture, they proceeded against him by the dark and tortuous ways of black magic.

(*) “This is certainly one of the oldest and most universal of spells. To effect the death of a man, or to injure him by making an image in his likeness, and mutilating or destroying this image, is a practice found throughout the whole wide world from its earliest years. It is common both in Babylon and in the Egypt of the Pharoahs, when magicians kneaded puppets of clay or pitch moistened with honey. If it were possible to mingle therewith a drop of a man’s blood, the parings of his nails, a few hairs from his body, a thread or two from his garments, it gave the warlock the greater power over him. In ancient Greece and Rome precisely the same ideas prevailed, and allusions may be found in Theocritus (Idyll II), Virgil (Eclogue VIII, 75-82), Ovid (Heroides, VI, 91, sqq.; Amores, III, vii, 29, sqq.), and many more. (See R. Wunsch, Eine antike Rachepuppe, Philologus, lxi, 1902, pp. 26-31.) We find this charm among the Ojebway Indians, the Cora Indians of Mexico, the Malays, the Chinese and Japanese, the aborigines throughout Australia, the Hindoos, both in ancient India and at the present day, the Burmese, many Arab tribes of Northern Africa, in Turkey, in Italy and the remoter villages of France, in Ireland and Scotland, nor is it (in one shape and form or another) yet unknown in the country districts of England.”

An astrologer, attached to the Duke’s house-hold, when taken and charged with <werchyrye of sorcery against the King,> confessed that he had often cast the horoscope of the Duchess to find out if her husband would ever wear the English crown, the way to which they had attempted to smooth by making a wax image of Henry VI and melting it before a magic fire to bring about the king’s decease. A whole crowd of witches, male and female, were involved in the case, and among these was Margery Jourdemain, a known a notorious invoker of demons and an old trafficker in evil charms.”

In the days of Edward IV it was commonly gossiped that the Duchess of Bedford was a witch, who by her spells had fascinated the king with the beauty of her daughter Elizabeth, whom he made his bride, in spite of the fact that he had plighted his troth to Eleanor Butler, the heiress of the Earl of Shrewsbury. So open did the scandal become that the Duchess of Bedford lodged an official complaint with the Privy Council, and an inquiry was ordered, but, as might have been suspected, this completely cleared the lady.”

O Edward, Edward! fly and leave this place,

Wherein, poor silly King, thou are enchanted.

This is her dam of Bedford’s work, her mother,

That hath bewitch’d thee, Edward, my poor child.


Her ascendancy over the king was attributed to the enchantments and experiments of a Dominican friar, learned in many a cantrip and cabala, whom she entertained in her house, and who had fashioned 2 pictures of Edward and Alice which, when suffumigated with the incense of mysterious herbs and gums, mandrakes, sweet calamus, caryophylleae, storax, benzoin, and other plants plucked beneath the full moon what time Venus was in ascendant, caused the old king to dote upon this lovely concubine. With great difficulty by a subtle ruse the friar was arrested, and he thought himself lucky to escape with relegation to a remote house under the strictest observance of his Order, whence, however, he was soon to be recalled with honour and reward, since the Good Parliament shortly came to an end, and Alice Perrers, who now stood higher in favour than ever, was not slow to heap lavish gifts upon her supporters, and to visit her enemies with condign punishment.”

There was nobody more thoroughly scared of witchcraft than Henry VIII’s daughter, Elizabeth, and as John Jewel was preaching his famous sermon before her in February, 1560, he described at length how <this kind of people (I mean witches and sorcerers) within these few last years are marvellously increased within this Your Grace’s realm;> he then related how owing to dark spells he had known many <pine away even to death.> <I pray God,> he unctuously cried, <they may never practise further than upon the subjects!> This was certainly enough to ensure that drastic laws should be passed particularly to protect the Queen, who was probably both thrilled and complimented to think that her life was in danger. It is exceedingly doubtful, whether there was any conspiracy at all which would have attempted Elizabeth’s personal safety.”

That it was a huge and far-reaching political conspiracy is patent form the fact that the lives of Louis XIV, the Queen, the Dauphin, Louise de la Vallière, and the Duchesse de Fontanges had been attempted secretly again and again, whilst as for Colbert, scores of his enemies were constantly entreating for some swift sure poison, constantly participating in unhallowed rites which might lay low the all-powerful Introduction of Minister.”

As early as 600 S. Gregory I had spoken in severest terms, enjoining the punishment of sorcerers and those who trafficked in black magic. It will be noted that he speaks of them as more often belonging to that class termed servi, that is to say, the very people from whom for the most part Nihilists and Bolsheviks have sprung in modern days.” Não consigo encontrar referências para os serui – segundo a grafia moderna poderiam ser os servi, os sérvios? Dostoievsky é o epítome da literatura niilista pré-Revolução Russa. Mas e daí? Ele queimou alguém na fogueira? Na verdade até onde eu sei era um beato (viciado em jogo, mas um beato). Nenhuma pista, só um palpite.

On 13, December, 1258, Pope Alexander IV (Rinaldo Conti) issued a Bull to the Franciscan Inquisitors bidding them refrain from judging any cases of witchcraft unless there was some very strong reason to suppose that heretical practice could also be amply proved. On 10 January, 1260, the same Pontiff addressed a similar Bull to the Dominicans.

DEFENDENDO O INDEFENSÁVEL: “Sixtus IV was an eminent theologian, he is the author of an admirable treatise on the Immaculate Conception, and it is significant that he took strong measures to curb [restrain] the judicial severities of Tomás de Torquemada [que bonzinho], whom he had appointed Grand Inquisitor of Castile, 11 February, 1482. During his reign he published three Bulls directly attacking sorcery, which he clearly identified with heresy, an opinion of the deepest weight when pronounced by one who had so penetrating a knowledge of the political currents of the day [ó!]. There can be no doubt that he saw the society of witches to be nothing else than a vast international of anti-social revolutionaries. (sic!!!)

It has been necessarily thus briefly to review this important series of Papal documents to show that the famous Bull Summis desiderantes affectibus, 9 December, 1484, which Innocent VIII addressed to the authors of the Malleus Maleficarum, is no isolated and extraordinary document, but merely one in the long and important record of Papal utterances, although at the same time it is of the greatest importance and supremely authoritative. It has, however, been very frequently asserted, not only by prejudiced and unscrupulous chroniclers, but also by scholars of standing and repute, that this Bull of Innocent VIII, if not, as many appear to suppose, is actually the prime cause and origin of the crusade against witches, at any rate gave the prosecution and energizing power and an authority which hitherto they had not, and which save for this Bull they could not ever have, commanded and possessed.” “a Bull is an instrument of especial weight and importance, and it differs both in form and detail from constitutions, encyclicals, briefs, decrees, privileges, and rescripts. It should be remarked, however, that the term Bull has conveniently been used to denote all these, especially if they are Papal letters of any early date. By the 15th century clearer distinctions were insisted upon and maintained.”

Alexander VI published two Bulls upon the same theme, and in a Bull of Julius II there is a solemn description of that abomination the Black Mass, which is perhaps the central feature of the worship of Satanists, and which is unhappily yet celebrated today in London, in Paris, in Berlin, and in many another great city.” Leo X, the great Pope of Humanism, issued a Bull on the subject; but even more important is the Bull Dudum uti nobis exponi fecisti, 20 July, 1523, which speaks of the horrible abuse of the Sacrament in sorceries and the charms confuted by witches.”

There is a Constitution of Gregory XV, Omnipotentis Dei, 20 March, 1623; and a Constitution of Urban VIII, Inscrutabilis iudiciorum Dei altitudo, 1st April [hehe], 1631, which – if we except the recent condemnation of Spiritism in the19th century – may be said to be the last Apostolic document directed against these foul and devilish practices.

The noble and momentous sentences are built-up word by word, beat by beat, ever growing more and more authoritative, more and more judicial, until they culminate in the minatory and imprecatory clauses which are so impressive, so definite, that no loophole is left for escape, no turn for evasion. <Nulli ergo omnino hominum liceat hanc paganim nostrae declarationis extentionis concessionis et mandati infringere vel ei ausu temeraris contrarie Si qui autem attentate praesumpserit indignationem omnipotentis Dei ac beatorum Petri et Pauli Apostolorum eius se noverit incursurum.> If any man shall presume to go against the tenor let him know that therein he will bring down upon himself the wrath of Almighty God and of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul.

infallibility is claimed on the ground, not indeed of the terms of the Vatican definition, but of the constant practice of the Holy See, the consentient teaching of the theologians, as well as the clearest deductions of the principles of faith.” “Without exception non-Catholic historians have either in no measured language denounced or else with sorrow deplored the Bull of Innocent VIII as a most pernicious and unhappy document, a perpetual and irrevocable manifesto of the unchanged and unchangeable mind of the Papacy. From this point of view they are entirely justified, and their attitude is undeniably logical and right. The Summis desiderantes affectibus is either a dogmatic exposition by Christ’s Vicar upon earth or it is altogether abominable.” Choose for the second!

It is all the more amazing to find that the writer of the article upon Witchcraft in the Catholic Encyclopaedia quotes Hansen with complete approval and gleefully adds with regard to the Bull of Innocent VIII, <neither does the form suggest that the Pope wishes to bind anyone to believe more about the reality of witchcraft than is involved in the utterances of Holy Scripture,> a statement which is essentially Protestant in its nature, and, as is acknowledged by every historian of whatsoever colour or creed, entirely untrue. By its appearance in a standard work of reference, which is on the shelves of every library, this article upon Witchcraft acquires a certain title to consideration which upon its merits it might otherwise lack. It is signed Herbert Thurston, and turning to the list of <Contributors to the Fifteenth Volume> we duly see <Thurston, Herbert, S.J., London.> Since a Jesuit Father emphasizes in a well-known (and presumably authoritative) Catholic work an opinion so derogatory to the Holy See and so definitely opposed to all historians, one is entitled to express curiosity concerning other writings which may not have come from his pen. I find that for a considerable number of years Fr. Thurston has been contributing to The Month a series of articles upon mystical phenomena and upon various aspects of mysticism, such as the Incorruption of the bodies of Saints and Beati, the Stigmata, the Prophecies of holy persons, the miracles of Crucifixes that bleed or pictures of the Madonna which move, famous Sanctuaries, the inner life of and wonderful events connected with persons still living who have acquired a reputation for sanctity. This busy writer directly or incidentally has dealt with that famous ecstatica Anne Catherine Emmerich; the Crucifix of Limpias; Our Lady of Campocavallo; S. Januarus; the Ven. Maria d’Agreda; Gemma Galgani; Padre Pio Pietralcina; that gentle soul Teresa Higginson, the beauty of whose life has attracted thousands, but whom Fr. Thurston considers hysterical and masochistic and whose devotions to him savour of the <snowball> prayer; Pope Alexander VI; the origin of the Rosary; the Carmelite scapular; and very many themes beside. Here was have (sic) a mass of material, and even a casual glance through these pages will suffice to show the ugly prejudice which informs the whole. The intimate discussions on miracles, spiritual graces and physical phenomena, which above all require faith, reverence, sympathy, tact and understanding, are conducted with a roughness and a rudeness infinitely regrettable. What is worse, in every case Catholic tradition and loyal Catholic feeling are thrust to one side; the note of scepticism, of modernism, and even of rationalism is arrogantly dominant. Tender miracles of healing wrought at some old sanctuary, records of some hidden life of holiness secretly lived amongst us in the cloister or the home, these things seem to provoke Fr. Thurston to such a pitch of annoyance that he cannot refrain from venting his utmost spleen. The obsession is certainly morbid. It is reasonable to suppose that a lengthy series of papers all concentrating upon certain aspects of mysticism would have collected in one volume, and it is extremely significant that in the autumn of 1923 a leading house announced among Forthcoming Books: The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism. By the Rev. Herbert Thurston, S.J. Although in active preparation, this has never seen the light. I have heard upon good authority that the ecclesiastical superiors took exception to such a publication. I may, of course, be wrong, and there can be no question that there is room for a different point of view, but I cannot divest my mind of the idea that the exaggerated rationalization of mystical phenomena conspicuous in the series of articles I have just considered may be by no means unwelcome to the Father of Lies [é coisa do demo usar a cabeça]. It really plays into his hands: first, because it makes the Church ridiculous by creating the impression that her mystics, particularly friars and nuns, are for the most part sickly hysterical subjects, deceivers and deceived, who would be fit inmates of Bedlam; that many of her most reverend shrines, Limpias, Campocavallo, and the sanctuaries of Naples, are frauds and conscious imposture; and, secondly, because it condemns and brings into ridicule that note of holiness which theologians declare is one of the distinctive marks of the true Church.” Finalmente alguém sensato na parada!

INFALIBILIDADE DOS DEMÔNIOS EM PELE DE CORDEIRO: “and Fr. Thurston for 15 nauseating pages insists upon <the evil example of his private life>. This is unnecessary; it is untrue; it shows contempt of Christ’s Vicar on earth.”

For a full account of the Papal Bulls, see my Geography of Witchcraft, 1927” Deve ser um livro interessantíssimo. Um catálogo das páginas mais execráveis já escritos por homens de autoridade na era dos domínios de Deus-Filho sobre a superfície da redonda terra.

* * *

Verbete W I K I sobre Thurston:

Thurston wrote more than 150 articles for the Catholic Encyclopedia (1907-1914), and published nearly 800 articles in magazines and scholarly journals, as well a dozen books. He also re-edited Alban Butler’s Lives of the Saints (1926-1938). Many of Thurston’s articles show a skeptical attitude towards popular legends about the lives of the saints and about holy relics. On the other hand, his treatment of spiritualism and the paranormal was regarded as <too sympathetic> by some within the Catholic community.” “Thurston attributed the phenomena of stigmata to the effects of suggestion.” Livro que parece o mais interessante como inicial: The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism (1952). Vemos, portanto, que o livro foi “enrolado”, mas saiu, após a segunda e nefastérrima edição do Malleus do reverendinho SummersWinters!

* * *


It should be borne in mind too that frequent disturbances, conspiracies of anarchists, and nascent Bolshevism showed that the district was rotted to the core, and the severities of Kramer and Sprenger were by no means so unwarranted as is generally supposed.” “Unfortunately full biographies of these two remarkable men, James Sprenger and Henry Kramer, have not been transmitted to us, but as many details have been succinctly collected in the Scriptores Ordinis Praedicatorum of Quétif and Echard, Paris, 1719, I have thought it convenient to transcribe the following accounts from that monumental work.”

PAPAS PROCRIADORES (MAS SANTOS): (*) Burchard was only aware of two children of Innocent VIII. But Egidio of Viterbo wrote: <Primus pontificum filios filiasque palam ostentavit, primus eorum apertas fecit nuptias.>

(*) “One writer, professing himself a Christian, declares that it is at least doubtful whether Our Lord instituted The Holy Sacrifice of the Altar. This, of course, is tantamount to a denial of Christ.”

