The Story of Serapion part 7

Our old discussion would go on forever. Then there is another point which you ought seriously to consider. You must, I should suppose, perceive that I, who am talking with you, am leading the peaceful and happy life of a man reconciled with God. It is only after having passed through martyrdom that such a life dawns upon the soul. And if it has pleased the Almighty to cast a veil over what happened before my martyrdom, is it not a terrible and diabolical action to try to tear that veil away?’

“With all my wisdom, I stood confounded and silenced in the presence of this insane man! With the very rationality of his irrationality he had beaten me completely out of the field, and I saw the folly of my undertaking in all its fulness. Still more than that, I felt the reproach contained in what he had last said as deeply as I was astounded at the dim remembrance of his previous life which shone through it like some lofty, invulnerable higher spirit.

“Serapion seeme

The Story of Serapion part 6

And such is my fortune also. Every now and then there appear to me emissaries, sent by Satan, who try to persuade me that I am Count P of M, and that I ought to betake myself to the life of Courts, and all sorts of unholiness. Were it not for the efficacy of prayer, I should take these people by the shoulders, turn them out of my little garden, and carefully barricade it against them.

But I need not do so in your case; for you are, most unmistakably, the very feeblest of all the adversaries who have ever come to me, and I can vanquish you with your own weapons—those of ratiocination. It is insanity that is in question be I ween us. But if one of us two is suffering from that sad malady, it is evident that jyoa are so in a much greater degree than I. You maintain that it is a case of Fixed Idea that I believe myself to be Serapion the martyr—and I am quite aware that many persons hold the same opinion, or pretend that they do.

Now, if I am really insane, non

The Story of Serapion part 5

“ ‘That was so,’ said Serapion, turning pale, and his eyes glowing with a somber fire. ‘But Serapion the martyr, had no connection with that monk, who, in the fury of his asceticism, did battle against human nature. I am Serapion the martyr, to whom you allude.’

“ ‘What?’ I cried, with feigned surprise. ‘ You believe that you are that Serapion who suffered such a hideous martyrdom so many hundred years ago?’

“ ‘That,’ said Serapion with much calmness, ‘may appear incredible to you, and I admit that it must sound very wonderful to many who cannot see further than the points of their own noses. However, it is as I tell you. God’s omnipotence permitted me to survive my martyrdom, and to recover from its effects, because it was ordained, in His mysterious providence, that I had still to pass a certain period of my existence, to His praise and glory, here in the Theban desert. There is nothing now to remind me of the tortures which I suff

The Story of Serapion part 4

“Thus equipped, I set out one fine morning in search of my anchorite. “I found him working in his garden with hoe and spade, singing a devotional song. Wild pigeons, for which he had strewed an abundant supply of food, were fluttering and cooing round him, and a young deer was peeping through the leaves on the trellis.

He was evidently living in the closest intimacy with the woodland creatures. Not the faintest trace of insanity was visible in his face; it bore a quiet expression of remarkable serenity and happiness; and all this confirmed what Hr. S n B had told me. When he heard of my projected visit to the anchorite, he advised me to go some fine, bright, pleasant morning, because he said, his mind would be less troubled then and he would be more inclined to talk to a stranger, whereas at evening lie would shun all intercourse with mankind.

“As soon as he saw me he laid down his spade, and came towards me in a kind and friendly manner. I said that, being

The Story of Serapion part 3

He was taken to the lunatic asylum at B, and there the methodical system, based upon profound psychological knowledge, pursued by the medical man then in charge of that institution, succeeded in bringing about a condition of much less excitement, and greater quietness in the form of his malady. Whether this doctor, true to his theory, gave the patient an opportunity of escaping, or whether he himself found the means of doing so, escape he did, and was lost sight of for a considerable time.

“Serapion appeared, ultimately, in the country some eight miles from B, where I had seen him; and the doctor declared that if any true compassion was to be shown him, he should not be again driven into a condition of wild excitement; but that, if he was to be at peace, and, after his fashion, happy, he should be left in these woods in perfect freedom, to do just as he liked; in which case he, the said doctor, would be responsible for the consequences.

Accordingly, the police

The Story of Serapion part 2

“With which he arose and walked down into the ravine.

