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« The Syrian Girl »

dimanche 25 mars 2012, par Pierre Dortiguier

We’re all fond of your voice, while takes place Syria
With such a lovely figure addressing to our mind-,
And in a green lodging quite fit to let disappear
The tumultuous loudness of calumny behind !
A lovely face in your case is really not easy
To be kept out of sight, and a Syrian Goddess
Would have such a smile, against hypocrisy
Of indecent people mistaking such firmness !
Sometimes your English suggests what is told
By Russian searchers, on Byzantine home
Of the English crown, making for itself bold
To disable the East without fearing a shame.
Are you the heart of an ancient nation ?
Which fights as does Assad confident in justice
Not in delusive words, but in demonstration
Of the need of being enlightened to enforce
The different races and faiths always alive
Because of Memory forbidding to enslave !

« If I had ever come in contact with one of those distinguished mountebanks, in the public squares of the city, I should have cried out them vehemently. » Forbear ! And do not thus compromise the Divinity by endeavouring to deceive us into a belief that he came down upon earth to teach that, which he had previously instilled into the minds of all, and with which of course all are acquainted ; your object, no doubt, is to make it subservient to some other purpose ; you wish to take advantage of our consent to eternal truths, to extort from us our consent to your usurpation ; I therefore denounce you to the people as a blaspheming tyrant. (Voltaire, The Philosophy of History, translated by Henry Wood Gandell, London 1829, chapter 53)

« Si je m’étais trouvé vis-à-vis de quelqu’un de ces grands charlatans dans la place publique je lui aurais crié : « Arrête, ne compromets point ainsi la Divinité ; tu veux me tromper si tu la fais descendre pour enseigner ce que nous savons tous ; tu veux sans doute la faire servir à quelque autre usage ; tu veux te prévaloir de mon consentement à des vérités éternelles, pour arracher de moi mon consentement à ton usurpation : je te défère au peuple comme un tyran qui blasphème. » Voltaire, Essai sur les Mœurs et l’Esprit des nations, première partie, La Philosophie de l’Histoire, chapitre 53.)

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