Letter 41

, par Stewart

Usbek to Pharan in the Fatmé gardens

Rejoice, and recognize these sacred letters ; have the grand eunuch kiss them, and the intendant of my gardens : I forbid them to lay a hand on you before my return. Tell them to buy the eunuch who is lacking. [1] Fulfill your duty, as if you always had me watching you, for be sure that the more my mercies are great, the more you shall be punished, if you abuse them.

Paris this 25th day of the moon of Rhegeb 1713 [2]


[1Already in letter 25 Usbek’s confidence in his eunuchs, as in his wives, seemed uncertain.

[2This letter, which is a reply to the two previous ones, arrives six months and eighteen days later, the longest such interval in the novel. There must be delays in transmission, or else Usbek waited some time before replying. See the beginning of letter 65.