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The British Museum has five editions of the 15th century: 4to., 1490? (IA 8634); folio, 1490 (IB 8615); 4to., 1494 (IA 7468); folio, 1494 (IB 5064); 4to., 1496 (IA 7503).” “Malleus Maleficarum, 8vo., Paris, an edition to which the British Museum catalogue assigns the date of <1510?>.”

Malleus Maleficarum . . . per F. Raffaelum Maffeum Venetum et D. Jacobi a Judeca instituti Servorum summo studio illustratis et a multis erroribus vindicatus . . . Venetiis Ad Candentis Salamandrae insigne. 1576, 8vo. (This is a disappointing reprint, and it is difficult to see in what consisted the editorial care of the Servite Raffaelo Maffei [Rafael Má-fé!], who may or may not have been some relation of the famous humanist of the same name (d. 25 January, 1522)(*), and who was of the monastery of San Giacomo della Guidecca. He might have produced a critical edition of the greatest value, but as it is there are no glosses, there is no excursus, and the text is poor. For example, in a very difficult passage, Principalis Quaestio II, Pars II, where the earliest texts read <die dominico sotularia ivuenum fungia . . . perungunt,> Venice, 1576, has <die dominica sotularia ivuenum fungia . . . perungent.>)” (*) Não é Raffaello Sanzio, que morreu em 1520.

Malleus Maleficarum, 4 vols., <sumptibus Claudii Bourgeat,> 4to., Lyons, 1669. This would appear to be the latest edition of the Malleus Maleficarum

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The derivation of Femina from fe minus is notorious, and hardly less awkward is the statement that Diabolus comes <a Dia, quod est duo, et bolus, quod est morsellus; quia duo occidit, scilicet corpus et animam.>

O show de horrores continua…

Possibly what will seem even more amazing to modern readers is the misogynic trend of various passages, and these not of the briefest nor least pointed. However, exaggerated as these may be, I am not altogether certain that they will not prove a wholesome and needful antidote in this feministic age, when the sexes seem confounded, and it appear to be the chief object of many females to ape the man, an indecorum by which they not only divest themselves of such charm as they might boast, but lay themselves open to the sternest reprobation in the name of sanity and common-sense. For the Apostle S. Peter says: Let wives be subject to their husbands: that if any believe not the word, they may be won without the word, by the conver[sa]tion of the wives, considering your chaste conversation with fear. Whose adorning let it not be the outward plaiting of the hair, or the wearing of god, or the putting on of apparel; but the hidden man of the heart is the incorruptibility of a quiet and meek spirit, which is rich in the sight of God. For after the manner heretofore the holy women also, who trusted God, adorned themselves, being in subjection to their own husbands: as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters you are, doing well, and not fearing any disturbance.”

(*) “The extremer Picards seem to have been an off-shoot of the Behgards and to have professed the Adamite heresy. They called their churches Paradise whilst engaged in common worship stripped themselves quite nude. Shameful disorders followed. A number of these fanatics took possession of an island in the river Nezarka and lived in open communism. In 1421 Ziska, the Hussite leader, practically exterminated the sect. There have, however, been sporadic outbreaks of these Neo-Adamites. Picards was also a name given to the <Bohemian Brethren>, who may be said to have been organized in 1457 by Gregory, the nephew of Rokyzana.”

Montague Summers.

In Festo Expectationis B.M.V.


Já vai tarde, martelador de coisas erradas!

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It was published in 1487, but two years previously the authors had secured a bull from Pope Innocent VIII, authorizing them to continue the witch hunt in the Alps which they had already instituted against the opposition from clergy and secular authorities. They reprinted the bull of December 5, 1484 to make it appear that the whole book enjoyed papal sanction.

Anybody with a grudge or suspicion, very young children included, could accuse anyone of witchcraft and be listened to with attention; anyone who wanted someone else’s property or wife could accuse; any loner, any old person living alone, anyone with a misformity, physical or mental problem was likely to be accused. Open hunting season was declared on women, especially herb gatherers, midwives, widows and spinsters. Women who had no man to supervise them were of course highly suspicious. It has been estimated by Dr. Marija Gimbutas, professor of archaeology at the University of California, that as many as 9 million people, overwhelmingly women, were burned or hanged during the witch-craze. For nearly 250 years the Witches’ Hammer was the guidebook for the witch hunters, but again some of the inquisitioners had misgivings about this devilish book. In a letter dated November 27, 1538 Salazar advised the inquisitioners not to believe everything they read in Malleus Maleficarum, even if the authors write about it as something they themselves have seen and investigated (Henningson, p.347).”

Edo Nyland – The Witch Burnings: Holocaust Without Equal

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every alteration that takes place in a human body – for example, a state of health or a state of sickness – can be brought down to a question of natural causes, as Aristotle has shown in his 7th book of Physics. And the greatest of these is the influence of the stars. But the devils cannot interfere with the stars. This is the opinion of Dionysius in his epistle to S. Polycarp. For this alone God can do. Therefore it is evident the demons cannot actually effect any permanent transformation in human bodies; that is to say, no real metamorphosis. And so we must refer the appearance of any such change to some dark and occult cause.”

For devils have no power at all save by a certain subtle art. But an art cannot permanently produce a true form. (And a certain author says: Writers on Alchemy know that there is no hope of any real transmutation.) Therefore the devils for their part, making use of the utmost of their craft, cannot bring about any permanent cure – or permanent disease.”

But the power of the devil is stronger than any human power” (Job 40) Ou a tradução para Português perde muito do sentido original ou o autor se equivoca muito ao interpretar os versos de Jó XL como sobre o demônio, quando só falam de Deus onipotente, do homem impotente e, no máximo, do animal beemote, que é um crente, age com sabedoria, não se desespera, porque conhece a própria fraqueza melhor do que o homem.

For the imagination of some men is so vivid that they think they see actual figures and appearances which are but the reflection of their thoughts, and then these are believed to be the apparitions of evil spirits or even the spectres of witches.”



an infidel and worse than a heathen”

tempstation du mal, ô Être!

Deuteronômio 18: Este, pois, será o direito dos sacerdotes, a receber do povo, dos que oferecerem sacrifício, seja boi ou gado miúdo; que darão ao sacerdote a espádua e as queixadas e o bucho.”

Ça ser dote ou não ser, eis a questão

Entre ti não se achará quem faça passar pelo fogo a seu filho ou a sua filha, nem adivinhador, nem prognosticador, nem agoureiro, nem feiticeiro;

Nem encantador, nem quem consulte a um espírito adivinhador, nem mágico, nem quem consulte os mortos;

Pois todo aquele que faz tal coisa é abominação ao Senhor; e por estas abominações o Senhor teu Deus os lança fora de diante de ti.


estas nações, que hás de possuir, ouvem os prognosticadores e os adivinhadores; porém a ti [descendente sacerdotal] o Senhor teu Deus não permitiu tal coisa. [Daí estaria implícito que a adivinhação e o ato de aconselhar [?] estão permitidos para todas as tribos não-sacerdotais; são simplesmente naturais dentre o povaréu. Não deveriam ser os e as possuidoras de tantos e atípicos talentos vítimas de apedrejamento, apenas deixad@s em sua ‘cegueira espiritual inerente’, para serem julgad@s na Esfera competente Quando de competência!]

Porém o profeta que tiver a presunção de falar alguma palavra em meu nome, que eu não lhe tenha mandado falar [um Genocídio teria de advir], ou o que falar em nome de outros deuses, esse profeta morrerá.” Não disse de quê.

Quando o profeta falar em nome do Senhor, e essa palavra não se cumprir, nem suceder assim; esta é palavra que o Senhor não falou; com soberba a falou aquele profeta; não tenhas temor dele.” Jesus tem ainda uns 30 mil anos de crédito, relaxai…

Levíticos 19: “The soul which goeth to wizards and soothsayers to commit fornication with them, I will set my face against that soul, and destroy it out of the midst of my people.”

Levíticos 20: “A man, or woman, in whom there is a pythonical or divining spirit dying, let them die: they shall stone them.”

IV Kings I // 2 Reis 1: “His brother and successor, Joram, threw down the statue of Baal, erected by Achab”

(…) Ide, e perguntai a Baal-Zebube, deus de Ecrom, se sararei desta doença.

Mas o anjo do Senhor disse a Elias, o tisbita: Levanta-te, sobe para te encontrares com os mensageiros do rei de Samaria, e dize-lhes: Porventura não há Deus em Israel, para irdes consultar a Baal-Zebube, deus de Ecrom?

E por isso assim diz o Senhor: Da cama, a que subiste, não descerás, mas sem falta morrerás. Então Elias partiu.


Então o rei (…) disse-lhe: Homem de Deus, o rei diz: Desce.

Mas Elias respondeu, e disse ao capitão de cinqüenta: Se eu, pois, sou homem de Deus, desça fogo do céu, e te consuma a ti e aos teus cinqüenta. Então fogo desceu do céu, e consumiu a ele e aos seus cinqüenta.


E tornou a enviar um terceiro capitão de cinqüenta, com os seus cinqüenta; então subiu o capitão de cinqüenta e, chegando, pôs-se de joelhos diante de Elias, e suplicou-lhe, dizendo: Homem de Deus, seja, peço-te, preciosa aos teus olhos a minha vida, e a vida destes cinqüenta teus servos.

Eis que fogo desceu do céu, e consumiu aqueles dois primeiros capitães de cinqüenta, com os seus cinqüenta; porém, agora seja preciosa aos teus olhos a minha vida.

Então o anjo do Senhor disse a Elias: Desce com este, não temas. E levantou-se, e desceu com ele ao rei.


Assim, pois, morreu, conforme a palavra do Senhor, que Elias falara (…)”

I Paralipomenon 10 (Bíblia Vulgata, English translation – equivalente a 1 Crônicas 10): “Saul is slain for his sins: he is buried by the men of Jabes. Now the Philistines fought against Israel, and the men of Israel fled from before the Philistines, and fell down wounded in mount Gelboe. And the Philistines drew near pursuing after Saul, and his sons, and they killed Jonathan, and Abinadab, and Melchisua the sons of Saul. And the battle grew hard against Saul and the archers reached him, and wounded him with arrows. And Saul said to his armour-bearer: Draw thy sword, and kill me: lest these uncircumcised come, and mock me. But his armour-bearer would not, for he was struck with fear: so Saul took his sword, and fell upon it. [réprobo dos réprobos!] And when his armour-bearer saw it, to wit, that Saul was dead, he also fell upon his sword and died. So Saul died, and his 3 sons, and all his house fell together. And when the men of Israel, that dwelt in the plains, saw this, they fled: and Saul and his sons being dead, they forsook their cities, and were scattered up and down: and the Philistines came, and dwelt in them. And the next day the Philistines taking away the spoils of them that were slain, found Saul and his sons lying on mount Gelboe. And when they had stripped him, and cut off his head, and taken away his armour, they sent it into their land, to be carried about, and shown in the temples of the idols and to the people. And his armour they dedicated in the temple of their god, and his head they fastened up in the temple of Dagon. And when the men of Jabes Galaad had heard this, to wit, all that the Philistines had done to Saul, All the valiant men of them arose, and took the bodies of Saul and of his sons, and brought them to Jabes, and buried their bones under the oak that was in Jabes, and they fasted 7 days. So Saul died for his iniquities, because he transgressed the commandment of the Lord, which he had commanded, and kept it not: and moreover consulted also a witch, And trusted not in the Lord: therefore he slew him, and transferred his kingdom to David the son of Isai.”

I will not mention those very many other places where S. Thomas in great detail discusses operations of this kind. As, for example, in his Summa contra Gentiles, Book 3, c. 1 and 2, in part one, question 114, argument 4. And in the Second of the Second, questions 92 and 94. We may further consult the Commentators and the Exegetes who have written upon the wise men and the magicians of Pharaoh, Exodus 7. We may also consult what S. Augustine says in The City of God, Book 18, c. 17. See further his second book On Christian Doctrine. Very many other doctors advance the same opinion, and it would be the height of folly for any man to contradict all these, and he could not be held to be clear of the guilt of heresy. For any man who gravely errs in an exposition of Holy Scripture is rightly considered to be a heretic.”

For they say, and S. Thomas agrees with them, that if witchcraft takes effect in the event of a marriage before there has been carnal copulation, then if it is lasting it annuls and destroys the contract of marriage, and it is quite plain that such a condition cannot in any way be said to be illusory and the effect of imagination.”

DSM-0 (IMPOTENCIAS FEITICIRIVS): “they lay down whether it is to be treated as a lasting or temporary infirmity if it continued for more than the space of 3 years”

Any person, whatsoever his rank or position, upon such an accusation may be put to torture, and he who is found guilty, even if he confesses his crime, let him be racked, let him suffer all other tortures prescribed by law in order that he may be punished in proportion to his offences.

Note: In days of old such criminals suffered a double penalty and were often thrown to wild beast to be devoured by them. Nowadays they are burnt at the stake, and probably this is because the majority of them are women.”

A tênue linha entre a Mãe Diná, David Copperfield e o Capeta.

Here it must be noticed that there are fourteen distinct species which come under the genus superstition, but these for the sake of brevity it is hardly necessary to detail, since they have been most clearly set out by S. Isidore in his Etymologiae, (*) Book 8, and by S. Thomas in his Second of the Second, question 92.” “The category in which women of this sort are to be ranked is called the category of Pythons, persons in or by whom the devil either speaks or performs some astonishing operation, and this is often the first category in order.”

(*) “Throughout the greater part of the Middle Ages it was the text-book most in use in educational institutions. Arevalo, who is regarded as the most authoritative editor of S. Isidore (7 vols., Rome, 1797-1803), tells us that it was printed no less than ten times between 1470 and 1529.”

it is necessary that there should be made a contract with the devil, by which contract the witch truly and actually binds herself to be the servant of the devil and devotes herself to the devil, and this is not done in any dream or under any illusion

CAVALGAR, ASSUNTO FEMININO POR EXCELÊNCIA: “although these women imagine they are riding (as they think and say) with Diana or with Herodias, in truth they are riding with the devil, who calls himself by some such heathen name and throws a glamour before their eyes. (…) the act of riding abroad may be merely illusory, since the devil has extraordinary power over the minds of those who have given themselves up to him, so that what they do in pure imagination, they believe they have actually and really done in the body.” “Whether witches by their magic arts are actually and bodily transported from place to place, or whether this merely happens in imagination, as is the case with regard to those women who are called Pythons, will be dealt with later in this work, and we shall also discuss how they are conveyed.”

The Evil Damnation

Devi[l-]da[-]mente orden[h]ado

that God very often allows devils to act as His ministers and His servants, but throughout all it is God alone who can afflict and it is He alone who can heal, for <I kill and I make alive> (Deuteronomy 32:39).”

