Page:Thus Spake Zarathustra - Thomas Common - 1917.djvu/171

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uneasiness- and then did all the people say that the devil had taken Zarathustra. His disciples laughed, sure enough, at this talk; and one of them said even: "Sooner would I believe that Zarathustra has taken the devil." But at the bottom of their hearts they were all full of anxiety and longing: so their joy was great when on the fifth day Zarathustra appeared amongst them.

And this is the account of Zarathustra's interview with the fire-dog:

The earth, said he, has a skin; and this skin has diseases. One of these diseases, for example, is called "man."

And another of these diseases is called "the fire-dog": concerning him men have greatly deceived themselves, and let themselves be deceived.

To fathom this mystery did I go o'er the sea; and I have seen the truth naked, verily! barefooted up to the neck.

Now do I know how it is concerning the fire-dog; and likewise concerning all the spouting and subversive devils, of which not only old women are afraid.

"Up with you, fire-dog, out of your depth!" cried I, "and confess how deep that depth is! Whence comes that which you snort up?

You drink copiously at the sea: that does your embittered eloquence betray! In sooth, for a dog of the depth, you take your nourishment too much from the surface!

At the most, I regard you as the ventriloquist of the earth: and ever, when I have heard subversive and spouting devils speak, I have found them like you: embittered, mendacious, and shallow.

You understand how to roar and obscure with ashes! You are the best braggarts, and have sufficiently learned the art of making dregs boil.