Page:Auerbach-Spinozanovel.djvu/58

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36
SPINOZA.

messenger from the band of murderers who called themselves a tribunal. Each one, I thought, would throw back his mantle and disclose the blood-red I on his breast. The old freedom from care had disappeared; I knew only fear and mistrust. Waking and sleeping, the figure of Geronimo was before me; 'you too, you too,' it said to me, 'may die such a death; deserted by the faith that was a plaything of thy cowardice; tossed hopelessly betwixt truth and lies.' I sold all my goods, and not without great danger—for you know no one is allowed to leave Spain without special permission from the king—was with God's help free. I sent my children out of the country by different ways; they have remained in Leyden. If God preserves my life, I will bring them here next week. If I should relate all that I suffered till I arrived here, it would keep us till the morrow, and I should not have told a tenth part; but it is already late, and if it pleases God, we shall remain longer together."

"Yes, the lights are already burnt out, and tomorrow is the sixth Iyar; we must rise early, so we will, in God's name, retire." So spake the father, and they all parted.

Pleasant as a Jewish house is on Friday evening in the festive hour, as weird and strange is it at the time of separation. The seven lights burn alone in the empty sitting-room, and it is a strange sensation to imagine it as light after light burns out;