From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

earth,' so begin to narrate; you must do it in the end."

Baruch then related the well-known legend of how Alexander advanced to the gates of Eden with his army. Oldenburg then told, out of the old poems of the priest Lamprecht and Ulrich von Eschenbach, the glorious legends in which the poetical German spirit had celebrated the great deeds of Alexander. And in interchange of opinions on the great hero of old times, whose life, though he had found no Homer, the poetical legends of all nations, both Eastern and Western, had colored in brightest hues, the three passed a pleasant hour. The stranger and Olympia stared in astonishment at Baruch when he declared with quiet decision that fear was the original and sustaining cause of superstition. He quoted Alexander as a striking proof of this, for whenever circumstances were unfavorable, or misfortunes occurred, he called in sacrifices and superstitious observances to his aid. While Baruch sought the corroborating passages in Curtius, from Book iv. Chap. 10, and Book V. Chap. 4, etc., his two listeners recognized an extraordinary mind that would shed new meanings on the past.

From that time Oldenburg came oftener, when he knew that Baruch was with Olympia, and she was glad to see the two young men become daily more friendly. She took a certain pride in being