(*) “<Lex Cornelia.> De Sicariis et Ueneficis. Passed circa 81 B.C. This law dealt with incendiarism as well as open assassination and poisoning, and laid down penalties for accessories to the fact.”

Yet perhaps this may seem to be altogether too severe a judgement mainly because of the penalties which follow upon excommunication: for the Canon prescribes that a cleric is to be degraded [?] and that a layman is to be handed over to the power of the secular courts, who are admonished to punish him as his offence deserves. Moreover, we must take into consideration the very great numbers of persons who, owing to their ignorance, will surely be found guilty of this error. And since the error is very common the rigor of strict justice may be tempered with mercy. And it is indeed our intention to try to make excuses for those who are guilty of this heresy rather than to accuse them of being infected with the malice of heresy. It is preferable then that if a man should be even gravely suspected of holding this false opinion he should not be immediately condemned for the grave crime of heresy. (See the gloss of Bernard upon the word Condemned.)”

since an idea merely kept to oneself is not heresy unless it be afterwards put forward, obstinately and openly maintained, it should certainly be said that persons such as we have just mentioned are not to be openly condemned for the crime of heresy. But let no man think he may escape by pleading ignorance. For those who have gone astray through ignorance of this kind may be found to have sinned very gravely. For although there are many degrees of ignorance, nevertheless those who have the cure of souls [padres?] cannot plead invincible ignorance, as the philosophers call it, which by the writers on Canon law and by the Theologians is called Ignorance of the Fact.” “For sometimes persons do not know, they do not wish to know, and they have no intention of knowing. For such persons there is no excuse, but they are to be altogether condemned.”

If it be asked whether the movement of material objects from place to place by the devil may be paralleled by the movement of the spheres, the answer is No. Because material objects are not thus moved by any natural inherent power of their own, but they are only moved by a certain obedience to the power of the devil, who by the virtue of his own nature has a certain dominion over bodies and material things; he has this certain power, I affirm, yet he is not able to add to created material objects any form or shape, be it substantial or accidental, without some admixture of or compounding with another created natural object.”

The planets and stars have no power to coerce and compel devils to perform any actions against their will, although seemingly demons are readier to appear when summoned by magicians under the influence of certain stars. It appears that they do this for two reasons. First, because they know that the power of that planet will aid the effect which the magicians desire. Secondly, They do this in order to deceive men, thus making them suppose that the stars have some divine power or actual divinity, and we know that in days of old this veneration of the stars led to the vilest idolatry.”

alchemists make something similar to gold, that is to say, in so far as the external accidents are concerned, but nevertheless they do not make true gold, because the substance of gold is not formed by the heat of fire which alchemists employ, but by the heat of the sun, acting and reacting upon a certain spot where mineral power is concentrated and amassed, and therefore such gold is of the same likeness as, but is not of the same species as, natural gold.”

Raimundo de Sabunde, espanhol, traduzido até por Montaigne (Theologia Naturalis).

we learn from the Holy Scriptures of the disasters which fell upon Job, how fire fell from heaven and striking the sheep and the servants consumed them, and how a violent wind threw down the four corners of a house so that it fell upon his children and slew them all. The devil by himself without the co-operation of any witches, but merely by God’s permission alone, was able to bring about all these disasters. Therefore he can certainly do many things which are often ascribed to the work of witches.”

uma sálvia podre, arremessada numa corrente d’água, pode causar terríveis tempestades e borrascas.”

Um dos argumentos muito repetidos: Citamos Aristóteles, que diz, no terceiro livro de sua Ética: O Mal é um ato voluntário, o que se prova pelo fato de que ninguém executa uma ação injusta, e um homem que comete um estupro o faz em busca do seu próprio prazer, não é que prejudique apenas por prejudicar ou queira cometer o mal pelo próprio mal. Mas não é assim que entende a Lei. O diabo está apenas usando a bruxa como seu instrumento; logo, neste caso a bruxa é apenas um títere; a bruxa não deveria ser punida pelo seu ato.” [!!!]

Gálatas 3: “O senseless Galatians, who hath bewitched you that you should not obey the truth?”

And the gloss upon this passage refers to those who have singularly fiery and baleful eyes [inflamados, perniciosos], who by a mere look can harm others, especially young children.” ???

Alguns podem seduzir e hipnotizar pelo mero olhar” Avicena

O ímã assustava os crentes até no mínimo Santo Agostinho. O “poder” feminino da maquiagem é colocado em pé de igualdade com aquele poder de atração magnética!

Moisés atacou o Egito com dez pragas por intermédio do ministério dos bons Anjos; já os magos do Faraó foram capazes tão-só de realizar três desses milagres pela ajuda de Satanás. E a peste que caiu sobre as pessoas por 3 dias devido ao pecado de Davi, que enumerou as pessoas, e os 72 mil homens que foram massacrados numa noite, do exército de Senacheribe, foram milagres produzidos por Anjos de Deus, i.e., Anjos bons tementes a Deus e sabedores de Sua Vontade.”

No tempo de Jó não havia feiticeiros nem bruxas. A Providência quis que o exemplo de Jó servisse para alertar sobre os poderes ocultos do Anjo caído manifestáveis mesmo contra os justos (…) lembre-se: nada ocorre senão a vontade de Deus.”

Vincent of Beauvais(*) in his Speculum historiale, quoting many learned authorities, says that he who first practised the arts of magic and of astrology was Zoroaster, who is said to have been Cham the son of Noe. And according to S. Augustine in his book Of the City of God, Cham laughed aloud when he was born, and thus showed that he was a servant of the devil, and he, although he was a great and mighty king, was conquered by Ninus the son of Belus,¹ who built Ninive, whose reign was the beginning of the kingdom of Assyria in the time of Abraham.”

(*) “Little is known of the personal history of this celebrated encyclopaedist. The years of his birth and death are uncertain, but the dates most frequently assigned are 1190 and 1264 respectively. It is thought that he joined the Dominicans in Paris shortly after 1218, and that he passed practically his whole life in his monastery in Beauvais, where he occupied himself incessantly upon his enormous work, the general title of which is Speculum Maius, containing 80 books, divided into 9.885 chapters. The third part, Speculum Historiale, in 31 books and 3,793 chapters, bring the History of the World down to A.D. 1250.”

¹ Grego antigo Bēlos; a reencarnação antropomórfica de Marduk; e ainda suposto neto de Hércules! Belus é algumas vezes associado à Assíria, outras à Babilônia e ainda outras ao Egito como um “pai civilizacional” e mestre militar ou semideus da guerra. Na última versão (a egípcia), teria se casado com a filha do deus-rio Nilo. De 12 autores clássicos que citaram Belus, 4 atribuem sua paternidade a Poseidon. Não estão tampouco descartadas relações do nome Belus com Ba’al do Velho Testamento (conseqüentemente, Ba’al e Marduque possuem verossimilhanças e correlações).

From this time men began to worship images as though they were gods; but this was after the earliest years of history, for in the very first ages there was no idolatry, since in the earliest times men still preserved some remembrance of the creation of the world, as S. Thomas says, Book 2, question 95, article 4. Or it may have originated with Nembroth [Nimrod], who compelled men to worship fire; and thus in the second age of the world there began Idolatry, which is the first of all superstitions, as Divination is the second, and the Observing of Times and Seasons the third.

The practices of witches are included in the second kind of superstition, since they expressly invoke the devil. And there are 3 kinds of this superstition: — Necromancy, Astrology, or rather Astromancy, the superstitious observation of stars, and Oneiromancy.Freud bruxão

The prophet Isaiah (6:6) says: The earth is filled with the knowledge of the Lord. And so in this twilight and evening of the world, when sin is flourishing on every side and in every place, when charity is growing cold, the evil of witches and their inequities superabound.”

And since Zoroaster was wholly given up to the magic arts, it was the devil alone who inspired him to study and observe the stars.”

For the eyes direct their glance upon a certain object without taking notice of other things, and although the vision be perfectly clear, yet at the sight of some impurity, such, for example, a woman during her monthly periods, the eyes will as it were contract a certain impurity. This is what Aristotle says in his work On Sleep and Waking, and thus if anybody’s spirit be inflamed with malice or rage, as is often the case with old women, then their disturbed spirit looks through their eyes, for their countenances are most evil and harmful, and often terrify young children of tender years, who are extremely impressionable.” “Os olhos dirigem sua mirada a certos objetos sem se concentrar sobre ou perceber outros, e ainda que o sentido da visão resulte perfeitamente claro, quando abstraído por alguma impureza, como, por exemplo, uma mulher em seu período menstrual, os olhos serão contaminados pela mesma impureza. Isto é o que Aristóteles diz em sua obra Sobre o Sono e a Vigília [livro contido na obra maior, Da Alma]; destarte, se a alma de alguém estiver dominada pela malícia ou fúria, o que é amiúde o caso das mulheres velhas, sua alma perturbada transparece através dos olhos; basta observar o quanto seus semblantes parecem maus e daninhos, e como assustam com tanta facilidade as crianças pequenas nos anos da inocência, que são extremamente impressionáveis.”

A lenda do “olhar letal” do basilisco: quiçá a fonte do Mito da Medusa.

EVIL NEVER DIES: “Réalité de la Magie et des Apparitions, Paris, 1819 (pp. xii-xiii), has: <Le monde, purgé par le déluge, fut repeuplé par les trois fils de Noé. Sem et Japhet imitèrent la vertu de leur père, et furent justes comme lui. Cham, au contraire, donna entrée au démon dans son coeur, remit au jour l’art exécrable de la magie, en composa les règles, et en instruisit son fils Misraim.>


Caldeu, astrólogo e mago eram três sinônimos perfeitos.”

And now with reference to the second point, namely, that blood will flow from a corpse in the presence of a murderer.” Superstição lida hoje em Tom Sawyer!

Now there are two circumstances which are certainly very common at the present day, that is to say, the connexion of witches with familiars, Incubi and Succubi, and the horrible sacrifices of small children. (…) Now these demons work owing to their influence upon man’s mind and upon his free will, and they choose to copulate under the influence of certain stars rather than under the influence of others, for it would seem that at certain times their semen can more easily generate and beget children.”

At first it may truly seem that it is not in accordance with the Catholic Faith to maintain that children can be begotten by devils, that is to say, by Incubi and Succubi: for God Himself, before sin came into the world, instituted human procreation, since He created woman from the rib of man to be a help-meet unto man: And to them He said: Increase, and multiply, Genesis 2:24. Likewise after sin had come into the world, it was said to Noé: Increase, and multiply, Genesis 9:1. In the time of the new law also, Christ confirmed this union: Have ye not read, that he who made man from the beginning, Made them male and female? S. Matthew 19:4. Therefore, men cannot be begotten in any other way than this.

But it may be argued that devils take their part in this generation not as the essential cause, but as a secondary and artificial cause, since they busy themselves by interfering with the process of normal copulation and conception, by obtaining human semen, and themselves transferring it.”

to collect human semen from one person and to transfer it to another implies certain local actions. But devils cannot locally move bodies from place to place. And this is the argument they put forward. The soul is purely a spiritual essence, so is the devil: but the soul cannot move a body from place to place except it be that body in which it lives and to which it gives life: whence if any member of the body perishes it becomes dead and immovable. Therefore devils cannot move a body from place to place, except it be a body to which they give life. It has been shown, however, and is acknowledged that devils do not bestow life on anybody, therefore they cannot move human semen locally”

the power that moves and the movement are one and the same thing according to Aristotle in his Physics. It follows, therefore, that devils who move heavenly bodies must be in heaven, which is wholly untrue, both in our opinion, and in the opinion of the Platonists.”

as Walafrid Strabo says in his commentary upon Exodus 7:2: And Pharaoh called the wise men and the magicians: Devils go about the earth collecting every sort of seed, and can by working upon them broadcast various species. And again in Genesis 6 the gloss makes 2 comments on the words: And the sons of God saw the daughters of men. First, that by the sons of God are meant the sons of Seth, and by the daughters of men, the daughters of Cain. Second, that Giants were created not by some incredible act of men, but by certain devils, which are shameless towards women. For the Bible says, Giants were upon the earth.”

For through the wantonness of the flesh they have much power over men; and in men the source of wantonness lies in the privy parts, since it is from them that the semen falls, just as in women it falls from the navel.”

men may at times be begotten by means of Incubi and Succubi”

We leave open the question whether it was possible for Venus to give birth to Aeneas through coition with Anchises. For a similar question arises in the Scriptures, where it is asked whether evil angels lay with the daughters of men, and thereby the earth was then filled with giants, that is to say, preternaturally big and strong men.” Santo Agostinho

Satyrs are wild shaggy creatures of the woods, which are a certain kind of devils called Incubi.”

As to that of S. Paul in I Corinthians 11, A woman ought to have a covering on her head, because of the angels, many Catholics believe that because of the angels refers to Incubi. Of the same opinion is the Venerable Bede in his History of the English; also William of Paris in his book De Universo, the last part of the 6th treatise. Moreover, S. Thomas speaks of this (I. 25 and II. 8, and elsewhere; also on Isaiah 12 and 14). Therefore he says that it is rash to deny such things. For that which appears true to many cannot be altogether false, according to Aristotle (at the end of the De somno et vigilia, and in the 2nd Ethics). I say nothing of the many authentic histories, both Catholic and heathen, which openly affirm the existence of Incubi.”

I Corinthians 11: Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head. But every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head—it is the same as having her head shaved. For if a woman does not cover her head, she might as well have her hair cut off; but if it is a disgrace for a woman to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, then she should cover her head. A man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man.”

materially life springs from the semen, and an Incubus devil can, with God’s permission, accomplish this by coition. And the semen does not so much spring from him, as it is another man’s semen received by him for this purpose (see S. Thomas, I. 51, art. 3). For the devil is Succubus to a man, and becomes Incubus to a woman. In just the same way they absorb the seeds of other things for the generating of various thing, as S. Augustine says, de Trinitate 3.”

INNER-BREEDING HERMAPHRODITE MUTUAL CONCEPTION: “one devil, allotted to a woman, should receive semen from another devil, allotted to a man [esperma feminino, vale dizer], that in this way each of them should be commissioned by the prince of devils to work some witchcraft; since, to each one is allotted his own angel, even from among the evil ones; or because of the filthiness of the deed, which one devil would abhor to commit.”

the soul occupies by far the lowest grade in the order of spiritual beings, and therefore it follows that there must be some proportionate relation between it and the body which it is able to move by contact. But it is not so with devils, whose power altogether exceeds corporeal power. (…) And just as the higher heavenly bodies are moved by the higher spiritual substances, as are the good Angels, so are the lower bodies moved by the lower spiritual substances, as are the devils. And if this limitation of the devils’ power is due to the essence of nature, it is held by some that the devils are not of the order of those higher angels, but are part of this terrestrial order created by God; and this was the opinion of the Philosophers. And if it is due to condemnation for sin, as is held by the Theologians, then they were thrust from the regions of heaven into this lower atmosphere for a punishment, and therefore are not able to move either it or the earth. (…) Also there is the argument that objects that the motion of the whole and of the part is the same thing, just as Aristotle in his 4th Physics instances the case of the whole earth and a clod of soil; and that therefore if the devils could move a part of the earth, they could also move the whole earth. But this is not valid, as is clear to anyone who examines the distinction.”

through such action complete contraception and generation by women can take place, inasmuch as they can deposit human semen in the suitable place of a woman’s womb where there is already a corresponding substance. (…) wherefore the child is the son not of the devil, but of some man.”

