Page:Carroll - Notes by an Oxford Chiel.djvu/135

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withal too fantastic to be useful. And if this be not enough, you are to note further that, were it all one arch, it must needs cut short one of those shafts which grace the Quadrangle on all sides——and that were a monstrous and unheard-of thing, in good sooth, look you.

Ven. In good sooth. Sir, if I look, I cannot miss seeing that there be three such shafts already cut short by doorways: so that it hath fair ensample to follow.

Tutor. Then will I take other ground, Sir, and affirm (for I trust I have not learned Logic in vain) that to cut short the shaft were a common and vulgar thing to do. But indeed a single arch, where folk might smoothly enter in, were wholly adverse to Nature, who formeth never a mouth without setting a tongue as an obstacle in the midst thereof.

Ven. Sir, do you tell me that the block of masonry, between the gateways, was left there of set purpose, to hinder those that would enter in?

Tutor. Trust me, it was even so; for firstly, we may thereby more easily controul the entering crowds ('divide et impera' say the Ancients), and secondly, in this matter a wise man