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Voltaire's Calligrapher

by Pablo De Santis

20 year-old Dalessius naturally compares his beloved scripts with printed books but in a crazily gothic, and often blackly funny, quest also compares man (and woman) with machine and reason with conspiracy. Is Voltaire's pen really mightier than convention's sword? Read 'Voltaire's Calligrapher' to enjoy just one answer to this question.

Extract

'The Halifax gibbet, used in England in the sixteenth century, apparently with excellent results. I've almost decided on this model. It won't be hard to build: all you need is wood and a blade, and enough lead to make sure it drops fast and hard. If it works there'll be no need for executioners; everyone will be able to kill. It's a shame: us old executioners with our knowledge and our customs will disappear forever, replaced by clerks who simply have to pull a rope. We'll be forgotten, like calligraphers.'
Translated by Lisa Carter

Parallels

The Gold Bug by Edgar Allan Poe
 

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