Candide by Voltaire, Lowell Bair (translator)

By Voltaire, Lowell Bair (translator)

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I have left abundance where there was want before. True—only by ruining myself. ” To people his town he took advantage of certain persecutions then proceeding in Geneva. He set up workshops to make silk stockings. He established a lace-making industry. Above all, he attracted to his seat excellent watchmakers, and took as much trouble to market the watches of his subjects as to administer an empire. He recommended the Ferney watches to all his friends in Paris: “They make them much better here than at Geneva .

It was in some measure due to Voltaire that French, in the eighteenth century, was the supreme language of Europe, and the glory of that tongue, coruscating in the mirrors of the European Courts, encircled the old man of Ferney with a startling resplendence. Finally, and above all else, he was marvelously alive; and mankind, dreading boredom even more than anxieties, is grateful to those who make life throb with a swifter, stronger beat. In the downpour of pamphlets, epistles, stories, poems, and letters that was showered on France for so many years from Cirey and Berlin and Ferney, there were trivialities and excellences.

He asked alms of several solemn individuals who all replied that if he continued to ply that trade he would be shut up in a house of correction to teach him better manners. Next he approached a man who had just spoken about charity for a whole hour in front of a large assembly. This orator scowled at him and said, “What are you doing here? ” “There is no effect without a cause,” replied Candide modestly. “All things are necessarily connected and arranged for the best. ” “You don't deserve to eat,” said the orator.

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