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XXI. Letters. Personal Records. Dated Notes Index
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And in this case I know that I shall make few enemies seeing that no one will believe what I can say of him; for they are but


p. 413

few whom his vices have disgusted, and he only dislikes those men whose natures are contrary to those vices. And many hate their fathers, and break off friendship with those who reprove their vices; and he will not permit any examples against them, nor any advice.

If you meet with any one who is virtuous do not drive him from you; do him honour, so that he may not have to flee from you and be reduced to hiding in hermitages, or caves or other solitary places to escape from your treachery; if there is such an one among you do him honour, for these are our Saints upon earth; these are they who deserve statues from us, and images; but remember that their images are not to be eaten by you, as is still done in some parts of India  690 where, when the images have according to them, performed some miracle, the priests cut them in pieces, being of wood, and give them to all the people of the country, not without payment; and each one grates his portion very fine, and puts it upon the first food he eats; and thus believes that by faith he has eaten his saint who then preserves him from all perils. What do you think here, Man, of your own species? Are you so wise as you believe yourselves to be? Are these things to be done by men?


412:689 : Below this text we read gusstino--Giustino and in another passage on the same page Justin is quoted (No. 1210, 1. 48). The two have however no real connection.

413:690 15: In explanation of this passage I have received the following communication from Dr. G. W. LEITNER of Lahore: "So far as Indian customs are known to us, this practice spoken of by Leonardo as 'still existing in some parts of India' is perfectly unknown; and it is equally opposed to the spirit of Hinduism, Mohammedanism and Sikhism. In central Thibet the ashes of the dead, when burnt, are mixed with dough, and small figures--usually of Buddha--are stamped out of them and some are laid in the grave while others are distributed among the relations. The custom spoken of by Leonardo may have prevailed there but I never heard of it." Possibly Leonardo refers here to customs of nations of America.

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