FREEZER ANTIGO: “devils are able to store the semen safely, so that its vital heat is not lost; or even that it cannot evaporate so easily on account of the great speed at which they move by reason of the superiority of the move over the thing moved.”

I Corinthians 15: “As long as the world endures Angels are set over Angels, men over men, and devils over devils. Also in Job 40 it speaks of the scales of Leviathan, which signify the members of the devil, how one cleaves to another. Therefore there is among them diversity both of order and of action.” “It is Catholic to maintain that there is a certain order of interior and exterior actions, and a degree of preference among devils. Whence it follows that certain abominations are committed by the lowest orders, from which the higher orders are precluded on account of the nobility of their natures.”

Dionysus also lays it down in his 10th chapter On the Celestial Hierarchy that in the same order there are 3 separate degrees; and we must agree with this, since they are both immaterial and incorporeal. See also S. Thomas (2:2).”

For though one and the same name, that of devil, is generally used in Scripture because of their various qualities, yet the Scriptures teach that One is set over these filthy actions, just as certain other vices are subject to Another. For it is the practice of Scripture and of speech to name every unclean spirit Diabolus, from Dia, that is Two, and Bolus, that is Morsel [pedaço]; for he kills two things, the body and the soul. And this is in accordance with etymology, although in Greek Diabolus means shut in Prison, which also is apt, since he is not permitted to do as much harm as he wishes. Or Diabolus may mean Downflowing, since he flowed down, that is, fell down, both specifically and locally. He is also named Demon, that is, Cunning over Blood, since he thirsts for and procures sin with a threefold knowledge, being powerful in the subtlety of his nature, in his age-long experience, and in the revelation of the good spirits. He is called also Belial, which means Without Yoke or Master; for he can fight against him to whom he should be subject. He is called also Beelzebub, which means Lord of Flies, that is, of the souls of sinners who have left the true faith of Christ. Also Satan, that is, the Adversary; see I Peter 2: For your adversary the devil goeth about, etc. Also Behemoth, that is, Beast, because he makes men bestial.

But the very devil of Fornication, and the chief of that abomination, is called Asmodeus, which means the Creature of Judgement: for because of this kind of sin a terrible judgement was executed upon Sodom and the 4 other cities. Similarly the devil of Pride is called Leviathan, which means Their Addition; because when Lucifer tempted our first parents he promised them, out of his pride, the addition of Divinity. Concerning him the Lord said through Isaiah: I shall visit it upon Leviathan, that old and tortuous serpent. And the devil of Avarice and Riches is called Mammon, whom also Christ mentions in the Gospel (Matthew 6): Ye cannot serve God, etc.

Segundo este panfleto, Lúcifer e os “diabos mais altos” jamais cometeriam um ato tão impuro quanto a fornicação! Demônios pudicos…

certain men who are called Lunatics are molested by devils more at one time than at another; and the devils would not so behave, but would rather molest them at all times, unless they themselves were deeply affected by certain phases of the Moon.”

the choleric are wrathful, the sanguine are kindly, the melancholy are envious, and the phlegmatic are slothful.”

S. Augustine (de Civitate Dei, V), where he resolves a certain question of 2 brothers who fell ill and were cured simultaneously, approves the reasoning of Hippocrates rather than that of an Astronomer. For Hippocrates answered that it is owing to the similarity of their humours; and the Astronomer answered that it was owing the identity of their horoscopes. For the Physician’s answer was better, since he adduced the more powerful and immediate cause.”

Saturn has a melancholy and bad influence and Jupiter a very good influence”

(*) “Although in Cicero and in Seneca mathematicus means a mathematician, in later Latin it always signifies an astrologer, a diviner, a wizard. The Mathematici were condemned by the Roman law as exponents of black magic. Their art is indeed forbidden in severest terms by Diocletian (A.D. 284-305): <Artem geometriae discere atque exervere oublice interest, ars autem mathematica damnabilis interdicta est omnino.>

Also, as William of Paris says in his De Universo, it is proved by experience that if a harlot tries to plant an olive it does not become fruitful, whereas if it is planted by a chaste woman it is fruitful.”

And here it is to be noted that a belief in Fate is in one way quite Catholic, but in another way entirely heretical.” “Fate may be considered to be a sort of second disposition, or an ordination of second causes for the production of foreseen Divine effects. And in this way Fate is truly something.”

as Aristotle says, the brain is the most humid of all the parts of the body, therefore it chiefly is subject to the operation of the Moon, which itself has power to incite humours. Moreover, the animal forces are perfected in the brain, and therefore the devils disturb a man’s fancy according to certain phases of the Moon, when the brain is ripe for such influences. And these are reasons why the devils are present as counsellors in certain constellations. They may lead men into the error of thinking that there is some divinity in the stars.”

And as for that concerning I Kings 16: that Saul, who was vexed by a devil, was alleviated when David played his harp before him, and that the devil departed, etc. It must be known that it is quite true that by the playing of the harp, and the natural virtue of that harmony, the affliction of Saul was to some extent relieved, inasmuch as that music did somewhat calm his sense through hearing; through which calming he was made less prone to that vexation.”

parteiras, que ultrapassam todas as outras em maldade.”

there are three things in nature, the Tongue, an Ecclesiastic, and a Woman, which know no moderation in goodness or vice; and when they exceed the bounds of their condition they reach the greatest heights and the lowest depths of goodness and vice.”

Avoid as you would the plague a trading priest, who has risen from poverty to riches, from a low to a high estate.”

Ecclesiasticus 25: “There is no head above the head of a serpent: and there is no wrath above the wrath of a woman. I had rather dwell with a lion and a dragon than to keep house with a wicked woman.”

O que mais é uma mulher senão um inimigo da amizade, uma punição inescapável, um mal necessário, uma tentação natural, uma calamidade desejável, um perigo doméstico, um prejuízo deleitável, um mal da natureza disfarçado de beleza?” João Crisóstomo

Cicero in his second book of The Rhetorics says: The many lusts of men lead them into one sin, but the lust of women leads them into all sins; for the root of all woman’s vices is avarice. And Seneca says in his Medea: A woman either loves or hates; there is no third grade. And the tears of woman are a deception, for they may spring from true grief, or they may be a snare. When a woman thinks alone, she thinks evil.”

Intelectualmente, as mulheres são como crianças.” Terêncio

Nenhuma mulher compreendia filosofia exceto Temeste.” Lactâncio, Instituições Divinas

Provérbios 11: “Como uma jóia de ouro no focinho dum porco, assim é uma mulher bonita que não tem modos.”

And when the philosopher Socrates was asked if one should marry a wife, he answered: If you do not, you are lonely, your family dies out, and a stranger inherits; if you do, you suffer perpetual anxiety, querelous complaints, reproaches concerning the marriage portion, the heavy displeasure of your relations, the garrulousness of a mother-in-law, cuckoldom, and no certain arrival of an heir. [fonte?] This he said as one who knew. For S. Jerome in his Contra Iovinianum says: This Socrates had 2 wives, whom he endured with much patience, but could not be rid of their contumelies and clamorous vituperations. So one day when they were complaining against him, he went out of the house to escape their plaguing, and sat down before the house; and the women then threw filthy water over him. But the philosopher was not disturbed by this, saying, <I knew the rain would come after the thunder.>

If we inquire, we find that nearly all the kingdoms of the world have been overthrown by women. Troy, which was a prosperous kingdom, was, for the rape of one woman, Helen, destroyed, and many thousands of Greeks slain. The kingdom of the Jews suffered much misfortune and destruction through the accursed Jezebel, and her daughter Athaliah, queen of Judah, who caused her son’s sons to be killed, that on their death she might reign herself; yet each of them was slain. The kingdom of the Romans endured much evil through Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt, that worst of women. And so with others. Therefore it is no wonder if the world now suffers through the malice of women.”

There is no man in the world who studies so hard to please the good God as even an ordinary woman studies by her vanities to please men.”

All witchcraft comes from carnal lust, which is in women insatiable.”

We know of an old woman who, according to the common account of the brothers in that monastery even up to this day, in this manner not only bewitched 3 successive Abbots, but even killed them, and in the same way drove the 4th out of his mind. For she herself publicly confessed it, and does not fear to say: I did so and I do so, and they are not able to keep from loving me because they have eaten so much of my dung – measuring off a certain length on her arm. I confess, moreover, that since we had no case to prosecute her or bring her to trial, she survives to this day.”

APARENTEMENTE, A REFUTAÇÃO DO ‘FENÔMENO’ DA POSSESSÃO: “And a third kind of mutation can be added, which is when a good or bad angel enters into the body, in the same way that we say that God alone is able to enter into the soul, that is, the essence of life. But when we speak of an angel, especially a bad angel, entering the body, as in the case of an obsession, he does not enter beyond the limits of the essence of the body; for in this way only God the Creator can enter, Who gave it to be as it were the intrinsic operation of life. But the devil is said to enter the body when he effects something about the body: for when he works, there he is, as S. John Damascene says. And then he works within the bounds of corporeal matter, but not within the very essence of the body.”

the devil can directly prevent the erection of that member which is adapted to fructification, just as he can prevent local motion.”

And again, it was a greater thing to turn Lot’s wife into a pillar of salt than it is to take away the male organ; and that (Genesis 19) was a real and actual, not an apparent, metamorphosis (for it is said that that pillar is still to be seen), And this was done by a bad Angel; just as the good Angels struck the men of Sodom with blindness, so that they could not find the door of the house. And so it was with the other punishments of the men of Gomorrah. The gloss, indeed, affirms that Lot’s wife was herself tainted with that vice, and therefore she was punished.”

PRECISO PROVAR QUE A ODISSÉIA NÃO FOI REAL, ORA QUAL É O MEU PROBLEMA? “it is read in the books of the Gentiles that a certain sorceress named Circe changed the companions of Ulysses into beasts; but that this was due to some glamour or illusion, rather than an actual accomplishment, by altering the fancies of men”

(*) “Crohns in his Die Summa theologica des Antonin von Florenz und die Schützung des Weibes im Hexenhammer, Helsingfors, 1903, has set out to show that the very pronounced misogyny which is apparent in the Malleus Maleficarum can be traced to the Summa of S. Antoninus.”

(*) “During the 16th century in France lycanthropy was very prevalent, and cannibalism were rife in many county districts.”

penitent witches have often told to us and to others, saying: No one does more harm to the Catholic Faith than midwives. For when they do not kill children, then, as if for some other purpose, they take them out of the room and, raising them up in the air, offer them to devils.”

Evil will be for all time, even to the perfecting of the universe.” Dionysius

as through the persecution of the tyrants came the patience of the martyrs, and through the works of witches come the purgation or proving of the faith of the just”

God in His justice permits the prevalence of evil, both that of sin and that of pain, and especially now that the world is cooling and declining to its end”

SALADA MISTA TEO-GENTÍLICA: “See Apocalypse 12. The dragon falling from heaven drew with him the third part of the stars. And he lives in the form of Leviathan, and is king over all the children of pride. And, according to Aristotle (Metaph., V), he is called king of princes, inasmuch as he moves those who are subject to him according to his will and command.”

Do alto de uma montanha (Escolástica, pressentimento de Dia do Juízo iminente) é fácil dizer que “a ordem do cosmo” exige descer até o último andar do porão na escada metafísica da perfeição gradual de cada coisa a seu tempo…

Democritus and the other natural philosophers were in error when they ascribed whatever happened to the inferior creation to the mere chance of matter.”

the sins of witches are more grievous than those of the bad angels and our first parents. Wherefore, just as the innocent are punished for the sins of their fathers, so are many blameless people damned and bewitched for the sins of witches.”

Adam sinned only in doing that which was wrong in one of two ways; for it was forbidden, but was not wrong in itself: but witches and other sinners sin in doing that which is wrong in both ways, wrong in itself, and forbidden, such as murders and many other forbidden things.”

in fornication a young man sins, but an old man is mad.”

For they are called witches (maleficae) on account of the enormity of their crimes”

For the sin of infidelity consists in opposing the Faith; and this may come about in 2 ways, by opposing a faith which has not yet been received, or by opposing it after it has been received. Of the first sort is the infidelity of the Pagans or Gentiles. In the second way, the Christian Faith may be denied in 2 ways: either by denying the prophecies concerning it, or by denying the actual manifestation of its truth. And the first of these is the infidelity of the Jews, and the second the infidelity of Heretics.”

II Pedro 2: “the infidelity of the heretics, who while professing the faith of the Gospel fight against it by corrupting it, is a greater sin than that of the Jews and Pagans.”

they received the prophecy of the Christian Faith in the Old Law, which they corrupt through badly interpreting it, which is not the case with the Pagans.”

a Saracen fasts, to observe the law of Mohammed as to fasting, and a Jew observes his Feast days; but in such things he is guilty of mortal sin.”

For, besides the punishment of excommunication inflicted upon them, Heretics, together with their patrons, protectors and defenders, and with their children to the 2nd generation on the father’s side, and to the first degree on the mother’s side, are admitted to no benefit or office of the Church. And if a Heretic have Catholic children, for the heinousness of his crime they are deprived of their paternal inheritance. And if a man be convicted, and refuse to be converted and abjure his heresy, he must at once be burned, if he is a layman. For if they who counterfeit money are summarily put to death, how much more must they who counterfeit the Faith? But if he is a cleric, after solemn degradation he is handed over to the secular Court to be put to death. But if they return to the Faith, they are to be imprisoned for life.”

For, bodily speaking, sons are a property of the father, and slaves and animals are the property of their masters; and so the sons are sometimes punished for their parents. Thus the son born to David from adultery quickly died; and the animals of the Amalekites were bidden to be killed. Yet the reason for these things remains a mystery.”

SOBRE DEUS INFLIGIR SOFRIMENTO SEM CULPA DO “CRENTE”: “For he says that for 5 causes God scourges man in this life, or inflicts punishment. First, that God may be glorified; and this is when some punishment or affliction is miraculously removed, as in the case of the man born blind (S. John 9), or of the raising of Lazarus (S. John 11).” Ou quando ele me deu 10 graus de miopia, para se gloriar na seqüência com meus infinitos livros.

