Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Hobbs: Leviathan ... two things

I can't tell if he believed in fairies or not. He says not, but his words say, "yes."

He couldn't spell worth beans. [yes, yes, I know words were spelled differently way back when, but I wanted to say that anyway.

The Fairies in what Nation soever they converse, have but one Universall King, which some Poets of ours call King Oberon ; but the Scripture calls Beelzebub, Prince of Damons. The Ecclesiastiques likewise, in whose Dominions soever they be found, acknowledge but one Universall King, the Pope.

The Ecclesiastiques are Spirituall men, and Ghostly Fathers. The Fairies are Spirits, and Ghosts. Fairies and Ghosts inhabite Darknesse, Solitudes, and Graves. The Ecclesiastiques walke in Obscurity of Doctrine, in Monasteries, Churches, and Church-yards.

The Ecclesiastiques have their Cathedrall Churches ; which, in what Towne soever they be erected, by vertue of Holy Water, and certain Charmes called Exorcismes, have the power to make those Townes, Cities, that is to say, Seats of Empire. The Fairies also have their enchanted Castles, and certain Gigantique Ghosts, that domineer over the Regions round about them.

The Fairies are not to be seized on; and brought to answer for the hurt they do. So also the Ecclesiastiques vanish away from the Tribunals of Civill Justice.

The Ecclesiastiques take from young men, the use of Reason, by certain Charms compounded of Metaphysiques, and Miracles, and Traditions, and Abused Scripture, whereby they are good for nothing else, but to execute what they command them. The Fairies likewise are said to take young Children out of their Cradles, and to change them into Naturall Fools, which Common people do therefore call Elves, and are apt to mischief.

In what Shop, or Operatory the Fairies make their Enchantment, the old Wives have not determined. But the Operatories of the Clergy, are well enough known to be the Universities, that received their Discipline from Authority Pontificiall. [387]

When the Fairies are displeased with any body, they are said to send their Elves, to pinch them. The Ecclesiastiques, when they are displeased with any Civill State, make also their Elves, that is, Superstitious, Enchanted Subjects, to pinch their Princes, by preaching Sedition ; or one Prince enchanted with promises, to pinch another.

The Fairies marry not; but there be amongst them Incubi, that have copulation with flesh and bloud. The Priests also marry not.

The Ecclesiastiques take the Cream of the Land, by Donations of ignorant men, that stand in aw of them, and by Tythes: So also it is in the Fable of Fairies, that they enter into the Dairies, and Feast upon the Cream, which they skim from the Milk.

What kind of Money is currant in the Kingdome of Fairies, is not recorded in the Story. But the Ecclesiastiques in their Receipts accept of the same Money that we doe; though when they are to make any Payment, it is in Canonizations, Indulgences, and Masses.

To this, and such like resemblances between the Papacy, and the Kingdome of Fairies, may be added this, that as the Fairies have no existence, but in the Fancies of ignorant people, rising from the Traditions of old Wives, or old Poets : so the Spirituall Power of the Pope (without the bounds of his own Civill Dominion) consisteth onely in the Fear that Seduced people stand in, of their Excommunications; upon hearing of false Miracles, false Traditions, and false Interpretations of the Scripture.

2 comments:

Harry H said...

You didn't give a date for this document, but it sounds if it was written prior to the protestant reformation and the author was using wives' tales about faeries to compare them to the controlling forces exerted by the Vatican on the rest of the western world. His point being that the Pope's authority in the world is as real as faeries are to him.

Sha'el, Princess of Pixies said...

Thomas Hobbes wrote Leviathan; it was published in 1651. He was an Anglican and virulently anti-Catholic.

His "fairy" statements have puzzled scholars for generations.