“I felt as if I must be in a dream. Presently I heard the sound of wheels close by. I made my way through the thickets, and found my space in a forest track, where I saw a countryman going along in a cart. I overtook him, and he shortly brought me to the high road lending to B. As we went along I told him my adventure, and asked if he knew who the extraordinary man in the forest was.

‘Oh, sir,’ he said, ‘that was the worthy man who calls himself Priest Serapion, and who has been living in these woods for some years, In n little hut which he built himself. People say he’s not quite right in his head, but he is a nice, good gentleman, never does any harm, and willies us of the village with pious discourses, giving us all the good advice that he can.’

“I had come across the anchorite some six or eight miles from B so I concluded that something must be known of him there, and this proved

The Story of Serapion part 1

E. T. A. Hoffmann (1776—1822)

Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann was a master of one particular type of short story, which was to a great extent a product of the romantic tendencies of his times. His earliest collection of tales, Fantasy Pieces in the Manner of Callot, are characterized by those qualities of fantasy and mystery with which his name is always associated. The collection under the title of The Serapion Brethren, is set within a “frame narrative of the storytelling club in Berlin, where Hoffmann spent the last six years of his life as judge of a criminal court.” Poe was especially indebted to Hoffmann in the composition of his stories, as were several of the most important Nineteenth Century fiction writers all over Europe.

The present translation, by Alexander Ewing, is reprinted from The Serapion Brethren, Bohn Library, London, by permission of the publishers, G. Bell and Sons.

The Story of Serapion

From The Serapion Brethr

Princes Isles

The Princes’ Isles is an area where the natura is best preserved in Istanbul.

Buyukada

Buyukada; the island of monks retired into seclusion, the center of Adalar district, the biggest of the nine islands is a big island as its Turkish name refers, famous with being a land where people of all religions gather for wishing and praying. On the certain days at the monasteries and churches decorating its hills, drink Aya Yorgi (St. George) wines and where there are no motor vehicles if you ignore the ones “official use” whose number has increased up to the limits of patience recently, with its pavilions, Anadolu Kulubu, hundreds of phaetons, thousands of bicycles with plate numbers.

The Princes’ Isles

Taking one of its old names from the exiled princes and the other from the monks that prefer here to retire into I seclusion, now they are now simply called The Princes’ Isles (Adalar). It used to be Papadonissia, perhaps the qualities th

Istanbul Mosques

Some of the mosques in Istanbul reach out the sky while some
others are hardly noticeable due to their small size. Some old churches had
begun serving as mosques after the Ottomans conquered the city. The most
splendid ones of these mosques are accepted to be national monuments and are
not used for religious purposes today.

Kalenderhane Mosque

Kalenderhane Mosque that is around Bozdagan Kemeri (Aqueduct) was allocated for dervishes during Ottoman period. Bozdogan Kemeri (Aqueduct) was built by the end of the 12* century. The mosaics and pictures that were found during the restoration, including a Franciscan Epic have not been open for visitors yet.

Fethiye Mosque

Theotokos Pammakaristos, The Joyous Mother of God, from I2th-i3th
century was the centre of Orthodox patriarchs. The church was converted to the
mosque in 1591. The southern chapel with mosaics is worth to see. Among these
mosaics are the Christ Pantocrator, surrounded by twelve p

Istanbul Churches

Istanbul met Christianity in the 4th century, while, Paganism was dominant before.

The first Christian churches are Havariyyun, Haghia Sophia and Haghia Eirene. Many churches had been built until the conquest of Istanbul. There the churches of different sects and religious orders such as Nestorianism, Monophysism, Catholicism, Orthodoxy, Syrian Christianity, Gregorianism, Keldani, Dominicanism, Franciscanism has been in Istanbul. Moreover, different nations such as Greek, Armenian, Latin and Genoese also has had their own churches.

The Armenian Patriarchate

The Armenian Patriarchate in Istanbul is one of the four hierarchical centers of the Armenian Church -the others are in Erivan, Beirut and Jerusalem. The first patriarch of Istanbul, Hovaghim I, was in charge during the reign of Fatih Sultan Mehmet. Since r64i, the Virgin Mary (Meryem Ana) Central Church and the traditional wooden Patriarchate building of Istanbul Armenian Patriarchate is in Kumkap