And the species of the first form of Divination, that is, an open invocation of devils, are the following: Sorcery, Oneiromancy, Necromancy, Oracles, Geomancy, Hydromancy, Aeromancy, Pyromancy, and Soothsaying (see S. Thomas, Second of the Second, quest. 95, 26, and 5). The species of the 2nd kind are Horoscopy, Haruspicy, Augury, Observation of Omens, Cheiromancy and Spatulamancy.

But let no one think that such practices are lawful because the Scripture records that the soul of the just Prophet, summoned from Hades to predict the event of Saul’s coming war, appeared through the means of a woman who was a witch. For, as S. Augustine says to Simplicianus: It is not absurd to believe that it was permitted by some dispensation, or by the potency of any magic art, but by some hidden dispensation unknown to the Pythoness or to Saul, that the spirit of that just man should appear before the sight of the king, to deliver the Divine sentence against him.

Oneiromancy may be practised in two ways. The first is when a person uses dreams so that he may dip into the occult with the help of the revelation of devils invoked by him, with whom he has entered into an open pact. The second is when a man uses dreams for knowing the future, in so far as there is such virtue in dreams proceeding from Divine revelation, from a natural and intrinsic or extrinsic cause”

when we study at the time of the dawn we are given an understanding of certain occult matters in the Scriptures.”

MUITA FÉ NO ARI.: “doctors are very often helped by dreams in their diagnosis (as Aristotle says in the same book).”

when they desire to see what their fellow-witches are doing, it is their practice to lie down on their left side in the name of their own and of all devils; and these things are revealed to their vision in images.”

The other species of divination, which are performed with a tacit, but not an open, invocation of devils, are Horoscopy, or Astrology, so called from the consideration of the stars at birth; Haruspicy, which observes the days and hours; Augury, which observes the behaviour and cries of birds; Omens, which observe the words of men; and Cheiromancy, which observes the lines of the hand, or of the paws of animals.”

although the sin of Satan is unpardonable, this is not on account of the greatness of his crime, having regard to the nature of the Angels, with particular attention to the opinion of those who say that the Angels were created only in a state of nature, and never in a state of grace. And since the good of grace exceeds the good of nature, therefore the sins of those who fall from a state of grace, as do the witches by denying the faith which they received in baptism, exceed the sins of the Angels.”

A certain well-born citizen of Spires had a wife who was of such an obstinate disposition that, though he tried to please her in every way, yet she refused in nearly every way to comply with his wishes, and was always plaguing him with abusive taunts. It happened that, on going into his house one day, and his wife railing against him as usual with opprobrious words, he wished to go out of the house to escape from quarrelling. But she quickly ran before him and locked the door by which he wished to go out; and loudly swore that, unless he beat her, there was no honesty or faithfulness in him. At these heavy words he stretched out his hand, not intending to hurt her, and struck her lightly with his open palm on the buttock; whereupon he suddenly fell to the ground and lost all his senses, and lay in bed for many weeks afflicted with a most grievous illness. Now it is obvious that this was not a natural illness, but was caused by some witchcraft of the woman. And very many similar cases have happened, and been made known to many.”

it is to be said that witches are not generally rich for this reason: that the devils like to show their contempt for the Creator by buying witches for the lowest possible price. And also, lest they should be conspicuous by their riches.”

And because we are now dealing with matters relating to morals and behaviour, and there is no need for a variety of arguments and disquisitions, since those matters which now follow under their headings are sufficiently discussed in the foregoing Questions; therefore we pray God that the reader will not look for proofs in every case, since it is enough to adduce examples that have been personally seen or heard, or are accepted at the word of credible witnesses.

There are 3 classes of men blessed by God, whom that detestable race cannot injure with their witchcraft. And the first are those who administer public justice against them, or prosecute them in any public official capacity. The second are those who, according to the traditional and holy rites of the Church, make lawful use of the power and virtue which the Church by her exorcisms furnishes in the aspersion of Holy Water, the taking of consecrated salt, the carrying of blessed candles on the Day of the Purification of Our Lady, of palm leaves upon Palm Sunday, and men who thus fortify themselves are acting so that the powers of devils are diminished; and of these we shall speak later. The third class are those who, in various and infinite ways, are blessed by the Holy Angels.”

FAÇA O SINAL DA CRUZ, OTÁRIO! “When I had invoked the devil that I might commit such a deed with his help, he answered me that he was unable to do any of those things, because the man had good faith and diligently defended himself with the sign of the cross; and that therefore he could not harm him in his body, but the most he could do was to destroy an 11th part of the fruit of his lands.”

Therefore we may similarly say that, even if the administrators of public justice were not protected by Divine power, yet the devils often of their own accord withdraw their support and guardianship from witches, either because they fear their conversion, or because they desire and hasten their damnation.”

But since self-praise is sordid and mean, it is better to pass them over in silence than to incur the stigma of boastfulness and conceit. But we must except those which have become so well-known that they cannot be concealed.”

Not even the forbidden books of Necromancy contain such knowledge; for witchcraft is not taught in books, nor is it practised by the learned, but by the altogether uneducated; having only one foundation, without the acknowledgement or practice of which it is impossible for anyone to work witchcraft as a witch.”

But these are only the children who have not been re-born by baptism at the font, for they cannot devour those who have been baptized, nor any without God’s permission.”

The first method is when witches meet together in the conclave on a set day, and the devil appears to them in the assumed body of a man, and urges them to keep faith with him, promising them worldly prosperity and length of life; and they recommend a novice to his acceptance. And the devil asks whether she will abjure the Faith, and forsake the holy Christian religion and the worship of the Anomalous Woman (for so they call the Most Blessed Virgin MARY), and never venerate the Sacraments; and if he finds the novice or disciple willing, then the devil stretches out his hand, and so does the novice, and she swears with upraised hand to keep that covenant. And when this is done, the devil at once adds that this is not enough; and when the disciple asks what more must be done, the devil demands the following oath of homage to himself: that she give herself to him, body and soul, for ever, and do her utmost to bring others of both sexes into his power. He adds, finally, that she is to make certain unguents from the bones and limbs of children, especially those who have been baptized; by all which means she will be able to fulfil all her wishes with his help.”

Another, named Walpurgis, was notorious for her power of preserving silence, and used to teach other women how to achieve a like quality of silence by cooking their 1st-born sons in an oven.”

O SUPER-HOMEM ESTUDA DEMONOLOGIA: “For just as a physician sees signs in a sick man which a layman would not notice, so the devil sees what no man can naturally see.”

As bruxas evitavam fazer bruxarias aos sábados, o dia da Santa Virgem. Hohoho, quão poderosas!

And though we are 2 who write this book, one of us has very often seen and known such men. For there is a man who was once a scholar, and is now believed to be a priest in the diocese of Freising, who used to say that at one time he had been bodily carried through the air by a devil, and taken to the most remote parts.”

This is clear in the case of certain men who walk in their sleep on the roofs of houses and over the highest buildings, and no one can oppose their progress either on high or below. And if they are called by their own names by the other by-standers, they immediately fall crashing to the ground.” HAHAHA

For it is manifest that some of them, which the common people call Fauns, and we call Trolls, which abound in Norway, are such buffoons and jokers that they haunt certain places and roads and, without being able to do any hurt to those who pass by, are content with mocking and deluding them, and try to weary them rather than hurt them. And some of them only visit men with harmless nightmares.”

Did not the devil take up Our Saviour, and carry Him up to a high place, as the Gospel testifies?”

Indeed the natural power or virtue which is in Lucifer is so great that there is none greater among the good Angels in Heaven. For just as he excelled all the Angels in his nature, and not his nature, but only his grace, was diminished by his Fall, so that nature still remains in him, although it is darkened and bound.”

Two objections which someone may bring forward are not valid. First, that man’s soul could resist him, and that the text seems to speak of one devil in particular, since it speaks in the singular, namely Lucifer. And because it was he who tempted Christ in the wilderness, and seduced the first man, he is now bound in chains. And the other Angels are not so powerful, since he excels them all. Therefore the other spirits cannot transport wicked men through the air from place to place.

These arguments have no force. For, to consider the Angels first, even the least Angel is incomparably superior to all human power, as can be proved in many ways. First, a spiritual is stronger than a corporeal power, and so is the power of an Angel, or even of the soul, greater than that of the body. Secondly, as to the soul; every bodily shape owes its individuality to matter, and, in the case of human beings, to the fact that a soul informs it”

(GOLDEN) WITCHING (S)HOU(E)R: “Here is an instance of a visible transportation in the day-time. In the town of Waldshut on the Rhine, in the diocese of Constance, there was a certain witch who was so detested by the townsfolk that she was not invited to the celebration of a wedding which, however, nearly all the other townsfolk were present. Being indignant because of this, and wishing to be revenged, she summoned a devil and, telling him the cause of her vexation, asked him to raise a hailstorm and drive all the wedding guests from their dancing; and the devil agreed, and raising her up, carried her through the air to a hill near the town, in the sight of some shepherds. And since, as she afterwards confessed, she had no water to pour into the trench, she made a small trench and filled it with her urine instead of water, and stirred it with her finger, after their custom, with the devil standing by.”

Know, moreover, that the air is in every way a most changeable and fluid matter: and a sign of this is the fact that when any have tried to cut or pierce with a sword the body assumed by a devil, they have not been able to; for the divided parts of the air at once join together again. From this it follows that air is in itself a very competent matter, but because it cannot take shape unless some other terrestrial matter is joined with it, therefore it is necessary that the air which forms the devil’s assumed body should be in some way inspissated [condensado], and approach the property of the earth, while still retaining its true property as air. And devils and disembodied spirits can effect this condensation by means of gross vapours raised from the earth, and by collecting them together into shapes in which they abide, not as defilers of them, but only as their motive power which give to that body the formal appearance of life, in very much the same way as the soul informs the body to which it is joined.”

From this there may arise an incidental question as to what should be thought when a good or bad Angel performs some of the functions of life by means of true natural bodies, and not in aerial bodies; as in the case of Balaam’s ass, through which the Angel spoke, and when the devils take possession of bodies. It is to be said that those bodies are not called assumed, but occupied. See S. Thomas, 2:8, Whether Angels assume bodies.”

To return to the point. Devils have no lungs or tongue, though they can show the latter, as well as teeth and lips, artificially made according to the condition of their body; therefore they cannot truly and properly speak. But since they have understanding, and when they wish to express their meaning, then, by some disturbance of the air included in their assumed body, not of air breathed in and out as in the case of men, they produce, not voices, but sounds which have some likeness to voices, and send them articulately through the outside air to the ears of the hearer. And that the likeness of a voice can be made without respiration of air is clear from the case of other animals which do not breathe, but are said to make a sound, as do also certain other instruments, as Aristotle says in the De Anima. For certain fishes, when they are caught, suddenly utter a cry outside the water, and die.” “If anyone wishes to inquire further into the matter of devils speaking in possessed bodies, he may refer to S. Thomas in the Second Book of Sentences, dist. 8, art. 5. For in that case they use the bodily organs of the possessed body; since they occupy those bodies in respect of the limits of their corporeal quantity, but not in respect of the limits of their essence, either of the body or of the soul.”

HAHAHA: “Therefore it must be said that in no way does an Angel, either good or bad, see with the eyes of its assumed body, nor does it use any bodily property as it does in speaking, when it uses the air and the vibration of the air to produce sound which becomes reproduced in the ears of the hearer. Wherefore their eyes are painted eyes.” “For if the secret wishes of a man are read in his face, and physicians can tell the thoughts of the heart from the heart-beats and the state of the pulse, all the more can such things be known by devils.”

JESUS CRISTO NÃO CAGAVA: “In Christ the process of eating was in all respects complete, since He had the nutritive and metabolistic powers; not, be it said, for the purpose of converting food into His own body, for those powers were, like His body, glorified; so that the food was suddenly dissolved in His body, as when one throws water on to fire.”

in times long past the Incubus devils used to infest women against their wills, as is often shown by Nider in his Formicarius, and by Thomas of Brabant in his books On the Universal Good, or On/About Bees.”

And it is no objection that those of whom the text speaks were not witches but only giants and famous and powerful men; for, as was said before, witchcraft was not perpetuated in the time of the law of Nature, because of the recent memory of the Creation of the world, which left no room for Idolatry. But when the wickedness of man began to increase, the devil found more opportunity to disseminate this kind of perfidy.”

a witch is either old and sterile, or she is not. And if she is, then he naturally associates with the witch without the injection of semen, since it would be of no use, and the devil avoids superfluity in his operations as far as he can. But if she is not sterile, he approaches her in the way of carnal delectation which is procured for the witch. And should be disposed to pregnancy, then if he can conveniently possess the semen extracted from some man, he does not delay to approach her with it for the sake of infecting her progeny.” “But this also cannot altogether be denied, that even in the case of a married witch who has been impregnated by her husband, the devil can, by the commixture of another semen, infect that which has been conceived.”

they have greater opportunity to observe many people, especially young girls, who on Feast Days are more intent on idleness and curiosity, and are therefore more easily seduced by old witches.”

But with regard to any bystanders, the witches themselves have often been seen lying on their backs in the fields or the woods, naked up to the very navel, and it has been apparent from the disposition of those limbs and members which pertain to the venereal act and orgasm, as also from the agitation of their legs and thighs, that, all invisibly to the bystanders, they have been copulating with Incubus devils; yet sometimes, howbeit this is rare, at the end of the act a very black vapour, of about the stature of a man, rises up into the air from the witch. And the reason is that that Schemer knows that he can in this way seduce or pervert the minds of girls or other men who are standing by.”

Husbands have actually seen Incubus devils swiving [fodendo] their wives, although they have thought that they were not devils but men. And when they have taken up a weapon and tried to run them through, the devil has suddenly disappeared, making himself invisible. And then their wives have thrown their arms around them, although they have sometimes been hurt, and railed at their husbands, mocking them, and asking them if they had eyes, or whether they were possessed of devils.”

CARTEIRADA NAS ESTRELAS: “those changes which were miraculously caused in the Old or New Testament were done by God through the good Angels; as, for example, when the sun stood still for Joshua, or when it went backward for Hezekiah, or when it was supernaturally darkened at the Passion of Christ. But in all other matters, with God’s permission, they can work their spells, either the devils themselves, or devils through the agency of witches; and, in fact, it is evident that they do so.”

