Page:Auerbach-Spinozanovel.djvu/321

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299
PROSELYTES.

accept the doctrine of Descartes as the best deduction from Calvin's. Queen Christina, the most zealous follower of this philosopher, who taught her himself, can find proofs in it on which to ground her conversion to the Catholic Church."

"The Catholic religion is the mother Church, and it is a natural impulse to return to it."

"Speak out," said Oldenburg to Spinoza. "I see by the corners of your mouth you wish to answer, If the Catholic Church is the mother, the Jewish is the grandmother Church, and could just as well demand that we should don her vestments. But we will take another example. Turenne is so pre-eminently a field marshal by nature, he will only bear the star of his own faith on his breast, standing in the front, and not in the ranks among the members of the Catholic Church like a common soldier. Is he not right to do so?"

Spinoza noticed the digression as Van den Ende, who had come into the circle with Kerkering, interposed:

"Turenne is a soldier, and soldiers, who hourly risk their lives, do not willingly lay aside their familiar armor; they think this or that superstition has made them shot free; but if once peace were made I do not think it would be difficult to make Turenne turn Catholic."

"Were he capable of loving a girl tenderly and ardently," added Kerkering, "he would soon join