that lofty peep-hole on a level with the river’s current

To-day the upholders of the past, unable to deny these things, have adopted the expedient of smiling at them.
There has come into fashion a strange and easy manner of suppressing the revelations of history, of invalidating the commentaries of philosophy, of eliding all embarrassing facts and all gloomy questions.
A matter for declamations, say the clever.
Declamations, repeat the foolish. Jean-Jacques a declaimer; Diderot a declaimer; Voltaire on Calas, Labarre, and Sirven, declaimers.
I know not who has recently discovered that Tacitus was a declaimer, that Nero was a victim, and that pity is decidedly due to “that poor Holofernes.”
Facts, however, are awkward things to disconcert, and they are obstinate. The author of this book has seen, with his own eyes, eight leagues distant from Brussels,–there are relics of the Middle Ages there which are attainable for everybody,–at the Abbey of Villers, the hole of the oubliettes, in the middle of the field which was formerly the courtyard of the cloister, and on the banks of the Thil, four stone dungeons, half under ground, half under the water. cheap michael kors They were in pace.
Each of these dungeons has the remains of an iron door, a vault, and a grated opening which, on the outside, is two feet above the level of the river, and on the inside, six feet above the level of the ground.
Four feet of river flow past along the outside wall.
The ground is always soaked. The occupant of the in pace had this wet soil for his bed. In one of these dungeons, there is a fragment of an iron necklet riveted to the wall; in another, there can be seen a square box made of four slabs of granite, too short for a person to lie down in, too low for him to stand upright in.
A human being was put inside, with a coverlid of stone michael kors handbag on top.
This exists.
It can be seen. It can be touched.
These in pace, these dungeons, these iron hinges, these necklets, that lofty peep-hole on a level with the river’s current, that box of stone closed with a lid of granite like a tomb, with this difference, that the dead man here was a living being, that soil which is but mud, that vault hole, those oozing walls,– what declaimers!

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