(*) <Carnival.> These Pagan practices are sternly reprobated in the Liber Poenitentiali of S. Theodore, 7th Archbishop of Canterbury. In Book 37 is written: <If anyone at the Kalends of January goeth about as a stag or a bull-calf, that is, making himself into a wild animal, and dressing in the skins of a herd animal, and putting on the heads of beast; those who in such wise transform themselves into the appearance of a wild animal, let them do penance for 3 years, because this is devilish.> The Council of Auxèrre in 578 (or 585) forbade anyone <to masquerade as a bull-calf or a stag on the 1st of January or to distribute devilish charms.>

In the town of Ratisbon a certain young man who had an intrigue with a girl, wishing to leave her, lost his member; that is to say, some glamour was cast over it so that he could see or touch nothing but his smooth body. In his worry over this he went to a tavern to drink wine; and after he had sat there for a while he got into conversation with another woman who was there, and told her the cause of his sadness, explaining everything, and demonstrating in his body that it was so. The woman was astute, and asked whether he suspected anyone; and when he named such a one, unfolding the whole matter, she said: <If persuasion is not enough, you must use some violence, to induce her to restore to you your health.> So in the evening the young man watched the way by which the witch was in the habit of going, and finding her, prayed her to restore to him the health of his body. And when she maintained that she was innocent and knew nothing about it, he fell upon her, and winding a towel tightly about her neck, choked her, saying: <Unless you give me back my health, you shall die at my hands.> Then she, being unable to cry out, and growing black, said: <Let me go, and I will heal you.> The young man then relaxed the pressure of the towel, and the witch touched him with her hand between the thighs, saying: <Now you have what you desire.> And the young man, as he afterwards said, plainly felt, before he had verified it by looking or touching, that his member had been restored to him by the mere touch of the witch.”

As when a man who is awake sees things otherwise than as they are; such as seeing someone devour a horse with its rider, or thinking he sees a man transformed into a beast, or thinking that he is himself a beast and must associate with beasts. For then the exterior senses are deluded and are employed by the interior senses. For by the power of devils, with God’s permission, mental images long retained in the treasury of such images, which is the memory, are drawn out, not from the intellectual understanding in which such images are stored, but from the memory,¹ which is the repository of mental images, and is situated at the back of the head, and are presented to the imaginative faculty. And so strongly are they impressed on that faculty that a man has an inevitable impulse to imagine a horse or a beast, when the devil draws from the memory an image of a horse or a beast; and so he is compelled to think that he sees with his external eyes such a beast when there is actually no such beast to see; but it seems to be so by reason of the impulsive force of the devil working by means of those images.”

¹ Trecho absolutamente silogístico.

Meu problema é que fui possuído por algo maligno que começa com “D”, Diagnóstico. E essa coisa de que falei me diz que eu estou (com) outra coisa que começa com “B”. Eu (e)s(t)ou (com) uma Besta!

Me disseram que minha visão foi transtornada

Pela rigorosa fé no mais puro nada!

CRIAÇÃO DE MINHOCAS: “And what, then, is to be thought of those witches who in this way sometimes collect male organs in great numbers, as many as 20 or 30 members together, and put them in a bird’s nest, or shut them up in a box, where they move themselves like living members, and eat oats and corn, as has been seen by many and is a matter of common report?”

But in the second sense there is a distinction to be drawn between creatures; for some are perfect creatures, like a man, and an ass, etc. And other are imperfect, such as serpents, frogs, mice, etc., for they can also be generated from putrefaction.”

TRACTATUS DE ÓTICA MEDIEVAL: “For in a glamour there may be an exterior object which is seen, but it seems other than it is. But imaginary vision does not necessarily require an exterior object, but can be caused without that and only by those inner mental images impressed on the imagination.”

It is to be said that the soul is thought to reside in the centre of the heart, in which it communicates with all the members by an out-pouring of life. An example can be taken from a spider, which feels in the middle of its web when any part of the web is touched.”

A CONVENIÊNCIA DO DIABO NÃO PODER FAZER DE MULHERES INOCENTES BRUXAS (POIS QUALQUER PIA E LINDA MOÇA ACUSADA DE BRUXARIA É AUTOMATICAMENTE CULPADA E BOA CARNE DE CHURRASCO): “although the devil can blacken men’s reputations in respect of other vices, yet it does not seem possible for him to do so in respect of this vice [the pact] which cannot be perpetrated without his cooperation.” “it has never yet been known that an innocent person has been punished on suspicion of witchcraft, and there is no doubt that God will never permit such a thing to happen.”

For we have often found that certain people have been visited with epilepsy or the falling sickness by means of eggs which have been buried with dead bodies, especially the dead bodies of witches, together with other ceremonies of which we cannot speak, particularly when these eggs have been given to a person either in food or drink.”

DISFIGURING DIVINE JUSTICE: “And there are witches who can bewitch their judges by a mere look or glance from their eyes, and publicly boast that they cannot be punished; and when malefactors have been imprisoned for their crimes, and exposed to the severest torture to make them tell the truth, these witches can endow them with such an obstinacy of preserving silence that they are unable to lay bare their crimes.”

For the devil knows that, because of the pain of loss, or original sin, such children [mortas antes do batismo] are debarred from entering the Kingdom of Heaven. And by this means the Last Judgement is delayed, when the devils will be condemned to eternal torture; since the number of the elect is more slowly completed, on the fulfilment of which the world will be consumed. And also, as has already been shown, witches are taught by the devil to confect from the limbs of such children an unguent which is very useful for their spells.”

REALMENTE UM ROMANCE DIGNO DE CERVANTES:A certain man relates that he noticed that his wife, when her time came to give birth, against the usual custom of women in childbirth, did not allow any woman to approach the bed except her own daughter, who acted as midwife. Wishing to know the reason for this, he hid himself in the house and saw the whole order of the sacrilege and dedication to the devil, as it has been described. He saw also, as it seemed to him, that without any human support, but by the power of the devil, the child was climbing up the chain by which the cooking-pots were suspended. In great consternation both at the terrible words of the invocation of the devils, and at the other iniquitous ceremonies, he strongly insisted that the child should be baptized immediately. While it was being carried to the next village, where there was a church, and when they had to cross a bridge over a certain river, he drew his sword and ran at his daughter, who was carrying the child, saying in the hearing of 2 others who were with them: <You shall not carry the child over the bridge; for either it must cross the bridge by itself, or you shall be drowned in the river.> The daughter was terrified and, together with the other women in the company, asked him if he were in his right mind (for he had hidden what had happened from all the others except the 2 men who were with him). Then he answered: <You vile drab, by your magic arts you made the child climb the chain in the kitchen; now make it cross the bridge with no one carrying it, or I shall drown you in the river.> And so, being compelled, she put the child down on the bridge, and invoked the devil by her art; and suddenly the child was seen on the other side of the bridge. And when the child had been baptized, and he had returned home, since he now had witnesses to convict his daughter of witchcraft (for he could not prove the former crime of the oblation to the devil, inasmuch as he had been the only witness of the sacrilegious ritual), he accused bot her daughter and wife before the judge after their period of purgation; and they were both burned, and the crime of midwives of making that sacrilegious offering was discovered.”

For the devil hates above all the Blessed Virgin, because she bruised his head.” Quando a Virgem Boxista Maria golpeou o crânio do Belzebu?

The second result to the children of this sacrilege is as follows. When a man offers himself as a sacrifice to God, he recognizes God as his Beginning and his End; and this sacrifice is more worthy than all the external sacrifices which he makes, having its beginning in his creation and its end in his glorification, as it is said: A sacrifice to God is an afflicted spirit, etc. In the same way, when a witch offers a child to the devils, she commends it body and soul to him as its beginning and its end in eternal damnation; wherefore not without some miracle can the child be set free from the payment of so great a debt.” The dead lion which is the daily miracle.

Finally, we know from experience that the daughters of witches are always suspected of similar practises, as imitators of their mothers’ crimes; and that indeed the whole of a witch’s progeny is infected. And the reason for this and for all that has been said before is, that according to their pact with the devil, they always have to leave behind them and carefully instruct a survivor, so that they may fulfill their vow to do all they can to increase the number of witches. For how else could it happen, as it has very often been found, that tender girls of 8 or 10 years have raised up tempests and hailstorms, unless they had been dedicated to the devil under such a pact by their mothers? For the children could not do such things of themselves by abjuring the Faith, which is how all adult witches have to begin, since they have no knowledge of any single article of the Faith.”

I have sometimes seen men coming in and out to my mother; and when I asked her who they were, she told that they were our masters to whom she had given me, and that they were powerful and rich patrons. The father was terrified, and asked her if she could raise a hailstorm then. And the girl said: Yes, if I had a little water. Then he led the girl by the hand to a stream, and said: Do it, but only on our land. Then the girl put her hand in the water and stirred it in the name of her master, as her mother had taught her; and behold! the rain fell only on that land. Seeing this, the father said: Make it hail now, but only on one of our fields. And when the girl had done this, the father was convinced by the evidence, and accused his wife before the judge. And the wife was taken and convicted and burned; but the daughter was reconciled and solemnly dedicated to God, since which hour she could no more work these spells and charms.”

But when this is publicly preached to the people they get no bad information by it; for however much anyone may invoke the devil, and think that by this alone he can do this thing, he deceives himself, because he is without the foundation of that perfidy, not having rendered homage to the devil or abjured the Faith. I have set this down because some have thought that several of the matter of which I have written ought not to be preached to the people, on account of the danger of giving them evil knowledge; whereas it is impossible for anyone to learn from a preacher how to perform any of the things that have been mentioned. But they have been written rather to bring so great a crime into detestation, and should be preached from the pulpit, so that judges may be more eager to punish the horrible crime of the abnegation of the Faith.”

it is very true that many cattle are said to have been bewitched in some districts, especially in the Alps; and it is known that this form of witchcraft is unhappily most widespread.”

For in devils there are 3 things to be considered – their nature, their duty and their sin; and by nature they belong to the empyrean of heaven, through sin to the lower hell, but by reason of the duty assigned to them, as we have said, as ministers of punishment to the wicked and trial to the good, their place is in the clouds of the air. For they do not dwell here with us on the earth lest they should plague us too much; but in the air and around the fiery sphere they can so bring together the active and passive agents that, when God permits, they can bring down fire and lightning from heaven.”

In the same work we hear of a certain leader or heresiarch of witches named Staufer, who lived in Berne and the adjacent country, and used publicly to boast that, whenever he liked, he could change himself into a mouse in the sight of his rivals and slip through the hands of his deadly enemies; and that he had often escaped from the hands of his mortal foes in this manner. But when the Divine justice wished to put an end to his wickedness, some of his enemies lay in wait for him cautiously and saw him sitting in a basket near a window, and suddenly pierced him through with swords and spears, so that he miserably died for his crimes.”

ATÉ UM ESPIRRO DO PROSCRITO PODIA CONDENÁ-LO: “For when they use words of which they do not themselves know the meaning, or characters and signs which are not the sign of the Cross, such practices are altogether to be repudiated, and good men should beware of the cruel arts of these warlocks.”

Also it appears that it is very rarely that men are delivered from a bewitchment by calling on God’s help or the prayers of the Saints. Therefore it follows that they can only be delivered by the help of devils; and it is unlawful to seek such help.”

it is submitted that the exorcisms of the Church are not always effective in the repression of devils in the matter of bodily afflictions, since such are cured only at the discretion of God; but they are effective always against those molestations of devils against which they are chiefly instituted, as, for example, against men who are possessed, or in the matter of exorcising children.”

No Angel is more powerful than our mind, when we hold fast to God. For if power is a virtue in this world, then the mind that keeps close to God is more sublime than the whole world. Therefore such minds can undo the works of the devil.” Augustine, o Sofista

There are 7 metals belonging to the 7 planets; and since Saturn is the Lord of lead, when lead is poured out over anyone who has been bewitched, it is his property to discover the witchcraft by his power.”

In this way we have answered the arguments that no spell of witchcraft must be removed. For the first 2 remedies are altogether unlawful. The 3rd remedy is tolerated by the law, but needs very careful examination on the part of the ecclesiastical judge. And what the civil law tolerates is shown in the chapter on witches, where it is said that those who have skill to prevent men’s labours from being vitiated by tempests and hailstorms are worthy, not of punishment, but of reward. S. Antoninus also, in his Summa, points out this discrepancy between the Canon Law and civil law. Therefore it seems that the civil law concedes the legality of such practices for the preservation of crops and cattle, and that in any event certain men who use such arts are not only to be tolerated but even rewarded.”

With regard to the bewitchment of human beings by means of Incubus and Succubus devils, it is to be noted that this can happen in 3 ways. First, when women voluntarily prostitute themselves to Incubus devils. Secondly, when men have connection with Succubus devils; yet it does not appear that men thus devilishly fornicate with the same full degree of culpability

As for instances where young maidens are molested by Incubus devils in this way, it would take too long to mention even those that have been known to happen in our own time, for there are very many well-attested stories of such bewitchments. But the great difficulty of finding a remedy for such afflictions can be illustrated from a story told by Thomas of Brabant in his Book on Bees.”

William of Paris notes also that Incubus seem chiefly to molest women and girls with beautiful hair; either because they devote themselves too much to the care and adornment of their hair, or because they are boastfully vain about it, or because God in His goodness permits this so that women may be afraid to entice men by the very means by which the devils wish them to entice men.”

At times also women think they have been made pregnant by an Incubus, and their bellies grow to an enormous size; but when the time of parturition comes, their swelling is relieved by no more than the expulsion of a great quantity of wind. For by taking ants’ eggs in drink, or the seeds of spurge or of the black pine, an incredible amount of wind and flatulence is generated in the human stomach. And it is very easy for the devil to cause these and even greater disorders in the stomach. This has been set down in order that too easy credence should not be given to women, but only to those whom experience has shown to be trustworthy, and to those who, by sleeping in their beds or near them, know for a fact that such things as we have spoken of are true.”

the devil can inflame a man towards one woman and render him impotent towards another; and this he can secretly cause by the application of certain herbs or other matters of which he well knows the virtue for this purpose.” “he can prevent the flow of the semen to the members in which is the motive power, by as it were closing the seminal duct so that it does not descend to the genital vessels, or does not ascend again from them, or cannot come forth, or is spent vainly.”

He who loves his wife to excess is an adulterer [!]. And they who love in this way are more liable to be bewitched after the manner we have said.”

it is assumed to be temporary if, within the space of 3 years, by using every possible expedient of the Sacraments of the Church and other remedies, a cure can be caused. But if, after that time, they cannot be cured by any remedy, then it is assumed to be permanent.”

