Page:Biagi - The Centaurians.djvu/205

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The Centaurians

shackless justice, reigning centuries of calm. Centauri, however, brought about many radical changes. His strenuousness ended the quietude of centuries, destroyed the ancient laws of his ancestors and created new ones. The people welcomed the new regime. "Progression!" they cried, but ignored entirely that which was next to Centauri's heart.

"Progression by degrees is more thorough." The people pleaded and vetoed the order "to abolish all Sun Temples and erect new houses of worship to Him, who is supreme."

Centauri wished to found a new sect and when learning of the veto, sorrowfully remarked: "I have ignored the Gradual, yet will live to realize the suggestion as fact." He sacrificed his wish to the people. He set a new value upon Trade, which in this ideal world defined the full significance of the word—merchandise for merchandise—limiting the circulation of currency to such an extent that in the present era of plenty money was superfluous, and exchanged merely for form in trifling transactions.

Many schools, libraries were stationed throughout the city; handsome buildings luxuriously equipped. Private institutions had long been abolished, young ladies' seminaries and muscle-developing colleges, where fancy sums are expended for a veneer which renders the subject pitifully unfit, lacking even the ability to assist themselves in necessity. Mere useless toys of frivolity issued yearly from stilted preparatories—unseasoned veal