But some may find it difficult to understand how this function can be obstructed in respect of one woman but not of another. S. Bonaventura answers that this may be because some witch has persuaded the devil to effect this only with respect to one woman, or because God will not allow the obstruction to apply save to some particular woman. The judgement of God in this matter is a mystery, as in the case of the wife of Tobias. But how the devil procures this disability is plainly shown by what has already been said. And S. Bonaventura says that he obstructs the procreant function, not intrinsically by harming the organ, but extrinsically by impeding its use; and it is an artificial, not a natural impediment; and so he can cause it to apply to one woman and not to another. Or else he takes away all desire for one or another woman; and this he does by his own power, or else by means of some herb or stone or some occult creature. And in this he is in substantial agreement with Peter of Palude.” Philocaption, or inordinate love of one person for another, can be caused in 3 ways. Sometimes it is due merely to a lack of control over the eyes; sometimes to the temptation of devils; sometimes to the spells of necromancers and witches, with the help of devils.” The second cause arises from the temptation of devils. In this way Amnon loved his beautiful sister Tamar, and was so vexed that he fell sick for love of her (II Samuel 13). For he could not have been so totally corrupt in his mind as to fall into so great a crime of incest unless he had been grievously tempted by the devil.”

when a man often puts away his beautiful wife to cleave to the most hideous of women, and when he cannot rest in the night, but is so demented that he must go by devious ways to his mistress; and when it is found that those of noblest birth, Governors, and other rich men, are the most miserably involved in this sin (for this age is dominated by women, and was foretold by S. Hildegard, as Vincent of Beauvais records in the Mirror of History, although he said it would not endure for as long as it already has); and when the world is now full of adultery, especially among the most highly born; when all this is considered, I say, of what use is it to speak of remedies to those who desire no remedy?” Indeed, sir: why bother?

Avicenna mentions 7 remedies which may be used when a man is made physically ill by this sort of love; but they are hardly relevant to our inquiry except in so far as they may be of service to the sickness of the soul. For he says, in Book III, that the root of the sickness may be discovered by feeling the pulse and uttering the name of the object of the patient’s love; and then, if the law permits, he may be cured by yielding to nature [?]. Or certain medicines may be applied, concerning which he gives instructions. Or the sick man may be turned from his love by lawful remedies which will cause him to direct his love to a more worthy object. Or he may avoid her presence, and so distract his mind from her. Or, if he is open to correction, he may be admonished and expostulated with, to the effect that such love is the greatest misery. Or he may be directed to someone who, as far as he may with God’s truth, will vilify the body and disposition of his love, and so blacken her character that she may appear to him altogether base and deformed. Or, finally, he is to be set to arduous duties which may distract his thoughts.”

(*) “No formal canonization of S. Hildegard has taken place, but many miracles were wrought at her intercession, and her name is in the Roman Martyrology. The feast is celebrated on 17 September in the dioceses of Speyer, Mainz, Trier and Limburg, and by the Solesmes monks on 18 September with a proper Office. The Relics of the Saint are at Eibingen, of which town she is patron. The convent of S. Hildegard there was formally constituted on 17 September, 1904.”

When a sick man wishes to confess, and if on the arrival of the priest he is rendered dumb by his infirmity, or falls into a frenzy, those who have heard him speak must give their testimony. And if he is thought to be at the point of death, let him be reconciled with God by the laying on of hands and the placing of the Sacrament in his mouth. S. Thomas also says that the same procedure may be used with baptized people who are bodily tormented by unclean spirits, and with other mentally distracted persons. And he adds, in Book IV, dist. 9, that the Communion must not be denied to demoniacs unless it is certain that they are being tortured by the devil for some crime. To this Peter of Palude adds: In this case they are to be considered as persons to be excommunicated and delivered up to Satan.”

such was the case of the Corinthian fornicator (I Corinthians 5) who was excommunicated by S. Paul and the Church, and delivered unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit might be saved in the day of our Lord JESUS Christ (…) For so great was the power and the grace of S. Paul, says the gloss, that by the mere words of his mouth he could deliver to Satan those who fell away from the faith.”

For in the primitive Church, when men had to be drawn into the faith by signs, just as the Holy Spirit was made manifest by a visible sign, so also a bodily affliction by the devil was the visible sign of a man who was excommunicated. And it is not unfitting that a man whose case is not quite desperate should be delivered to Satan; for he is not given to the devil as one to be damned, but to be corrected, since it is in the power of the Church, when she pleases, to deliver him again from the hands of the devil. So says S. Thomas.”

This man was casting a devil out of a man possessed in the monastery, and the devil asked him to give him some place to which he could go. This pleased the Brother, and he jokingly said, <Go to my privy [vaso sanitário].> So the devil went out; and when in the night the Brother wished to go and purge his belly, the devil attacked him so savagely in the privy that he with difficulty escaped with his life.” HAHAHA

But a man possessed by a devil can indirectly be relieved by the power of music, as was Saul by David’s harp, or of a herb, or of any other bodily matter in which there lies some natural virtue. Therefore such remedies may be used, as can be argued both from authority and by reason.” although it is good that in the liberation of a bewitched person recourse should be had to an exorcist having authority to exorcise such bewitchments, yet at times other devout persons may, either with or without any exorcism, cast out this sort of diseases.”

ETIMOLOGIA DO TERMO ENERGÚMENO: “But if anyone asks what is the difference between the aspersion of Holy Water and exorcism, since both are ordained against the plagues of the devil, the answer is supplied by S. Thomas, who says: The devil attacks us from without and from within. Therefore Holy Water is ordained against his attacks from without; but exorcism against those from within. For this reason those for whom exorcism is necessary are called Energoumenoi, from En, meaning In, and Ergon, meaning Work, since they labour within themselves. But in exorcising a bewitched person both methods are to be used, because he is tormented both within and without.”

A FÊMEA É DUAS VEZES MAIS DIABÓLICA QUE O DIABO (MORE EVIL THAN THE DEVIL): “the labour required in the case of the bewitched is twofold, whereas it is only single in the case of the possessed.”

The miracle of the removal of a mountain was actually performed by S. Gregory Thaumaturgus, Bishop of Neocaesarea (d. circa 270-275), as the Venerable Bede tells us in his Commentary upon S. Mark XI: <Hoc quoque fieri potuisset, ut mons ablatus de terra mitteretur in mare, si necessitas id fieri poscisset. Quomodo legimus factum precibus beati patris Gregorii Neocaesareae Ponti Antistitis, viri mentis et virtutibus eximii, ut mons in terra tantum loco cederet, quantum incolae civitatis opus habebant. Cum enim volens aedificare ecclesiam in loco apto, vident eum angustiorem esse quam res exigebat, eo quod ex una parte rupe maris, ex alia monte proximo coarctaretur; venit nocte ad locum, et genibus flexis admonuit Dominum promissionis suae, ut montem longius juxta fidem petentis ageret. Et mane facto reversus invenit montem tantum spatii reliquisse structoribus ecclesiae, quantum opus habuerant.>

Also, because when witches wish to deprive a cow of milk they are in the habit of begging a little of the milk or butter which comes from that cow, so that they may afterwards by their art bewitch the cow; therefore women should take care, when they are asked by persons suspected of this crime, not to give away the least thing to them.”

In addition to the setting up of the sign of the Cross which we have mentioned, the following procedure is practised against hailstorms and tempests. Three of the hailstones are thrown into the fire with an invocation of the Most Holy Trinity, and the Lord’s Prayer and the Angelic Salutation are repeated twice or 3 times, together with the Gospel of S. John, In the beginning was the Word. And the sign of the Cross is made in every direction towards each quarter of the world. Finally, The Word was made Flesh is repeated 3 times, and 3 times By the words of this Gospel may this tempest be dispersed. And suddenly, if the tempest is due to witchcraft, it will cease. This is most true and need not be regarded with any suspicion. For if the hailstones were thrown into the fire without the invocation of the Divine Name, then it would be considered superstitious.” And for this reason it is a general practice of the Church to ring bells as a protection against storms, both that the devils may flee from them as being consecrated to God and refrain from their wickedness” And although, according to this rule, the ceremonies and legal procedures of the Old Testament are not now observed, since they are to be understood figuratively, whereas the truth is made known in the New Testament, yet the carrying out of the Sacrament or of Relics to still a storm does not seem to militate against this rule.”

Another terrible thing which God permits to happen to men is when their own children are taken away from women, and strange children are put in their place by devils. And these children, which are commonly called changelings, or in the German tongue Wechselkinder, are of 3 kinds. For some are always ailing and crying, and yet the milk of four women is not enough to satisfy them. Some are generated by the operation of Incubus devils, of whom, however, they are not the sons, but of that man from whom the devil has received the semen as a Succubus, or whose semen he has collected from some nocturnal pollution in sleep. For these children are sometimes, by Divine permission, substituted for the real children. And there is a third kind, when the devils at times appear in the form of young children and attach themselves to the nurses. But all 3 kinds have this in common, that though they are very heavy, they are always ailing and do not grow, and cannot receive enough milk to satisfy them, and are often reported to have vanished away.”

Again in Deuteronomy 22: God says that men shall not put on the garments of women, or conversely; because they did this in honour of the goddess Venus, and others in honour of Mars or Priapus.

(*) “So in Ireland the fairies are called <good people>, and traditionally seem to be of a benevolent and capricious and even mischievous disposition. In some parts of Highland Scotland fairies are called daoine sithe or men of peace, and it is believed that every year the devil carries off a 10th part of them. It will be readily remembered that to the Greeks the Fairies were the gracious goddesses.”

ACENDE A BANANA DE DINAMITE E SAI CORRENDO: “Certainly those whose high privilege it is to judge concerning matters of the faith ought not to be distracted by other business; and Inquisitors deputed by the Apostolic See to inquire into the pest of heresy should manifestly not have to concern themselves with diviners and soothsayers, unless these are also heretics, nor should it be their business to punish such, but they may leave them to be punished by their own judges. Nor does there seem any difficulty in the fact that the heresy of witches is not mentioned in that Canon.”

Again, Solomon showed reverence to the gods of his wives out of complaisance, and was not on that account guilty of apostasy from the Faith; for in his heart he was faithful and kept the true Faith. So also when witches give homage to devils by reason of the pact they have entered into, but keep the Faith in their hearts, they are not on that account to be reckoned as heretics.” But should be burnt!

a heretic is different from an apostate, and it is heretics who are subject to the Court of the Inquisition” “Let the Bishops and their representatives strive by every means to rid their parishes entirely of the pernicious art of soothsaying and magic derived from Zoroaster; and if they find any man or woman addicted to this crime, let him be shamefully cast out of their parishes in disgrace.”

But if, just as these arguments seem to show it to be reasonable in the case of Inquisitors, the Diocesans also wish to be relieved of this responsibility, and to leave the punishment of witches to the secular Courts, such a claim could be made good by the following arguments. For the Canon says, c. ut inquisitionis: We strictly forbid the temporal lords and rulers and their officers in any way to try to judge this crime, since it is purely an ecclesiastical matter: and it speaks of the crime of heresy. It follows therefore that, when the crime is not purely ecclesiastical, as is the case with witches because of the temporal injuries which they commit, it must be punished by the Civil and not by the Ecclesiastical Court. Besides, in the last Canon Law concerning Jews it says: His goods are to be confiscated, and he is to be condemned to death, because with perverse doctrine he opposed the Faith of Christ. But if it is said that this law refers to Jews who have been converted, and have afterwards returned to the worship of the Jews, this is not a valid objection. Rather is the argument strengthened by it; because the civil Judge has to punish such Jews as apostates from the Faith; and therefore witches who abjure the Faith ought to be treated in the same way; for abjuration of the Faith, either wholly or in part, is the essential principle of witches.” A canalhice do clero de que Montesquieu tão bem falou: aplicar o N.T. na esfera civil para se apropriar dos próprios bens e terras judias.

Besides, if the trial and punishment of such witches were not entirely a matter for the civil Judge, what would be the purpose of the laws which provide as follows?” “But in contradiction of all these arguments, the truth of the matter is that such witches may be tried and punished conjointly by the Civil and the Ecclesiastical Courts.” And again, although a secular prince may impose the capital sentence, yet this does not exclude the judgement of the Church, whose part it is to try and judge the case. Indeed this is perfectly clear from the Canon Law in the chapters de summa trin. and fid. cath., and again in the Law concerning heresy, c. ad abolendam and c. urgentis and c. excommunicamus, 1 and 2. For the same penalties are provided by both the Civil and the Canon Laws, as is shown by the Canon Laws concerning the Manichaean and Arian heresies. Therefore the punishment of witches belongs to both Courts together, and not to one separately.”

MAS NÓS, OS OPERADORES DO CADAFALSO, TEMOS NOSSA PRÓPRIA CÔRTE: “If it is an ecclesiastical crime needing ecclesiastical punishment and fine, it shall be tried by a Bishop who stands in favour with God, and not even the most illustrious Judges of the Province shall have a hand in it. And we do not wish the civil Judges to have any knowledge of such proceedings; for such matters must be examined ecclesiastically and the souls of the offenders must be corrected by ecclesiastical penalties, according to the sacred and divine rules which our laws worthily follow.”

Our main object here is to show how, with God’s pleasure, we Inquisitors of Upper Germany may be relieved of the duty of trying witches, and leave them to be punished by their own provincial Judges; and this because of the arduousness of the work: [!!!] provided always that such a course shall in no way endanger the preservation of the faith and the salvation of souls. And therefore we engaged upon this work, that we might leave to the Judges themselves the methods of trying, judging and sentencing in such cases.

Therefore in order to show that the Bishops can in many cases proceed against witches without the Inquisitors; although they cannot so proceed without the temporal and civil Judges in cases involving capital punishment [o melhor dos mundos para o Inquisidor]; it is expedient that we set down the opinions of certain other Inquisitors in parts of Spain, and (saving always the reverence due to them), since we all belong to one and the same Order of Preachers, to refute them, so that each detail may be more clearly understood.” ‘Com todo o respeito, mas discordo de vossas eminências espanholas latinas e frouxas’, parecem dizer os inquisidores saxões a cada linha…

so many more burdens are placed upon us Inquisitors which we cannot safely bear in the sight of the terrible Judge who will demand from us a strict account of the duties imposed upon us.” “the presbyter Udalricus went to a secret place with a certain infamous person, that is, a diviner, says the gloss, not with the intention of invoking the devil, which would have been heresy, but that, by inspecting the astrolabe, he might find out some hidden thing. And this, they say, is pure divination or sortilege.”

(*) “As Clement V died before the collection had been generally published, John XXII promulgated it anew, 25 October, 1317, and sent it to the University of Bologna as the authoritative Corpus of decretals to be used in the courts and schools.”

BEM QUE ALEMÃES SÃO REPUTADOS POR GOSTAR DE ENCHER LINGÜIÇA: “This being the case, it follows that however serious and grave may be the sin which a person commits, if it does not necessarily imply heresy, then he must not be judged as a heretic, although he is to be punished. Consequently an Inquisitor need not interfere in the case of a man who is to be punished as a malefactor, but not as a heretic, but may leave him to be tried by the Judges of his own Province.”

For a person rightly to be adjudged a heretic he must fulfill five conditions. First, there must be an error in his reasoning. Secondly, that error must be in matters concerning the faith, either being contrary to the teaching of the Church as to the true faith, or against sound morality and therefore not leading to the attainment of eternal life [fé da igreja e fé verdadeira explicitamente diferenciadas?]. Thirdly, the error must lie in one who has professed the Catholic faith, for otherwise he would be a Jew or a Pagan, not a heretic. [Benza Pan!] Fourthly, the error must be of such a nature that he who holds it must confess some of the truth of Christ as touching either His Godhead or His Manhood; for if a man wholly denies the faith, he is an apostate. Fifthly, he must pertinaciously and obstinately hold to and follow that error.”

REPENT! “if a man commits fornication or adultery, although he is disobeying the command Thou shalt not commit adultery, yet he is not a heretic unless he holds the opinion that it is lawful to commit adultery.”

EU NÃO SABIA QUE PODIA HAVER DISCUSSÕES MAIS ESTÉREIS DO QUE “FOI PÊNALTI OU NÃO FOI”, MAS EI-LAS: “a simonist is not in the narrow and exact sense of the word a heretic; but broadly speaking and by comparison he is so, according to S. Thomas, when he buys or sells holy things in the belief that the gift of grace can be had for money. But if, as is often the case, he does not act in this belief, he is not a heretic. Yet he truly would be if he did believe that the gift of grace could be had for money.”

For according to Aristotle every wicked man is either ignorant or in error. Therefore, since they who do such things have evil in their wills, they must have an error in their understandings.”

A Theologian will say that it is in the first instance a matter for the Apostolic See to judge whether a heresy actually exists or is only to be presumed in law. And this may be because whenever an effect can proceed from a two-fold cause, no precise judgement can be formed of the actual nature of the cause merely on the basis of the effect. Therefore, since such effects as the worship of the devil or asking his help in the working of witchcraft, by baptizing an image, or offering to him a living child, or killing an infant, and other matters of this sort, can proceed from 2 separate causes, namely, a belief that it is right to worship the devil and sacrifice to him, and that images can receive sacraments; or because a man has formed some pact with the devil, so that he may obtain the more easily from the devil that which he desires in those matters which are not beyond the capacity of the devil; it follows that no one ought hastily to form a definite judgement merely on the basis of the effect as to what is its cause, that is, whether a man does such things out of a wrong opinion concerning the faith. So when there is no doubt about the effect, still it is necessary to inquire farther into the cause; and if it be found that a man has acted out of a perverse and erroneous opinion concerning the faith, then he is to be judged a heretic and will be subject to trial by the Inquisitors together with the Ordinary. But if he has not acted for these reasons, he is to be considered a sorcerer, and a very vile sinner.”

(*) “Extravagantes. This word designates some Papal decretals not contained in certain canonical collections which possess a special authority, that is, they are not found in (but <wander outside>, <extra vagari>) the Decree of Gratian, or the 3 great official collections of the Corpus Iuri (the Decretals of Gregory IX; the 6th Book of the Decretals; and the Clementines). The term is now applied to the collections known as the Extravagantes Joannis XXII and the Extravagantes Communes. When John XXII (1316-34) published the Decretals already known as Clementines, there also existed various pontifical documents, obligatory upon the whole Church indeed, but not included in the Corpus Juris, and these were called Extravagantes. In 1325, Zenselinus de Cassanis added glosses to 20 constitutions of John XXII, and named this collection Viginti Extravagantes papae Joannis XXII. Chappuis also classified these under 14 titles containing all 20 chapters.”

And a Bishop can proceed without an Inquisitor, or an Inquisitor without a Bishop; or, if either of their offices be vacant, their deputies may act independently of each other, provided that it is impossible for them to meet together for joint action within 8 days of the time when the inquiry is due to commence; but if there be no valid reason for their not meeting together, the action shall be null and void in law.”

we treat of 20 methods of delivering sentence, 13 of which are common to all kinds of heresy, and the remainder particular to the heresy of witches.”

The first method is when someone accuses a person before a judge of the crime of heresy, or of protecting heretics, offering to prove it, and to submit himself to the penalty of talion if he fails to prove it. The second method is when someone denounces a person, but does not offer to prove it and is not willing to embroil himself in the matter” “The third method involves an inquisition, that is, when there is no accuser or informer, but a general report that there are witches in some town or place; and then the Judge must proceed, not at the instance of any party, but simply by the virtue of his office. Here it is to be noted that a judge should not readily admit the first method of procedure. For one thing, it is not actuated by motives of faith, nor is it very applicable to the case of witches, since they commit their deeds in secret. Then, again, it is full of danger to the accuser, because of the penalty of talion which he will incur if he fails to prove his case.” “Note also that in the case of the 2nd method the following caution should be observed. For it has been said that the 2nd method of procedure and of instituting a process on behalf of the faith is by means of an information, where the informer does not offer to prove his statement and is not ready to be embroiled in the case, but only speaks because of a sentence of excommunication, or out of zeal for the faith and for the good of the State. Therefore the secular Judge must specify in his general citation or warning aforesaid that none should think that he will become liable to a penalty even if he fails to prove his words; since he comes forward not as an accuser but as an informer.” Invejável engenharia do clima de denuncismo impune – laboratório avant-la-lettre do fascismo!

A figura do “laico-religioso” (com conhecimento de Direito): “if a Notary is not to be procured, then let there be two suitable men in the place of the Notary. For this is dealt with in the c. ut officium, § verum, lib. 6, where it is said: But because it is expedient to proceed with great caution in the trial of a grave crime, that no error may be committed in imposing upon the guilty a deservedly severe punishment; we desire and command that, in the examination of the witnesses necessary in such a charge, you shall have 2 religious and discreet persons, either clerics or laymen.

O PRO-FORMA DA INQUISIÇÃO (Manual de Redação da Caça às Bruxas)

In the Name of the Lord. Amen.

In the year of Our Lord —, on the — day of the — month, in the presence of me the Notary and of the witnesses subscribed, N. of the town of — in the Diocese of —, as above, appeared in the person at — before the honourable Judge, and offered him a schedule to the following effect.”

And if he says that he has seen anything, as, for example, that the accused was present at such a time of tempest, or that he had touched an animal, or had entered a stable, the Judge shall ask when he saw him, and where, and how often, and in what manner, and who were present. If he says that he did not see it, but heard of it, he shall ask him from whom he heard it, where, when, and how often, and in whose presence, making separate articles of each of the several points above mentioned. And the Notary or scribe shall set down a record of them immediately after the aforesaid denunciation”

The third method of beginning a process is the commonest and most usual one, because it is secret, and no accuser or informer has to appear. But when there is a general report of witchcraft in some town or parish, because of this report the Judge may proceed without a general citation or admonition as above, since the noise of that report comes often to his ears; and then again he can begin a process in the presence of the persons, as we have said before.”

Since we have said that in the 2nd method the evidence of the witnesses is to be written down, it is necessary to know how many witnesses there should be, and of what condition. The question is whether a Judge may lawfully convict any person of the heresy of witchcraft on the evidence of 2 legitimate witnesses whose evidence is entirely concordant, or whether more than 2 are necessary. And we say that the evidence of witnesses is not entirely concordant when it is only partially so; that is, when 2 witnesses differ in their accounts, but agree in the substance or effect: as when one says <She bewitched my cow>, and the other says, <She bewitched my child>, but they agree as to the fact of witchcraft.” “although 2 witnesses seem to be enough to satisfy the rigour of law (for the rule is that that which is sworn to by 2 or 3 is taken for the truth); yet in a charge of this kind 2 witnesses do not seem sufficient to ensure an equitable judgement, on account of the heinousness of the crime in question. For the proof of an accusation ought to be clearer than daylight; and especially ought this to be so in the case of the grave charge of heresy.” “the prisoner is not permitted to know who are his accusers. But the Judge himself must by virtue of his office, inquire into any personal enmity felt by the witnesses towards the prisoner; and such witnesses cannot be allowed, as will be shown later. And when the witnesses give confused evidence on account of something lying on their conscience, the Judge is empowered to put them through a 2nd interrogatory.” “if the prisoner is the subject of an evil report, a period should be set for his purgation; and if he is under strong suspicion on account of the evidence of 2 witnesses, the Judge should make him abjure the heresy, or question him, or defer his sentence. For it does not seem just to condemn a man of good name on so great a charge on the evidence of only 2 witnesses, though the case is otherwise with a person of bad reputation. This matter is fully dealt with in the Canon Law of heretics, where it is set down that the Bishop shall cause 3or+ men of good standing to give evidence on oath to speak the truth as to whether they have any knowledge of the existence of heretics in such a parish.” “But when, in spite of certain discrepancies, the witnesses agree in the main facts, then the matter shall rest with the Judge’s discretion

But it may be asked whether the Judge can compel witnesses to sweat an oath to tell the truth in a case concerning the Faith or witches, or if he can examine them many times. We answer that he can do so, especially an ecclesiastical Judge, and that in ecclesiastical cases witnesses can be compelled to speak the truth, and this on oath, since otherwise their evidence would not be valid. For the Canon Law says: The Archbishop or Bishop may make a circuit of the parish in which it is rumoured that there are heretics, and compel 3or+ men of good repute, or even, if it seems good to him, the whole neighbourhood, to give evidence. And if any through damnable obstinacy stubbornly refuse to take the oath, they shall on that account be considered as heretics.”

Note that persons under a sentence of excommunication, associates and accomplices in the crime, notorious evildoers and criminals, or servants giving evidence against their masters, are admitted as witnesses in a case concerning the Faith. And just as a heretic may give evidence against a heretic, so may a witch against a witch; but this only in default of other proofs, and such evidence can only be admitted for the prosecution and not for the defence: this is true also of the evidence of the prisoner’s wife, sons and kindred; for the evidence of such has more weight in proving a charge than in disproving it.” Wit(chn)ess.

The case of evidence given by perjurers, when it is presumed that they are speaking out of zeal for the faith, is dealed with in the Canon c. accusatus, § licet, where it says that the evidence of perjurers, after they have repented, is admissible; and it goes on to say: If it manifestly appears that they do not speak in a spirit of levity, or from motives of enmity, or by reason of a bribe, but purely out of zeal for the orthodox faith, wishing to correct what they have said, or to reveal something about which they had kept silence, in defence of the faith, their testimony shall be as valid as that of anyone else “So great is the plague of heresy that, in an action involving this crime, even servants are admitted as witnesses against their masters, and any criminal evildoer may give evidence against any person soever.” “But if it is asked whether the Judge can admit the mortal enemies of the prisoner to give evidence against him in such a case, we answer that he cannot; for the same chapter of the Canon says: You must not understand that in this kind of charge a mortal personal enemy may be admitted to give evidence.” “And a mortal enmity is constituted by the following circumstances: when there is a death feud or vendetta between the parties, or when there has been an attempted homicide, or some serious wound or injury which manifestly shows that there is mortal hatred on the part of the witness against the prisoner. And in such a case it is presumed that, just as the witness has tried to inflict temporal death on the prisoner by wounding him, so he will also be willing to effect his object by accusing him of heresy; and just as he wished to take away his life, so he would be willing to take away his good name.” “But there are other serious degrees of enmity (for women are easily provoked to hatred), which need not totally disqualify a witness, although they render his evidence very doubtful, so that full credence cannot be placed in his words unless they are substantiated by independent proofs, and other witnesses supply an indubitable proof of them. For the Judge must ask the prisoner whether he thinks that he has any enemy who would dare to accuse him of that crime out of hatred, so that he might compass his death; and if he says that he has, he shall ask who that person is; and then the Judge shall take note whether the person named as being likely to give evidence from motives of malice has actually done so. And if it is found that this is the case, and the Judge has learned from trustworthy men the cause of that enmity, and if the evidence in question is not substantiated by other proofs and the words of other witnesses, then he may safely reject such evidence. But if the prisoner says that he hopes he has no such enemy, but admits that he has had quarrels with women; or if he says that he has an enemy, but names someone who, perhaps, has not given evidence, in that case, even if other witnesses say that such a person has given evidence from motives of enmity, the Judge must not reject his evidence, but admit it together with the other proofs. § There are many who are not sufficiently careful and circumspect, and consider that the depositions of such quarrelsome women should be altogether rejected, saying that no faith can be placed in them, since they are nearly always actuated by motives of hatred. Such men are ignorant of the subtlety and precautions of magistrates, and speak and judge like men who are colour-blind.”

PROCESSO DE CONDENAÇÃO SUMÁRIA: It often happens that we institute a criminal process, and order it to be conducted in a simple straightforward manner without the legal quibbles and contentions which are introduced in other cases. (…) The Judge to whom we commit such a case need not require any writ, or demand that the action should be contested; he may conduct the case on holidays for the sake of the convenience of the public, he should shorten the conduct of the case as much as he can by disallowing all dilatory exceptions, appeals and obstructions, the impertinent contentions of pleaders and advocates, and the quarrels of witnesses, and by restraining the superfluous number of witnesses; but not in such a way as to neglect the necessary proofs” the Judge ought to advise the accuser to set aside his formal accusation and to speak rather as an informer, because of the grave danger that is incurred by an accuser. And so he can proceed in the 2nd manner, which is commonly used, and likewise in the 3rd manner, in which the process is begun not at the instance of any party.”

…Asked further how he could distinguish the accused’s motive, he answered that he knew it because he had spoken with a laugh. § This is a matter which must be inquired into very diligently; for very often people use words quoting someone else, or merely in temper, or as a test of the opinions of other people; although sometimes they are used assertively with definite intention.” “Here it must always be noted that in such an examination at least 5 persons must be present, namely, the presiding Judge, the witness of informer, the respondent or accused, who appears afterwards, and the 3rd is the Notary or scribe: where there is no Notary the scribe shall co-opt another honest man, and these 2, as has been said, shall perform the duties of the Notary; and this is provided for by Apostolic authority” For this is a common custom of witches, to stir up enmity against themselves by some word or action, as, for example, to ask someone to lend them something or else they will damage his garden, or something of that sort, in order to make an occasion for deeds of witchcraft; and they manifest themselves either in word or in action, since they are compelled to do so at the instance of the devils, so that in this way the sins of Judges are aggravated while the witch remains unpunished.”

Asked why she touched a child, and afterwards it fell sick, she answered. Also she was asked what she did in the fields at the time of a tempest, and so with many other matters. Again, why, having 1 or 2 cows, she had more milk than her neighbours who had 4 or 6. Let her be asked why she persists in a state of adultery or concubinage; for although this is beside the point, yet such questions engender more suspicion than would the case with a chaste and honest woman who stood accused.”

It is asked 1st what is to be done when, as often happens, the accused denies everything. We answer that the Judge has 3 points to consider, namely, her bad reputation, the evidence of the fact [nada mais genérico], and the words of the witnesses; and he must see whether all these agree together. And if, as very often is the case, they do not altogether agree together, since witches are variously accused of different deeds committed in some village or town; but the evidences of the fact are visible to the eye, as that a child has been harmed by sorcery, or, more often, a beast has been bewitched or deprived of its milk [o ser humano babaca vê o que quer ver; aliás, o ser humano em geral!]; and if a number of witnesses have come forward whose evidence, even if it show certain discrepancies (as that one s